Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Batman and Robin Eternal #23 Review


Effect vs Affect


Written by: Genevieve Valentine
Art by: Christian Duce, Gabe Eltaeb and Saida Temofonte
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 9, 2016

Well, what can I say that hasn't already been said in my other twenty two introductions to this weekly series.  I guess I could give you a full recap, crack a couple jokes or commiserate with you fellow Eternal readers about the long, strange trip it's been.  I'm not going to do any of those and instead I will try to rally the troops for what is this book's stretch run.  This series hasn't been all bad...we've learned a lot more about Harper Row, got Cassandra Cain back in the DCU and should leave this behind with Dick Grayson's identity restored and ready for some Nightwing action.  That's pretty cool, right?  Come on, I'm trying to stay positive and all you guys are just sitting there, staring at your screens, looking all pissed off.  Turn that from upside down people and let's jump into this week's issue of Eternal.  It can't be that bad, Midnighter is on the cover.  Midnighter, guys...Midnighter.




The issue starts off with something that I think the last twenty or so issues has neglected and that is Harper checking in with her brother, Cullen.  Genevieve Valentine does her best to fool us into thinking Harper had always tried to stay in touch, but we all know better.  While this is going on, we get to see that Mother's signal is working it's magic all over the world.



This is the first bit that confused me.  Does the satellite affect certain cities, or the entire world?  Last issue, the Robins made it seem like it would be a city-by-city thing and the beginning of this issue suggests that as well.  However, when Tim Drake doors into the apartment to get Stephanie Brown and Cullen, he says "Because of a radio signal, every child in the world has been ordered to kill their parents and join the New Order..."  Isn't that special?  Why isn't it affecting Cullen, Stephanie and Tim?  Later, it isn't affecting Damian either and I'm yelling BULLSHIT at the top of my lungs right now!!!  I was really close to just giving up and not reading or reviewing this book anymore...but, I am going to finish what I started.  It's still bullshit, though.

Tim sends Stephanie off to watch over Scarecrow and takes Cullen with him to...Midnighter's apartment.  I'll tell you that Midnighter is the best character in this issue, but really, the only reason he is in this series at this juncture is to provide a means for the characters to get wherever they want to (or damn close to it) at a moment's notice.  Yes, it is very forced.



We see that the Robins have been busy recruiting an army that includes some pretty cool characters, including Batwoman, who are going to help fight Mother's children.  That's when it seems like the signal is again only affecting certain cities, but with all the made up scientific mumbo jumbo being thrown at the reader, I'm not even sure anymore.

We then head off to see Stephanie and Scarecrow and again, it's such a forced scene.  It's also a waste of a couple pages as Scarecrow tries to mess with Steph's mind and nobody is fooled in the slightest. That's when Jason doors in and grabs Crane.  This part of the issue makes complete sense, yet it still conflicts with what we've already seen.  Jason tells Crane that with his help, they will make enough trauma toxin to disrupt Mother's signal, but Crane doesn't want to help.  Jason does threaten him about Mother finding him, but what about when Crane went on and on with Batman earlier in the series about wanting to stop the signal because he couldn't stand to live in a world without fear? That's when this whole toxin thing started in the first place, but I guess Crane forgot.  Jason even brings it up, but needs to push Crane a bit more to get him to agree.



We then see everyone on Team Robin suit up and head off to combat the kids.  Remember when I yelled BULLSHIT up above?  I'm doing it again because we see Duke Thomas, Tim and Damian head right into the fray...without being affected by the signal in the least.  I'm sorry to bring it up again, but this is just ridiculous!  The issue ends with the battle in full effect and Dick Grayson taking the fight to Mother's doorstep.

After all the inconsistencies that this book has thrown at us each week, you'd think I'd be immune to it all, but that's not the case.  I'd love to say that this is the last straw, but I think I ran out of straws a month ago.  The book hinges on a couple big ideas and one of them is who gets affected by Mother's signal.  This issue punches that idea in the gut, throws it on the ground, kicks it in the stomach and then spits on it.  This is not a nitpick...this is unforgivable!  Add to that a bunch of forced in scenes and characters and an issue that doesn't push the story forward at all and you get a recipe for a really shitty cake or pie...or cookies. Whatever the hell it is, it's shitty!

I did like the art this week and have to tell you that Christian Duce saved this issue from being a complete disaster.  While the issue tries to fool you into thinking there is some big action going on, his character models are really good and are the highlight.  Maybe the only highlight.

Bits and Pieces:

I have gotten used to the disappointment that this book brings almost every single week, but this issue is just too much.  It's as if all the writers have been leading us on so they can laugh at us when it's all over.  I don't know about you, but I don't like getting laughed at.

