Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Robin #176 Review

ROBIN #176
Written by Fabian Nicieza
Art by Chris Batista and Cam Smith

While not as good as the last issue, I still very much enjoyed this month's edition of Robin. It continued to expand on the 52 / missing year while showcasing how Robin is handling the disappearance and apparent insanity of his mentor.

However, in a disturbing trend with this week's covers, this Robin cover has nothing to do with the issue. Sure, Robin and Penquin and Batman all show up at some point in this issue, but never on the same page and Penquin is barely a cameo, let alone kills Batman. I'll let it slide since this is labelled a Batman RIP tie-in and it, shockingly, actually ties into that story. I'll let the RIP poetic license explain away the 'dead' Batman on the cover.

As I said, this issue follows up on Robin's paranoia over Batman's disappearance over in Batman RIP and features Robin, with 'help' from Spoiler, trying to track down Batman or at least try and verify his case files from his black book. To do this, Robin enlisted the help of the Penquin, who informed Robin of some gangbangers that snapped a picture of an 'insane' Batman.

After taking down the thugs, they check their phones for the supposed image and Spoiler, off to the side, finds the phone with the photo and promptly deletes it. It was a bit odd, but it's later explained that Batman asked her to do this a few days ago to keep Robin out of this mess and some other nonsense. I'll chalk it up to Batman RIP and Batman being, well, a drugged up dope fiend nutjob during this storyarc.

As for the photo, it didn't look all that insane or non-Batman-like, but we'll go with bad artwork to explain that one away. It looks like a typical 'angry face' Batman when I think they were trying to have insane Zur-en-Arrh Batman. Should have at least put him in his hobo costume.

Verdict - Check It. Was hoping for some confrontation with the insane Batman, but they at least showed the fight with the Club of Villains from the last issue of RIP and it looks like we'll see a follow up on that next month. Good issue that adds something to the event while standing on its own for those that don't care about RIP. Can't ask for much more.

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