Review | Batman and Robin #1

After reading Batwoman and declaring myself victim of a little Batigue (it seems as though Batman somehow managed to work himself into 144 books included in the New 52), I was pleasantly shocked that this title may be my favorite hero book thus far. It's been a while since I've read DC regularly, but I can glean that this picks up in the middle of the Batman Inc. agenda, and obviously once Bruce Wayne is back on the scene, with son Damian trading as his Robin. The book opens with a mysterious killer hunting the Batmans of the world, taking down the Moscow addition. And then Bruce takes Damian out to acknowledge the evening on which his parents were killed one last time: He's decided to begin celebrating their wedding anniversary. And then some guys raid a university-run nuclear reactor.

The storytelling is crisp, punchy and cleanin both words and arteven when they both get pretty dark. I think that's what I loved most about this book, the way the two complimented each other so well. If I had to pick a favorite moment, I'd give it a tie between the first two panels of page six—in which a very badass Damian sleeps in assassin-at-the-ready mode—and the gorgeous spread when Batman and Robin launch into the bad guys. The art is beautiful, but the details really sing: Batman is close-mouthed and stoic as a Batarang enters a robber's face, and Robin is screaming, kicking out at them, one Batarang (I don't have to call them Wing-Dings, do I?) in his left hand, two splicing the fingers of his closed right fist. And like the book as a whole, he's executing a perfect kick.

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Laura Baginski, Editor (@TimeOutChicago)