Tag Archives: Tim Drake

Preview: DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

Written by: Meghan Fitzmartin
Art by: Belén Ortega

The breakout story from Batman: Urban Legends collected in one volume for the very first time, in time for Pride Month! Tim Drake’s search for a missing friend kidnapped by the villains known as the Chaos Monsters leads Tim to realize his identity as a bisexual man. Collecting the Tim Drake stories from Batman: Urban Legends #4-6 and #10, with a brand-new story that sees Tim teaming up with his former Young Justice teammates and the Batgirls, beginning Tim Drake’s 2022 path!

DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

Tim Drake’s story continues in Tim Drake: Robin, a new ongoing series

Tim Drake’s story continues in his own series: Tim Drake: Robinon sale September 27. Written by Meghan Fitzmartin with art by Riley Rossmo, the series spins out of Batman Urban Legends and the Tim Drake Pride Special.

This kinetic, high-energy series pulls Tim center stage as a mystery over a year in the making takes shape. A new villain who’s been hounding Tim from afar decides to take things up close and personal, putting Bernard and everyone else Tim cares about in peril. All that and Tim finally carves out a corner of Gotham City just for himself, and sets up shop in his very own…murder-shack-boat? 

If that wasn’t enough, break out your skateboards and motorcycles because DC has assembled a Rogues’ Gallery of artists to capture all of Tim’s iconic looks over the years, with a One Year Later Era variant by Jorge Jimenez, a 1:25 Debut Era variant by Sweeney Boo, a 1:50 Young Justice Era variant by Dan Mora, and a 1:100 Teen Titans Era variant by Jamal Campbell, with main cover by Ricardo López Ortiz

Preview: DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

Written by: Meghan Fitzmartin
Art by: Belén Ortega

The breakout story from Batman: Urban Legends collected in one volume for the very first time, in time for Pride Month! Tim Drake’s search for a missing friend kidnapped by the villains known as the Chaos Monsters leads Tim to realize his identity as a bisexual man. Collecting the Tim Drake stories from Batman: Urban Legends #4-6 and #10, with a brand-new story that sees Tim teaming up with his former Young Justice teammates and the Batgirls, beginning Tim Drake’s 2022 path!

DC Pride: Tim Drake Special

Around the Tubes

Detective Comics #1041

It was new comic book day yesterday. What’d you all get? What’d you like? What’d you dislike? Sound off in the comments below! While you think about that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

The Mary Sue – Tim Drake, the Best Robin AS Robin, Is the Newest LGBTQ Mainstream Comic Book Character – If you missed the news.

Reviews

The Beat – Cheer Up: Love and Pompoms

That Hashtag Show – Detective Comics #1041

Screenrant – The Heart Hunter

That Hashtag Show – The Joker #6

But Why Tho Podcast – Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven

Super-Articulate: DC Multiverse Killer Croc Assortment

THIS . . . is a big one. Quite simply one of the best assortments that Mattel has released since the advent of DC Multiverse, the Killer Croc wave is almost everything that you’d want out of a Batman grouping. Let’s dig in. But first: thank you to Mattel for providing us with these figures free for the purposes of review. First up . . .

Red Robin (Tim Drake): I’m glad Tim got out as Red Robin before the Drake name change. (No sir, I do not like it). DC Multiverse has done a great job getting to Rebirth characters, and I’ve been really pleased with the attention paid to the excellent Detective Comics run. I think that Red Robin looks pretty great. The RR logo is easy to read. The cape is pretty solid. Also, the staff is well done. This figure has a pretty great face sculpt, too; that’s a grim and determined expression right there. I’m kind of surprised that it took until this deep in the line to get to him, but hey, I’m happy he’s here.

Red Hood (Jason Todd): This is the figure that I struggle with the most in the assortment. I’m definitely glad that it exists, but I’m equally bummed that the pistols are sculpted into the gun belt and can’t be removed. That’s a swing and a miss. The rest of the figure itself is pretty good. I like the jacket existing as a separate piece over the torso. The Red Hood helmet sculpt is okay, but the masked Jason head is great. This particular figure has some of the best paint work in the assortment; I especially like the shininess of the helmet itself. Red Hood also comes with a few extra hands, including hands sculpted to hold guns (which is a little ironic).

