Comics, Reviews

Detective Comics #1071 Review: A Tale as Old as Time

Ram V continues to cook up something fierce with his run on Detective Comics. Discover how the hands that built Gotham City have the power to take it all away.

Detective Comics #1071 by Ram V
Image: DC
By: Javier ReyesFeb 23, 2024, 2:06 AM

Detective Comics #1071

Detective Comics #1071 Cover

Writer: Ram V.

Artist: Stefano Raffaele

Publisher: DC

Release Date: April 24, 2023

Page Count: 40

Format: Comic

The story flashes back to the ancient times of Gotham, revealing the city's deep connections to the Orghams and Al Ghuls.

At his core, Batman is a character who loves his home unconditionally. In stories like Knightfall, we see Batman put his life on the line for the sake of Gotham City. While it often feels like Batman is giving up too much of himself for Gotham, there’s an undeniable feeling of hope seeing the Dark Knight’s undying dedication to the city he loves. That timeless dynamic of heroism is on full display in Ram V’s incredible run on Detective Comics. With a story that delves into the secret history of Gotham, the writer presents us with a deeper understanding of Batman’s unbreakable ties to the city itself.

This latest issue pulls the curtain back further to reveal the earliest roots of Gotham and the hands that directly played a part in creating it. In this review, we will dive into Detective Comics #1071 and break down what it means for the series to come!

Detective Comics #1071 by Ram VImage: DC

Setting the Stage

Since taking on the lead writer role for Detective Comics in 2022, Ram V has established a mystical threat to Gotham City known as the Orgham royal family. Introduced back in Detective Comics #1061, the Orghams announced themselves as the rightful owners of Gotham City through a centuries-old treaty. The early years of Gotham saw the Orgham family passing down the ownership of the city from generation to generation. It’s revealed that at some point in the city’s history, the Orghams changed their names to Arkham (a name all fans of Batman are familiar with) to protect parts of their family business. Over time, the family let others take leadership over Gotham while still quietly watching from the shadows. But it was the destruction of Arkham Asylum that pushed the Orghams to reemerge and reclaim the city that’s on the brink of forgetting their family’s legacy.

Detective Comics #1071 by Ram VImage: DC

The Orghams are no ordinary royal family, as they delve deep into the mystic arts. Through the power of a device known as the Thelemus Engine, the Orghams can grant demonic powers to themselves and their followers. Among the highest in their ranks is Gael Tenclaw, a man that’s lived for centuries and can transform into a werewolf. With their fleet of Azmers, soldiers who are part man and part demon, the Orghams secretly marched into Gotham on a mission to take complete control of the historic city.

Pulling the Curtain Back

The last few issues in Detective Comics have carefully set the stage for Batman to finally crack down on the Orghams, revealing more about the royal family’s mysterious origins. Issue #1071 goes a step further and gives readers an intimate history lesson on the Orghams’ connections to the Al Ghul family. This revelation encapsulates the beauty of Ram V’s run with the Dark Knight so far. By connecting their story to the history of Gotham City itself and establishing a blood feud with the Al Ghuls, the Orghams have been presented as a bigger and bigger threat with each new facet of their story that gets revealed.

Detective Comics #1071 by Ram VImage: DC

This issue is cathartic because it shows Batman acting true to form again. Throughout a large chunk of Ram V’s run on Detective Comics, Batman dealt with an affliction that affected him physically, mentally, and emotionally. There were moments when Batman made costly mistakes or was slower to act, which resulted in him spending days recovering from injuries. While Bruce initially believed his struggles were purely physical, he eventually realized something deeper was plaguing his psyche. Because his roots run so deep within Gotham, Batman learned it's the Orghams' mystical influence over the land itself that was damaging his soul. Talia al Ghul’s revelation to Batman about who the Orghams are was the piece he needed to understand who exactly he’s dealing with. With everything falling back into place, Batman has all the pieces he needs to take down the Orgham family.

Final thoughts

Ten issues into his run now, Ram V seems incapable of delivering a bad issue on Detective Comics. The developing story of the Orghams has been compelling to read, as they present a breath of fresh air in terms of Batman villains. While the pacing of the overall story may feel slow at times, the lore built around the Orgham family and their connections to Batman has the stage for what is sure to be a massive climax. Detective Comics is definitely a comic to have on your pull list, especially if you’re craving a great Batman story in the making.

Detective Comics #1071 by Ram VImage: DC
TAGGED: Batman, Reviews