ROBIN WAR #1
Written by Tom King
Art by Khary Randolph, Alan Mauricet, Jorge Corona, Andres Guinaldo, Walden Wong, Emilio Lopez, Chris Sotomayor, Gabe Eltaeb, Sandra Molina
Published by DC Comics
Release Date: December 2, 2015
A gunshot. Dark deals. A war begins.
Tom King kicks this off this Robin War in a great way with this first issue, unfolding an incident that is very plausible in the city of Gotham. The re-introduction of the Court of Owls, one of my favourite groups since the inception of the New 52, had me stoked from the beginning and King uses these characters very well. This isn’t just a slug fest, there are dirty deeds in the works and King lets them come together very nicely. He has a massive cast to work with in this oversized issue, with everyone from the Robin gang, damn near the entire roster of Robins who worked with Bruce and a cast of side characters appear in this issue and King handles the lot of them well. His dialogue is sharp, especially with Duke Thomas and the Robins.
King walks a tightrope of an issue that could very easily become too crowded, but for the most part he avoids it. He may bump into it at a couple points, but the oversized issue helps out with that. Moments that need room to breathe are granted it, and the story is stronger for it. There is a lot to set up in this crossover and King moves things along at a nice pace without rushing, which helps the Robin War blow up in all the right ways.
I spoke of the risk of overcrowding before, and, well, take a look at that artist line above. The oversized aspect of the issue lead to the need for a large art team and, for the most part, they handle their roles well. There is some awkwardness in style change as the story shifts, but nothing is exceptionally dramatic. The colour work by the multiple colourists brings it together nicely and, overall, the artwork gets the story across. The team had a huge cast to deal with and they don’t let the strong script down.
Robin War #1 kicks off this crossover in fine fashion. While we currently have Robins everywhere in the DCU between all the titles in this crossover and the weekly Eternal series, King and the art team craft a compelling enough story here to have my attention. Robins vs. Owls, I’m in.
The Verdict: 8.5/10