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Batman & Robin, Vol. 1: Batman Reborn Paperback – April 5, 2011

4.2 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Following Bruce Wayne's reported demise, this Grand Guignol miniseries shows the competition to fill his role. Dick Grayson, the original Robin, has established a separate crime-fighting identity as Nightwing, but now has donned the iconic cape and mask of Batman. Partnered with bratty, impatient 10-year-old Damian (son of the original Wayne), he wants to modernize Batman's equipment but maintain his high principles. Dick's successor as Robin, Jason Todd, now calls himself the Red Hood and believes that the way to reduce crime is to kill criminals as dramatically as possible. Unfortunately, the Red Hood's violent tactics bring reprisals in the form of the Flamingo, an incredibly vicious South American assassin who enjoys skinning and eating the faces of beautiful young women. Morrison's scripts use this dark material effectively, and the art—first by Quitely, then by a team of three—is dazzling. In this largely self-contained episode, Morrison expertly retools DC's old superhero machinery. When combined with Quitely, it nearly reaches the heights of the duo's previous All-Star Superman. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Recent issues of the comic book Batman have portrayed momentous developments, indeed. Bruce Wayne is dead, and erstwhile Robin Dick Grayson has replaced him as Batman. The new Robin is arrogant, 10-year-old upstart Damian, who’s both Bruce’s son and archvillain Ra’s al Ghul’s grandson. Morrison charts the new team’s first missions, as Grayson strives to guide headstrong Damian while tackling foes old (the Penguin) and new (Professor Pyg and his Circus of Strange). Complications arise from the reappearance of the Red Hood—another former Robin, Jason Todd, who battles crime more brutally than the new Dynamic Duo. In the first three of the six issues collected here, Morrison is joined by artist Frank Quitely, his collaborator on All-Star Superman. Their efforts here don’t reach the sublimity of that landmark work; unlike their extra-canonical Superman tales, these stories are restricted by the characters’ established continuity, and Quitely’s vivid visuals are less appropriate for the Dark Knight’s moody atmosphere. Still, these are the most accomplished, enjoyable printed Batman stories in many a year. --Gordon Flagg --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: Batman
  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (April 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401229875
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401229870
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.3 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,763 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The DC Universe has been through a lot over the past few years. Not a single hero or villain has been immune to the effects of reality-altering circumstances, sudden resurrections, and crazy machinations that threaten to rewrite the entirety of their existence. It's pretty heavy stuff. With everything so mired in complex continuity, it's difficult to just leap into any comic, but Grant Morrison's Batman & Robin presents a good starting point.

Here's what you need to know: Bruce Wayne has disappeared in time, because comics like to do that. The original Robin, Dick Grayson, has returned to Gotham to fight crime as Batman, alongside Bruce Wayne's 10-year-old son, Damian, who is essentially half supervillain and very angry about stuff. Both of these heroes are finding their legs in these iconic roles throughout the course of these six collected issues. Everything else should spell itself out without becoming too confusing.

Grant Morrison is one of my favorite writers. He can write incredibly strange, surreal, psychological fiction and just as easily slip back into writing powerful superhero tales about the X-Men or the Justice League. While it sometimes feels that Morrison is writing weird things for weirdness' sake, the historically bizarre bad guys that attack Gotham are a very good fit for his version of creepy, and there's no better artist to make sense of his strange exhortations than Frank Quitely.

Quitely's artwork, which is used for the first half of the collection, might be an acquired taste. It feels soft and squishy, but it's also ultra-detailed and focuses on a stylized realism, textures, and atmospherics.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The first part of a three part collection, this Batman story has a unique aspect that separates it from other Batman stories. That is: Dick Grayson is Batman and Bruce Wayne's son (Damian) is Robin. I like this version of the dynamic duo. Grayson is a goof-ball at heart and it comes through when he wears the cowl. Damian is a rebellious, disrespecting brat; but he's a good fighter. Real good. Together they make an interesting team.

If you're new to Batman comics, I would suggest a few other reads before diving into this one. There is a lot of backstory that leads up to how and why Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne end up together. You'll enjoy this series for what it is if you know how they got there.

Here's my suggested list:

Older Stuff
Batman: Death in the Family
Batman: The Black Casebook
Batman: Son of the Demon

Newer Stuff
Batman: Under the Red Hood
Batman: Batman and Son (New Edition)
Batman: RIP
Final Crisis
Batman: Battle For the Cowl

Like I said, there's a lot of backstory involved with Batman & Robin. This isn't even the full list. If you're up for it, you should read these books first. But I'll admit that is quite the commitment.
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Format: Hardcover
It's unfortunate that Frank Quitely never seems to be allowed to do more than a few issues at a time of any given series. He's far and away my favorite illustrator, and it's a shame that he wasn't responsible for this whole book.

Grant Morrison's take on the Batman mythos has been pretty inconsistent for my taste - I was not a fan of the Return of Bruce Wayne story - but this is pretty much the high point. While the previous volumes in Morrison's run were dense and difficult to approach without doing lots of other reading, his run on Batman & Robin comes across like a love letter to comics. Everything is bright, colorful, and fun without seeming childish, forced, or melodramatic. I hope this style catches on, frankly. It avoids the absurd "grittiness" of the recent era, eschewing mopy characterization and paranoia and creates a new style that is unashamed of itself, unselfconscious, but trimmed of the ham and excesses of melodrama that typified past eras.

After reading this volume and reading some of the other Batman stories of the past twenty years or so (Bruce Wayne: Fugitive, Knightfall, and a couple of others) I realized that I actually liked Morrison's characterization of Dick Grayson as Batman better than most of the takes on the Bruce Wayne Batman. That's an accomplishment. The second volume is slightly weaker than this one, partially due to the influence of the odious "Blackest Night" event, but even by itself this volume is a great introduction to a new, exciting world of comics.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Bruce Wayne is dead! So get ready folks, `cause there is a new Batman and Robin in town, and things are about to heat up!

Now, since we all know Bruce Wayne won't stay in the hereafter for long, we can sit back without any angst or sorrow and enjoy the brief tenure of the new Batman: Dick Grayson (a.k.a. Nightwing and the first Robin) who has donned the caped crusaders' cowl. Joining him as Robin is none other than Bruce Wayne's own ten year old son, Damian Wayne (son of Talia and grandson of Ra's al ghul). It's a new team with new vibes and new problems to work through. So pop some popcorn and get ready for some fun.

Right off the bat (Yeah, I went there) our Dynamic Duo has issues. Damian is an arrogant brat, who has been raised with an attitude of entitlement - not to mention the fact his care givers ran a a league of killers, and honestly, he is pissed that he has been relegated to being Grayson's sidekick when it is obvious that he could do a much better job as Batman. As for Dick, he feels a bit overwhelmed by the responsibility thrust upon him and struggles to live up to Bruce's legacy while still being true to his own self. So naturally, the two go through some growing pain together.

But they just don't have time to find their grove, because right out of the gate they are confronted by some bloodthirsty new villains, which gives the book a fresh feel. On one side of the spectrum, we have a new Red Hood and his sidekick Scarlet, who are enforcing their own brand of justice in Gotham and tweeting that the Dynamic Duo are yesterdays news, while on the other, Mr. Toad, Professor Pyg and the monstrous Flamingo are spreading death and disfigurement across Gotham City indiscriminately.
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