Batman And Nightwing #23 Review
A few months ago Batman felt a pain like he never felt before, one that no parent should ever have to: he lost his son. Damian Wayne, Robin died. Bruce Wayne had to bury not just a Robin, not just a ward, but his son. For the past few months the Batman And Robin title became Batman And …. A title where his “Family” filled in that role each helping him with a different stage of grief.
In the final stage Bruce Wayne finally accepts that Damian has passed away and is ready to move on, to stop mourning while never forgetting.
Peter J. Tomasi did a great job in this issue. I lost someone very close to me, the opposite of Bruce Wayne, I’m a Robin who lost his Batman. My father passed away and I went through the stages of grief, but he equipped me throughout my life to go through it a bit differently. While I grieved differently, Tomasi still connected that pain that is universal. The pacing of this was flawless. I really did enjoy this particular issue because not only do we get Bruce coming to terms we also get Dick and Alfred doing so as well.
I didn’t like Damian at first, but at some point the brat grew on me, as he did the Bat Family. You see that in this issue through Dick and Alfred mainly. I thought it was a stroke of brilliance to have Dick be there for this stage, Bruce was his father, maybe not by blood, but for where it counted he was his father. Dick helped Bruce realize that he is giving up and giving up isn’t respecting Damian, that to honor his life he needs to live and make sure that other kids out there in Gotham have the childhood that Damian was denied.
Tomasi also ties in Alfred to this stage. Alfred has always been this stoic figure, this rock, a proper British man, and to see him grieve to the degree that we do here is extremely powerful and tugs at your heart. The heart is also tugged when the parallel of Dick and Bruce’s relationship is mirrored by the one between Alfred and Bruce, and Bruce realizes he’s not alone in his grief, Alfred lost Damian too, and that he blames himself for his death just as much as Bruce does, and I think it helps him realize that he isn’t to blame anymore than Alfred is and he is finally able to accept his son’s passing.
Patrick Gleason is usually a solid artist but here I think he had some flubs. There is a page where Nightwing is talking to Alfred while Bruce is using the V.R. to try to relive the last moments of Damian’s life and save him that it looks like his head is on backwards or something. The anatomy is just off. Other than the few flubs Gleason does a decent job, and delivers the power scene of Alfred and Bruce with raw emotions on the paper.
Over all I say pick this issue up. You really don’t need the other 4 issues as this one is the pay off and really is worth the time and the money.
That is what I think about this book. Let us know what you think about the book, and about this Batman And …. arc, in the comments. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter to know whenever we post more previews, reviews, news and interviews on Comic Frontline.