Friday, September 4, 2015

Review: ROBIN: Son of Batman #1


[This review was originally posted on Patreon.]

STORY/PENCILS: Patrick Gleason
INKS: Mick Gray
COLORS: John Kalisz
LETTERS: Tom Napolitano
COVER: Patrick Gleason with John Kalisz
VARIANT COVER: Robbi Rodriguez
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (August 2015)

Rated “T” for Teen

Batman created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger

“Year of Blood” Part One

Damian Wayne is the (illegitimate) son of Batman/Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul, and thus, the grandson of Batman villain, Ra's al Ghul, Talia's father.  An unnamed male infant credited as Batman and Talia's child first appeared in the original graphic novel, Batman: Son of the Demon.  Other writers would later compose speculative stories about the child's life.  In Batman #655, writer Grant Morrison reinterpreted that child as Damian Wayne, the centerpiece of the story arc, “Batman and Son.”

Damian Wayne was eventually killed off and then resurrected.  He is now the star of a new comic book, Robin: Son of Batman, which is part of the “DCYou” publishing initiative.  It is written and penciled by Patrick Gleason, inked by Mick Gray, colored by John Kalisz, and lettered by Tom Napolitano.

Robin: Son of Batman #1 (“Year of Blood” Part One) opens in Bialya, where Damian/Robin is confronting Abush.  The self-proclaimed king is holding Goliath (“Don't call him a man-bat”) prisoner.  There will be bigger threats for Damian to face.  The first is the revenge seeking daughter of Morgan Ducard a.k.a. “Nobody,” whom Damian apparently killed.  Secondly, Damian will have to face his legacy as an al Ghul in the “Year of Blood.”

I am definitely adding Robin: Son of Batman to my reading list.  Next to the Bat-Mite miniseries, Robin is, thus far, one of the “DCYou” titles that I have enjoyed reading the most.  Writer-artist Patrick Gleason has created a story that reminds me of the international adventure that was a big part of Robin, the 1991 five-issue miniseries.  I am intrigued and pleased that Gleason seems willing to dig into the darkness that is part of Damian Wayne the way Batman writers have obsessed over depicting the darkness within Bruce Wayne, especially over the last four decades

Even as a longtime comic book reviewer I have been reluctant to heartily recommend a superhero comic book title to all of my readers, even the ones who do not read superhero comics.  Well, I heartily recommend Robin: Son of Batman to all of you – superhero, alt-comix, indie, and manga readers alike.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

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