It’s appropriate that I’m reviewing this concluding bookend to the end of the “Robin Rises” event for DC Comics. After all, I did review the first comic in this, which was called Robin Rises: Omega. From an end comes a new beginning.
If you read my Comics Portal column this week, you’ll know that I feel Batman needs Robin. If you haven’t read it yet, go to this link.
But every event must come to an end, and so this one does on Christmas Eve. For those of us who believe in Robin, it’s an excellent gift indeed!
If you haven’t read this title and the issues leading up to it, I recommend you wait to read on further. I’m going to talk about what happens in it in some detail, so be warned!
Previously in BATMAN AND ROBIN: “It all ends here! Batman’s been to the hells of Apokalips and back just to retrieve his son’s body. But what has he brought back with him? And who is the new Robin?”
TOMASI’S SCRIPTING SHINES
As I mentioned a few months ago, it was Grant Morrison who wanted to kill Damian Wayne years before. But Peter Tomasi has done a terrific job of dealing with the aftermath most in the Batman and … title since his death.
But is death in comics anything but temporary?
When you kill off a character as well-known as Robin, if you’re going to bring him back, you need to do it BIG! And that’s what happens in this event! Batman versus Darkseid? That’s BIG, in my opinion!
With Robin in the past, the next Boy Wonder has basically presented himself or herself to Batman while asking for the job. With Damian’s passing, Bruce has had to fight Darkseid himself in order to retrieve his body.
In this issue, we see Bruce and many members of the Bat-family returning to the Batcave on Earth with Damian’s casket and body. I won’t go into it here, but let’s just say that Damian doesn’t stay there very long after that.
Tomasi, who has been the main scripter dealing with Robin’s death, does an excellent job of showing how people respond to when he comes back to life. There’s disbelief, then relief as Bruce’s son is returned to him. Let’s face it – Batman’s had enough tragedy in his life. Losing Damian forever would have been just too much, I think.
Tomasi throws an interesting curve ball at us. Since it’s been all over the Internet, I’ll spoil that here – he has super strength now. If we thought Damian was headstrong before, imagine Damian with powers! That’s what the now re-titled Batman and Robin will be exploring in the months ahead. Given the writer’s ability to explore their relationship, it’ll be fun to see how the two deal with Robin’s resurrection and his new-found abilities.
THE ART FITS THE STORY
With battles galore as well as dramatic moments when the Bat-family is made whole again, the art in this issue is dynamic when it needs to be, more personal when that’s required. It’s very well done.
I was particularly struck by the way Kalibak is drawn in this comic. I’ve always felt this denizen of Apokalips hasn’t been portrayed in the books as well as when he’s been in the animated shows Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League.
The art is just what we need for this story, so I enjoyed it tremendously!
BOTTOM LINE: This Closing Chapter of the Rising of Robin Is a Good One
If you liked Damian as much as I did or maybe even more, this issue is a must-have. If you didn’t care for him or have no idea who he is, you’ll find this issue a great jumping-on point. Hey, if you’re a Batman fan, you’ll enjoy this book because it’s got the Dark Knight and those strange and wonderful allies he often surrounds himself with, taking to task those villains beyond Batman’s ability! That’s always fun!
Can’t wait until the next issue of Batman and Robin, when the fallout from this event continues! I highly recommend it!