PLEASE NOTE BEFORE PROCEEDING! This post contains a major spoiler, so if you are not current on Batman Beyond, look away now!
I’m not big on Mary Sue characters. I like my heroes and heroines with some flaws — a little dirt beneath their fingernails and some weaknesses. Perfect is boring.
But it also bothers me when a hero/heroine is gratuitously compromised or written in a way that is wildly out of character. At least offer a plausible explanation for why the person went off the deep end before sending them there in a burst of flames.
Which brings us to Batman Beyond #4, in which we learn that the new Hush — the nut who has been terrorizing Gotham City and killing folks — is none other than (drumroll) …
… Dick Grayson. That’s right. As in the previously well-adjusted former Boy Wonder/Nightwing and current Batman.
All together now: Really?
“Well, that was nauseatingly lame,” V. said.
Before the big reveal, I dug where the comic was going with the mystery of New Hush. And since Batman Beyond has always hinged upon Bruce Wayne’s (probably inevitable) isolation, I liked the addition of a middle-aged Grayson, still wounded by his former mentor’s abandonment after he nearly died. Earlier in this issue, when Dick warns Terry McGinnis that Bruce doesn’t care about anything but his crusade, well, it’s hard to argue the point.
But Dick becoming a murderous villain because he felt betrayed? I’m sorry, but that is some Jason Todd, Lazarus Pit bullshit. Perhaps this mini-series will provide a powerful explanation for turning one of DC’s most likable and level-headed characters into a maniac with a bandage fetish. Perhaps. It occurred to me that this could all be a hoax, and that some shape-shifter is impersonating Dick. Perhaps. But for now, I can only scratch my head at the nonsense that brought an interesting story to such an awkward, screeching halt.