All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder #8 (DC – Miller / Lee) – DC’s take Part 1 of Frank Miller’s and Jim Lee’s two-fisted thrill ride ends here, yet it’s only just begun! The Dark Knight links a brutal psychopath to the Flying Grayson’s murder, and the streets of Gotham run red with terror! Dick Grayson is reborn to wage war on crime! The newly banded Justice League fans out, trying to catch a bat! I know it’s been about a month since this came out, but given that we have had eight issues in about 2 years, and the issue #9 doesn’t come out until February (if it’s not late), I figured this review is ahead of schedule, if we use the All-Star calendar. Surprisingly this issue actually has quite a bit content… an interlude with the Joker, a cameo from Cat Woman, Green Lantern and Batman’s opinion of him, the origins of the name Robin and young Dick getting in Batman’s face and asking him what the deal is with the giant robot T-Rex. Even though I poke at the tardiness fo the book, it is filled from cover to cover with clever writing. The downside to this book (beyond the obvious scheduling issues) is that this issue has the same feel as the first… dark, dark, dark. There has been no development in the characters and Batman and his supporting cast has become very predictable. The upside to this book is that Frank Miller and the All-Star team is showing us a different version of known and loved characters (for lack of a better label, the All-Star universe could be one of the 52). And I think the DC fan base is very interested in this.
DC might find the readership of and interest towards the All-Star books jump if there was one All-Star book that rotated characters and creative teams, allowing the fans to see this darker universe and yet not be on the schedule of talented comic book rock stars like Frank Miller and Jim Lee.
Grade: B (would have been A- but points were taken off for being late)