Robin War #1
Written by Tom King
Art by Khary Randolph, Alain Mauricet, Jorge Corona, Andres Guinaldo and Walden Wong
Colors by Emilio Lopez, Chris Sotomayor, Gabe Eltaeb, Sandra Molina
Breakdowns by Rob Haynes
Letters by Carlos M. Mangual and Tom Napolitano
Published by DC Comics
The Robin mythos is ever expanding to usher in changes in honor of the character’s 75th anniversary. In the introductory issue to the event, the Robin Movement that is the genesis idea of the title We Are Robin hits a turning point and this opener draws the curtain on the entire operation of the Robin movement, what’s to come with the higher ups of Gotham, and what this mean for the teenage movement of do gooders.
We Are Robin has slowly built an air of an uprising based around the outings of the “Middletown Cell” of Robins consisting of Duke, Izzy, Dre, Dax, and Riko. Within six issues, our team has experienced help in not so high places, loss, death, and expanded the Gotham corner of the DCU ever so slightly. Since the beginning phase of the “James Gordon Batman” Era, Gotham has become rougher and tougher on a variety of levels. The powers that be in the Gotham City social structure are all doubling down on the vigilante heroes of the city, and it gives off the feel of the military state previously witnessed in Batman Eternal. Like the Powers Corporation in the main Batman title, there is shown a new character with ties to just one of the villains every Robin will come under fire during the month long event. Given our climate of police brutality, articles of clothing on African-American teenagers, and the usage of social media in how we capture events all over the world…Robin War #1 is one of the more modernly driven titles that captures the little man in the realistic light while incorporating a larger than life universe.
Each section of the one-shot has a different artist to detail a specific part of the whole. Khary Randolph begins the first section and acts as the We Are Robin buffer and rightly so, drawing the meat of the plot. After a young teen goes through a failed save and rescue mission in a convenience store the crackdown on Robins throughout the city begins. Jorge Corona, who is the main artist on We Are Robin, gives us his usual great facial work on all of the Robins new and old with action scenes to boot. Having Corona on the artistic lineup works for the one-shot because it gives a sense of continuity between We Are Robin and the happenings of the issue. Lastly, Alain Mauricet alongside Andres Guinaldo and Walden Wong deliver the more “legacy” sections of the title with all manner of Grayson, Tim Drake, Red Hood, Damian, and James Gordon Batman action. Damian coming off of the heels of his own adventure in Robin: Son of Batman hasn’t exactly been updated on the changes in his city, and Tom King writes all of the characters with the right amount of teenage snark, adult evil, and maintains the voices we’ve seen throughout their separate series rather splendidly together to create a culmination of sorts that equates to a phenomenal entrance of events across the board.
Robin War #1 may spin out of events in Batman and We Are Robin, but in this one-shot the events that transpired will ring across through all of Gotham for months to come and throughout all of December as every member of the Batman family will feel the wrath of the Robin War in their specific title.