Hello and welcome everyone to @RenegadeRobinsClub’s ROBIN RISES EVENT
What is this event all about you might be asking?
Every story Damian has been in thus far has been working toward this series of events. Since these particular stories are so pivotal to Damian’s character I have elected to cover them in monthly sessions over the next three months rather than using the normal set up we’ve been doing. I’m hoping this will foster a chance for a more in-depth discussion of these issues.
This month we will be taking a more in-depth look at the story line that started it all: Grant Morrison’s Batman, Incorporated. Now we already covered volume one of this epic here a few months back so that if some of you need a refresher I’ll link that discussion below otherwise feel free to jump into volume two instead.
PREVIOUS DISCUSSION LINK
WHAT TO READ
This month will feature a return to discussion questions, which will be posted each week on Sundays starting April 4 but you are also welcome to discuss anything about these issues you want outside of that.
To join RENEGADE ROBINS simply click the link.
NEXT MONTH: ROBIN RISES PART TWO: REQUIEM AND THE HUNT FOR ROBINB
My hot take: the events of issue #8 should’ve stayed permanent. That’s not because I have anything against Damian, obviously. I love the little guy. Rather, it’s because that’s the culmination of Grant Morrison’s arc with the character, and I still think that Damian was at his best when he was written by Morrison. I also think that this entire second volume of Incorporated should’ve been set in the pre-Flashpoint universe, so perhaps that clarifies why I’d be okay with this story being the end.
I always thought it should have been that story which was allowed to remain totally within the Pre-Flashpoint universe even if the publishing of it coincided with the initial N52 releases. They could have indicated that the events therein happens in the previous continuity and could have even advertised it as the “Final” Pre-Flashpoint story. I’ve always thought it was a travesty that things didn’t work out that way.
As for Damian I also thought he should have stayed dead because really deaths in comics have become this very bad joke at this point in my opinion. It’s difficult for any death, even as significant of one as the death of Robin, to carry the necessary emotional weight for a reader if that reader knows it will just be undone in a few months. I honestly have trouble building up any emotional reaction at all to a character’s death these days and I don’t see that as a good thing.
To be honest the last character death that had emotional weight to it for me was Jason’s because back at that time deaths stuck. That fact was also why I was not overly upset when he was resurrected YEARS later. A lot of time had passed and I had felt that Jay got a raw deal with the tackless way his death was handled so a resurrection made sense to me.
Along those lines, I wouldn’t have had a problem with Damian “returning from the dead” (literally or figuratively through multiverse shenanigans) as part of DC Rebirth. (Maybe that’s just because I love the Super Sons.)
So basically something similar to Jason’s own return involving some sort of "SB Prime punch?
I could see the setup situation being one where Bruce 'forgets" he had a son named Damian who died because something about Flashpoint caused him to forget about the events that happened in Incorporated and in his life related to Damian. There is a precedence for that sort of set up in that the Titans forgot their history and Barry forgot about Wally and even in the N52 with characters whose continuities seem off (such as Dick being older when he first became Robin or characters who should know each other having no memory of ever meeting.)
Then, I don’t know, maybe Wally pulls Damian out with him or something when he comes back.Or maybe Damian from Convergence somehow follows Superman, Lois and Jon into the main Earth into the Rebirth U.
I got a hotter take than that: I think that outside of the stuff with Damian’s death, the second volume of Batman Incorporated is rather slow and bland, and I feel like the end of Batman & Robin is a much stronger end for Morrison’s run.
Now, I haven’t read this book since it released, so I’m going to see if maybe my perspective changes.
I noticed that too. Makes me wonder just how much this story was effected by the sudden reboot even though some fans insisted at the time that Morrison had to much clout with DC for them to interfere with his story. It has always been my belief that the story we got was not the story as Morrison intended it to be. I don’t have any proof of course only a gut feeling but I can’t help but wish I was a fly on the wall at the time just to see what went down.
Maybe? I don’t know, I remember it being more how it was paced. Like, Morrison is many things as a writer, but their work is rarely “decompressed,” but I remember Inc’s 12 issues being basically 6-8 issues padded out.
But like I said, maybe I’ll feel different on a second read.
You know I had that feeling too as I read it myself. It sort of felt…not Morrison enough maybe?
And here’s our first discussion question.
In the above panel Damian tells Dick that he was his favorite partner and “We were the best, Richard. No matter what anyone thinks.” A great compliment coming from Damian who had initially though Dick was undeserving of the Batman mantle. Do you agree with Damian’s assessment or did you like him partnered with his father better?
I prefer him with Dick. There’s an actual contrast there.
I really enjoyed the contrast between Dick and Damian. I also really liked the role reversal that was involved with it. I really never enjoyed Bruce and Damian working together as much as Dick and Damian.
I’d say it’s about equal to me – yeah, Dick and Damian have contrast, which is fun, but Damian and Bruce have so much in common, and yet just enough different that it’s fun when they clash. Plus I feel like in recent years whenever Damian’s interacted with Dick he feels a little Flanderized, either going full psycho or just acting like a sugar high kid.
I liked the contrast between Dick and Damian especially the whole sort of role reversal thing they had going with a brighter sort of Batman and a darker Robin.
Bruce and Damian are too much alike in my opinion. It was a bit like watching Me and Mini Me and it just wasn’t at all what I was looking for in the Dynamic Duo. Even in my rereading here I still don’t n find it all that appealing.
And here is this weeks question a bit early. I’ve had a nasty sinus infection that I’m still working through so I thought to this now rather than tomorrow.
Damian was somewhat surprised and I would say upset that Wingman was in fact Jason Todd. Did this reveal surprise you when you first read it or did you suspect it was him? Also what did you think of their brief team up while Damian was “Red bird”?
It left me kinda cold. I didn’t have a strong reaction one way or the other, which is probably not a good thing…
I didn’t have much of a reaction to the reveal either way myself. I am, however, not at all surprised by Damian’s reaction to the reveal or by the tirade he goes on in the panels following this one.
It does seem very Pre-Flashpoint of him though.
Just started reading this and one of my issues with Volume 1 is back in full force before we’re even five pages in: what’s with the gratuitous gore in these books? Every Morrison Batman story I’ve read has some degree of gore which I often found off-putting (mostly off-panel in AA and Gothic, but suggested) but it’s right here on the page, and it’s making it hard for me to read. I really want to like Morrison’s work but I don’t want to have to reach for a barf bag every time I try.
It makes it hard for me to read without skipping pages. I can handle some degree of violence/gore in a comic but prefer it not be constant and in-your-face.
That’s pretty much my problem with a lot of modern comics: the complete overkill in the gore department. A little necessary blood and whatnot is fine to add a bit of realism now and then but sometimes I hate how modern comics handle the use of both violence and gore.
In my opinion less really is more and you don’t necessarily have to have blood sprayed everywhere to give the reader an idea of how violent a particular crime was. There are other ways of doing that.
And here’s our next questions.
I love Damian with all his animals in these issues. Seeing him taking care of them softens his otherwise rough edges in my opinion.
This was my favorite animal scene in these issues. What was yours and do you believe that his love of animals is important to his character?