Batman: The Dark Knight #11
After a mediocre initial story arc, and a "Night of the Owls" chapter that didn't actually feature Red Robin fighting a Talon at all - like the cover of the issue promises - Greg Hurwitz has stepped in to bring Scarecrow into the 'New 52' with style, and he does so in spades. Unlike the increasingly doom-and-gloomy Scarecrow pre-reboot, Hurwitz's take on Jonathan Crane is rooted in pure insanity - he gleefully kidnaps children and exposes them to his fear gas, mimicking his own father's tactics years prior. The eighth page is a striking and apt example of the feeling Hurwitz achieves, in this case mostly because of David Finch's artwork: (in three panels) a child is on a teeter-totter, then Scarecrow can be seen in the bushes, and finally, the child is gone. It's a subtle, yet explosive point in the issue that leads to even more ridiculousness - Scarecrow's hyperbolic needle gloves really push the crazy point across - culminating in the best issue of Batman: TDK to date.
The Flash #11
(Manapul, Buccellato, To, McCarthy)
11 months into the 'New 52', and The Flash is finally getting a little less convoluted and little more character-driven. While Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato have been having fun putting Barry Allen through the revamp ringer - he's in a relationship with Patty Spivot instead of Iris West, the Rogues have been retooled as much more deadly foes, The Flash is blamed for a mass power outage in the Gem Cities, etc. - the series thus far has been somewhat light on real character development. Sure, we get to see Barry trying to balance his civilian life and his career as the Flash, but it always felt somewhat dry until this issue. A candid conversation between Captain Cold and Barry - as he has started a new life as "Al", a bartender at a Rogues bar in Keystone City - makes each character much more relatable than they've been in previous issues, a welcome breathe of fresh air from a series that's been stuck in a single gear for a while.
Green Lantern: New Guardians #11
(Bedard, Kirkham, Batt)
Jeff Lemire continues his fantastic run on Justice League Dark this month with big revelations, cool magic stuffs, more John Constantine. Felix Faust and his Demons Three have been giving the JLD a hard time for a few issues now, so Constantine barters his way into the Black Room to retrieve a few items to help them stop the mad wizard before he can gain access to the room himself. Lemire is taking his time with this story, as it's poised to set up some major changes for magic in the 'New 52', including the appearance of Timothy Hunter, a character created by Neil Gaiman who hase the potential to become "the greatest mage the world had ever known", as well as the inevitable moment when the Black Room becomes a toy store for DC's magical villains. Usually, plot-driven arcs get under my skin due to the lack of true character development, but "The Black Room"s purpose as a prelude of sorts to upcoming events gives it a pass in light of future potentials.
National Comics: Eternity
(Lemire, Hammer, Donovan)