Batman vs Robin #2 review

There are a host of familiar faces from around the DC Universe in the second issue of this spin-off from the new World’s Finest series. Well, I say ‘around’, it’s more a case of one corner of the DCU. One very dark corner. The part where dwell the likes of, well, I did say ‘host’…



And the Three Witches.

It’s a case of the Witching Hour in the House of Mystery and House of Secrets for Batman and Alfred and they try to find out why Robin has gone dark. Last issue Damian appeared in the Batcave with teen magician Tim Hunter and djinn djuggler Jakeem Thunder, and the three heretofore good guys attacked Batman. The Caped Crusader and back-from-the-dead butler Alfred Pennyworth fled, found Zatanna hanging around and wound up in the spirit realm. And that’s where visions show them what Robin’s been up to of late.

Meeting his great-grandmother on Lazarus Island…

… and being conned into releasing the devil you know.

The Devil Nezha.

Good on writer Mark Waid for bringing readers who haven’t been reading Joshua Williamson’s Robin series (I gave up after #2) or his own World’s Finest (love it!) up to date with what’s brought us to Batman vs Robin. And if you don’t need the flashbacks, there’s lots more to enjoy, including the efforts of some of Earth’s nastiest mystics to steal enchanted tat for Nezha in return for a power boost. There’s Bruce’s continuing reunion with Alfred. And a callback to the first ever Justice League of America I read.

There’s also a priceless moment as Alfred gives his opinion of the ramshackle House of Secrets.

If you like the DCU at all and haven’t been buying this book, jump on board now – as with World’s Finest, you never know who’s going to show up. I’ve not mentioned a couple of heroes who pop up here. To be honest, they’d rather they were elsewhere…

Have I mentioned how great it is to have Mark Waid back at DC? No one knows the characters and settings better, and his sense of story allows him to put everything together in new ways that are surprising yet logical.

Mahmud Asrar’s art is terrific throughout, he’s another gifted storyteller and having previously seen him only on a Supergirl series, it’s a treat to watch him spread his visual wings across the DCU. His Batman is especially good, and the full Felix Faust scene is a freaky joy. The only image that doesn’t work for me is the final page – Damian gets a new-old look and he reckons it’s awesome; I think he looks like he’s changed gender.

Maybe he has, there’s a lot of magic around this comic.

There’s certainly magic in the colouring and lettering of Jordie Bellaire and Steve Wands, each of whom also help the storytelling with their skills.

And Asrar’s cover with colour artist Nathan Fairbairn is a winner – I love how the composition involves the logo.

This is a fantastic comic, 39 pages of DC Universe enchantment. Don’t miss it.

9 thoughts on “Batman vs Robin #2 review

  1. I didn’t read the book but isn’t it Damian’s future suit?

    World’s Finest makes me wish DC Editorial had let the likes of Cary Bates off the leash back in the day. They let him craft fun stories robbed of consequence. Waid proves you can invoke peril with essentially flashback stories. Bates’ True Believers for Marvel proved he was capable of such stories if he’d been allowed to tell them.

    (I’m ten books away from finally catching up onmy reading. Whatever ennui I felt for comic reading appears to be gone since the first book I read today was from September 7th so I am back, baby!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh yeah, I know it’s the future suit, I just don’t recall adult Damian in it looking like he’s a Ladyboy.

      I agree with you about how Cary Bates rarely got to show how good he is… did you ever read his Captain Atom, that was certainly a step up? And I loved his return to Superman, albeit in Elseworlds mode, with Last Family of Krypton about a decade ago. I reviewed a couple of the issues.


      1. I’d go Captain atom, Last Family, and True Believers in order as great, greater, and truly awesome. One issue of teh last had Reed Richards accused of DUI!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I was trying to remember the name of that Bates Super-series a while back. Sadly, it’s not on DCUI yet.

    But yeah, this is a FANTASTIC series. It’s good to see Waid unleashed!

    Liked by 1 person

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