Comic Review: Batman & Robin #1

First thing on the agenda: If you like Batman You-Must-Buy-This-Book. The second thing is why....

Book: Batman & Robin #1 Written By: Peter J. Tomasi Art By: Patrick Gleason Publisher: DC Comics Price: $2.99 Pages: 32 First point on the agenda: If you like Batman You-Must-Buy-This-Book. The second point is why. Since his debut in 2006, Batmans biological son - Damian has been in my opinion, one of the biggest breakthrough characters in mainstream comics of the past decade. Any issue he has appeared in (especially after he officially took up the mantle of Robin) is a joy to read, the concept and execution of his character under the recent handful of different writers has always hit the nail on the head. He is a breathe of fresh air for old Batman fans & new readers alike. Under the hands of writer Peter J. Tomasi, I sense this trend will continue for a very long time. We were teased at what a Batman & Robin book under the helm of Tomasi would be like earlier in the year in his three arc story "Tree of Blood". Which continued the original tone of the series set up by previous writer Grant Morrison, while being able to step out of Morrisons shadow and be its own story. With the New 52 launch, Tomasi finally has that shot and is now head writer on the book. Tomasi has shown his ability to write small personal moments very well, the opening scene in "Tree of Blood" where the Batman Family sit down and watch "The Mask Of Zorro" in remembrance of why they do what they do was perfect. In this issue we see for the first time Bruce take Damian on patrol as Batman & Robin after a brief de-tour to the street corner where Bruce's parents were gunned down (on the anniversary of their death no less). It's a touching moment between the two characters while setting up the duos dynamic in the book and helps me realise theres still more to Bruce nowadays than grunting and disjointed fragment sentences. The new villain is nicely set up in the very brief time we see him and leaves the reader wanting more, action scenes are dynamic and flow very smoothly from panel from panel. All work delivered by penciler Patrick Gleason, inker Mick Gray and colourist John Kalisz is spot on for a book like this. Their use of lighting and shadows throughout the different set pieces within the book helps set up the stories distinctive mood quickly without resorting to dipping everything in black. Overall I enjoyed Batman & Robin #1 more than last weeks hyper violent Detective Comics #1(which is still an enjoyable read), it juggled the more out there elements of recent Batman stories with the classic dark approach to the character extremely well. In sense of tone think of Batman & Robin as The Caped Crusaders and Detective Comics as The Dark Knight. If you go into this book knowing what to expect you will leave loving every moment. Without a doubt one of the best books from the New 52 so far.

rating: 5

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Follow him on twitter @Jay_Slough for constant film/tv/comic commentaries. This is the rather strange story of how Jamie Slough, at 3am one morning decided to try and form a cohesive sentence on his laptop by bashing his head on a nearby keyboard while finishing some university work. It's been doing him surprisingly well for the last few years and things don't seem to be changing anytime soon. At most times Jamie can be found reading from a large stack of comic books, catching up on TV shows such as Doctor Who, Breaking Bad & Curb Your Enthusiasm, begging people for work (but less said about that the better) and pretty much trying to be analytical about stuff. When he's not doing any of those he's writing or replacing yet another broken keyboard...