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The second installment of Grant Morrison’s Batman and Robin hit the stands today.  Now that the euphoria of the first issue has worn off, how well does this issue hold up?

BMROB_Cv2.jpgThis issue is told slightly different than the first, in that Dick Grayson is relating how he and Damian had a falling out after recent events at the police station.  Morrison then takes readers back to the moment immediately after the end of the first issue, where Batman and Robin meet Commissioner Gordon to get the low down on the interrogation of Mr. Toad.

The conversation is cut short as a band of circus freaks attack the police station, killing and maiming officers on their way to the holding cell.  Morrison cranks out a fast action sequence that is simply brilliant when combined with Frank Quitely’s art.  The two page spread featuring Batman flying across the room and bringing down a group of the bad guys will stun readers in how the art and action blend together in a way that makes one think they’re watching a motion picture.  Comic scholars and art instructors will use this simple two page spread for years to show how one can portray action in sequential art.

I have begun to really like Quitely’s art, but the biggest failing with this issue is the color by Alex Sinclair.  It’s not that he doesn’t know how to color a page, but when the backgrounds throughout the book look like a bad compression job it totally turns this reviewer off.

Being the first time Batman and Robin are interacting with the police, there is an interesting moment when several officers question Gordon on the look and sound of the caped crusader and his kid sidekick.  Gordon follows with a sly yet insightful comment that is meant to throw his fellow officers off, but reveals more about his keen investigating skills than readers may have ever seen.

Damian being Damian, the fight gets out of control when he doesn’t follow orders, which leads to the first tussle between vigilante and cops that could ruin everything Bruce built up over the years.  It also leads to Damian and Dick having their first Master/Apprentice argument that results in Damian running off to do his own thing, and totally getting caught up in a bad situation for which he is not prepared.

Morrison’s writing continues to shine in the series that asks you not to take anything too seriously, as he peppers the issue with one liners and gags that will either make the reader roll their eyes or chuckle audibly.  Morrison caps off the issue with a new vehicle that immediately had this reviewer thinking of the over the top Batmobile from Jim Starlin and Bernie Wrightson’s Batman: The Cult series from 1988.

Save for the coloring, Batman and Robin #2 is another top notch read. Morrison doesn’t fill the issue with heady thoughts, and Quitely cranks out the action earning the issue a solid 4.5 out of 5 Stars.

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About Author

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...

14 Comments

  1. it was a great read, loved the two page spread mentioned… I thought to myself “this is why Dick is Batman”.

  2. That two page spread was fantastic. I second websnap’s comment about our new, more agile Batman. I am really liking the dynamic between Alfred and Dick too.

  3. I think the coloring is a thematic point. It gives the book a kind of subtle psychedelic look. Like the bright colors are just bleeding into air. It serves the same function that the lens flares did in Star Trek.

  4. okay, I’ll admit it — I wasn’t quite sure what was happening in that 2-page spread — it looks very cool from a design perspective, but in terms of the fight itself, I had trouble figuring out how Dick won so quickly…

    but then I find a lot of comic fight scenes nowadays to be visually incomprehensible… :(

  5. ~wyntermute~ on

    Brainy, you’re not the only one… There are a few issues of things I’ve seen where, by the end, it becomes PAINFULLY obvious to me that I missed something, usually in a “big spread”. I blame TV. I dunno how TV is to blame, but I blame it.

  6. Anybody else besides me have a problem with the fact that Damian is only ten-years old? Loved the dynamic betwen Dick and Alfred btw…

  7. Discount Lad on

    Also, Morrison wins for having the best interpretation of the “Dick Grayson ponders his fate while looking at the Batmantle case” scene.

  8. ~wyntermute~ on

    It bugged me that Dick’s Batman busts out circus lingo right in front of the cops. Unless it was intentional, so as to give Gordon a (in my opinion) preeetty big hint as to what’s up. Yes, I know that “Batman” always knows everything, but… This just felt like a big ol’ flashing neon giveaway.

  9. These two issues are the first Batman issues I’ve ever bought. If Morrison could keep this up, I might go back and skim through some of the other stuff.

  10. @~wynter:

    You know, I have the same problem with fight scenes in movies, especially when the camera is jerky — I feel like it’s a cheat in order to avoid actually having to show how the hero wins the battle!

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