Hallelujah! Finally, Dick Grayson has stopped playing 007 and returned to the black and blue in Nightwing: Rebirth #1. It’s a small victory for those who stuck through the peculiar Grayson series, hoping Dick would find his way back to his mask. There are quite a few spoilers below, so turn back now if you prefer to live on the surprised side of life.
The prodigal son returns to Gotham in Nightwing: Rebirth #1 to take up his former mantle. However, what begins as a heart-warming story showcasing Dick’s close relationship with Damian and Bruce Wayne, quietly turns into a humdinger as we find out Nightwing’s next challenge: the Parliament of Owls. Revisiting the Owls’ ties with Dick proves to be a stroke of genius by Tim Seeley, since ‘The Court of the Owls’ story arc is arguably one of the best Grayson-centric stories alongside ‘The Black Mirror’. But that’s not all: there’s another twist in the tale as Helen Bertinelli also revisits her masked past, ensuring that Nightwing will be busy for the next couple of issues.
While the story sets a healthy bar of good things to come, the artwork of Nightwing: Rebirth #1 isn’t quite as comparable. Looking more at home in IDW’s TMNT series, Yanick Paquette’s art appears rushed and incomplete. Perhaps we’ve been spoilt by terrific art in the Nightwing series of future past, but this issue lacked the same pizzazz.
Like the rest of the Rebirth titles, Nightwing: Rebirth #1 sets the course in the right motion. It’s obvious that DC has listened and embarked on a new direction with its titles, pandering to what the fans want. While this isn’t always such a good thing for creativity, it does mean we get Nightwing back, so it can’t be too bad.