Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Batman and Robin Eternal #22 Review

My Parents are Dead!

Written by: Genevieve Valentine
Art by: Fernando Blanco, John Rauch and Corey Breen
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 2, 2016

Last week's issue of Eternal was one of my favorites of the series and best in a long while.  When it ended with Damian showing up (with a few days to kill?  I love that reference) and the fact that Genevieve Valentine was also returning this issue (with a few days to...write?), I was actually looking forward to this issue more than I could have imagined only weeks ago.  I am not a hard man to please, all I need from Eternal is to have good art and a story that doesn't step all over itself and make everything I've already read a damn mess.  That doesn't seem that crazy, so why has it been so hard to come by?  Like the number of licks of a Tootsie Pop, the world may never know.  However, we aren't here to talk about the past (unless it's a Batman Flashback of course), but to see if this weeks Eternal is any good.  Well, is it?  Let's find out...

The issue opens up in Mother's base of the Arctic Circle.  Okay...This lady sure gets around and I really want to know how much money it took to build such a huge and hi-tech base there.  We see as Mother is getting the Somnus Satellite in position and in case we all forgot, we get a reminder of how awful she is.  Poor Adam, poor, poor Adam


While it is actually hard for me to care about Adam (I hardly knew Ye), I do care about Harper and hearing her talk about her Mother got some feels out of me, but when she tells Cassandra she "feels nothing" when it comes to her, I rolled my eyes a bit.  Come on Harper, don't bottle it all up.

We then shift to the Robins and the part I was eagerly anticipating...Damian.  While Valentine seems to "get" each Robin, something was definitely lost in translation and the dialogue comes off stiff, forced and even unrelated to what others are saying.  It doesn't help that they are throwing the biggest pity party known to man and unfortunately, we're all invited.  That's when Damian steps up and tries to recreate every one's favorite Batman and Robin meme.  It fell flat.  It did lead to the best part of the issue, however, when Damian rallies the troops by telling them what Batman really thought of them.

We get to see a Batman and (Damian) Robin flashback that showed just how much Bruce learned from his interactions/confrontations with Mother and used them to become a better person, mentor and father.  It was one of the best moments in this whole series, but it just wasn't enough.  On a side note, is it just me or does Jason really get the short end of the stick this whole issue?  He comes off as an awful emotional flip flopper and the "praise" he gets is hardly anything to write home about.

Back with Mother, Orphan and Poppy arrive with Harper and Cassandra and while she seems happy to see the girls, she is disappointed with David.  Poor, poor David.  Actually, the guy was a real piece of shit, but he did love his Mother.  The issue ends with a little bubbly, an Orphan cosplay contest and some trouble at the Times Square Amalgam.  Why are there so many kids out at this time of night?  What happened to rules people?  Hey, where the hell are my kids?  Oh god, that one kid with the hat looks like my son, Ethan!  #WorstDadEver.

I'm sure you can tell already, but I didn't like this issue.  The dialogue was pretty awful and while the overall story pretty much stalled out, the big moments came and went with little impact.  I did really like seeing that Batman learned from his mistakes, but it was not enough to make this issue worth reading.  Also, having Damian was a waste and only used to set up a flashback.  You have one of the most dynamic and interesting characters in the DCU in the book with a real reason to be pissed off and he pretty much is there for reassurance and to be a cheerleader.

As much as I didn't like the dialogue and story progression, I liked Fernando Blanco's art even less. What the hell happened Fernando?!?  I have always been a fan of his art so I actually hope this was rushed or just mailed in, otherwise I would have to change my opinion of him and I'm not ready to do that just yet.

Bits and Pieces:

I should have known that after loving the last issue of Eternal, I was only setting myself up for a big disappointment.  This issue had bad dialogue, poor characterizations and awful art.  While we get a really good flashback scene, most of this issue was just setup for the cliffhanger and this book's stretch run.  I am tired and just want it to end.  Please, make it end.



  1. 4 more boss...its almost over...I know ya hate him but be a Hal Jordan...WILL POWER!

  2. I liked the Batman flashback stuff with Damien ... but when all the Robins were throwing themselves a pitty party I got very angry inside. It felt way out of character, "nonsense" if you will, and only then does a 10 - 12 year old snap all the "adults" out of it.

    Can Damien just grab a seat on Goliath and organize a fly by on Mother where he orders Goliath to eat her face off already. He then would win the best Robin contest .... THE END.

  3. I didn't like the pity party either. If anything, it is way out of character for Red Hood to act like that. He'd be doing his own thing.

    1. Jason is so off in this issue...and series

    2. Agreed.

      But I think what's more insulting (for me at least) is that despite the fact that we've gone through 20+ issues, this is really the first we've even seen any sign that Bruce actually did trust, or believe in , any of the Robins. I mean up until 2 issues ago when we found out that Bruce left Dick "in charge" of Gotham ONE time (with Superman babysitting overhead), this series has been nothing but the equivalent of a snuff film for Dick's sense of self worth. But at least Dick had that much time devoted to his screw ups , whereas there has been NOTHING shown about Jason or Tim's respective times as Robin.

      I mean all the potential that could have come from Batman's true proteges figuring something out on their own was wasted.

      And then Damian shows up to slap some sense into them? Really?
      "Okay guys fine, I'll try to muster some feels I had with my dad once, to get you all back on your feet!"
      "Wow, Good thing there was a Wayne in the house to turn things around for us!"

      They didn't even pay homage to the fact Dick and Damian were partners, in a Batman and Robin book!

      I just don't understand what the writers wanted this book to be, because its definitely not what the story they suckered us in on.


  4. I actually wanted to read this one since Goliath is on the cover looking all badass. But j said inward done at issue 6, so this book can still kiss my ass.

    1. I didn't mention Goliath in my review because he may just be outside???? I wanted to see him and it really was a missed opportunity. HE better show up next issue

    2. Goliath was the main reason I stuck with Son of Batman.

      (Waiting for anonymous to tell me to fuck off...)

  5. Come on...Come on... You can do this Anthony! Just a FEW more issues. And You can put this Nightmare behind you, Just like "The Truth".

    1. We will get through it together, anthony. But then all we will have are faded memories, an extra $2.99 a week and our sanity.

    2. Yup, but that $2.99 is already DC's thanks to rebirth. "I try to get away, but they keep pulling me back in."

    3. Truth is worse by FAR, but yeah , eternal just keeps tripping itself up.

  6. When did Damian become a little girl? I swear the first panel we see him in he has boobs. Needless to say.......I hate the "art" in this issue. (I mean, I hate almost everything about this series, but the art is what really set me off this week.)