It's pretty safe to say that ever since DC started its Rebirth campaign, we've been enthralled with nearly every single issue. With that kind of pressure coming into Nightwing Rebirth, how could it live up to the hype? Well, by pulling a page out of Green Arrow's Rebirth and having the writer who made the character great in New 52 stick around: Hackin' Tim Seeley!
Having a writer as talented as Seeley makes most books a lot better than they should be, and having him write Dick Grayson -- whose self-titled book was one of the best things that came out of DC You -- elevates this book into another stratosphere. Seeley, along with Tom King, always had a knack for making the tone of Grayson light and affable, and that carries on in this issue: although dealing with a crisis of identity, Dick is still playful with everyone who knows him.
And there are cameos aplenty in this issue, all rendered beautifully by the stunningly underrated Yanick Paquette. He has this beautiful way of rendering his characters as physically beautiful, but places them in all-too-human circumstances in a believable way. For instance, Dick and Damian are putzing around in an arcade, and you can't see the abs of either Wayne boy through their baggy clothes. Same with Tiger in a flashback: he's in militaristic garb, and it looks functional.
Paquette's grasp of the human form (and of action sequences) is on stunning display as Dick goes on a series of closure missions, be it traveling to the Hadrian school to see how Helena Bertilnelli is doing, the aforementioned Tiger, or with Dick's Nemesister - the Midnighter.
And this ties back to the tone set by Seeley. This is a ****ing funny book! I laughed out loud multiple times because he captures the chemistry between Dick and Damian that Grant Morrison established so well. Dick seems to be excited to be alive, to enjoying what he's capable of doing in this crazy world he lives in. That optimistic tone really shines when Dick is being hilarious, which he is thankfully prone to do often. Also? A surprise appearance by one of the best new Bat-villains in 20 years.
Paquette and Seeley hit an absolute home run with this book - this Dick Grayson is as light-hearted and sure-footed as he's ever been, even if he wears his emotions on his sleeve. I can't be happier when he dons the blue suit again, and I can't encourage you to pick this up hard enough.