Katana: I was pleasantly surprised when Katana was announced as part of this group, and I think Mattel did a fine job. The splashes of red and white on a costume that’s predominantly black make for a striking figure; I got a really good paint op on mine, as it has a sleek sheen. Katana does have an extra hand for holding her namesake weapon; that’s another well-done piece. Knowing her history in the Outsiders, I had to take a picture of her with the CW Black Lightning from two weeks back. Seeing them together makes me wish Mattel had gotten time to do Geo-Force and Halo, too. Nice work, good figure.

Batman (Dick Grayson): There’s a lot to like about this figure. First off, I loved the Morrison/Quitely/etc Batman and Robin title. Secondly, he’s sculpted differently than Bruce. You can tell that THIS Batman is different from the OTHER Batman, and that’s excellent. Another difference that’s pretty clever is the use of the cloth cape; it’s another signifier, given the predominance in plastic molded capes for Bruce. Going in that direction with the cape also echoes the way that Quitely drew him, particularly on the cover of issue #1 of that run. The figure comes with an unmasked head and a”hanging cowl” accessory that lets you mimic Dick’s appearance when he has the cowl pulled off. I like this one. It wouldn’t have been one that I would have thought of immediately, and that’s cool; it makes for a nice surprise and it’s a solid figure.

KGBeast: Holy crap; this guy’s HUGE. Originally appearing in the class “Ten Nights of the Beast” story and popping up on occasion across media (Justice League Unlimited; there by his real name in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice), KGBeast has always been a favorite weird villain of mine. I feel like they got the flavor of the guy, particularly with his crazy weapon attachment. That’s just ridiculously big, and also awesome. A pair of daggers go into booth sheaths, which is a great touch. It’s just a massive and intimidating figure, and I really dig it.

Alfred: This Alfred figure is just tremendous. The basic look is terrific. It looks just like Alfred from the comics. The choice of serving tray and glass accessories is hilarious and super-appropriate; way to be on-the-nose, Mattel. This is all well and good. But the thing that pushes Alfred into the stratosphere is the fact that he’s got not one, not two, not three, but four frickin’ heads. Love the ’60s TV show? There’s the Napier head. Love the Keaton movies? Allow us to show you the Gough head. You a comic person? Comic head! And the fourth . . . the Outsider! If you don’t know who the Outsider is (short form: bad Alfred), then trust us; it’s a little complicated to get in right now. But that choice is just awesome. I love this Alfred; obviously, there have been a few over time in various lines, but I think this is the best.

Collect + Connect Killer Croc: Did I say KGBeast was big? Good Lord. Killer Croc is enormous. But even better, he’s still extremely poseable. Frequently in figures of this type, you trade that poseability for the size. Not here. Aside from the hinged jaw, you have good mobility at the joints. And the detail! The size makes it a little easier to achieve this, but this figure is a veritable explosion of scales and ridges. The texture and general weight of this figure is off the charts. Outstanding work.

As you can tell, I think that Mattel pretty much pulled out the stops this time. There are some fine figures here and I appreciate the selection. I got out the DCUC Signature Damien to pose Al and the boys for a couple of shots to mark the occasion. What about you, readers? You like this set? Tell us about it in the comments. Thanks for reading!

Review: Detective Comics #981

James Tynion concludes his run on Detective Comics with smiling, hugs, and the simple refrain that maybe one should take things one day at a time instead of coming up with complex algorithms and plans for the future. His first artistic collaborators on the series, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, and Adriano Lucas, return for Detective #981 and provide chilling double page spreads of possible futures and more solid ones of the present of the Bat-family. The Brother Eye/Ulysses Armstrong/future Tim Drake plot is resolved fairly quickly so that Tynion, Barrows, and Ferreira can dig deeper into the characters’ emotions and relationships and tease out the different paths that the members of Batman and Batwoman’s hero training squad follows.

