Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Batman and Robin Eternal #10 Review


Nerd Skillz


Written by: Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly
Art by: Roge Antonio, Geraldo Borges, Allen Passalaqua and Marilyn Patrizio
Cover Prince: $2.99
Release Date: December 9, 2015

I was not a fan of last week's Batman and Robin Eternal because of one thing...characterization.  Lanzing and Kelly just didn't seem to have a full grasp of the characters they were writing and the situations they put them in felt off.  Plus, everything just felt like it was thrown together to get to one thing...Azrael.  I'll admit it, he looked pretty badass, but a cool cliffhanger page does not a great issue make.  So, with all the pieces set into place, do Lanzing and Kelly settle in and give us a good story this week?  Let's find out...




We start this week right where we left off last, with Azrael looking like a badass.  It's easy to do when you have a large, flaming sword, but he throws in an ominous speech that ends with a 90's action movie one liner.  Okay, I'm not minding this at all!  Then the issue actually begins.

It's no shock that shits about to go down and the fight splits into two separate brawls...Bane vs Azrael and Jason and Tim vs the Priests of St. Dumas.  Immediately, I was pumped for the Azrael/Bane stuff because I imagined it as  a twisted kind of  rematch of Knightfall.  Hey, this is the DC You where story trumps continuity, right?  However, the whole thing ended quickly with Azrael laying hands on Bane and making him see the light...or god...or something that makes him a sniveling fool.



While I wish there was more to the fight, that's not my major problem with this scene.  No, I was really mad when Azrael used his sword to cut Bane's venom hoses and venom came out of them. Why would that make me mad?  Because last issue we were told that Bane was off the venom. Which is it?  Unfortunately, that's not the only thing that goes against what we were told last week.

While this is going on, Jason and Tim are fighting the "Friar Tucks" as Jason called them.  Actually, Tim is fighting them as Jason hacks the St. Dumas Mainframe.  I know that sentence will seem wrong to any fan of either character, but it was not a typo.  It seems that Lanzing and Kelly think that Jason can only shoot people since the two switch up their normal roles because Jason is low on bullets.  Oh well, Tim has a really crooked stick that gets the job done.



The nonsense piles up more as Jason hacks into Mother's financial records and decides to run a search for the exact signal wavelength that happened in Gotham.  I think Lanzing and Kelly got their hacking info from the movies Hackers, Wargames and Weird Science.  I guess it doesn't matter because Jason finds it!  Oh goodie.

He also finds a few other things...a mysterious "Project: Ichthys", the defenses Tim ran into at Beacon Tower earlier and "Project: Azrael".  While I question why these projects are being kept in easily spelled out folders, they use the information to connect Jean Paul Valley to the list of  Mother's "children".

We then go back in time to Prague and see a scene where Bruce in not very happy with Robin.  While Dick was dealing with Mother and Orphan, it seems that Dick was out trying to stop the Scarecrow. Bruce plays angry sergeant and demands that Dick turn in his mask for not doing things by the book and it ends with Robin storming out of the cave off to who knows where.  This scene felt really forced and strange knowing what Bruce had been up to lately.

Bruce then heads out as Batman and goes back to Mother.  She told Orphan he'd be back, but even she couldn't have thought it would be this soon.  After telling her a schoolyard story, he looks like he is down with her plan.  I still don't buy it, mainly because it is just thrown into our faces over and over again.



Back in the present, Tim and Jason square off against Azrael and while Jason gets kicked to the curb pretty quickly, Tim fights the good fight.  He tells Azrael his real name and unmasks him, hoping to get him on their side.  It doesn't work and Azrael lays his hands on Tim (isn't that a Bon Jovi song?) and the reader finds out what it was like to take the brown acid at Woodstock or being Grant Morrison.  Far out, man.  Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly did enough to confuse all on their own.

Jason saves the day by grabbing Tim, jumping out a window and spraying each of them with Shark Repellant.  Yep, the shark repellant makes another appearance and I hated the mention of it last week, but actually seeing it in action,,,made me want to strangle someone!

The issue ends with a Harper and Dick doing...well, it was a bit confusing. It's a bunch of quick scenes that show them gathering information and then they are scuba diving in British Columbia.  The name drop of who Orphan is is pretty cool and then the issue ends with the appearance of a woman we've seen earlier, but now we know her name...or at least her job description that seems to double as a name in the Mother network.



Yet another issue that I didn't like.  This time it wasn't just the characterization, but also the dialogue, the story inconsistencies and the ridiculous shit thrown in all over the place.  I'm sick of sitting through an issue just to get to an interesting cliffhanger.  Sick and tired.

