Nightwing 4: Second City

nightwing volume 4 second city cover trade paperback new 52
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Art: 8/10

Still think Nightwing is a fun character with potential

Feels like the character is sometimes caught in a rut

Comic Info

Comic Name:  Nightwing (Volume 2)

Publisher: DC Comics

Writer: Kyle Higgins

Artist: Brett Booth/Will Conrad/Norm Rapmund

# of Issues: 6

Release Date: 2013

nightwing #19 cover prankster new 52

Nightwing (2) #19

Reprints Nightwing (2) #19-24 (June 2013-December 2013).  Dick Grayson has come to Chicago with a mission…to find a ghost!  Receiving a tip that his parents’ killer Tony Zucco is actually alive, Nightwing begins patrolling the city of Chicago for evidence of his location.  Zucco is hiding in plain sight but when a vigilante named the Prankster targets Chicago, Zucco and Nightwing might find that stopping him could force them into an uneasy alliance.

Written by Kyle Higgins, Nightwing Volume 4:  Second City is a DC Comics New 52 Batman Family series.  Following Nightwing Volume 3:  Death of the Family, the collection features art by Brett Booth, Will Conrad, and Norm Rapmund.

Nightwing is interesting as a character in that he’s truly evolved over the years.  He started out as the sidekick of Batman, formed his own identity, became Nightwing, and became Batman.  Now, Nightwing is back to the basics and that is both a good and bad thing.

Nightwing really took a jump when he became Batman in Grant Morrison’s run on that series.  It is odd to see him back to being Nightwing since it felt like he had evolved into something more.  Nightwing (sometimes) can be lighter and more fun than Batman, but generally, he is written just as dead serious as Batman which feels a bit of a slight to the character which never was as burdened by his parents’ deaths as Batman was.

nightwing #24 cover dick grayson new 52

Nightwing (2) #24

Here, Nightwing’s origin comes full circle with the return of Tony Zucco.  The move to Chicago gives Nightwing a bit of independence and gives a different vibe from Gotham (and living in the Midwest, I can tell you that Chicago definitely isn’t like the East Coast cities, both in people and feel).  A new city is good, but it also kind of feels like when Nightwing moved to Bludhaven so it doesn’t feel that original.

I also feel like the Zucco aspect was put to bed and reviving it seems a bit repetitive.  The story surrounding the Prankster is pretty good, but it is obvious from the final issue in the collection that Zucco’s role in Nightwing’s life isn’t over and I kind of wish that Higgins had moved on to something else entirely.

Nightwing continues to be a fun title, but it always feels like it could better.  A new reader probably wouldn’t have as many complaints with the storyline compared to a reader who is familiar with Nightwing and his past, but it still feels like Nightwing is caught in a rut even when he changes direction.  Nightwing 4:  Second City is followed by Nightwing 5:  Setting Son.

Related Links:

Nightwing 1:  Traps and Trapezes

Nightwing 2:  Night of the Owls

Nightwing 3:  Death of the Family

Nightwing 5:  Setting Son

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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