Probably the most unexpected hug is the first one between Tim Drake, who has been possessed by Brother Eye technology, and Batwoman as they realize that finding a perfect algorithm to fight crime involves pushing away friends and family and giving into one’s darker nature. It’s not punching or gadgets that brings Tim back to his real self (I love how Sal Cipriano gradually “de-Brothers” his word balloons.), but Stephanie Brown’s voice on the other end telling him she loves him no matter if he’s Red Robin, a future autocratic Batman, or just Tim Drake the college student. The split screens between her and ruthlessly manipulative and pragmatic Ulysses Armstrong represents the warring side of his psyche as Tim wants to efficiently prevent crime in Gotham City and elsewhere, but the human cost is too great. Batwoman experiences almost the same thing in a potent vision of the future where she is hunting down Batman for the government and is content to let him go, but because Bruce is dying of radiation from Brother Eye, she executes a mercy killing. Even if it’s a potential future timeline, Lucas uses a full color palette and Barrows uses tighter knit panels to show the tears on Kate’s face as she puts down an aging Bruce, who has realized that Bat-symbol is a powerful force for good, but it’s not one that needs to be eternal. It’s a direct refutation to the machine set up by Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy back in 2014’s Detective Comics #27 where Batman set up a way for a Batman (and Alfred) to exist in every era perpetually.

Detective Comics #981 is all about being able to love your family members, but also knowing when they need to go down their own path. Especially in the early part of Tynion’s run, Batman, Batwoman, and Red Robin have all been about control with strict training protocols and focus on efficiency and results at the expense of emotions, which caused Stephanie Brown to leave the team, poor Cassandra Cain to be estranged, and Clayface to die. The second half of this comic sets this all to rights with honest conversations, smiling, hugs, and yes, breaking up the proverbial band. Kate and Bruce share drinks at a fancy restaurant where their parents used to “parley”, and Bruce admits that the fact that she’s one of his only living relatives is why their relationship is so frustrating. Also, Kate talks about starting to figure out where she fits in this world of vigilantes and high tech paramilitarism as more of a solo act like she was back when J.H. Williams was writing her comics. But everything isn’t all sunshine and rainbows because this is a book predominantly set in Gotham City so, of course, Jake Kane is listening on their entire conversation. Kate might wear the Batman symbol and have respect for Batman and her other cousin Bruce, but she doesn’t answer to him.

Even if she isn’t technically the “star” of Detective Comics #981, the short scene with Cassandra Cain and Barbara Gordon is definitely the most heartfelt as Cass moves from Wayne Manor to a room in Leslie Thompkins’ clinic where she can be a student and young woman and not just a crime fighter. In contrast with her completely face and form obscuring Orphan costume, Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira draw Cass and her surroundings as open and dynamic before slowly pivoting to this issue’s saddest moment. At the clinic, she isn’t her codename, and Barbara Gordon is “Babs”, not Batgirl. Even though the glimpse of Cassandra picking up her pre-Flashpoint mantle as Batgirl in the previous issue was glorious, it is good to see her learning how to speak and function in society as a human being and not just as a human weapon and nicely caps off the arc that James Tynion has set up for her throughout Batman and Robin Eternal and Detective Comics.

Although it features alternate timelines, crazy future tech, and of course, masked vigilantes who wear a flying rodent on their costumes, Detective Comics #981, and by extension James Tynion’s whole 47 issue run on Detective Comics, has been a family drama with Batwoman playing the badass aunt and Tim Drake as the son, who wants to please his father and also wants to do his own thing. It ends with Batman going into action alone while his surrogate family members forge a path of their own. Sure, Tim and Stephanie are investigating alternate timelines and not going to college, but Batman trusts and loves them enough to let them strike out on their own. Batman fighting crime in Gotham City is a constant, but there is room for change in that constant.

