Batman & Robin Eternal #3 Review

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Baby we were born to ruuuuun!

 

Jason's a knave, Harper  bleeds in the cave, and Bruce needs to be saved in this third issue in DC's new weekly Batman lackey party. I don't know what I have more difficulty believing, that the loser Jason Todd can even keep up with Cassandra Cain for a second or that Tim Drake can continue to be portrayed as the world's dumbest genius. But hey, in a world when you can't trust a cannibalistic spy, who can you trust? Steph coins the term "Batler", Cassie gets offered peanuts for info, Helena expositions, and Beacon Tower is just the worst place in Gotham for Bruce Wayne to be.

 

I usually get mine on J-List.

As this book is essentially an extension of Seeley and King's Grayson book, it's no surprise that the general focus of the issue is on Dick Grayson, superspy, and the doings of the Spyral group. The initial arc of that book had Dick rounding up super power granting organs that were being used/impanted by various power. One of the people with a super-organ was Poppy, a cannibal who ate people to maintain her super speed. Well, naturally she was the perfect candidate to work for a spy organization, but it turns out she'd been working for this mysterious "Mother" figure the whole time. And now after removing the nanobot leash on her, she plans to help carry out the master plan, whatever that is (it involves knives, apparently). There's also mention of Agent Zero, the first Spyral spy (who, if I recall Grant Morrison's Batman Incorporated, is Kathrine Webb-Kane, the original Batwoman), whose journal mentions meeting this "Mother", who makes designer people.

Continuing where the last flashback left off, the flashback in this issue occurs just after Batman and Robin's first encounter with Scarecrow. Batman gets a fear toxin-crazed Dick back to the Batcave to record the symptom in an attempt to find an antidote. Robin relates that his greatest fear is being unworthy of being Batman's partner. The Teen Wonder is astonished that Batman seems to have been completely unaffected by the gas, either because he's an ubermench who fears nothing or conquered his fears, or more likely, he's just keeping what he saw in the gas to himself. Or perhaps... there's something to this theory that Batman's peewee squad is the result of Mother's human tampering. I doubt things are so simple, though.

 

And that was the last time Robin showed Batman a Magic Eye poster.

 

Whatever the case is, Bruce has that part of him locked up, or something of the sort, because he's just Bruce Wayne now. And unfortunately for him, whoever's been targeting his sidekicks is now looking to do him in as well. Maybe he should have just ordered out that night.

 

Sigh. Typical Denny's.

I love the little interactions with the Robin group and the new teen girl heroes. I would really love to see a book with Harper, Steph, and Cass as BFF superheroines. Maybe a new Birds of Prey or Batman's Angels, or something along those lines. What I didn't like is that whole "Jason's the fist, Tim is the brain, and Dick is the heart of the Robins" shtick. They're more than just those elements. Frankly, I can't imagine Jason being a more competent fighter than Dick or Tim, but who knows in this new continuity? After four years, Tim Drake is still mostly a shadow of his former self, and here he is offering Cass candy for information. Between that and putting spy cameras in the Harper household, my favorite Robin is becoming a full-on creep.

 

"And this guy's the smart one."

Oh well, still better than Jason.

I haven't made any real comments on my general impression of the series thus far because while I'm enjoying it as much as the last weekly (maybe more), I need to wait until the plot builds up a bit more, to something substantial. I am generally liking the thrust of the scenario and the artwork by Pelletier and Eaton is solid in this issue. I especially love that issue where Cassandra motions for Harper to follow her. The expressions on Cassandra and Harper are very expressive and natural. Dick Grayson's Robin costume for this continuity is growing on me, too.

I'm looking forward to seeing this series revv up.

 

"These are where your tumors are." "My tumor is in my fist?" "No, for you I just wanted to higlight that you masturbate too much."
 

Next:  Knives To See You!

 

- Penguin Truth
(2015)

Story: James Tynion IV & Scott Snyder
Script: Tim Seeley
Pencils: Paul Pelletier & Scot Eaton
Inks: Marc Deering & Wayne Faucher
Colors: Rain Beredo
Lettering By: Joshua Cozine & Troy Peteri
Cover By: Tony S. Daniel & Tomeu Morey
Editor: Chris Conroy
Asst. Editor: Dave Wielgosz
Group Editor: Mark Doyle
Batman Created By Bob K--wait...

Still too little credit for Finger.