SpartanNerd Scoop!…Batman and Robin #33

Being a cheapskate, I get a subscription in the mail to most of the Bat-titles, including Batman and Robin.  So generally I don’t get to read the stories until as many as two weeks after they come out.

But once in awhile, the moons and planets align, and I get a comic on the day it comes out…even more rarely even a day early…

This is why I have a SCOOP today.  Batman and Robin #33 came right on time!  (I would point out that Batman #33 hasn’t arrived yet. I don’t fully understand how the comics come so irregularly to my mailbox!)

Here are the details, and my review…

IMG_4737

The cover shows exactly what this book is all about.  Tension between Batman and the Justice League.  I don’t like that Lex Luthor is a part of the Justice League, and am getting used to seeing him with all of the good guys.  And is Captain Cold a League member too, or is he just hanging out with Luthor?

The story left off after “Robin Rises:Omega #1”, where Shazaam just “saved Batman” from flying through that portal to Apokalips hanging onto that flying Paradaemon.  Batman then proceeds to beat him.  I detailed my delight in all of this here!

So the league is having a meeting.  Batman is trying to justify going to Darkseid’s dimension/planet, reminding the league that Darkseid had already tried to invade once before.  Luthor sums it up.  “It is all about Robin.”  SO Batman does this…

IMG_4738

I thought…”Oh man.  He just hacked Cyborg to force him to Boom tube.”  Not exactly.  Batman was thinking very clearly.  He went up to the Watchtower Satellite, where he has some gear stashed.  Not just any gear…

IMG_4739

“The Hellbat.”  Is this the same suit depicted in the pages of Batman and Robin before?  If so, I didn’t know its title, and I think this is the first time the origin of the suit is explored.  The Justice League forged it to help Batman with his weaknesses.  (He is the only Justice Leaguer with NO POWERS!)

I like how we get this old school style page, summarizing the creation of “The Hellbat.”

IMG_4740

This is old school…I mean, we could have had a mini-series about the creation of this suit!

Apparently, Batman plans on taking this suit to Apokalips.  I would like to point out that Batman has already been to Apokalips once before, when Darkseid invaded Earth….And then he didn’t have this suit, and was successful!

So the rest of the league catch up with Batman, and Captain Cold puts his Cold Gun to Batman’s head…Poor Cyborg gets one pulled on him AGAIN!

IMG_4741

Batman goes home.  He says he’s “tired.”  Yeah right.  He goes home and smashes Damien’s tombstone.

Superman shows up…Where has he been?  Why did we have Shazaam before when Glorious Godfrey showed up?  Batman and Superman have one of the warmest conversations we have seen in the New 52.  (And they even have their own joint title, where they mostly put each other down.)

IMG_4742

Batman asked Superman to come down…His neck hurts.  I don’t know if he was telling the truth or not.  I kind of thought he might be up to something else.  But we don’t see anything happen…

Batman and Superman apparently part ways.  Batman shows up in the Batcave, greeting the entire Bat-family, (sans Dick Grayson.)!!!

IMG_4743

They are all going to tackle this.

 

I like how this is an issue about issues…The Justice League values vs. their personal values.  Batman directly asks Aquaman if he would feel the same as him if it were about Mera.  I like that.  Arthur has no reply, except “That isn’t fair.”  But it was fair.

I don’t like how Cyborg got hated on so much.  And really, he was just kind of a bystander…(Same as almost always.)  The hacking of the teleport system as well as becoming the target of redirection for the cold gun were just wrong.  I guess I wish it were Shazaam that was the target, or Lex Luthor.

So the next issue of Batman and Robin will be about Batman relating to Red Robin, Red Hood, and Batgirl.  This title should be about the Bat-family.  I hope this brings them closer together…The Joker has fragmented them so, and then with the loss of Damien and the seeming loss of Dick they have been at odds with one another.

I rate Batman and Robin #33 at 5/5.  This read kept me on the edge of my chair.  The whole “Hellbat” thing was a great bonus.  Batman bested the Justice League, another great thing.  We saw a warm conversation between Clark and Bruce, something we almost never see anymore, and finally we saw the Bat-family assembled, ready to work together on something!  The art is great as well, showing a tortured Bruce Wayne as the story progresses.  Really, this book deserves every bit of the 5 points.  What would you give it, oh Hub City Geeks?  Comment and let me know what you think!

