Review – Robin #8: The Final Round

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Robin #8 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Robin #8 – Joshua Williamson, Writer; Gleb Melnikov, Max Dunbar, Artists; Hi-Fi, Colorist

Ray – 9/10

Ray: The end of the tournament of the League of Lazarus is finally here, and the stakes are becoming much different from what this gaggle of hitmen and martial artists assumed when they signed up. Mother Soul is cutting a deal with some dark forces, and now the tournament is down to two—Damian Wayne and Connor Hawke, both sons of elite DC heroes. As all the other heroes and villains watch, having lost their two lives and wisely bowed out before risking their final life, the two champions size each other up. Connor decisively beat Damian in their first match, but now Damian is ready, and Williamson and the artists manage to get a lot of tension out of this scene even before the first punch is thrown. Hawke has been kept at arms’ length for most of this series and we don’t know too much about him, but what we know from before makes it likely he’s not actually on the level with his evil masters.

Dark gathering. Via DC Comics.

When the fight begins, it explodes. We can feel every punch being thrown and the close escapes Damian manages are tense. There are some funny scenes mixed in, like an unfortunate spectator who winds up being a convenient platform for Damian to bounce off. The fight takes up much of the issue and leads to a dramatic finale—except that it’s not really a finale because in this tournament, the loser of this rematch still gets back up and is forced to ask the question of how much they truly want this. This series has been a fantastic look at the way Damian views mortality. Ever since Alfred was lost, Damian is chasing something, and this issue makes that a little clearer. I wish the big reveal wasn’t quite so mustache-twirling on the villain’s part, but the cliffhanger leaves us in a fascinating place as enemies may become allies. Damian can be a hard character to like at times, but this is the run he’s needed for a long time.

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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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