Batman and Robin Eternal Vol. 1 written by Scott Snyder and Tim Seeley
Published by: DC Comics on March 15, 2016
Review Source: Publisher, Edelweiss
Genres: Graphic Novels, Superheroes
Plot: The Dark Knight is still man down, but that doesn’t mean Gotham is safe from Batman’s past. When Mother comes to town all of the Robins must band together to stay alive. (This is a collection of issues #1-12 and is considered volume four of the Batman Eternal series.)
Review: SPOILERS AHEAD***
Three things are running through my mind right now:
1. That was amazing!
2. This might be my new favorite “Robin” story.
3. I need the next volume immediately.
Picking up where Batman Eternal left off, Batman and Robin Eternal Vol. 1 is the kickoff for another huge story arc about the Bat family. Throughout the volume we follow a new (and awesome) villain, Mother, who specializes in murdering parents, harvesting the kids, and then brainwashing them for economic or murderous purposes. We’re talking sleeper-cell evil. Anyone can be one of her “children”. ANYONE. Including one of the Robins. Oh, and did I mention that Bruce might have paid Mother for the perfect Robin and no one knows who it is? Yeah. I need a moment.
It’s pretty damn gripping, and I haven’t been this into the Robins since Damian died.
Some things to note about the arc:
1. You do need a bit of Bat knowledge to really enjoy it. Snyder and Seeley are pulling in every “Robin” (excluding Damian). If you are unaware of the history surrounding the boy wonders, Bluebird, or Spoiler, you might want to pick up the previous volumes of Batman Eternal to avoid feeling overwhelmed. It’s important to note that the writers have also managed to breathe new life into a character with a seventy-five year legacy. It isn’t easy to balance comic canon with ingenuity, but they do so splendidly.
2. Remember why we have this series. This isn’t a rookie version of Batman. This is a big ol’ mother lode of Bat stuff that I truly believe is meant to serve two purposes: celebrate the best of Batman with longtime readers, and ignite curiosity in new ones. Think of it as an epic mash up, where if you don’t know the songs you might miss some of the finer points. It doesn’t mean you can’t dig it, it just means you will have to learn about the insider intel on your own sometime.
3. This is a celebration of what makes Robin an amazing sidekick. However, it’s not about an individual. It’s about an idea. Robins have always been such a huge part of what makes Batman whole. They provide a platform for Bruce to gain balance and perspective. Youth vs age, reactivity vs proactivity, passion vs emotional disconnect, finality vs legacy. Most importantly, the appearance of Robin represents the moment when Batman stops thinking solely of the loss of a family, and transitions into being the head of one. This story rocks that relationship to its core. The idea that Batman a) broke some cardinal rules, and b) was so secretly dissatisfied with his first son that he might have bought a new one could have lasting repercussions for how the Bat family will function. The Robins will find themselves on one long trip down the rabbit hole as they uncover Batman’s true actions and motives, or they will meet heartbreak when they discover that Batman is not the morally sound father figure they believe him to be. Whichever outcome, what better way to highlight all that Robin means, than by bringing them all together to battle for the sanctity of the scarlet R they have shared? The wait for the next issue is killing me!
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Who Should Snag It: Everyone. This is an arc you don’t want to miss.
*I would like to thank Edelweiss and the publisher for providing me with a free ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review*