I did like the art for the most part.  Both Roge Antonio and Geraldo Borges do a good job and while you can tell when they switch up, it's not a jarring transition at all.  The standout page is Tim's freakout, but I also appreciate the straight forwardness of the rest of the book as well.


Bits and Pieces:

While this issue moves the overall story along, it does so with poor dialogue, awful characterizations and ridiculous situations.  Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly were given some cool toys to play with, but did nothing with them.  This month's cliffhanger didn't have to zing that last week's did so the suffering getting to it felt all the more painful.  I've heard rumblings of people dropping this book and I only expect them to get louder after this issue.

3.0/10
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19 comments:

  1. I liked this team better last issue ... this was not my glass of beer. These same writers allowed Jason to fight last issue but here hes little brother to Tim so he doesnt get hurt and then lasts 3 seconds against Azrael. Far less jokes that hit home this time if any I can recall at all but I did enjoy the shark replant stuff still #DadJokes.

    I didnt pick up that the reveal at the end was someone from a previous issue maybe a big reason I didnt like it too. Where did she pop up previously? Also does Azrael's sword made of nerf or does it only cut venom tubes? Everyone should be cut up like thankgiving leftovers.

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    1. she was standing with Mother and Orphen in the first couple of issues. I guess a flaming sword isn't as powerful as it looks!

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    2. the scene where they were showing "Alicia" being molded

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  2. I hated this issue. Jim you are totally right about bane not having venom last issue, and all because what I'm assuming is lazy writers not reading previous issues. I hate how writers miss treat characters. Bane, even with out his venom is a credible threat with peak human preformance, but with it he is super strong and can be beat in a page or two.
    Jason hacking a computer isn't out of character, every bat fam member has above average computer skills, but the part that makes me mad is just like Bane, Jason is one of the New 52 top 20 Martial artist and in this issue gets brushed aside by Azreal. Jason is defenitly more skilled then Jean Paul, Jason quite literally has been trained by the best in the world; examples Batman, Bronze Tiger, Lady Shieva, Richard Dragon plus a wide assortment of mercenaries, Assasins and The All-Caste. But gets wrecked Quick Because....REASONS. I'm seriously thinking about dropping this title. They a misrepresenting some my favorite characters and give me garbage with characters who should not be considered Bat Family; Harper Row and Stephanie brown. Also bring back the character you said you were going to write already, give me more Cassandra.

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    Replies
    1. Yea, they really ruin Jason this issue and the venom thing was ridiculous because the creative team did last issue! Plus, where are the editors?

      But hey...Shark Repellant!

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    2. Yea, they really ruin Jason this issue and the venom thing was ridiculous because the creative team did last issue! Plus, where are the editors?

      But hey...Shark Repellant!

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    3. The "top 20 fighter" or whatever is really stupid, though. There's no reason for that other than Lobdell treating Jason as a self-insert. Jason really isn't anything special as a fighter, he's had his ass kicked by nearly everyone in the Batfamily (Dick, Damian, Cassandra, Barbara, etc) as well as a Talon, Bane, etc.

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    4. I don't know why, but I'm getting the sneaking suspicion that you don't like Scott Lobdell...and I'm no Mumbo Jimbo, but Jason is not your favorite Robin, right?

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  3. I am getting bored with this whole eternal thing. It is meandering along like an unnecessary third rate prog-rock dualing guitar solo. I am sick of the whole Mother concept and Azrael's lines are overly dramatic. I only wished that Red Hood would have emptied his entire clip into those fools! Something good better come out of all of this or else there's going to be some upset readers.

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    Replies
    1. I agree...except for the prog-rock guitar solo!

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    2. I agree...except for the prog-rock guitar solo!

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  4. Yeah. I didn't hate this comic as much as you or rate it as low when I did my review (I might have if I didn't feel so apathetic after reading it), but damn... so much... nothing to this issue. It just wasn't remotely entertaining or interesting.

    I'm looking forward to next issue when Ed Brisson comes aboard (outside of the ending, I did enjoy his previous comic Sheltered, so I know he is a good writer);

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Put a link to your review...I'd love to read it.

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    2. Put a link to your review...I'd love to read it.

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    3. It's not much of a review (I use a short recap review style when dealing with weeklies and bi-monthly titles), so it wouldn't be worth your time.

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  5. Yeah no more eteranals for the next five years after this one ends

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    Replies
    1. ya theres not a lasting effect to anything in them just a LONG soso story ... what really happened last one Bruce lost his money/house which he now has back basically. And March made a quick appearance then disappearance again. Did I miss anything?

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  6. The dialogue and characterization are really bad here. Everyone acts one-dimensionally, and every moment has to be spoonfed to the reader. Did Scott Lobdell write this or something? Because it reads like an issue of Red Hood and the Outlaws.

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