The new Batman and Robin with their new Batmobile.

After the events of Final Crisis and Battle for the Cowl, where Bruce Wayne supposedly dies by the hands of Darkseid, DC set out to restart the entire Bat-Family set (Batman, Batgirl, Birds of Prey, Detective Comics, and Batman and Robin). Batman and Robin took a new turn with Dick Grayson as Batman and Damian Wayne as Robin with Grant Morrison as writer and art by Frank Quitely, Philip Tan, Cameron Stewart, Andy Clarke, and Frazer Irving.

The series started out quite well creatively with new villains and an interesting dynamic with the new Dark Knight and Boy Wonder. The new Batman is more sympathetic and kind while Robin is brutal, blunt, and kind of a dick. The growth in the relationship is quick but easy to understand as well as interesting to read. We also see the creativity in having Dick Grayson, who had become a hero in his own right, step up to the mantle of Batman. While being compared to the old Batman he is trying to deal with his young partners attitude problem, the change in costume and character, along with the responsibility of being the head of the bat-family, and being the main protector of Gotham. It’s an interesting twist on growing up and fitting into a new role along with trying to be a good example for your “little brother.”

The series itself has had sixteen issues currently and at least three more have been confirmed. The series has had five arcs already: Batman and Robin Reborn, Revenge of the Red Hood, Blackest Knight, Batman vs Robin, and Batman and Robin Must Die.

In  the first arc, Batman and Robin Reborn, we see the dynamic of the new Dark Knight and Boy Wonder. Grayson appears to be a kinder version of Batman while Damian appears as a miniature Bruce Wayne with ‘roid rage. They deal with new villains while also trying to deal with each other in a comical way that makes you wonder if Damian would actually kill Dick. It has a good sense of dividing up the action with the serious problems of the two new superheroes. Morrison also creates a new villain that is sick twisted and just right up Batman’s alley. Including a good lead up to the next arc.

In the second arc we see the return of the Red Hood. This arc we get more of the witty banter between the caped crusader and his sidekick with less death threats, but only slightly. Morrison also adds a new type of psycho to the villains of the new Batman, who just so happens to be an old villain. On top of murdering criminals, the New Red Hood posts his actions on Twitter and if that wasn’t bad enough, people eat it up like kids at a candy store. With the people leaning towards the new vigilante it is more important for Batman to be the hero and save the day with even more twists and action. It is quite possibly this reviewers favorite arc of the story.

In the third arc we see a split of the new heroes due to injuries from their last battle. At this point the story gets a little iffy with zombies and catacomb traps and what not. However we do see a team up with Knight and Squire as well as with Batwoman. So fans will love the dynamic between the three heroes as well as the interesting twist it has in the end. While the end is kind of, “really? That’s it?”, the story is important because of the discoveries made by the heroes.

In the fourth arc takes a turn for the strange yet has a very nice detective feel. Dick and Damian put on their detective caps and search for clues in a way that is easy to understand, however without getting the other issues from the bat-family tie ins it can can be a little confusing. Understandable but confusing, it’s quite the contradictory. However we see the bond begin to grow with Dick and Damian and see that there is more to the little Demon child than meets the eye. The end of this arc has about everything you could ask for: action, betrayal, danger, and a little slice of mystery for the detective in everyone. Not to mention that Damian has one of the best lines of the series. I mean it is BAD ASS.

He wouldn’t think twice about killing you.

The fifth arc of the series is quite possibly the most confusing thing that has happened since Final Crisis. You might have to read through it twice to make sure you catch everything that happens. Also you may need to do a little back reading to remember certain characters in this arc. Morrison does a cartoon series finish to this arc, meaning he brings back villains and has an apocalyptic feel to the story. This story starts of with a bang that does peak your interest to find out what happens and is the main drive for finishing the arc. However if you get to the last issue of the arc it is definitely worth it. Morrison creates multiple stories that bend in every direction yet somehow manage to reconnect in, what can only be described as, an epic ending. The end of the book also not only opens up more adventures for our new Batman and Robin but also opens up to DC’s new series Batman Incorporated.

While the story started out well with many good dynamics it soon began to change and sort of drift off. The beginning had chases, mob fights, and raids on the GCPD and was looking to be very promising. However as the story progressed it almost seemed as though the author himself became bored with the story and started making things up. This may be due to DC’s annoying habit of splitting up single stories into six different issues, meaning you have to buy them all for the story to make sense, instead of just buying the one series you like. Morrison does however redeem himself in the later arcs and does prove that he hasn’t lost his touch.

While it may have shaky bits inside it, if you love Batman as much I do you will want to read this series. It has new characters and new arcs, new relationships, and a new feel to the ever growing Bat-family. While sketchy at times I firmly believe that Morrison’s Batman and Robin has the potential to be a great series.

Watch for Rene’s next post on Batman Incorporated as a follow-up to where Grant Morrison is taking the Batman story — Mike.

About The Author

René Rodriguez is a writer and reviewer for this lovely site. He tries to do reviews as frequently as possible but if there's something that piques his interest and he also thinks you should read it...well he'll probably review it. Mostly music and Spider-Man though.

3 Responses to Batman and Robin #1-16 — Reborn

  1. Comic Zone says:

    Fantastic stuff. Most of our customers really like Dick as Batman.