We Are Robin #7. Lee Bermejo- Script, Carmine Di Giandomenico, Mat Lopes- Colors.
The magic of the Year of Robin continues in this week’s We Are Robin #7. The next installment of “Robin War” continues to build upon the legacy and history of Robin. It truly is a celebration of the Robin concept and the individuals who have been Robin over the past 75 years.
We start in flashback as Dick is remembering his circus days and thinking fondly of his parents. The scene quickly jumps to the present as we see that this is what’s in his mind as Dick gets a save from the Gordon-Batman as he is hanging off the side of a building. We are following up on the last couple pages of last week’s Grayson #15. Once Dick is safe he and Gordon start discussing the issues that are plaguing the Robins. It’s a nice bit of interaction between the two as they touch on the past and talk about the meta-issues of child endangerment with Batman having a teenage sidekick. It’s a nice acknowledgement of the history of Robin and the issues that it would create in the real world. Additionally, it goes in-story as Gordon talks about his own issues with Batman having a teenage sidekick. As this discussion goes on the two are able to uncover some information about the people behind city council’s decision. Surprise! It’s the Court of Owls! There’s also a mystery looming about the “Gray Son of Gotham.” Now that certainly appears to be about the first Robin- Dick Grayson, but things are not always what they seem.
The story shifts to Duke Thomas and Damian Wayne in a cage where all the other Robins are being held. Damian is pretty tough on Duke as he is questioning his decision to start the We Are Robin movement. Duke thinks back to his motivation- discovering what happened to his parents, but now he is starting to think he may be in over his head. This is a nice connection to Dick Grayson and the event that led him to become the first Robin- the death of his parents.
As Damian tries to find a way out, members of the Court of Owls strut out Jason and Tim for a death match. Damian is both worried and intrigued as he knows that Jason will kill, but Tim will not. Tim seems to step it up a bit and Damian is both pleasantly surprised as well as entertained.
It doesn’t take Damian long to figure out what’s actually going on as he listens to Jason and Tim’s repartee. If you’ve read Grayson #12 you will get this immediately, but for those of you who haven’t, here’s the recap-
Throughout the issue, Dick seems to be set against his friends and allies, facing off against Jason, Tim and Babs. During their sparring, Dick is very verbose. It all sounds like exposition, but he’s actually using a code. His friends figure it out and are able to follow through on his encrypted communication.
Well, Tim and Jason have done the same thing. As they fought they gave out encrypted directions to Damian that he figured out. Damian was able to help Tim escape who then was able to free all the Robins. As they reach the roof they are met, however, by the Court of Owls, and they realize they haven’t quite escaped. At least not just yet.
There is a lot of upside to this issue. Bermejo has managed to continue the fun and family feel that was constructed so well in last week’s Grayson #15. The story flows smoothly while also moving forward just enough. The concept of Robin is really celebrated in this issue, as the family and legacy aspects are displayed as well as the ingenuity and free wheeling aspects of the concept that contrast with Batman’s more methodical and thoughtful approach.
While we get some real movement with the Robins escaping, it seems like it’s all happened a bit too quickly. While it was clear the capture of the Robins was a ploy, it’s all come about a little quickly. Otherwise, this issue was pretty darn close to perfect for a part of a multi-part crossover story.
If you are following Robin War, you will definitely no want to miss this issue. If you are unsure of “Robin War,” this is not a bad issue to try out. It gives enough information for a new reader that one won’t feel lost going in. This is a wonderful chapter in a crossover that is celebrating Robin’s 75th Anniversary. There’s something for almost every comic reader here- character, mystery and an engaging story.