In the final pages of ‘Batman and Robin’ #5, Damian/Robin had ran away from beneath the wing of his superhero father, the Batman, and paired up with the murderous Nobody. Under his father’s tutelage, Damian had become increasingly rebellious and distrustful of the training tactics and lack of Batman’s willingness to do what was necessary to stop criminals from threatening Gotham. Nobody has no such qualms and persuaded Damian to join him in his own violent assault against crime. As the issue came to a close, Nobody forced Damian into a tight spot by handing him a gun and forcing him to prove his loyalty to his new chosen path by killing a criminal. If Damian killed the man, he would never be able to return to the life that he knew.

This issue, the fallout from Damian’s decision leads Batman towards a confrontation with Nobody that may end in more than one death before the night is through. We also get the full story on Batman’s actual relationship with Nobody. As was previously revealed, Nobody is actually Morgan Ducard, son of the man who trained a young Bruce Wayne in the art of human tracking. Here we get a flashback to Bruce and Morgan’s final days together before Bruce became Batman.

With this issue, writer Peter Tomasi has given us a wonderful chapter leading towards a finale that I can’t wait to see. So far, ‘Batman and Robin’ has been about the struggles of Batman trying to be a good father to a son who was raised to be a killer. Neither Batman or Robin had much experience in their newly given roles and, as a result, their relationship has forced the both of them to deal with their own issues in way that has gone horribly wrong. Now with the finale of the first story arc looming, it’ll be interesting to see if there really will be a “Batman and Robin” after all.

If I have any complaints with this issue, it’s that the cover has absolutely nothing to do with the actual content inside the book this month. It’s normal for the art on the cover to not match the interior stories since a cover is supposed to grab your eye. But the tagline on the cover reads “Above the skis of Gotham… Dark Knight battles Demon Seed!” Don’t go in expecting Batman to fight Robin, over the city or otherwise. It just doesn’t happen.

That qualm aside, this is a great issue and definitely worthy of this week’s verdict of…

Verdict: Buy

Written by PETER J. TOMASI
Art and cover by PATRICK GLEASON and MICK GRAY