Comic Vine Review

33 Comments

Batman and Robin #23 - Acceptance Review

4

Batman is still dealing with his recent loss. Is there anything Nightwing can do to bring him out of this funk?

The Good

Peter Tomasi knows how to pull at our heartstrings. He has given us some great issues showing the building relationship between Bruce and Damian. Bruce has undergone loss before but this is proving to be an extremely hard time in his life.

With the latest chapter dealing with the different stages of grief, the big question is, will Bruce ever be able to handle "Acceptance." We know how obsessed he can be and, through special means, he is able to go over the key events. It is heartbreaking. Dick and Alfred are practically at a loss as to what they can do. That's what makes this enjoyable. It's not your typical Batman story where he beats up the bad guys. We're seeing him actually trying to deal with his loss.

Patrick Gleason always manages to squeeze in all sorts of emotion into his art. It's also great seeing his take on the story as there are some "flashbacks" to the BATMAN INCORPORATED issue.

The Bad

Why and how is Nightwing here? Isn't he busy in Chicago? We could easily put that aside and assume this happens before or after his Chicago adventure. Unfortunately it's mentioned he "just came in from Chicago." I'm sorry but that just doesn't flow with what is happening in NIGHTWING. Dick can't even properly repair rips in his costume while in Chicago and can barely afford a place to stay yet he's able to make a quick trip back to Gotham for this story.

This has been an important arc but parts of this just felt a little repetitive, and not for the obvious reason. Perhaps the five stages over five months was a bit much?

The Verdict

There's nothing harder than witnessing someone dealing with grief and loss. Peter Tomasi has been delivering such heartbreaking stories involving Batman and the death of Damian. Tomasi knows how to throw the curve balls at us (just wait for the ending here). Patrick Gleason's art fully captures the essence of it all as well. Nightwing's appearance makes sense in terms of his connection to Bruce but it's unfortunate that it feels so forced, given the recent events in his title and mention of them. Now that the stages are over, we'll have to wait and see what's next. The Villains Month issue takes over in September and we'll be eagerly awaiting what's to come. (Hint, it included Two-Face).

35 Comments
Posted by hausmanjm92

I thought this was an great, emotional issue. I haven't read the other issues in this arc but I can see how the story could get repetitive after five months.

Posted by batmannflash

So many feels in this issue. Tomasi has done a great job this entire series

Posted by dondave

So many feels in this issue. Tomasi has done a great job this entire series

QFT

Edited by Chronicjihad

As for your complaints about Dick being broke - Alfred likely sent him funds to get there.

Also, why didn't this get 5 stars? Amazing issue.

Posted by MuyJingo

@g_man I don't understand why you often seen confused when comics don't line up.

They don't have to.

Nightwing's story in Chicago could go on for another few months, but in the timeline of comics it could have ended just as the story in Batman and Nightwing #23 starts.

The stories are never said to be in "real time", as far as that applies to comics...

Posted by Amaryllis

I was hoping we would get to see the video that Damian made to explain why he wanted to take acting lessons that the annoying girl gave to Bruce last issue.

Edited by Shallbecomeabattoo

I really think that Batman and Robin, under Tomasi and Gleason, would be THE flagship Batbook, if they wouldn't have to follow every story Snyder or Morrison does.

If they were able to really tell their own stories and not be forced to be an ancillary title, they would blast Snyder and Capullo out of the water. Don't get me wrong, I love the main Batman book and Snyder/Capullo on it, but it bugs me that B&R gets held down by stories from other books.

Posted by thenexusrebound

So many feels in this issue. Tomasi has done a great job this entire series

I cried I won't lie. Girlfriend looked at me like "Are you okay?" So many feels...

Posted by Twentyfive

I know I'm going to get a LOT of bad comments directed at me for saying this, but I hope Batman will be out of his funk very, very soon.

Edited by FastestBlender

@muyjingo Agreed. There is no secure comic book continuity, it's a fallacy. The fact that Nightwing is in this book is not a fault of the storytelling. If you take @g_man line of thought to it's natural conclusion, every X-Book not named Wolverine should get demerits in a review because Wolverine's doing something else in his book.

Posted by G-Man

@muyjingo: It's not confusion. It's annoyance. Based on the interviews Kyle Higgins has done including when he was on the podcast, Dick basically isolated himself to complete his 'quest' in Chicago. He only intended to be there a brief time (Higgins originally said Dick figured he'd only be there a couple weeks). Throwing in a casual comment shows a lack of cohesion in the titles. The idea was to keep Dick separate from the rest of the Bat-Universe. This has been going on for five months (our time) but in other comics, Bruce seems to have already gone through the stages.

