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Batman Detective Comics #1006

Review by Paul Bowler

Dark, supernatural forces stalk Gotham in Detective Comics #1006 as the Spectre enlists Batman’s help in solving the mysterious disappearance of Jim Corrigan – the GCPD detective who is the host for the spirit of God’s Vengeance.

With this issue of Detective Comics writer Peter J Tomasi weaves a grim, suspenseful tale featuring the Spectre. This otherworldly character hasn’t featured prominently for a while now, so Kyle Hotz’s eye-catching cover immediately caught my attention, and I found myself instantly caught up in the gripping story within.

Tomasi quickly sets the tone by setting up a beguiling mystery for the Dark Knight when he is recruited by the Spectre after he can no longer feel Jim Corrigan’s presence. Though we are privy from the outset to Detective Corrigan’s ambush and abduction by bizarre green hooded cultists, who also murder his partner, we are still left just as much in the dark as the Spectre and Batman as to what has happened to Corrigan. The plot is skilfully crafted by Tomasi to keep us guessing every step of the way. From the striking opening scenes when Corrigan is attacked, through to Batman’s daunting initial rooftop encounter with the Spectre, and their eventual investigation of the gruesome crime scene the pace of this issue doesn’t let up for a moment.

The artwork by Kyle Hotz conjures up a wonderfully creepy atmosphere and gothic looking Gotham. Indeed, Hotz’s impressive work here in realizing Batman’s grim world reminded me a bit of Kelley Jones’ take on Batman, albeit in far more restrained in style, but still nevertheless equally as captivating if, like me, you are a fan of somewhat darker supernatural themed Batman stories and atheistics for the Dark Knight. The Spectre’s aforementioned rooftop recruitment of Batman is a big highlight, as is the gore soaked charnel house crime scene that serves as the primary focal point which drives much of the issues narrative. Similarly, the sombre color palette employed by colorist David Baron stylishly complements Hotz’s artwork to accentuate both the gritty and paranormal elements of Tomasi’s story perfectly.

It was great to see the Batman working alongside the Spectre in this issue and I thoroughly enjoyed this change of pace and tone following Tomaski’s Arkham Knight storyline. With its mysteriously compelling story by Peter J Tomaski and atmospheric artwork by Kyle Hotz Detective Comics #1006 is well worth checking out – especially if a decidedly stranger and more unearthly tale of the Dark Knight is your thing.

Publisher: DC Comics

Writer: Peter J Tomasi / Artist: Kyle Hotz

Colorist: David Baron / Letterer: Rob Leigh / Cover: Kyle Hotz