Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A few things on Batman & Robin #1

Um. Spoiler alert?

So Batman's mostly-dead ("He distinctly said 'To blave,' and as we all know, to blave means to bluff, heh? So you were probably playing cards, and he cheated." Which, while we're on the topic, is followed by a much more appropriate quote: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.") but Gotham still needs a Batman.

I don't really know why Gotham needs a Batman. No one's ever explained it to me sufficiently. Sure, I get that whole "he's the spirit of Gotham" thing, and it makes a lot more sense in the movies where there's only him and, occassionally, Chris O'Donnell, but in a world with a gigantic Bat family, I don't see why Gotham can't be all set with a Nightwing (I'm just assuming he'd hang around since Bludhaven sucks), Robin, Red Robin/Hood (erm, well, he's sort of a good guy!), Oracle, Huntress, Batwoman, Question (also assuming she's hanging out there, since Montoya's a native), Spoiler, Batgirl... am I missing anything? I think as long as that bat signal's shining into the night, Gotham's pretty much all set.

But hey, it's comics and comics don't have to make sense and, dagnabit, Gotham needs a Batman.

I'm glad it's Dick. That makes sense. Who else could it be? I would sort of think this is an inevitible conclusion. In a world without Terry McGinnis (hey, I liked Batman Beyond) the only heir that makes sense is Dick Grayson.

I'm sort of bummed about the whole Tim-Drake-has-a-hole-in-his-chest-so-Damien-gets-to-be-Robin. Here's my thing about Robin... people fall into it, they're not born for it. It's a privilege, not a right. Damien treats it as a right, and it makes me want to punch him in his tiny-nosed face. I'm suuuuure that this is all part of his arc and he'll eventually come around (or die tragically), but right now I still wish for some face punching. Dick's handling him very well. I actually like Dick as the unwilling Batman. I don't think I've liked Dick since, um. Frank Miller's Batman threw him into a bit of lava or something after he cut Carrie Kelly up.

Anyway. After viewing some preview panels this morning, I'm kind of looking forward to Streets of Gotham, because it'll be nice to see the new team from a different perspective. Also Dick deadpans. Ish.

(Also I love when Paul Dini writes Harley, but that's a blog entry for another time.) Too bad the art makes them look like the Bruce/Tim combo. Which brings me to the entire reason I started writing this:

To gush about Frank Quietly.

I love him!

Okay, but more specifically. I've only been paying attention to the artists for a year or two, and I was immediately drawn to his style. What I like best about B&R #1 is that the team doesn't look the same. Not just because Frank Quietly is drawing them, but because they're different.

The differences between his Bruce/Dick team and his Dick/Damien team speak for themselves. And that's good. I don't want Damien to look like Just Another Robin. And I haven't been following Batman in a continuous enough manner to just be able to pick up a book and know someone is different just by looking at him. So besides the fact that I just like the way Quietly draws the characters, I also like the way he draws the world. I like the lines and the shadows and all sorts of technical stuff I don't know about, because I know next-to-nothing about art.

But whatever. It's awesome. And I'm looking forward to the run, and I think it'll be good. The villain is creepy (though he reminds me of Sander Cohen from Bioshock, so we'l see how that goes) and, like I've said before, I like coming in at the start (which is also going to add Gotham Streets and Red Robin to my pull list, sigh).

So, good book, and I wrote more on it already than I'd planned. But don't you want to punch Damien in the face now? Smug bastard.


  1. Damien - smug bastard. Perfect description. Do you twitter too?

  2. I hope he one day (soon) gets his come-uppance.

    I twitter @samfeasor, but it's more a random life catch-all than completely comic related.