SpartanNerd Thoughts…Batman and Robin Eternal (Vol. 1 and 2)

After getting every issue of Batman Eternal, I decided to skip Batman and Robin Eternal in favor of getting the Graphic Novel when it came out.  It came out in two volumes, and I picked up both at Barnes and Noble during there recent sale.

It took me about four days to read the whole story.  (I get interrupted a lot.)

This story isn’t really what I thought it would be.  I thought it would be “What happened with Damien during Batman Eternal.”  Damien was dead…and resurrected while the whole event was happening.

Instead, this story went right alongside the regular New 52 continuity, where Batman was forgotten by Bruce Wayne.  Jim Gordon was the Batman, with “We are Robin” filling that role.  I avoided the whole story, but this is important context for knowing what was going on in Batman and Robin Eternal.

I have said for a while that I wanted to see more Dick Grayson as Robin stories.  Batman and Robin Eternal delivered that, as almost each issue had a flashback to events that happened the first time DIck Grayson encountered The Scarecrow.  The whole story centers around a villain called “Mother,” and we learn that Batman caused some collateral damage through some of his deception tactics in an attempt to defeat “Mother.”

The other big thing…virtually every New 52 Batman sidekick gets a big feature, with Cassandra Cain getting a new identity.  She was raised an assassin, and I could only imagine that DC is positioning her as a love interest for Damian.  (They have alot in common.)

The whole “Court of the Owls” story revealed to us that Dick Grayson was supposed to be a Talon.  Batman and Robin Eternal goes into the motivations that Batman had in guiding Dick to be a superhero with his own ways, and elaborates this to a point for each of the Robins and sidekicks.

Harper Row.  I expressed disdain for Harper before.  This story makes her an “illegitimate Robin,” (that’s a really crass way of putting it, but I don’t want to spoil too much.)  I love how it all gets explained, and Batman’s motivations make it clear that he believes each superhero should take their own path and do things there own way.

Red Hood is in this story alot.  I just am not really a fan of the resurrected Jason Todd.  He seems part baddie and part good guy.  He wears the bat on his chest, but is a killer.  He wears the red hood.  He just doesn’t fit with Tim Drake (historically, the Robin I knew best.)

Stephanie Brown is treated like the biggest amateur.  I’d like to see more of her.

The Midnighter.  I never heard of this guy.  Pretty cool character, who can supply “Magic Doors.”  It was annoying that Tim Drake sort of suddenly had the idea of sending parties all over the world at basically “Portal” speed.  An interesting twist, but silly just the same. Oh, and Cullen Row took right up with The Midnighter…

Duke Thomas.  We don’t see Duke do too much.  Kind of like Stephanie.  But I think she got more story time because of close association with Harper Row.

If anything, reading this has just about motivated me to try out the current run on Detective Comics, where apparently Batman and Batwoman are training these Sidekick types to be better.

I recommend this graphic novel…it kept me turning pages.  My problem is….I know what happens.  When will I be motivated to read it again?  I Own “Hush,” and have only read it twice.  “War Games” is tedious.

I won’t rate this.  Just let me know what you think in the comments!

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Batman and ….Robin…..???? Comics Review

Since the untimely and unexpected death of Damien Wayne, the Batman and Robin title has been THE PLACE to follow the story.

Batman and Robin continues to be THE COMIC BOOK that keeps me hooked. If you have read my thoughts on AquaMan, then you know I am a little bit picky about my books. In my memory, I havn’t read a story in this title that I didn’t like. I DO wish that Batman could bring Damien back. But it’s not gonna happen, probably, so……

I was a little worried about what was going to happen.  But now I’m cool with it.

One of the things the writers apparently said was that there would not be a “weeping Batman.”  Aside from the “Requiem” storyline, this has been largely so.  More like a ticked off and crazy Batman, not so much a weeping one.

Which is why this has been so good!

Batman and Robin #19 (Batman and Red Robin)

This is one of my favorites from this series.  I love it when a comic book goes somewhere you didn’t expect.  Action Comics #13 was a fine example, maybe the best example of this.  But Batman and Red Robin goes BIZERK!  Batman, uh, dissects Frankenstein to try and see if he can figure out how it is he can be dead but alive.

Creepy.  And very entertaining.  But a little bit off of Batman’s character.  Which is big evidence of Bruce going insane.

