NIGHTWING #45 is an interesting issue. Benjamin Percy has brought us an intriguing story about the plague of technology. This will be a villain Nightwing has never faced before and I'm curious to see how he will be able to fight against this computer virus sweeping the city. Perhaps he'll need the Batgirl's help to save the people of Blüdhaven. The artwork by Chris Mooneyham never ceases to amaze me. Blüdhaven is brought to life in NIGHTWING #45. This issue is definitely worth putting your phone down and reading!
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Nightwing investigates a string of deaths connected to a digital underworld in NIGHTWING #45. Written by Benjamin Percy, the story centers around a nasty computer virus plaguing Blüdhaven. Chris Mooneyham’s artwork transforms the city into a virtual nightmare world. With all the chaos, is this ‘phantasm,’ a new augmented reality device, really benefiting the city? How will Dick Grayson fight against a villain he can’t touch? Can he punch through pixels? You’ll have to check out NIGHTWING #45 to find out.

Phantasms Plague Blüdhaven in NIGHTWING #44

Technology Bytes Back in NIGHTWING #45

A naked Dick Grayson awakes to find an equally naked Barbara Gordon in his bed. What a way to start NIGHTWING #45. With no memory of the night before, he knows something just isn’t right. Calm down guys, she’s actually a digital illusion. When Grayson goes to meet his new client, Willem, for a training session, they find a corpse with a phantasm device attached to him at the bottom of the harbor.

After the murder victim from the last issue, this is another dead body connected to the augmented reality device. He enlists the help of the real Batgirl to do some research on Mirage, the company responsible for making the phantasm and transforming Blüdhaven into a “smart city.”

NIGHTWING #45 Page 2. Image Courtesy of DC Entertainment.
NIGHTWING #45 Page 2. Image Courtesy of DC Entertainment.

When Dick Grayson returns home, virtual Barbara is still there, appearing to be the perfect girlfriend. As he confronts the illusion, the image introduces itself as Wyrm and finally shows it’s true form, a ghoulish figure made of electricity. He fights the virus, but to no avail.

All of his attacks go right through the creature, whereas all of Wyrm’s attacks are packing a punch. NIGHTWING #45 concludes with the phantasm’s neural scan on Grayson completing. What will Wrym do with all of Dick Grayson’s personal information? Will his cover as Nightwing will be blown? I’m waiting not-so-patiently for the next issue.

Knowledge is Power

The last issue, I complained about how technology acting as a detriment to society was a dull topic. However, the plot is developing into something slightly more interesting in NIGHTWING #45. In this issue, we learn a little bit more about the phantasm’s true objective. The virus is meant to collect information.

I’m curious to see how phantasm’s mission of transforming Blüdhaven into a ‘smart city’ connects with stealing everyone’s personal information. Are these virtual illusions merely a distraction to steal private data from people? What Wyrm plans to do with everyone’s private information is unknown. But as the saying goes, knowledge is power. So what will Wyrm do with that kind of power?

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Captivating Artwork

Some of the images in NIGHTWING #45 are nightmarish. When Grayson finds the dead body at the bottom of the ocean, the imagery of the corpse is incredibly disturbing. The skeleton creature made of pulsing electricity looks amazing and terrifying. Like a ghoul made entirely of crackling lightning. Even virtual Barbara’s sinister smile is just plain creepy. All of these details in the visuals create this nightmare world that is slowly taking over the city.

NIGHTWING #45 Page 3. Image Courtesy of DC Entertainment.
NIGHTWING #45 Page 3. Image Courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Once again, I must give Christopher Mooneyham compliments on the setting. There’s a gritty, mysterious feel to Blüdhaven that I just love. When Grayson and his client, Willem, are standing at the docks, the city skyline behind them looks so cool. And while Nightwing is swinging through a shadowy Blüdhaven with a blood red sky, the city itself becomes its own character. Hats off to Chris Mooneyham for capturing the urban heartbeat of the city.

Final Thoughts on NIGHTWING #45

Overall, the storyline is becoming more interesting little by little. The more we learn about Wyrm and the phantasm, the more intriguing the plot becomes. Also, the incorporation of Batgirl into the story is great. Nightwing needs all the help he can get, and there’s no one better to help handle a situation like this than Batgirl.

In terms of the art style, Chris Mooneyham’s work is the real standout of NIGHTWING #45. I’m left competently mesmerized by the visuals in this issue. Benjamin Percy writing has my interest hooked with a great story. How will Nightwing fight against a villain he can’t touch? We’ll have to read the upcoming issue to find out.

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