3.0/10


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31 comments:

  1. I think I gave up on this book around #13. It's been dying a slow death ever since. Put a bullet in its brain already.

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    Replies
    1. You gave it up when the giving up was good!

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    2. i wish i had the good sense to quit like Deron.
      just 2 issues left to go, but i know they are going to suck!

      if the Rebirth bi-weekly comics are this bad it'll be a good time to get rid of all these bad comics i've been collecting since 2011 and just re-read some old comics on Wednesdays?

      Delete
  2. The only reason I continue to shell out money for this book is because I've collected it this far, might as well own the whole run. :(

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    1. yep, we are just going to finish what we started...I can't wait until it ends

      Delete
  3. Every thing is coming to a head but the people helping out all of a sudden pisses me off. If they could get Batwoman, Spoiler, Midnighter, Duke and Catwoman. Hell why not call the Justice league, Teen Titans and the rest of the outlaws.

    I like the fact that the Robins this issue aren't acting uncharacteristiclly like Pussies. But it seems way to easy, there should be no reason we the Robins last issue bitched out.

    No worries 3 more to go. Ohh wait. Nope, where getting like ten fucking Biweekly books. There will be no quality at DC. Everything will feel like Eternal!!!..My own Personal damn Hell.

    The End is Nye.

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    1. Dick even said that they should call the Justice League last issue and I yelled "YES" then!!! I know that we disagreed on scores for this series in the past, but this issue was utter nonsense!

      Delete
    2. Couldn't agree with you more Jim. And to think all this frustration we've built up towords this series and all we get out of it is bullshit Status Quo. I hope every one who wanted dick Grayson back as Nightwing bought even half this series, to justify this not taking fucking place in "Grayson". As you can probably tell I'm not a fan of dick become Nightwing again. I'm not a fan of retcons that are not need. Truth is Dicks character Peaked when he Became Batman. The returning to the status quo is just regression of a character.

      Every Robin should have his own feel, style or stick. Tim has the teen titans, handling meta humans, and Detective work, Jason has Vigilantism, anti hero, Criminal underworlds and assassin mysticism, even Damian has an angle of truly getting to know his father and hope being a person rather than just learning how to be a Robin. But If dicks Nightwing again than he just another bat family member that doesn't stick out. I'm looking at you Batgirl, and Batwoman. I like Dick as a leader, when originally lead the Teen Titans, he's suppose to be batman without the darkness. And truth be told I like the angle that one person in the bat family had been outted as a hero.

      This comment became more of a tangent...let be bring it back home. This series has been nothing more than the regression of the character of Dick Grayson, that should have taken place in his own title. So people who want a Batman & Robin family story could buy something else instead of Grayson. This title should have been called
      "Nightwing Eternal".

      I'm sorry to unload on you Jim but this series has turned out to be UTTER NONSENSE.

      Delete
  4. Really now? This was easily the best issue of the entire series. The stakes felt real, and many of the characters like Jason, Barbara, and Stephanie have been written much, much better than in anything else they've been in recently.

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    1. I hope you are joking!!! What stakes? WHAT STAKES?????!!!!???? Barbara does nothing and Stephanie is so forced in it is laughable. I did like Jason, but explain to me why Tim, Duke, Damian, Stephanie and Cullen are not affected by the signal. Also, like Anthony said above, why are they all of a sudden calling heroes in and not calling the Justice League?

      and...WHAT STAKES???!!!???!!! The children of the world are affected by Mother's signal? We knew this was going to happen for 18 or so issues.

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    2. I'm not sure about this being there best written appearance, but that's not the issue man. It's the fact that this series could been better had we got to this sooner as well as not coming off as forced. For the issue of it feeling forced why is it all of a sudden that the Robins would trust Stephanie in such a way. She's been nothing more than a name that Harper mentions once and awhile. Why would the Robins also Trust Duke who had no less than a few pages out of this whole series. Why wouldn't the Robins call in batgirl, Batwoman and for some stupid reason "Midnighter", Sooner. This was an Okay issue, that should have taken place like 4-5 issues ago.

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    3. Because they didn't know what they were dealing with until now? Now they know exactly what the threat is, and how widescale it is, hence bringing in reinforcements, and people that they trust.

      "but explain to me why Tim, Duke, Damian, Stephanie and Cullen are not affected by the signal."

      Did you not read the previous issues, in which they found a way to counteract the signal? They can't exactly mass produce it yet.

      And Anthony just sounds like one of those "why aren't they focusing on my pet character instead of this other character" people.

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    4. What pet character? I can't state an obvious divergence in the series That's called Batman & Robin Eternal, not Harper eternal or even just Grayson Eternal. Reread the first issue where all the robins are feature in character, and fairly.

