Writer: Rob Williams
Pencils: V Ken Marion
Inks: Sandu Florea
Colors: Dinei Riberio
Letters: Steve Wands
Cover: Guillem March & Tomeu Morey
2017 ENDS WITH A BANG
Trinity has had amazing highs and some trudging lows in 2017; and thankfully this final issue of the year is a representation what works best about the book – character interaction. This series has always been at its strongest when it focuses less on the action and dives deeper into the relationship between DC‘s three most iconic heroes (Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman for those wondering). Issue 16 of the series hits that nail on the head by giving us a look into the often uneasy dynamic between the three, and shows us that Batman is willing to make more compromises than his super powered teammates to make sure the innocent are protected.
This issue is high on action but doesn’t skimp on heart.
BREAK DOWN ( SPOILERS)
Batman starts off the issue doing what he does best; brooding over the city. He reflects on the meaning of New Years and of time itself (a theme you will find prevalent in this issue), and remembers the night of his parent’s passing as well as lamenting that he was not present for the birth of his som. He then swoops into action and crashes through the windshield of a van being piloted by two members of the Kobra Cult and knocks the pair out. As Batman is working he is commutating with Deadshot off panel and instructs him to stand down.
One of the Kobra operatives ingests a pill that mutates him into a hulking reptile creature who vows that Kobra will do what villains do and “have their revenge.” The monster states that Deadshot’s daughter, Zoe, is in one of the many vans the cult has around the city and will die at midnight as revenge for Deadshot murdering their leader. Deadshot ignores Batman’s order to stand down, and blasts the creature with a rocket-launcher.
This explosion attracts the attention of Wonder Woman and Superman who are in their civilian disguises enjoying a Wayne-less New Year’s party at Wayne Enterprises in Times Square. Before being interrupted the two were discussing how much “like Bruce” it was to not be at his own party. Superman especially felt this way about their friendship in general stating that it is hard for him to remember that Bruce is one of the good guys sometimes.
Diana and Clark arrive on the scene just before Deadshot delivers a killing blow to the snake-creature. Clark reprimands Deadshot in a very fatherly manner essentially telling him he is grounded and going back to Belle Reve Penitentiary. Batman intervenes and informs them that Deadshot is working with Batman under a 24 hour leave granted by Amanda Waller. Superman and Wonder Woman cautiously accept this partnership.
Clark flies off to search the remaining vans for Zoe. As he searches he thinks about how happy he is to have his son Jon but is saddened by the realization that one day Jon will grow into a man and leave “like a rocket ship heading to the starts”, as Clark puts it.
Meanwhile on the ground, Wonder Woman uses her lasso of truth to interrogate on the Kobra members. She discovers that not even the drivers know where the girl is and are just blindly following orders. Superman picks up some police chatter about the vans carrying bombs have blocked traffic on all of the major bridges into Manhattan.
Batman instructs Superman to handle the bombs and tries to appeal to Deadshot villainous side in order to better understand the logic behind Kobra’s actions. Deadshot informs Batman that he would use a red herring to distract them from the real threat. This revelation causes Batman to realize that the New Year’s celebration was the real target. He grapples away leaving Deadshot alone and feeling betrayed.
As Bruce suspected, the party is interrupted by multiple mutated snake-men. You know, standard New Year’s affair. Wonder Woman finally gets her chance to monologue about time and how being an immortal could be a dull experience; but states that only true if one lives a selfish life. She vows to care for and save as many others as she can, which make her life joyous and meaningful. She and the other heroes crash through a window saving the guests from the grasp of the Kobra operatives. One final cult member emerges with a quantum bomb strapped to his chest and wired to his heart set to blow up at midnight, which is mere seconds away. All seems lost until a bullet fired by Deadshot flies through the back of the beast’s skull at literally the last second. Superman quickly flies the monster out of the building and all is saved.
Deadshot sets off to leave to find his daughter despite Batman’s pleas to stay and let him handle it. Deadshot states that he and Batman both know that he can’t just stop searching for his daughter and keeps walking, only to be stopped by Wonder Woman’s lasso of truth.
I will leave the ending page up for you to read yourself. There’s no giant revelations at the end, just some heartwarming sentiments from a killer with a heart of gold.
This is a great holiday special and wonderful way for the series to round out the calendar year. If you are looking for profound story-telling look elsewhere; but if you are just looking for a good time and some feels alongside some engaging artwork then you can’t go wrong with this issue.
The pacing isn’t perfect but it works for a self contained issue. It is entirely believable that the events in this issue take place over the course of an hour. The art is also worth noting. There are some things that look a little off, I’m not a huge fan of and of the mask-less faces in this story, but the composition and action sequences are extremely enjoyable and add a ton of flair to the story telling. Deadshot in particular looks fantastic in this issue.