We continue with Neal Adams’ return to Batman with the second issue of Batman Odyssey.
We start with Bruce again telling some unseen person the story that began the last one. Bruce explains how the scene with Man-Bat was actually Bruce waiting for Langstrom to deliver some codes so Bruce would know the source of a donation, which turned out to be Ra’s al Ghul. Bruce then goes back to the museum story. Where last we left with a bunch of goons shooting up hydrogen tanks in vehicles with a professor and young daughter caught in the cross-hairs.
Fortunately the guns don’t do anything as the hydrogen was infused in a hydride. An explosion then happens, and Bruce explains that it was Robin taking out semi trucks. Batman comes up behind the goons and starts going to town asking them questions about who they work for and gives an explanation for why the hydrogen was not exploding. As the goons turn their guns on Batman, Robin jumps in and lends a hand, Batman then goes to find the professor, Dr. Petrason, and his daughter. Once he finds them, he tries to get them to leave, hides them in a corner and then heads out to see if its clear. Unfortunately a whole bunch of goons were waiting for him and Batman is lit up ala Sonny Corleone at the tool booth in The Godfather.
We then pick up more of Bruce’s narration as he explains that at the moment he collapsed, he was thinking about the parts to his first adventure story that he didn’t get a chance to tell Robin last issue. We cut to that scene, Bruce on top of the train with the Spanish agent, who explains that Bruce did not completely knock out the two guys who Bruce punched out the last time. However they jumped off the train and the agent seems to want to blow the train, with the passengers in it. Bruce now has to move quickly the get the passengers off that train.
First he manages to get the car with the explosives away from the passenger car. Then its time to get the passengers off the train. However they are frightened, and have no clue as to what to think of this costume, even thinking him to be a vampire! Since everyone, even the conductor, seems to be ignoring what Bruce is saying at this point, Bruce unfortunately has to resort to brandishing two pistols in order to scare the passengers into the next car. All except for one, an elderly woman whom he has to carry off onto the next car.
The bomb does go off, the car gets thrown off the tracks, Batman figured though that no one would get killed though, though he and the old woman did get hurled from the train and into a pile of dirt. As Batman and the old woman are getting up, the conductor rushes in, proclaiming Batman to be a murderer and saying that Batman was the one who destroyed the train. The conductor then shoots Batman right in the same spot Bruce was telling his unseen conversation partner about in the first page of the first issue. The inertia of the shooting causes the conductor to pass out, and Batman does the same.
We then cut back to Bruce talking about the incident, and then explaining how since that day he has made sure his costume is bullet proof and a special one is rigged with a fake blood distribution system, like the one at the pier story, which is apparently two months prior to this conversation. We cut back to that scene and we end on the thugs preparing to finish the job by shooting Batman in the head.
This was a solid continuation of the story Adams had began with. The Langstrom story is left dangling, but we do have 10 more issues to go. The splash images of Bruce getting shot up were a highlight, sort of reinforcing the idea of Bruce being very much a street level hero that could get in a bad way with just some common thugs. Can’t wait to see how things progress with the story Adams is telling.
Batman: Odyssey #2:
Reviewed by SteveJRogers