@chronicjihad: Again, Dick is doing his Chicago thing on his own. He wouldn't ask Alfred for money. Why only four stars? Because reviews are opinions and this wasn't a five for me. Also, there's some text written in the "Bad" section explaining my dislikes. What I don't understand is why people like to accuse us of giving so many fives and then quickly complain if we don't give a book they felt was a five that same score.

Big picture, EVERYONE here can write their own user review. I encourage everyone, whether you agree with our reviews or not, to write your own. That's far more productive than questioning or complaining if you don't agree with our reviews.

Apologies to those that don't have a problem with the review/rating.

Staff
Edited by MuyJingo

@g_man said:

@muyjingo: It's not confusion. It's annoyance. Based on the interviews Kyle Higgins has done including when he was on the podcast, Dick basically isolated himself to complete his 'quest' in Chicago. He only intended to be there a brief time (Higgins originally said Dick figured he'd only be there a couple weeks). Throwing in a casual comment shows a lack of cohesion in the titles. The idea was to keep Dick separate from the rest of the Bat-Universe. This has been going on for five months (our time) but in other comics, Bruce seems to have already gone through the stages.


G_man, I think you missed my point, or perhaps I missed yours.

Dick being in Chicago in Nightwing, and being in Gotham in this issue having just come from Gotham doesn't show a lack of cohesion, or at least I fail to see how it does.

Dick may be in Chicago for six months (our time), but may well have been there only for a few weeks.

You had essentially the same criticism during Death of the Family with Joker in all of the bat books, and I think you said something similar about Captain America being in Dimension Z.

There isn't any inconsistency or lack of cohesion unless you assert a characters many stories across books are taking place concurrently in comic time. I don't know where that assumption would come from or how it would make sense.

If I've misunderstood your point, I apologize.

Just a side note, regarding the reviews...I don't really care what stars are awarded because I understand they are opinions, but I think it would be better if "the Bad" was elaborated on more, as to why was 4 stars in place of 5 or 3 in place of 4.

The stars seemed to be based on just a feeling of how much the book was enjoyed, and it would be nice if that were articulated more which isn't always the case. Just my opinion....

Posted by batsymyplaything

I guess we can finally say RIP Damian Wayne, Son of Batman and Robin!

Posted by Hawkguy

What an amazing issue. Its amazing how emotional Alfred made me... As much as I'd like to see some action and some new Robin action, I can't help but give this book a place in my heart.

The same way we all unwind with a funny book like Hawkeye (you're welcome) or superior foes, I feel a want for a book like this, one that taps into characters and their emotions like no other.

Solid book, loved it.

Edited by cobra88king8

I really dislike how DC has handled Dick's handling of Damian's death. I understand that they didn't want to force the issue too much in his own book and I'm fine with that. But I feel like none of the Bat titles (except Batman Inc) have addressed the fact that they were partners and Damian's death would have had a very large effect on him

Posted by Jacobin_Wisdom

@chronicjihad: That what I assumed. Alfred been hellbent on having every bat-family member try to help Bruce heal, mourn and return to life as Bruce/Batman. Alfred would give Dick some funds for a round trip flight to aid in Alfred's cause for sure.

Posted by Jacobin_Wisdom

Five months was a bit much? Not really as it felt refreshing that Batman is properly mourning his son's death, and does a good job of hitting the five stages accurately. Now I don't know where they can go with this title without having a Robin tag-along.

Personally if I was a writer/editor/whatever then I would have a four comic arc on Batman handling a villain that he and Damian have fought in the past. Show how Batman was better with a robin at his side, and how he is lost without a robin, and specifically without Damian.

They should introduced a new robin by the end of Year Zero, or if not then they should temporarily end this comic as without a Robin it's not workable.

Posted by sinestro_GL

As G-Man says in the review above

This has been an important arc but parts of this just felt a little repetitive, and not for the obvious reason.

Posted by SupBatz

Really hating the way that Tomasi has been writing Bruce so I am reluctant to buy this issue.

Edited by detective38

complaining about continuity over an extremely popular character like batman is absurd, for all any body knows tomasi might have written this before nightwing started in chicago and only knew about it happening so he threw a mention of it into his script. Jason has a story arc going on in his book thats seperated from the other bat books as well so how bout we complain about his tie in book from this arc as well. I thought this was the best issue in this arc and a very great ending.

Posted by apg103

I hope this leads to Tim Drake becoming robin again. He was the best robin there was. I hated that damien replaced him

Posted by fallbrigade

How do we not know this simply takes place after the current events in Nightwing? I mean, I don't think we need to be so nitpicky about this bit. I really enjoyed this issue, and the ending was simply heartbreaking.

