Out with the old, in with the new


Last issue ended with the reveal that two of Robin’s former foes were actually one playing both roles, and with Gotham City about to fall into chaos, what is a young side-kick to do?  The answer, Dear Reader, is for him to grow a pair and step from behind the cape to become a hero in his own right.

robin182cover.jpgWhat do we learn from this issue that is nothing but a climactic fight scene?  Readers discover that via the pen and computer of Fabian Nicieza and Freddie Williams II, Robin has really grown up over the years to become a man. Granted, he’s a man still technically in high school, but a man none the less, which has to make dating those high school girls a real pain in the butt.

Robin #182 features Tim Drake acting in the same manner as Batman ;making split second decisions, seeing all the angles and possibilities needed to defeat the bad guy.  While it plays out really well in this issue, if the character of Tim goes on to bigger and better things following the Battle for the Cowl, the Tim Drake character could fall into that same “Whim of the Writer” syndrome that has plagued Batman for the last decade.

There are some threads that are still dangling by issues end, that hopefully will find a resolution by the next issue.  By far the biggest one that sticks in my gullet is that Jim Gordon and the rest of the GCPD are little too forgiving over the death of The General’s siblings, which makes Gordon’s final act in the issue seem a little too trusting – especially considering readers saw the on panel death of two children, something we at Major Spoilers have been clucking our tongues over for a while.  Obviously this means Gordon condones Robin’s decisions and is willing to let him become a darker Red Robin.

And that is really the point of this issue, Tim Drake/Robin has finally moved out from the shadow of all who have come before and has finally made the decision to become his own kind of hero.  He no longer has to worry what his adopted father thinks of his actions, Dick will always be there to support Tim’s decisions, and interestingly Tim and Jason Todd see eye to eye.

Following last issue, I was more convinced than ever that Tim Drake was going to become the man behind the mask when Red Robin launches later this year.  However, after Tim and Jason exchanged pleasantries in Blackgate Prison with Tim giving away the code that will get Jason out of prison for free, I’m not so sure.

With Tim’s love life in shambles at the moment, I wonder what his relationship with Stephanie/Spoiler is?  He says he loves Stephanie, and forbids her to don the Spoiler costume ever again.  It’s obvious he doesn’t want her to come to harm in the line of duty, but since when has Stephanie ever done what anyone told her to do.  There is a storm a brewing for the two down the road, and it can only end one way – badly.

Oddly, Robin #182 concluded a major arc and was turning point for Robin as the hero he was always meant to grow up to be.  This would have been the perfect ending point for the series, but DC has decided to squeeze one more issue out of the creative team as a lead in to the Battle for the Cowl.  Even with the odd resolution or two in the story, I enjoyed this issue a great deal.  Nicieza and Williams II are going out on a high note, and depending on how the next issue goes, this could be the series they are remembered for.  Robin #182 earns 4 out of 5 Stars.



The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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  1. January 25, 2009 at 12:17 pm — Reply

    I think I might need to read this story arc over. I didn’t really enjoy it month to month but I hardly remembered what the heck was going on.

  2. Ricco
    January 25, 2009 at 1:02 pm — Reply

    I was surprised at the end that he didn’t stick to the Red Robin persona (goes back to his old costume), given how that was the Robin who stopped the gang war.

    The last comic’ll probably have Tim making the decision to drop the old Robin life (he’s the sidekick to a dead man) and go full hero as Red Robin. Kind of like Dick becoming Nightwing.

    I love that little talk with Steph, basicaly he told her that she loves the person but no longer consider Spoiler a hero but a villain Robin would have to bring to justice.

  3. Rob
    January 27, 2009 at 11:06 am — Reply

    Wasn’t the back of Robin’s head charred at the end of the last issue? That was the whole reason he put on cowl, wasn’t it? How is he miraculously healed in 2 weeks time, complete with a full head of hair? Am I the only one confused by this?

    • January 27, 2009 at 12:08 pm — Reply

      Nope. I had the same problem. Although there is no indication at the end of the issue how much time had passed.

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