A prelude to the series next arc, Detective Comics #950 centers around Cassandra Cain. From her spying on the Gotham City Metropolitan Ballet’s prima ballerina Christine Montclair to taking down a gang of human traffickers, the entire issue is presented (and narrated) from the character’s point of view. We see her fear of her own training and nature, and her inability to tell those closest to her in on the thoughts and feelings bottled up inside. In many ways it’s a sad (even melancholy) standalone issue, but at the same time writer James Tynion IV and artist Marcio Takara create an unexpectedly quiet and beautiful character-driven issue that should be a must-read for any fans Cassandra.
Of the characters rebooted by the New 52 and now Rebirth, it’s been hard for Cassandra Cain to find her footing. Personally, I’d rather see her as Black Bat than Orphan, but Takara’s art makes a solid argument here for a more sleek costume for the character. The cameo by Shiva at the end of the issue foreshadows trouble, as does the back-up story involving Batman and Red Robin, but the issue doesn’t need to be tied to a full arc to be appreciated and enjoyed. Must-read.