As much as I love Dick Grayson in the Batman costume, Nightwing #1 was more or less of a reality check for me. It's clear that Dick makes a better Nightwing, and Dick himself admits to it early in the book. Simply put, he is Nightwing, and Bruce Wayne is Batman.
As Dick looks forward to his return in the Nightwing costume, his past has ironically also literally returned, as the Haley Circus makes it way to Gotham City. It's the circus's first visit back to Gotham since Dick's parents were murdered performing their trapeze act. (Circus's first time back? Effects of the reboot??) Coincidentally, a new villain from Dick Grayson's past is also in Gotham looking to cause our hero some trouble...
The issue is a good read for new readers, and even noobs unfamiliar with the Batman books will feel welcome here. We get a clear understanding of Nightwing's new life and his past as he returns to his true costumed identity. However, for veteran or even seasoned Nightwing fans, there's nothing really that new going on, aside from Nightwing's return and the new villain.
Though Nightwing #1 is a fun read, there's too much NOT happening. The majority of the issue is simply Dick talking to himself. Again, for a Dickie G fan like me, this may not be a problem, but there's not much here in terms of story but rather set up. Although writer Kyle Higgins does a good job of building up Nightwing's new life, you can't help but want more to be happening. By the time any feeling of a plot is developed, the issue is already over. This is probably simultaneously a good thing, because I honestly am looking forward to what happens next.
THE GOOD: Dick Grayson is back as Nightwing! The book shows promise and it almost makes you NOT miss his time as Batman. Kyle Higgins sets up Nightwing's new life well enough that you're glad he's back in the role.
THE BAD: Get to the point! There's too much of Dick's inner monologue and way too much explanation and not enough story. It's going to be difficult waiting 30 days to see what happens next.
THE ART: Great solid work from Eddy Barrows. He does a great job at illustrating Nightwing's acrobatic skills. On the downside I don't like the new costume! It reminds me too much of the Chris O'Donnell one from Batman and Robin. But I suppose it'll just take some getting used to...
FINAL VERDICT: B-
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