DCAU #79: Badge of Honor

IN THIS ONE... Gordon tracks down a captured undercover cop before Rupert Thorne executes him.

CREDITS: Written by Kelley Puckett; art by Mike Parobeck and Rick Burchett.

REVIEW: In Badge of Honor, Gordon is a hard-edged action cop despite his age and his usual, necessarily less violent, attitude on the show. But if you're going to do a whole issue with him as protagonist, he's got to be more hands on. And if he's running an undercover man, it makes sense that he would get involved more intimately. Though already exposed and captured, the cop may have been delivered to Thorne by someone inside the GCPD (which isn't as corrupt in the DCAU as it is in other versions of the force). But it's more than that. For him it's about honor and about his sense of responsibility towards his man. He even goes so far as to ask Batman to let him handle it personally.

And perhaps that's what rankles about the ending in which Bats shows up disguised as an out-of-town mobster to save Gordon's bacon. Doesn't rankle MUCH because the Commissioner is shown to be resourceful and able to free himself from his bonds to take part in the fight at a crucial moment, but neither Batgirl nor Robin suffered this kind of indignity when they got solo tales.

Nevertheless, this is a Gordon story where he smacks someone in the face with his gun, where he apparently breaks a hoodlum's knee with a kick, and where he uses detective work to get to Thorne without Batman's help. Kick ass.
IN THE MAINSTREAM COMICS: It's rare for a DCAU story to use first person narration, but here the way Gordon tells his story is reminiscent of his role in Frank Miller's Batman: Year One. Perhaps not coincidentally, the undercover cop in danger is called Miller.

REREADABILITY: Medium-High - A very good Gordon showcase, bar Batman's timely intervention, though it almost seems TOO violent for this version of the DCU.



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