Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Batman and Robin Eternal #2 Review

What a Dick

Written by: Tim Seeley
Art by: Paul Pelletier, Tony Kordos, Rain Beredo, and Carlos M. Mangual
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: October 14, 2015

While I have gone on record against reviewing a weekly book, I simply loved last week's premier issue of Batman and Robin Eternal.  James Tynion definitely took the "go big" route by giving readers tons of characters and one of the craziest cliffhangers I've ever seen.  The mystery of what Batman did to set up the Robins had me talking (and guessing) all week and I couldn't wait to jump into this issue.  Of course, I realize that we aren't going to get too much...this is a six month long event you know, but I'll take whatever goodness Tim Seeley has in store.  So, did this second issue continue the greatness?  Let's find out...

The issue starts with Harper Row looking worse for wear.  It looks like Orphan has given her the business since last week and he is now rubbing it in by taunting her while she bleeds.  Then, right before he delivers the fatality, Cassandra Cain makes her second appearance.

I am already a fan of Cassandra in this series and if you like cute superheroes who kick major ass, get on the trolley with me.  Orphan puts up a better fight than Dick did last week, but with Harper's help, they send the mysterious baddie flying out the window.

Speaking of Dick, he just happens to be on a fire escape below and tries saving Orphan, but the villain gets away with Cassandra hot on his tail.  Why was Dick there?  He tracked down Harper Row after seeing her name on that crazy list of Robins last week.  When he finally meets her, she is bleeding out and her roommate, Spoiler, helps stabilize her.

While this opener was high on action, it did not match the excitement of last issue.  I realize that it would be near impossible to give out that kind of awesome craziness each week, but a man can dream, can't he?

The scene transitions into another Scarecrow flashback and this one culminates into a forced bit where we "figure out" that Dick Grayson was a pretty insecure little Robin.  I put that in quotes because it's pretty much given to the reader on a silver platter.

Back in the present, Stephanie Brown crushes on Dick Grayson (who can blame her?) while they take care of Harper and Dick takes Steph off his person of interest list...remember, she wasn't on the Robin list.  The Tim shows up to the party and the issue takes a bit of a downswing.

It's not that I don't like Tim or his interaction with Dick, it's actually more about what he doesn't do. I'm talking about his non reaction to the bloody pulp that is Harper Row.  He completely ignores her, but asks Dick if he's okay.  Now we see who the real dick is!

It gets worse when he reveals that he has bugged Harper and Stephanie's apartment.  He tries to convince everyone that he isn't a pervert, but I don't buy it.  Of course, it was just a forced way to know what happened to Orphan and Cassandra, but it really came off bad.

The issue ends with the scene stealer from last issue, Jason Todd and he's at it again.  Dick calls Jason to warn him that an assassin may be after him, but good old Jason has the situation well in hand already.  The problem is, he looks like he has the wrong person in his sites.

This issue was a bit of a letdown after last week's stellar opener.  It was a full out setup issue and we don't get one step closer to finding out anything new.  I also had a huge problem with Tim (as I mentioned above) and didn't really like Stephanie Brown's characterization or dialogue either.  I'm sure I will be back salivation once we get on with the story and it's mysteries.

As a whole, I thought Paul Pelletier's art was okay.  It got the job done, but nothing really wowed me. Throw in the fact that some of the character work (Tim and Harper in particular) was not very good and I was left feeling a bit flat.

Bits and Pieces:

After such a great #1, I couldn't wait for this issue.  Maybe I expected too much, but this setup issue had me disappointed and looking forward to next week for the wrong reasons.  Nothing in this issue outright offended me, but nothing really grabbed me either.  I'm still fully into this series, but that's still the result of last week's issue, not this one.



  1. Really? I loved this one. It looks like Dick is taking his rightful place as the head of the Bat-Family in Bruce's absence, and this issue just confirmed it.

    And it may just be wishful thinking, but Steph calling Dick Nightwing regularly may be a hint at Dick's future...

    1. I do like the idea of Dick taking over the head of the family, but this issue was disapointing after last week's killer opener. It was such an opposite of the intrigue and mystery of that issue...feeling really forced and a bit generic.

      I don't think the Steph thing was a hint...just reminding us that the last time most people saw Dick was when he was outed as Nightwing in Forever Evil. I am a huge fan of Grayson and am now torn between getting Nightwing back and keeping Grayson going.

  2. Best part of the issue is the end. When my to favorite characters meet for the first time in history. I want Jason to to be the the person to actually question Cassandra because these to characters need to talk as much as possible, because the way people write them both they may never talk again.

    1. I'm pretty excited about that as well...though it seems weird that Cassandra got in that position

  3. I wouldn't argue with that score at all. Very disappointed there was really nothing to follow up last weeks ending. I look forward to the flashbacks too but this one felt out of place ... maybe it will make more sense later or is it just meant to show Dick was insecure which then ok random.

    Do like the art and the last page Red Hood looks awesome. All in all i enjoyed it just didnt expect an issue like this so soon i guess.

    New to the site and love the podcast keep up the good work.

    1. Thanks and I you put it perfectly...this is the type of issue we will see a bunch in a weekly book, just upsetting that it's the second issue.
      I do think that it was to show Dick is insecure, but even that was a bit forced. And...I also thought Jason looked badass on the last page.
      I expect some listener mail from you in the future, btw!

  4. Anyone notice a reference to
    Red hood/Arsenal #5. Jason says that the "new batman is a Dick...sorry dick didn't mean you." Anyone who Red Hood there was a cliff hanger that had me scared but thanks to this I think this takes place after Red Hood/Arsenal#5.

    Absolutely love the call back to Cassandras abilities. All the little Bubbles that highlighted the eygptian dudes weak points. Now all we need is to see her be able to read body language. But I don't know if she'll have that ability because apparently she still has the ability to speak. This was a good Issue, not great but style Good.

    1. nice call out to Red Hood/Arsenal #5. I am really enjoying Cassandra Cain and I really want more. I think that she will be the star in this series.