Archive for Robin

Robin’s Requiem


Batman and Robin #18

Robin is dead, and the first of the post-death Batman comics is an entirely wordless story focusing on Bruce Wayne and Alfred Pennyworth mourning Damian Wayne. There are no grand events depicted here — brief moments and small items that remind Batman of his son, ranging from an unfinished portrait to a sketchbook. Batman goes on patrol in Gotham, constantly expecting to see his son patrolling with him, constantly disappointed to see that he isn’t. Will the Dark Knight let rage consume him? Or will pure sorrow do the job?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s a beautiful story. Ain’t much more to say about it. It’s a beautiful story.


Batman #18

Scott Snyder gets his chance to do a little more mourning. Much of this story focuses on Harper Row, a Batman fangirl who’s been spotlighted a few times. She and her brother Cullen are still living on their own, their scumbag father locked up in Blackgate Prison. Harper keeps fairly close ties on Batman and has noticed that he’s been running himself harder than usual the last few nights. Concerned that he’s going to get worn out and killed by someone, she starts going out to try to help him. She saves him from a dog trainer who’s dosing his attack dogs with Venom, but she gets rewarded with a furious lecture and a broken nose from the Dark Knight. She ends up going to see Bruce Wayne, because she knows he helps fund some of Batman’s activities, to request his aid to help the Caped Crusader. What’s her plan? And will either Bruce Wayne or Batman help her?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Harper Row is a really interesting character, and I do enjoy any chance we get to spend more time with her. The smart money is that she’ll eventually become the new Robin, or at least another member of the Bat-family, so she’s worth watching out for. My lone criticism here is that, aside from the cover, there isn’t actually anything here about Robin. Yes, Batman is clearly mourning him, but well, it’s not much of a requiem when the kid isn’t even mentioned…

Today’s Cool Links:

  • Here’s a Kickstarter project for a printed collection of “Worsted for Wear,” a webcomic about fabric arts and crafts by former Lubbock artists Rachael and Josh Anderson. They’ve already hit their goal, but you can still pitch in to get some of the awesome yarn-related loot.
  • Speaking of Kickstarters, here’s a project from a friend of mine. It’s perfect for anyone who loves books. She needs less than $150 to get funded, so go pitch some money her way, okay?
  • Having some technology troubles? Let Star Trek be your helpline.
  • Some obsolete words are just too awesome to be believed.

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Didja Hear Robin’s Dead?


Batman Inc. #8

Yeah, it’s the worst-kept spoiler ever.

So it’s the big final battle against Leviathan, and the heroes are on the ropes. Batman’s trapped in a safe at the bottom of a swimming pool. Nightwing and Commissioner Gordon are being mobbed by brainwashed children. Red Robin is about to get ambushed. And Damian needs to save the day, against insurmountable odds. But when Damian’s clone — force-grown to adulthood and gifted with enhanced strength — shows up to the fight, things aren’t going to go well.

Verdict: For the most part, a thumbs up. Lots of action — pretty good action, too. Loved the interplay with Damian and Dick Grayson. They really were the best team, weren’t they?

However, I do thumbs it down for killing Damian, even if it’s just a temporary death. He’s an absolutely grand character, and completely unique within the Bat-family. In particular, I’m disappointed that Damian didn’t get more of a swan song — oh, sure, he was basically the star of all of the last few issues, but most of that was devoted to general ass-whuppery, and I think a character this great at least deserved a decent farewell scene with his dad. But I guess this way, we get an even more angsty unpleasant Batman back, which will be just like it was before. Is that what we really want?

Not even sure it matters. Like they’ll leave Damian dead for long? Heck, no. He’s too great a character, and DC can’t resist bringing characters back, except for the ones they hate, I guess (Wally, Cassandra, Stephanie, Donna, Lian, the Justice Society, etc.).


Uncanny Avengers #4

Pretty much a lot more hitting and punching. Thor has been mind-controlled by the Red Skull, who’s stolen Charles Xavier’s brain, and the Scarlet Witch has to take him out of the fight. The Skull works hard trying to mind-control Captain America, too. And everything eventually ends up okay, or basically kinda-sorta okay.

Verdict: Thumbs mostly down. The action was fine. The art was really nice. And it was all just basically people hitting each other a lot. And since reading this, I can’t stop seeing this as a bunch of honkeys fighting a bunch of Nazis. The next few issues of this better be really good, or I’ll have to dump it.

Today’s Cool Links:

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What is Best in Life?

People, I don’t have much of anything I want to blog about today, so I’m just gonna sit here and deliberately stir up trouble.

What I am about to reveal here is the complete, objective truth.

For example:

Who was the best Green Lantern?


Answer: Kyle Rayner.

No, definitely not Hal Jordan. He’s always been a shallow, generally uninteresting character. “Fearless test pilot” isn’t a personality all by itself, and the people out there who seem to freakin’ worship Hal strike me as some of the weirdest people on earth. Yes, that includes the “Hal’s Emerald Attack Team” fanatics and Geoff Johns. As for the rest of them, Guy Gardner’s generally fun, but he’s mostly a gag character. I like John Stewart, especially in the Justice League cartoons. Simon Baz is too new. But Kyle, the last Green Lantern, uncertain, awkward, crab-masked, completely aware of his own fears, freelance artist with the no-yellow-impurity power ring? Kyle was the best.

Who was the best Flash?


Answer: Wally West.

Definitely, definitely not Barry Allen. Having a crew cut and a bow tie makes him the *worst* Flash. Wally was funnier, cooler, more interesting in every possible way — and of course, he was far, far, far faster.

Who was the best Robin?