Story: James Tynion IV Pencils: Eddy Barrows
Inks: Eber Ferreira Colors: Adriano Lucas Letters: Sal Cipriano
Story: 9.5 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.8 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Batman and Robin Eternal #4

4878987-bmrbet_cv4_ds“Deadly Dinner”

So this week opens up with action right out the gate. From the moment you turn the first page it’s an all out kitchen melee. Bruce Wayne (with no knowledge of his former life) finds himself surrounded by a variety of deadly cutlery wielding assassins, who want him dead.

Lucky for Bruce, someone has his back. His former (again unbeknownst to Bruce) partner Dick Grayson, knows his way around some knives since he grew up in a circus. (I wonder if knife survival looks good on a resume?) As good as Grayson is though he begins to get outnumbered and the cavalry arrives in the form of some Robins. Make that tons of them. Duke Thomas and his band of street kids from the comic We are Robin, happily join the fray. (Personally that was the coolest part of the issue for me as the Duke Crew know how to make an entrance and it was completely unexpected)

Just when the fight seems about even, in comes Batgirl! She cracks wise while stylishly kicking some bad guy behind as well as endearing herself to her comrades. She even tries to give Duke and the new kids some pointers.(Remember kids, crime fighting etiquette is the utmost importance) Before long the fight is at a close and our heroes mop up, so to speak.

Dick and Barbara do some short catching up, before Barbara being sent off to keep a close eye on Bruce for his safety. It’s noted here that something occurred that caused friction between them. (the editor’s note says see Batgirl #45, I haven’t so I will plead ignorance at this point)

The remainder of the issue consists of Dick having a heated phone discussion with Tim Drake (Red Robin) who is manning the Batcave and providing all the intel. It’s funny to me that with Barbara fully healed and back in her Bat gear, Tim has taken on a very Oracle-like role in the Bat books as of late. I don’t mind it and it’s certainly a natural role for Tim with his tech savvy. I still wish it were Barbara as Oracle truth be told, but I guess I’m just being stubborn.  Dick (in disguise) also goes to visit Bruce to alert him of the dangers that lie ahead as well as making him aware that he has his back. One thing I will say, is that I am very much enjoying the Bat-Team with Bruce out of the equation. It lets us see what the kids are made of, and allows for some interesting story possibilities. I am hoping this starts to move at a more break neck pace soon, as each week is starting to feel like filler.

Overall: So not a great entry, but not a terrible one either. It had it’s moments. Certainly the kitchen surprise with all the Robins was very entertaining, but the rest of the issue even including what should have been a shocking cliffhanger, just didn’t pack the emotional punch I think it meant to. (Now that cliffhanger bomb, from issue #1, there’s a different story!) I know plots on a big epic like this take time to build but c’mon creative team, try a little harder please. The savior of the week though was penciller Scot Eaton. His art was energetic and the man knows his way about drawing a kitchen. All in all each week the artists are really holding their own in trying to make each chapter as exciting as possible. I just hope the writers get the memo, and start doing the same. If you need me I will be cautiously optimistic waiting on the rooftop, using the Batsignal to make menacing shadow puppets. Till next time, Gotham…

Story: James Tynion IV and Scott Snyder Art: Scot Eaton
Story: 6 Art: 7.5  Overall: 6.5  Recommend: Read

Review: Batman and Robin Eternal #3

BMRBET-03-300-001-HD-1-cad48“While the Bat’s away”

So we enter into week three of the half-year epic Batman & Robin Eternal, and while I appreciate that it must be quite a daunting task for any creative team to sustain interest and high level of creativity, it’s important to me as a reader that they don’t simply phone it in.

Each issue should be constructed almost like an episode of a season of a tv show with individual events but a long reaching overall story arc. While the first week was a big splash right out the gate and last weeks was lackluster, this one was somewhere right in the middle.

