Tim Drake: Robin #4 – Meghan Fitzmartin, Writer; Riley Rossmo, Artist; Lee Loughridge, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Ray: This has been a fun series from the start, putting Tim Drake in new and often unpredictable situations as he takes a step into adulthood for the first time. One of the best parts about the series has been the new setting—the Gotham Marina, where Tim has traded his mansion upbringing for a houseboat and a taste of independence. That comes with some minor issues—like a nosy, eccentric landlord who is increasingly panicked over the murders that keep plaguing the marina. One main mystery has been running through this title, and this issue is definitely the best at depicting how Tim solves crimes. He’s always been the most thorough of the various detectives in the Bat-family, and a two-page segment showing him analyzing clues from missing books is some of the best work Riley Rossmo has done on the title. And now that he has the clues, he needs some backup—in the form of the Batgirls.
Obviously, this has some complications, since Stephanie is Tim’s ex—and Fitzmartin has done a good job smoothing that over. The three young vigilantes find themselves up against another strange apparition, and Tim gets closer to digging up the truth and motivation of the killer. The suspense elements of this issue are top-notch, and I think the close focus on Tim and his thought process helped it to rise above the last few. If there’s a weak link in this series, though, it’s probably Bernard. Tim’s new boyfriend is overall a welcome addition to the series, but it does seem like he often slips into “generic nice guy” characterization, and by the end of the issue he’s been kidnapped and is being used by the villain to lure Tim to him. These tropes are all too familiar, and I’m kind of wishing we saw a bit more of the edgy Bernard from the run where he was introduced—and even Fitzmartin’s initial arc with Tim in Urban Legends.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.