Posted by ptigrusmagus

I used to worry about continuity but now I'm just happy when there is a continuity Easter egg. Kind of like comic covers, just can't sweat how the cover has nothing to do with the story being told haha.

Also ratings are done by peeps who enjoy the books and read them for fun.

Posted by JamDamage

This book was a 5 star just because of pure emotion. It really to me by surprise when Alfred played the simutlation, but it made it's point and I feel shitty knowing that Damian is dead.

Posted by MuyJingo

I just read this again...it baffles me how this wasn't 5 stars. I know I know, opinion...but sheesh.

The scene with Alfred at the end was more emotional than anything in any other bat book so far. All the characters are written perfectly.

It wasn't repetitive in any way, because it moves the story forward and follows naturally from what came before.

One of the best issues of any Bat book in the New 52, by far.

Edited by victorcheenoanleu

@muyjingo: I think you're completely missing his point. DC has had continuity problems since forever mostly because the writers don't really work together on certain things. Like for example there was a RHATO issue were Jason talked about teaming up with Damian over in Batman Incorporated at one point. If that were true & those events took place before death of the family then Damian shouldn't have been alive for DOTF or that particular issue of RHATO. All we're asking for is a bit of consistency, not for things to make sense or add up just cause we're being picky.

Posted by MuyJingo

@muyjingo: I think you're completely missing his point. DC has had continuity problems since forever mostly because the writers don't really work together on certain things. Like for example there was a RHATO issue were Jason talked about teaming up with Damian over in Batman Incorporated at one point. If that were true & those events took place before death of the family then Damian shouldn't have been alive for DOTF or that particular issue of RHATO. All we're asking for is a bit of consistency, not for things to make sense or add up just cause we're being picky.

I don't think I am missing his point.

He seems to be saying there is a lack of cohesion because the characters appearances across different books contradict each other.

I'm saying that isn't the case. That is only the case if you assume the stories are taking pace concurrently, and there is no reason to think that.

It has nothing to do with DC's wider continuity problems.

I also don't understand your example. It was pretty clear DotF took place before Damian's death.

Posted by k4tzm4n

@muyjingo said:

The scene with Alfred at the end was more emotional than anything in any other bat book so far.

I couldn't take my eyes off the panel of Alfred carrying a resting Damian away as Titus follows them. I just couldn't.

Staff
Posted by TheAcidSkull

i'd give this a 5/5 for making an emotionless f*ck like me cry. (if a tear drop Counts)

Posted by superior_prime_maybe

Alfred...
:'(

Didnt feel shilt for last 4 issues and almost one issue... And last 2 page makes me cry

Posted by Denam_Pavel

@muyjingo said:

@victorcheenoanleu said:

@muyjingo: I think you're completely missing his point. DC has had continuity problems since forever mostly because the writers don't really work together on certain things. Like for example there was a RHATO issue were Jason talked about teaming up with Damian over in Batman Incorporated at one point. If that were true & those events took place before death of the family then Damian shouldn't have been alive for DOTF or that particular issue of RHATO. All we're asking for is a bit of consistency, not for things to make sense or add up just cause we're being picky.

I don't think I am missing his point.

He seems to be saying there is a lack of cohesion because the characters appearances across different books contradict each other.

I'm saying that isn't the case. That is only the case if you assume the stories are taking pace concurrently, and there is no reason to think that.

It has nothing to do with DC's wider continuity problems.

I also don't understand your example. It was pretty clear DotF took place before Damian's death.

Yes, DotF took place before Damian's death. But Red Hood references his time with Damian as Red Bird and Wingman afterwards. So first DotF, then certain issues of Batman Inc. versus Leviathan. Then there is a certain point at which Jason thought his job was done and wanted to leave which is also when Starfire and Arsenal came to find him for the first time after DotF and when he confrnted Bruce about telling Superman to back off then he puts the helmet on and needs to recover for a month. Then Batman tells him to rejoin the family for realsies even though Bruce had put Jason in charge of Batman Inc.'s fight against Talia already. THEN comes Damians death. Doesn't fit very well. Nor does Joker being there to confront each and every single member of the Batfamily, while also renovating the Asylum while also renovating Haly's Circus and tracking down half a dozen other people personally.

Posted by ravisher

Edited by dreamfall31

This stages of grief arc started strong with the silent issue, was super mediocre during the middle, and ended with a heartbreakingly beautiful issue. #18 and #23 hands down some of the best issues of the year!