 

SpartanNerd Comic Review…Robin Rises: Omega

 

IMG_0280

 

This is definitely one of my favorite recent books!  Last month in “Batman and Robin Ras Al Ghul” #32, Batman beat the tar out of Ras…We see Batman beat a lot of people up.  But this time was…special!  He literally lost his temper and was just about to kill him for attempting to resurrect Damien in a Lazarus Pit.  The book came to a sudden and unexpected halt when Glorious Godfrey arrived, from Apokalips!  This is where “Robin Rises: Omega” would have begun…

Luckily, I guess for people who haven’t been consistent readers, the special “Omega” issue starts off with a series of flashbacks to bring you up to speed.  The flashbacks are a wonderful summary of the saga of Damien’s life and death, and how Batman grieved, avenged, and eventually came to terms with the loss of his son.  I would point out that the art here is in some cases FAR SUPERIOR to the original art that appeared in the mainstream comics!  Here are some examples below…

IMG_0281

Damien was killed by this big guy, “The Heretic.”  My grainy photo here is way better than the original art of Damien’s final moment in “Batman Incorporated. #8”

IMG_0282

 

Here is an example of a different kind of improvement.  The original art that appeared in “Batman and Robin Red Robin #19″  was cool, showing Batman dissecting Frankenstein quite gruesomely.  Here we get to see an even gorier picture of that same scene.

 

After the flashbacks, we get back into the main story with the battle between Batman and Glorious Godfrey.  It seems Glorious Godfrey thinks Batman has a crystal that belongs to him…(Actually Ras used it to activate the Lazarus Pit and it is in the coffin with Damien’s body.  Batman doesn’t know…)

IMG_0283

This is where it pays off to read EVERYTHING THAT CONNCECTS TO THE STORY.  If you read Batman and Superman, (I have read every issue…) then you saw this chaos crystal.  “Robin Rises: Omega” gives us this momentary flashback.  It seems that in the displacing of time and space that happened in the issues with Kaiyo, the Chaos Crystal was a player, and Batman’s memory was scrambled a little bit to where he knows something happened but doesn’t seem to know.    It is in his subconscious.  Somehow Ras has taken this piece of the crystal, and Batman hasn’t a clue because of this mind scrambling effect.  But it rushes back to him in his anger!

 

Most of this issue is a welcome battle royale.  Basically you have Batman, Titus (Damien’s great dane), Frankenstein, and Ras Al’ghul and his army verses Glorious Godfrey and his parademon goons from Apokalips.  There is some humorous dialogue just before the battle, where Batman indicates to Frankenstein that right now, the real enemy is Apokalips, considering the circumstances.  Batman knows Darkseid is far more of a threat that Ras.

It turns out that we get to see how much of a ninja all of these characters are.  Even Titus draws some blood!  This huge battle comes to “Duex Ex Machina” when the Justice League busts in.

IMG_0284

No Superman this time (he has some sickness, “Superman Doomed,”  I’ve only lightly read this.)  Instead we get Cheeseball.  Yep.  Shazam.  Shazam just does what he does.  Flys off the handle making rash decisions.  We see Aquaman call Orcas at just the right moment.  We see Wonder Woman do her awesome thing.  Cyborg calculatedly using his weapons.  But Shazam just messes things up.  Then, when Batman tries to go through the Boom Tube to Apokalips as Glorious Godfrey makes his hasty escape, Shazam thinks he’s saving Batman by knocking him off of the flying parademon.  Then we get these beautiful scenes.  (Sorry.  I am leaving the profanity here.)

IMG_0285

 

IMG_0286

 

Everyone who reads my blog knows I don’t like Shazam.  So these pictures are priceless.  GO BATMAN!

The issue ends with a seething Batman declaring that he is going to bring Damien back alive!

I can’t wait for “Batman and Robin” #33!  (This time no strikethrough.  The title is officially supposed to be called Batman and Robin again…We’ll see what that means!)

I give Robin Rises: Omega a 5/5!  The art is an improvement over what was already established in some cases.  There is a tide of emotions that go with this book, mostly anticipation and excitement, then amazement, humor, and finally you are feeling like Batman at the end of the book.  This is what comics should do every week!  This is probably my favorite piece of this story since issue 19.  (Well, #32 was really good.)

Contrasting what is going on here compared to the two weekly titles, “Batman Eternal” and “Future’s End,” where the characters and story seems to be floundering, and you get snips and pieces that don’t really move you, “Robin Rises: Omega” is a great read!

What do you think, oh Hub City Geeks?  Do you agree with my rating of 5/5?  Send a comment and let me know!