Continuity is more of a curse than a guide for many DC writers. As DC editors don’t seem as invested in any modicum of a history for the characters it makes it easy for a writer to casually say Dick Grayson wasn’t the first Robin after all. Actually it was the teen sidekick of a hacker that exposed the Batcave’s computers that Batman manipulated into helping him.
That’s the payoff for writer for writer Tim Seeley’s Robins series. It’s hard to stay invested in the wider world of DC when editors sign off on this kind of massive overhaul to a character for the sake of a few hours trending on Twitter. Not to drum up more sales for the books as these kind of choices keep having the opposite effect.
In this case, it’s best to just treat Robins like yet another self-contained story that doesn’t have any lasting meaning beyond this final issue.
That’s not too hard since Seeley’s take on Batman doesn’t sound like the established Batman voice at all. And Nightwing, Red Hood, Red Robin, Spoiler and Robin having so much trouble fighting hacker Jenny Wren felt like a stretch.
Baldemar Rivas’ art has a cartoonish flair that works for the tone of this series. With a property like Metal Men, Plastic Man or Doom Patrol, Rivas’ lighthearted style could work even if the take on the veteran Robins and Batman never truly matched up with their usual appearances.
Robins works best on its own for Batman fans who just wanted to see the early Robins — save Duke Thomas — teaming up. Ultimately, this outing was a disappointment considering the characters involved and the wacky shifting of Batman’s history.
Rating: 5 out of 10
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