Bricks are flying in We Are Robin #2 by Lee Bermejo, art by Jorge Corona, Rob Haynes on breakdowns, color by Trish Mulvihill and Jared K. Fletcher on letters. Epilogue art by Khary Randolph and
Duke Thomas (of Zero Year and Future’s End where he is Robin proper) is saved by our rag-tag team of “Robins” (Riko, Izzy, Dre, Troy and Dax) while exploring in the underground looking for his parents (I’m going to assume, having jumped into this issue cold). Duke takes a hit and is left behind by the group as a cop pulls up by orders from “The Nest”, their unseen organizer who contacts via text message. The cop collects Duke and Duke awakes in a police interrogation room. The cop, a tall skinny man tries to pry info out of Duke but Duke isn’t very cooperative and the man gives Duke the choice to become “professional”. Duke leaves the room, revealing it to be fake and situated in a bunker. Before him is a Robin jacket, a motorbike, and a new cellphone with the text leading him to the rest of the team. He meets up with them and the team then gets their next part of the mission; disarming a bomb threat.
In an epilogue a mysterious figure (Bruce?) investigates the underground and how a tall figure (not unlike the cop) reports to a mysterious figure.
I like the feel of the book. It has a certain gritty 90s feel but is also totally modern and that feel extends to the somewhat Kelly Puckett-ish artwork. It brings to mind the time in the Bat-books when Tim was training to be Robin and the introduction of Spoiler and Huntress and No Man’s Land. This does “street level” rather well, Batgirl another sort of “teen” street-level crime book in comparison fits the gentrified Burnside in which she lives, delivering a much more sugared coffeehouse version of what’s going on here. Both are welcome and I’d like to see this team’s take on Babs (though considering she shows up everywhere I’m not very inclined to want her here, I’d much rather have Spoiler or Bluebird show up).
The diversity of the group and their designs are solid. The space-cadet Riko looks like an authentic Robin (or if Jubilee decided to be Robin) and touches like Troy’s costume being a modified football uniform is also rather character developing and unique. I would have liked there to be an even three and three split between girls and boys on the now six person team but both Riko and Izzy have strong personalities. Dax is so far my least favorite but I’m not given enough to really judge fully.
Having homeless people being the main antagonist in the first is a bit squicky, it’s not like Bat writers haven’t done that before and it’s clear in the epilogue these people are being manipulated but it’s still a bit distasteful. The epilogue’s art is a bit better than the main books, it has an interesting look, but both are pretty exciting. Overall the book is not as pretty as either Batgirl or Gotham Academy but it certainly has a strong appeal and does action much better than both of those books.
Good book! A great start with decent pacing and a cool underlying mystery building on various angles. I like the team so far and really excited to see where this goes and what it brings to the “Young Gotham” line of books which is becoming rather strong.