Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Batman vs. Robin #5 Review

Written by: Mark Waid
Art by: Mahmud Asrar
Colors by: Jordie Bellaire
Letters by: Steve Wands
Cover art by: Mahmud Asrar, Nathan Fairbairn
Cover price: $5.99
Release date: February 28, 2023

Batman vs. Robin #5 ends the adventure against the Demon Nezha with a role reversal pitting Robin against a possessed Batman. Can the Boy Wonder make the ultimate sacrifice to save the world?

Is It Good?

I generally like this issue, but I hate how it ends. The reasons why will become apparent shortly, so bear with me.

When last we left the dynamic duo in the Omega issue of the Lazarus Planet "event," King Fire Bull was defeated, the magic and superpowered were restored (almost) to their previous state, and all was right with the world. However, the Demon Nezha transferred his soul into Batman's body when the Caped Crusader was weakened by a near-fatal blow. Now, Robin sets off to get Batman's body back by exorcising the Demon Nezha with the help of a few magical friends.

You get plenty of fierce action that's fun to watch, the Monkey Prince shows up to escalate the fun factor with impish charm and magical abilities, and Mark Waid expertly builds momentum to keep readers on the edge of their seats. That all sounds great until we reach the final moments.

We learn Nezha can't be removed without killing Batman since the Demon's power keeps Batman's lethal damage at bay. In short, stopping Nezha means killing Batman. In any other situation, that no-win scenario makes for great drama, but here, Waid resolves the scenario by homaging a scene straight from the Disney version of Peter Pan. Without spoiling outright, Waid gives Batman the Tinkerbell treatment.

Does it work? Technically, it feels like Waid painted himself into a corner and couldn't think of a clever way to escape it. The net result is a final resolution that sounds kiddish and silly.

To be fair, this is one reviewer's opinion. Your mileage may vary.

Also, the art by Asrar and Bellaire is mostly excellent. A few panels lack detail, indicating a possible time crunch, but the overall comic looks solid.

About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.

Follow @ComicalOpinions on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

Bits and Pieces:

Batman vs. Robin #5 puts a capper on the conflict against the Demon Nezha with a fight between father and son, with the world's fate in the balance. The action, pacing, and sense of momentum work, and the art is generally good, but the final solution to Batman's possession may have some readers groaning rather than cheering.


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