Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Batman and Robin by Grant Morrison issue #2

This is just fantastic. I'm so relieved that I'm reading a Batman series again that makes me happy especially when I actually care about the characters and the stuff that are happening to them within an issue. It's Grant Morrison after all and I can always trust him to bring me suspenseful and action-packed stories. I'm a fan of his Batman Incorporated run whose first nine issues in 2009 before DC rebooted really got me hooked (I'll be reading his New 52 Bat-Inc. stuff by next month, actually). So far, The quality of the action and storytelling that was featured here in The Circus of the Strange was enough to keep me invested and dully excited for the plot that is unfolding before me.

Quitely's artwork is superbly and massively thrilling to look at especially the pages that involved the varied fighting styles that define Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne as their individual heroes. Those pages were fun to read especially since I got to see Dick in action, using his signature acrobatic moves while he's wearing the Batman costume. They were wonderful to behold; they also reminded me that Dick is the first Robin and one whom I've always loved because he was such a perfect complement to Batman long ago. Now that he has taken over the role of his surrogate father as the Dark Knight, Dick is still making adjustments, mainly on his relationship with the new Robin, Bruce's own son, who has a natural streak of aggression to him that Dick has yet to figure out how to handle. 

Speaking of the handsome devil, Damian Wayne was gleefully violent in this issue as expected, employing quick, brutal tactics during his fight scenes. If it was any other character, they would have been caught dead by now, but Damian has the skills and abilities to back up his arrogance--to a certain extent. Since this is the start of their partnership, Damian still refuses to cooperate and work wholeheartedly with Dick. Sometimes you tend to forget how young and impulsive he truly is until you see him arguing with adults and disobeying orders just because he believes he is beyond reproach. This makes sense or me, seeing as he had a peculiar treatment from childhood (being raised by a group of assassins had hardened this boy far too early on). Reading this old Damian in light of recent events in Tomasi's on New 52 run makes me smile. He is MY Robin although he certainly has a lot of growing up to do in this series. Just look how stubborn he, insisting that he can do things by himself as he disrespects Dick by pointing out that he will never replace Bruce as Batman:

As for the titular Batman's character arc development, I'm understandably very keen to read more about Dick Grayson as the new Batman as he grows and embraces the cowl as his own. His character conflict stems from the fact that he feels like he has to fill in the shoes of a great man by compromising his individuality in the process. It's a great thing that Alfred corrects this mind-set early on. They had a great exchange which made me appreciate Dick even more as Batman. I love Bruce Wayne now and forever and he will always be the ONLY Batman for me, but if there was ever anyone who can don the cowl in his stead, it's Dick Grayson all the way. He brings so much life and energy to Batman in a way I haven't seen before and that's why I look forward to him getting more comfortable and at ease with the role he has to fill in the wake of all that has happened. I just wish that Damian would cut him some slack soon and realize that Dick is not trying to replace Bruce at all, especially not when it comes to the paternal role that Damian obviously needs. I can't freaking wait once these two finally start seeing things in their own respective perspectives and form a camaraderie. The issue ends with Damian going off by himself and steps into Professor Pyg's trap. That cliffhanger moment guarantees some exciting moments ahead. I'm going to read on as soon as I post this review!

I'll end this with Alfred's encouraging words:


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