The theme that all of Batman’s former young proteges are being targeted from a secret menace from his past is very intriguing. The new villain “Mother” could have lots of promise if handled properly. I have been thoroughly impressed with the “Bat books” since the rebirth of the New 52 a few years ago. So many concepts were revamped and updated with great achievement. Sure it’s a bit wacky that we are to believe in the new condensed continuity that Batman has had four Robins (Dick, Jason, Tim and Damian) in just 5 years (Talk about not longstanding job security) but hey that’s comics.

So on to the issue. The skinny here, is that Mother has a list, and all the Robins and former teenage sidekicks and even one current one (Harper Row) are on it. It’s not a good list, like the Dean’s list. This is bad news indeed.

Last issue we were treated to a yawn of a slugfest with a new villain named The Orphan, kicking our heroes collective butts, with no real explanation. This week we open up with the resident hothead of the Robin’s: Jason Todd, now known as Red Hood about to execute the ninja newbie Cassandra Cain. To Jason’s surprise she is more than ready for him. As Jason gets the upper hand though, big brother Robin, Dick Grayson aka Nightwing aka Agent 37 (Seriously Dick, pick one) steps in with words of peace to calm this kill fest down.

Red Robin (These guys sure love colors in their names) suggests if they are going to try to solve a mystery like the old days, there’s only one place to go: The Batcave. When they arrive in an effort of complete transparency (guess we are not in Congress) Dick plays Bruce’s secret message for his team. Team Robin tries to make heads or tails of it but with no real results. All they know is that “Mother” is some kind of teen agent human trafficker with deadly intentions and very vast resources.

Like the TV show Arrow, This story makes common use of flashbacks to give us crumbs to follow to piece the mystery together. (At this point though, you can yank my junior detective badge because I got squat) 

What we are shown in the flashback is more details of a case that Bruce and Dick worked on very early in their crime fighting careers as Batman and Robin. This one particular tidbit comes from the Dynamic Duo’s legendary first tussle with Dr. Jonathan Crane aka The Scarecrow. Robin (Dick) has been exposed to The Scarecrow’s “fear toxin” and nothing is seeming to shake the effects. In an effort to restore his partner to sanity, Bruce removes his Batman cowl and ask Dick what he’s seeing. In short Dick explained to him that the toxin makes him see his greatest fears and his fear of being a failure to Batman. Basically a failure that could resonate in any loving father-son relationship.

Just as Robin pours his heart out, Batman slips the cowl back on and heads out on the case.(wow a bit harsh in my view, but he is Batman after all) 

Here’s where it gets dicey. Batman was exposed to the fear toxin, the same as Robin, however he tells him that he was not effected at all. Hmm, I’m sure this will come into play later but for now I’m stumped. Perhaps at this stage in The Scarecrow’s career the “toxin” only effects adolescents? I’m not quite sure but they put bait on the hook because the writers got me here.

As for the rest of the issue we are treated a look at the non Bat- Bruce Wayne and left with yet another cliffhanger. I really wish the creative team would get us back the the great cliffhanger bomb they dropped on us back in issue one but I guess a modicum of patience is required.

Overall: As I pointed out this is a weekly story and takes time to build. However a weekly saga needn’t be a “weak” saga. I like the flashback scenes so far and that issue one cliffhanger was killer. I’m just not properly feeling it yet. At least the writers have another 23 weeks to turn me around. On the plus side, the art by Paul Pelletier and Scot Eaton was very polished and dynamic. I feel they have a terrific handle on the look of these characters without making them look juvenile. I particularly love the revamped design of Dick Grayson’s Robin costume for this era. It invokes a lot of the original Tim Drake costume design from the early 1990’s (One of my personal favorites) and there is nothing wrong with that. While I’m not floored yet at this juncture, like a loyal fan I will see how this plays out. So for the foreseeable future you can catch my weekly review here. Press the tights and check the utility belts, till next week same Bat .. err bird time, same bird channel!

Story: James Tynion IV, Tim Seeley, and Scott Snyder  Art: Paul Pelletier, Scott Eaton
Story: 6 Art: 8 Overall 6.5 Recommendation: Read