Aside from this, we get to see Carrie Kelly in dressed like Robin.  Our first tease at who the next Robin will likely be.  And Bruce refers to Damien in the present tense throughout….pointing to even more craziness.

Batman and Robin #20  (Batman and Red Hood)

This one takes place after Jason has recovered from the Joker’s prank, of planting Joker gas in his hood, and lining it with acid.  (Am I right about that?)

If I can recall correctly, the end of Red Hood and the Outlaws #18 Bruce is HUGGING Jason.  These two have not been friends in the  NEW 52.  (In the OLD 52 either, I gather.)

So this issue has Batman bringing Red Hood for an attack on some weapons smugglers.  And then paying a visit to Ethiopia, which was apparently the site where Jason was ressurected.  Batman wants him to remember details, etc.  In a desperate attempt to bring Damien back.  Red Hood does not.  SO…….They get into an argument about Bruce being selfish.  Which is true.  He didn’t even CONSIDER how Jason felt about it..

Batman and Robin #21 (Batman and Batgirl)

In this issue, Barbara Gordon basically throws herself at Bruce.  Desperate to help him by becoming Robin.

This is probably my least favorite of them.  Why does she have to be so dramatic?  On the upside the whole thing is a cooperation of the two heroes having some great action.

This issue kind of leaves Carrie Kelly out.

Batman and Robin #22 (Batman and Catwoman)

This is a good story.  It isn’t a Batman and Robin story, though it does feature Carrie Kelly worming her way into the manner taking care of Titus.  (The dog.)

Everyone knows there is NO CHANCE of Catwoman becoming Robin, so….

But didn’t Bruce also recently lose a girlfriend….hmmmmmm

But could Carrie Kelly……..nah…..

But I found it interesting that it was here that Batman learned that Catwoman was in the JLA, sort of parallel to the Trinity story arc.

This is a moving little story.  A good one-issue thing.

So next month, Batman and Nightwing……  And it looks like Two Face might be the villain.  This should be fun!

LOOOONG HIATUS!

Sorry to keep you all waiting.

Lots has happened since May 16, (My last post.)  And I am rethinking a few things.  One of them is the whole “secret identity” thing……

Should I kill Batman, or Bruce Wayne?  Should I become “Joe Clark, Fireman?”  Should I walk away, SpartanNerd’s back facing the sun?  (All three famous references.  Did you get them?)

Maybe we should co-exist, sort of like Iron Man/ Tony Stark.  This is what I am thinking.

First of all, why the long break from the blog.

I tried a giveaway.  No One Wanted What I Got.  So it seemed.  Serious discouragement.  Were all of the hits that Google showed me really non-traffic?  Next problem?  Handicapped MacBook Pro.  This one is reworking itself, however.  I type this entry on the eight year old iMac that my mother got me eight years ago.  This Beast Machine is pretty slow, but we are old friends.  And it is not handicapped in the way that the MacBook Pro is after the Great Fall.  Still, the iMac is not my favorite way to write. I have an iPhone and an iPad mini, but those are more for play than work.

So this brings me to the question.  Should I publicize this blog to my family and friends?  Pester the folks I know of FaceBook?  Promote myself on places like Pop Culture Network and He-Man.org?

Soul Searching….It’s what I have to do.

In the meantime, here’s what I’ll be writing about soon, all things which have happened.

Man of Steel
He-Man and the Masters of the Universe ongoing series
Magic Core Set 2014
Mega Man NT trading card game
Batman: Year Zero
Trinity War
Deadpool
Thoughts on “Batman and …….”
“Aquaman” Snore zzzzzzzz
MonsterCon
Spikor
Thoughts on the failure of Spider-Man
The Wolverine
Excitement for September reveals!
Superman?????

AND MUCH MUCH MORE!

Follow up, Follow Up! Follow Up!! to Robin Laid an Egg!

My issue came and I finally got to read it!  This issue does feature Carrie in the Robin costume, and it also features other partying friends dressed as Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, Aquaman, (Basically a Justice League costume party).  If you have been reading this story, then you probably read the “Batman and Robin Annual.”  In that book, Bruce tells Damian that he needs to work on his “Green Screen” skills.  And we see Damian trying to trick Batman into thinking he is in different locations with a Green Screen.  So this indicates that Damian either went and hired Carrie to teach him those skills, or he was already taking classes from her.  Filmography must have been an ambition of Damian’s.  Damian was 10.  This girl was driving, and seems to be at least 17 years old.  So he wasn’t “dating” her.  (I guess that should read “she wasn’t “dating” him!)

