Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Batman and Robin Eternal #4 Review
Written by: Steve Orlando
Art by: Scot Eaton, Wayne Faucher, Gabe Eltaeb and Saida Temofonte
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: October 28, 2015
I love the Bat Family and Dick Grayson in particular, so this book might as well have been made for me and me alone. That said, while I was a huge fan of the first issue, the last two haven't been as strong. We did end last week with a cliffhanger that had me hoping for Bruce Wayne kicking ass and then looking at his hands, part in surprise and part in disgust, but sadly, it was not meant to be. Spoiler Alert...Bruce Wayne is not Douglas Quaid, he's not getting his ass to Mars and he may never open his mind to Kuato. No, this book is not Total Recall, so what is it? Let's find out...
The first thing that readers of this book might notice is the opening scene is a bit different from where we left Bruce last week. I usually can overlook this sort of thing, but this is a weekly book and everything is fresh in my mind. It's not a huge thing and doesn't change much at all in this issue, but it still annoyed me. I'll chalk it up to this issue having a new creative team (Steve Orlando and Scot Eaton), but someone needs to make sure this doesn't happen.
Okay, I feel a bit better now and can proceed. The impromptu Hatchet Gang is rudely interrupted by Dick Grayson who shoves Bruce to safety and contacts Tim Drake in the Batcave. It seems that Bruce may not have been the only target as names from "The List" match some of the Gala's attendees.
I want to pause here to bring up something Eric asked during our podcast last week (shameless link HERE). What is this whole "Gotham Embraces You, Re-Welcoming Gala" all about? Did he get back his riches? Wayne Enterprises? What gives? Also, why does Dick get so mad at Tim for losing contact? Is it that crazy to believe that Mother's people are jamming up the works? Seems logical to me.
While Dick dealing with the Hatchet Gang is fun, the book takes a huge swing upward when the Robins show up. I don't mean Tim and Jason, I mean the We are...Robins and if you read that book (and you should), you had to have a smile on your face when they showed up. My smile didn't fade because they kick total ass.
I lied, because it did fade a bit when Orlando forced in a shoutout to Grayson #12 out of nowhere. If you didn't read that (and again, you should), Dick was disguised as "Mr. Sparrow" to talk to Bruce and see how he was doing. After talking to Dick earlier, Bruce suddenly recognizes the voice.
Not all is lost, though, because another great character joins the fray. It's Batgirl and she gives the Robins a helping hand and a compliment to boot. After a brief conversation and another editor's note, Dick asks Barbara to watch Bruce while he talks to Duke about being a Robin.
Then it's back to the Batcave to check in with Harper, Stephanie and Cassandra. It seems I'm not the only one who doesn't trust Cassandra and Harper goes looking for her. When she finds her, she yells out (empty) threats and then...joins her? The both disappear into the Cave's darkness as Steph throws a hissy fit and gets yelled at by Jason and Tim for letting them go.
The issue ends with Dick about to pay a really interesting family a visit and Tim (maybe) about to go rogue. It's a really clever ending with two distinct things very possible and both equally cool.
I wish the whole issue was as clever because I was not a fan. This is starting to be a trend...give us an okay issue and then hit us with an awesome cliffhanger to bring us back next week. I want a full issue of awesomeness, is that so much to ask?
I did like Scot Eaton's art with all the character models looking great and am so glad that Jason took off his helmet this week instead of flipping it up like Iron Man.
Bits and Pieces:
While I liked the awesome addition of the We are Robin crew and Batgirl, this issue fell flat...until the end. Steve Orlando follows suit of giving readers a mediocre issue with an awesome cliffhanger. Scot Eaton's art was good, but in the end, I can not recommend this issue and am starting to grow angry at where this book is (and isn't) going.