      Two questions for you "Anonymous", what about this series do Love to read each Week? And why defend a series the way you have without talking about the things that makes this series stand out?

      You must be one of those people that buy a series and not care how much your spending weekly on a title that has been falsely advertised, miss represents characters, forgets its own continuity and forgets there own rules to the Main plot Device they've setup.

      And please put your Name when you make a back handed comment to someone, so that person can talk directly towards you instead of every other anonymous. You come off as a COWARD, afraid to back up your claims with your own Name.

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    5. "Because they didn't know what they were dealing with until now? Now they know exactly what the threat is, and how widescale it is"
      WRONG!!!! They have known Mother was going to use the Spyral Somnus Satellite for a bunch of issues now...they have spent time trying to stop it because they knew exactly what it would do!!!! They are not in the least surprised because they knew it was coming.

      "Did you not read the previous issues, in which they found a way to counteract the signal? They can't exactly mass produce it yet."
      WRONG AGAIN!!!! They knew that the toxin would counteract it for a long while know...by using gas masks with the toxin...where are the gas masks? Where is an explanation that they are using it another way? THERE IS NONE!!!! Plus, Stephanie and Cullen are just in their apartment when it goes down in Gotham...why aren't they affected? The Robins weren't around? Please Explain!!!

      I really don't think you have been reading this series...

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  5. I was toying with the idea of checking this series out, but I guess not...

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    1. This issue was really good. The rest of the series has been okay. You should never let a fanboy review color your judgment. Often, you can tell how merit a review has based on how critique and how much whining it has.

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    2. Please let me get this straight...I'm biased and a fanboy?!?! Now that's a daily double!

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    3. Lol. Your a solid & Liquid...oh my god Jim, I think your a Starburst. Just a walking contradiction Jim.

      Pay no mind to this prick, it's not like your bashing this series because you like trolling people. This is a review site, and all people on it should talk about is the good & BAD! But this "True Fanboy" can't acknowledge the Bad in this series. Hell, he can't acknowledge the good either.

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  6. i don't understand why you continue to review this series your bias is unbelievable.

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    1. Because people buy it and read it and this is a review DC comics site. If you really think this issue is good tell us people why cause everyone above you has stated why it's crap.

      My main issue being (and everyone agrees) you have a magical signal affecting who it wants and a magical solution already in place, no filler is needed, which is what this is without a doubt.

      I've bough all 23 Issued read them all and this I could bearly finish this I was so angry. This series is going to be fire kindling this summer after rebirth

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    2. I don't understand why you don't start your own site and enlighten the world with your wisdom and insight. Then you can respond to your own reviews as "anonymous" and be a dick to yourself. I guess you could get in a time machine and go back to when internet trolling was new so you could at least be doing something somewhat new and original. We get it, you are a miserable prick who has to like everything that people hate and hate everything that people like. I know how it is, I was that person once...but then my 7th birthday came around and I put on my big boy pants and got on with my life.

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    3. and I will bite...tell me why my reviews are biased? What bias do I have? Please explain that and then give me 5 reasons you think this issue is great and we will debate it.

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    4. I had to create a google account to post this, because either post as an Annon is blocked now or my posts were being filtered. Also could have just not worked I have no clue. Attempt 3 As for my anonymity, my name is IAIN CAMPBELL. Even though my name should make no difference (unless you really really care about my life’s credentials) there you have it.
      You seem very offended by an anonymous post to the point where you are slinging insults in the direction of someone you assume is just trolling. Though that is not the case, in fact I have read every review you have posted on this series up till now. If that means I have nothing better to do but “troll” with a valid opinion about your reviews then so be it. I am essentially doing the same thing you are, but it’s directed at you instead of the creative team whom you have no problem telling “they suck”. You seem to be very defensive of any critique towards your own work, when the literal purpose of your work is to review and someone else’s work in a neutral and un-biased way.
      First off I have in no way stated that I am defending this series (the first anonymous post, was not me). I would have to agree that there is a lot of things wrong with this series. What I was asking, is why continue to review this series when you have made it abundantly clear that it is unsalvageable to you. You are not doing your readers any favors by continuing, as we all are quite certain of what YOU think about it. I understand that now we near the end so you might as well finish it, but your dislike has been clear since issue 8. I am not sitting here wondering how you will score the next 3 either as I am quite sure it will be fairly negative (does this series deserve negativity, I would say yes). But my point being that criticism is only useful when it is constructive.
      As an avid review reader it is easy to tell when someone has a bias on a subject. In this case the bias is your dislike for the series as a whole. There have been a few positive reviews that you have given throughout the run, but on average you express your extreme dislike for the entire series in each review. You even go so far as to OFFICIALLY (your words) announce your hate of batman and robin eternal in your review of issue 18. While reading your review, I feel as if you are building an argument for me as the reader on why I also should hate this series, instead of allowing me to read your points and decide for myself. I don’t know about you but that is pretty much the definition of bias to me.
      In this specific review you barely touch on the issue as an individual other than the summary. You don’t speak on the art other then you simply did not hate it. As this is a weekly series with multiple creative teams you don’t mention anything about this specific team on this specific book. It’s all lumped into one, pointing out inconsistencies of the story up to this point. Any valid point you have given is covered in bias with words used like “Its shit, Its BULLSHIT, it’s a disaster, etc”. As a reviewer you should never be telling your audience what something is or isn’t. You do not offer anything constructive or suggest any improvements. What takes the cake is this statement that the creators are out to laugh at us all, how in anyway way is this statement relevant to the work itself.
      As an opinion piece I have no problem with your work, as most of your points are valid. As a review I take issue because it lacks a sense of neutrality or chance of redeeming itself to the wide audience that reads it. As far as I’m concerned it has been set in stone that “JIM WERNER” does not like B&R Eternal, in fact I’m certain he hates it. So again I ask, what is the point in continuing the “review”?

