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  1. #1
    Amazing Member Matches's Avatar
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    Default Is The Azrael 1990's run any good?

    I usually am only into books with Bruce but curious about this series

  2. #2
    Incredible Member
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    Depends on two perspectives:

    A) It was the nineties. Exaggerated, violent artwork, exaggerated, violent action, coupled with big bangs. Inflated storylines, often many of them attached with events, such as Legacy, Contagion, and No Man's Land.

    B) If you are into Jean-Paul Valley. To be honest, my reading of Jean-Paul Valley was purely just Knightfall / Knightquest / Knightsend, which to me, that is enough. However, Azrael, I would, had I decided to read it, consider it "essential", out of the fact that it continued Jean-Paul Valley's story.
    Last edited by ngroove; 07-09-2020 at 09:34 AM.

  3. #3
    Amazing Member Wrestler's Avatar
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    I really appreciate his stories, I've read pretty much everything about him until No Man's Land. People here tend to dislike JVP for some reason, but I highly recommend reading it (as you would have imagined with my avatar).

    For me, the holy trinity of Batfamily is Batman himself, Nightwing and Azrael.

  4. #4
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    Been ages since I've posted here, but I'll state that Azrael was one of my early favorite characters and I feel the 90s run is WAY underappreciated. I got the TPB of Sword of Azrael and the first few issues of his solo series.

    It's a ton of fun. It has a globe-trotting trait that makes him feel like a more international hero compared to Batman, and his journey to understand the history of - and then seek to dismantle - the Order of St. Dumas gives him a historical legacy that's fascinating to explore. His supporting cast, from St. Dumas Sister Lilhy - who seeks to reform rather than destroy the Order, and Brian Bryan, a disgraced alcoholic psychiatrist who seeks to befriend and rehabilitate Jean-Paul, both serve as great tertiary characters.

    I'd argue that the series was pretty fun and executed for the first 50 issues or so. Things went south as they tried to integrate him more into the Batman and Gotham adventures instead of letting him be his own hero. I still love the set-up for the character and I'm happy to see Justice League Odyssey tap into that potential to make him beyond an international hero and turn him into a legit galaxy-trotting hero.

  5. #5
    Mighty Member SixSpeedSamurai's Avatar
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    The mini-series was great, a fun globe trotting adventure. The start of the regular series was good, but as it when on, he just became another Batman clone in my opinion.
    Pulls: Batman, Detective Comics, and Young Justice.
    My runs: Batman #260- and Detective #444-, every issue since I was born.

  6. #6
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garlador View Post
    I'd argue that the series was pretty fun and executed for the first 50 issues or so. Things went south as they tried to integrate him more into the Batman and Gotham adventures instead of letting him be his own hero.
    This. Azreal is absolutely worth reading....but it's not worth finishing the series. But the first few years were absolutely great.

    When Jean Paul starts hanging around Gotham more, and trying to emulate Bruce more, that's when it's time to cash in your chips and walk away. If you make it to the white costume with the open hair, you've stuck around a bit too long.
    Higher, Faster, Further....More.

    Truth, Justice, and a Better Tomorrow!

    Bridge Four!

  7. #7
    Astonishing Member K7P5V's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    This. Azreal is absolutely worth reading....but it's not worth finishing the series. But the first few years were absolutely great.

    When Jean Paul starts hanging around Gotham more, and trying to emulate Bruce more, that's when it's time to cash in your chips and walk away. If you make it to the white costume with the open hair, you've stuck around a bit too long.
    Oops! That's exactly when I lost interest. As soon as they got rid of the Quesada version of Azrael, I no longer felt the need to continue...



    Eventually, I did catch the finale. Great climax (but still sad, though):

    Last edited by K7P5V; 07-12-2020 at 12:28 PM. Reason: Corrected Grammatical Errors.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    This. Azreal is absolutely worth reading....but it's not worth finishing the series. But the first few years were absolutely great.

    When Jean Paul starts hanging around Gotham more, and trying to emulate Bruce more, that's when it's time to cash in your chips and walk away. If you make it to the white costume with the open hair, you've stuck around a bit too long.
    Yup. The first two years, up to around #26, are quite good. There's an Arkham story after that that's also pretty good. After that it varied between ok and really bad. The last few issues are almost totally nonsensical.
    Cheers - CL

  9. #9
    Mighty Member Timothy Hunter's Avatar
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    Didn't he stay dead from 2003 until the 2011 reboot? Was it explained why he returned in Rebirth?

    Has Michael Lane been seen since Batman Incorporated?

  10. #10
    Mighty Member jb681131's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matches View Post
    I usually am only into books with Bruce but curious about this series
    The others forgot to mention "The Sword of Azrael", which needs to be read before all, even Knightfall.
    You can find it collected in the following volume:


  11. #11
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    Yeah, the first few years on the solo title were pretty good. It wasn't perfect, mind you. But it was still a decent read. Like others have said, if Azrael had been allowed to develop into his own hero, instead of becoming yet another Batman clone in the titles last few years of publication, It would have lasted a bit longer. I could understand roping him in for the Legacy and Contagion crossovers (because he was pivotal in both), but there was no need for the later storylines such as No Man's Land.

    There were a few good arcs during his run - The Fall Of Saint Dumas and The Return Of Bane.

    In the end, Azrael was Batman's agent/operative overseas. He should have remained as such.

  12. #12
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    It started out good but too many issues were Azrael duking it out with really strong dumb guys. Felt too samey after a while. And Denny O'Neill was going for a deeper philosophical meaning with the Order of St Dumas and their tenets but that never became really clear, I feel.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy Hunter View Post
    Didn't he stay dead from 2003 until the 2011 reboot? Was it explained why he returned in Rebirth?
    He was reintroduced during Batman and Robin Eternal pre Rebirth.
    And that version was also the one in the Rebirth TEC run.
    His pre Flashpoint history (including Knightfall and his solo) was still out of continuity at that point.

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