I review Talon #11 by James Tynion IV and Szymon Kudranski, published by DC Comics.
Story: James Tynion IV | Art: Szymon Kudranski | Cover: Szymon Kudranski | Publisher: DC Comics | Price: $2.99
The clash between Talon and Bane’s forces comes to an epic finale on Santa Prisca as Casey Washington desperately seeks Batman to help him eliminate the Court of Owls once and for all.
Now we come to Talon, one of the most fun books that DC’s putting out recently but over the last few issues, it seems to have lost its charm. Don’t get me wrong, the storyline is as great as ever and this was one of the strongest issues in story yet, but there’s something that I really don’t like about this issue that’s preventing it from reaching the higher standards of the Rating scale, and it’s mainly due to the art, provided by Szymon Kudranski.
I didn’t like the art a lot with #10, but it wasn’t really that bad, or at least when you compare it to this issue. Judging by this I really hope that Szymon Kudranski doesn’t become the regular Talon artist when this book returns following Villain’s Month because it could quickly go on the chopping block, which is a real shame because I’ve been loving this series since the get go. I want to know what happens next to Calvin, Casey – and the Court. We got a pretty good idea at the fate of Sebastian Clark with this issue and that was one of the major highlights for me, with the twist being really unexpected, allowing for a nice tie-in to Trinity War and the upcoming Forever Evil event, which I will certainly be picking up. But back to the art, it just didn’t grab me. I’d stick with this book in normal circumstances regardless of the poor art because I love the character and I hope it doesn’t get cancelled, but Image and Vertigo are putting out a load of new releases in the near future and I need to make room for them on my pull list.
And quite frankly, I think that Talon may be one of the books that has to go. I’ve been praising it since #0, but ever since the Birds of Prey crossover, it’s started to go on a downward spiral thanks to the art. Don’t get me wrong, the storyline is fun and entertaining with each issue being very unpredictable, but the art… well, the art is not this book’s strong point, and this book needs to get a better artist ASAP, as Szymon Kudranski’s art is the major obstacle, and indeed – the only complaint that I’m having with this series at the moment. However, it’s a pretty big hurdle for this book to overcome, as you can’t really have a good issue without both the storyline and the art being great.
But now with that mini-rant out of the way, let’s move onto the story, which is really ramping up things when it comes to tension, unpredictability, fun and awesomeness. This certainly isn’t the best place to start for newcomers to the book, as this series is very much connected to the point where it’s hard to tell where a storyarc ends and another begins. The story as a result is very fun to read, and in terms of plot, this is the best fringe-Bat book out there at the moment.
A lot happens in this book, to the point where it’s quite hard to go through it without spoiling it. With so many characters being newcomers to the DC-Universe, literally nobody is safe and the only ones who you know are not going to die are those like Bane and of course Batman.
Therefore, I can offer my recommendation for this book if you love Bane or the Court of Owls, want to see one of the only regular DC books that isn’t a Justice League one that leads up to Villain’s month, but I’d advise against reading this issue if you’re a newcomer, and if you don’t like Szymon Kudranski’s art. This book would have easily been my pick of the week if it had the right artist (above the likes of Thor: God of Thunder and American Vampire), it’s just that Kudranski is currently the only person that’s preventing this book from becoming brilliant at the moment.