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    5. Iain Campbell, thank you for going through the trouble of making your name known. Now no one will not mistake you as anonymous who many people confuse as multiple people.

      Now to the Nitty Gritty, you have still not give any reason as to why this issue is good. You are on a Review site, where not only where Jim, Eric & Reggie Review comics, but we do as well. Constructive criticism only works if your talking to the person you are criticizing. And since the most likely they don't read these reviews and are comments, we are left with only one other way to criticize these books & writers, with Brutal Honesty. If something is bad, I say what is Bad. If something is Good I say it's good.

      So Mr. Campbell, I ask you again whats good about this issue that you think is worthy of higher Praise?

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    6. The reason for the trolling tag was mainly because of the anonymous thing. I am really glad that you signed up for Google Plus so now I can yell at you by name, Lain. The reason I review this book is because nobody else will and we try to review every book that comes out. I know I've been harsh, but I have also given issues as high as a 9.5/10 and six issues over a 7/10. I think that it does get magnified because I have to review it each and every week and yes, I have been disappointed by it and have had very low scores at times.

      As far as what a review is, I go with it being a primary source opinion piece. I'm not sure if you enjoy our site, but we pretty much go with the idea that we are going to try to tell you what happened in a particular issue and if we like it or don't. I am not smart enough to tell writers or artists how to do something better, I'm going to tell them if I like it, though.

      I have said this before, but I think it explains things a bit and will show you where we are coming from. We really try to review every single DC Comic that comes out every week. We do not cherry pick the comics we review. Because of that, we have books we love and hate and I think that's what does make our site different, but also can make the overall picture turn a little more negative than other sites. Looking at the stats on Comicbookroundup, the number of reviews of Eternal have steadily gone down almost every week. As I write this, only 3 other sites have reviewed this issue. I can't say why so many people ditched it, but they have. I haven't.

      The reason we started the site was just to review comics in a "common man" way that we thought was missing from most sites. I'm sorry if you don't like my review style or my writing, but it is what it is. I am a guy who works 12 hours a day in a cardboard box factory while raising five boys. After all that, I sit down and write comic book reviews and articles for no money, then record a 5 hour podcast on the weekend. What I'm trying to tell you is I'm a fucking idiot who does this for no apparent reason whatsoever! I'm not even sure if this even begins to touch on my Eternal reviews...I just hope you know that I would love it if every book was the best I ever read because sitting down and spending 2 hours reading and writing about something you don't like is not fun at all. But, I will finish it out because again, that's what we do and it may even set us apart a bit.

      With all that said, if you want to finish up the series for me, shoot me an email and I would love to give it to you. I am totally serious and would love to get another spin on it for the site. Let me know...Jim

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    7. Iain Campbell, get over it you boot-licking fanboy!

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  7. Oh god is this 1 anonymous arguing this book is good again or multiple. It's funny all the people that like this series have a hard time putting their name down when acknowledging they do so

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  8. IMO Joel from the CBC actually knows what he is talking about when it comes to this book. You are so unbelievably bias.

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  9. I can't say that this issue was good but I can say that Midnighter's dialogue did not infuriate me like it tends to do when Steve Orlando is writing so all-in-all I didn't hate this is you for that reason alone

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    1. You are preaching to the choir! This is the best Midnighter since he was in Grayson and Tom King wrote him. It's a shame that he is the worst in his solo book...that everyone else in the world keeps trying to convince me is so great.

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