Answer: Dick Grayson.

Really, I guess the best answer would be “Anyone but Jason Todd.” Because I really like all of the Robins. But Dick was the first Robin, he was Robin for the longest time, and he eventually ended up being the best possible Nightwing, so I’m giving the circus kid the crown.

Who was the best Batgirl?


Answer: Stephanie Brown.

Not to take anything away from Barbara Gordon or Cassandra Cain, because they were pretty cool, but as grim and gritty as the Bat-verse generally is, it was just plain awesome to get to read a Bat-title every month where the lead character wasn’t an emotionally-crippled basket case. Steph was fun and funny and had the best dialogue.

Who was the best Aquaman?


Answer: Bearded, hook-handed Aquaman.

Because I don’t care who writes him, the clean-shaven, orange-shirted nonentity from “Super Friends” just sucks on every possible level.

Who was the best Hawkgirl?


Answer: Kendra Saunders.

Mostly because I liked the idea of a Hawkgirl who, at least initially, didn’t want to be the back half of “Hawkman and” — she didn’t love Hawkman, and she wanted to be her own person. She was even in relationships with people other than Hawkman. Eventually, she fell in love with Hawkman in a way that felt more organic, realistic, and worthwhile, and that was fine with me. She certainly didn’t deserve to get exit-stage-lefted the way she did…

Who was the best Green Arrow?


Answer: The one with the beard.

I liked Connor Hawke, but he’d never be the equal of his dad. And Ollie without a beard just looks like a dork, so he’s gotta have the ridiculous beard.

Who was the best Hulk?


Answer: Angry green stupid Hulk.

I liked the Professor Hulk, actually. And the Green Scar was cool. Joe Fixit is always fun. But angry green stupid Hulk is the strongest one there is.

Who was the best Spider-Man?


Answer: The Peter Parker married to Mary Jane Watson.

Because Spider-Man isn’t Otto Octavius, and he doesn’t make deals with the Devil.

What are the best zombies? Fast or slow?


Answer: Slow zombies.

To quote Max Brooks: “Ha ha, there are no such things as fast zombies!”

So there we go, friends and neighbors, all the mysteries of life cleared up. Go on about your business, please.

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Friday Night Fights: Round Robin!

Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your eyes; I come to bury the workweek, not to praise it. The evil that men do lives after the beer run; The good is oft interred with — well, also with the beer run; So let it be with… FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

Tonight’s battle comes to us from July 2012’s Batman Inc. #1 by Grant Morrison and Chris Burnham, where Robin gets to do this:


One panel, multiple butt-whuppin’s. That’s a kid who knows how to live it up.

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Friday Night Fights: Roundhouse Robin!

Awright, kids, time to get the weekend started, and we all know the best way to start the weekend is with a little comic-book violence. So buckle on your reserve chutes, ’cause it’s time for… FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

Tonight’s battle comes to us all the way from the spring of 1941 and Batman #5 by Bill Finger, Bob Kane, and Jerry Robinson. The Joker’s got Batman cornered atop a lighthouse — good thing the Dark Knight has his Boy Hostage ready to help out.

That’s gonna do it for me tonight — all y’all have a great weekend.

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Friday Night Fights: Fighting Yourself!

Hey, you ready for Friday Night Fights? How ’bout you over there, you ready for Friday Night Fights? And you in the back, yeah, the guy wearing the onesie, you ready for Friday Night Fights? Well, let’s get to it then — it’s time for… FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

Tonight’s battle comes to us from February 2005’s Teen Titans #19 by Geoff Johns, Mike McKone, Marlo Alquiza, and Jeromy Cox, in which Tim Drake as Robin goes traveling through time and meets up with Tim Drake as Batman. Turns out they don’t get along.

Okay, y’all have a great weekend, and I’ll see you guys next week…

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Friday Night Fights: Bad Pun Theater!

Another week over, time for another couple days off. If you’re anything like me, you need a decent trigger to really get the weekend started — and there’s no better trigger for the weekend than FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

This week, we turn to November 1966’s Batman #186 and the story “Commissioner Gordon’s Death Threat” by Gardner Fox, Sheldon Moldoff, and Joe Giella. Here, we see Robin taking on some generic mooks:


“A helping of soles”?! Dagblast it, Boy Wonder, I could forgive a bad pun, but not a colossally inept one!

Thanks a lot, Robin, now my whole weekend is ruined. RUINED! I may as well go back to work now.

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Friday Night Non-Fights: Redefining Wrong!

Okay, one more week ’til Spacebooger starts the next regular session of Friday Night Fights up again, but that doesn’t mean we gotta wait for him. I know the last few weeks have been a bit free of the usual violence and carnage we’ve come to expect, but I’ve figured out what I’ve been doing wrong — too many kids comics, not enough Grant Morrison. Those Brits really know how to get the disturbingly gory violence flowing, right? So let’s turn things over to last week’s Batman and Robin #3 by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely:







And Robin wins the prize for the understatement of the year. As for me, I’m off to scrub the horrors from my eyes with a wire brush. Hope y’all have a great weekend…

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Friday Night Fights: Explosivo!

Okay, all together now. What day is it? What time is it? What are we here for? June 26th Evening Watered-Down Margaritas? Wrong answer! It’s FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

Our panel of pulverizin’ pain comes from October/November 1946’s Batman #37 by Jerry Robinson and an unknown writer, as Robin hits a guy so hard his heart explodes.

That is one seriously hardcore teen sidekick.

Tonight’s musical accompaniment comes from England’s most awesomely symphonic and theatrical rockers. Everybody on your feet for Queen!

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