The Return of Manhunter

manhunter…for me was the best part of last week’s new “Batman Streets of Gotham.” While there have been some major upheavals to the bat family since Batman’s death in “Final Crisis” #6, most notably the creation of the network and Dick Grayson taken up the mantle of Gotham’s protector, (again) I was more interested in Kate Spencer’s return and her relocation to Gotham as the city’s new D.A.

I have always been a huge fan of the character and while it is sad to see that Marc Andreyko’s brilliant creation has been reduced to back up status, at least nine pages is preferable to having her disappear from current DCU continuity entirely.

Kate’s move to Gotham is a logical transition for the character and while Los Angeles may have been a cool backdrop for her superheroic exploits, Gotham’s current state of chaos is ripe for storytelling possibilities. This back up feature in BSOG was rendered beautifully by the capable Georges Jeanty whose pencils regularly adorn the pages of Dark Horse’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer ongoing. Here,  Jeanty’s visuals are equally impressive setting the dark tone and mood needed to convey the desperation and utter hopelessness of the setting.

Also, while it is regrettable that we have been robbed of following the character in her own comic and therefore lost the cool cast of supporting characters like Dylan the techie, it is amazing to see how much Andreyko is able to pack into a short back up feature. Then again, I should not be surprised as he has always been a strong writer.

For example, The dialouge is impecabbly good, witness Kate’s exchange with Barbara Gordon or read over the poignant flashback scene where Kate says goodbye to her son upon taking the new job. Paul Dini gives us an enjoyable read in the main story which picks up from the events in the recent Battle for the Cowl mini-series, the only drawback for this comic was the hefty $3.99 price tag, but if Manhunter is going to be the regular back up feature on this title, it might be worth it, so sign me up and let Gotham’s criminals beware, Manhunter is back in business baby!

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