Other details about the book….I won’t spoil those, but lets just say this one went somewhere I totally didn’t expect it to go!  Batman has gone nuts!

Death of the Family review

DC Comics did it right when they began the New 52 with the Joker having his face cut off……and then keeping us in suspense for a year!

Along the way, Gotham policemen pranked each other with it, Harley Quinn tried to steal the face, and had a twisted moment with it and her new boyfriend, Deadshot.

And then the Joker returned, and he didn’t disappoint!  Right away he kills an entire station of Gotham policemen.  When we see him, he has his face horrifically strapped to his head, and stretched into a gruesome smile.  He spends no time catching up with Batman, and having some famous dialogue about how his “bat-family” makes him weaker.

This was also a cool trip through the New 52 origin of the Joker, (and Harley Quinn, too.)  DC portrayed the Joker as remixing his original crimes.  All of this echoed stuff from the old DC universes. Now it seems there is a solid origin story.  Batman knocked The Red Hood into a vat of chemicals, and it made him into the Joker.  That whole bit about him being a chemist also still seems to be true.

The Joker slowly picks off each Bat-Family member.  He does the biggest number on Batgirl, capturing her mom, removing her finger, and using it to propose to BatGirl.  Of course, she has to play along, or her mom will get blown up!  NightWing has his circus scared away because one of the clowns was killed for resembling the Joker.  Red Hood, Red Robin, and Robin (Damian) all get captured and thrown together in a cell.  (Damian’s book was really gruesome.)  Also, Alfred was attacked and Joker Gassed.  Every Bat Family member’s story ends with a suspenseful panel of the Joker holding a giant dinner platter about to open the lid….

The Bat Family is disenfranchised because apparently Bruce knew that the Joker might have figured out his identity, and thus was able to figure out everyone else’s.  It is never clear exactly how he figured out all of the personal details of how to get at the family members.  But Bruce seems to think that the Joker doesn’t want to know, and also blinds himself to what must be obvious to someone as brilliant as him with his insanity.   This detail is reinforced a couple of times if you think back.  In “Red Hood and the Outlaws #0” the Joker quickly cuts off someone who is trying to point out Batman’s identity, etc.

I suppose that the Joker really does need Batman and Family to keep him busy.  Otherwise he could have easily killed them all off in the end.  Instead he “plays a joke” on Batman by presenting their severed faces on a platter.  (not their real faces)

How is he defeated?  Of course Batman had no trouble saving the family members.  Then when he chases down the Joker and threatens him that he has figured out his identity, Joker won’t hear of it and throws himself down into the sewer, dropping his face in the process.

So far, the Bat Family members are rather irked at Bruce.  It is a wonder they won’t answer his calls and stuff….Damian was just killed.  They are not helping their mentor mourn.  They are THAT MAD.

Where will this go?  I wonder about the Joker’s face.  Is he going to appear as someone else, with a healthy face next?  The future is wide open on the part of the Joker.  He kind of always comes and goes, and now this won’t be much different.  I wonder if a whole “Joker in disguise” storyline might be coming up.  Or maybe he will grow his face back?  Or something else?  Anyone else out there have any theories?

I think maybe DC was trying to create some space around Batman.  Give him more room.  Isn’t this kind of process always going on?  Now he doesn’t even have an official Robin.  Batman is working alone for the most part.  It won’t be long though before the family is close again, so…..

So what do you think, Hub City Geeks?  Comment!  Join the show!  Make my little blog grow!  Increase the traffic flow!  Come on nerds Disco! (DISCO, DISCO DUCK!)

Robin Laid an Egg follow-up…….

A friend recklessly spoiled who the new Robin is to me….before I got my book in the mail.  And my guesses were entirely wrong.

I should have seen this coming, though.  Didn’t they recently release “The Dark Knight Returns” on video?  I haven’t seen it.

So welcome to the New 52, Carrie Kelly.  I suppose that wasn’t too much of a spoiler for anyone.  It is Thursday, after-all.  Maybe if ANYONE OUT THERE EVER READS THIS, I might receive a comment, even a complaint!

 Follow up to the follow up, I read some more news…..It seems that Carrie actually MIGHT NOT be Robin after all.    I guess we gotta keep reading.  I can’t wait until my issue comes in the mail!