Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Batman & Robin #22 - Review

The White Knight makes his Final Move!

In the conclusion of the three-issue story by writer Peter Tomasi, Batman (Dick Grayson) and Robin (Damian Wayne) must stop the maniacal White Knight from killing all of the inmates of Arkham Asylum as well as their relatives. The White Knight believes in preemptive crime fighting by killing those who would pose the most threat down the line. This means murdering anyone remotely related to any super villain that has done a stint in Gotham's prisons. Batman and Robin must stop the White Knight's plot to make multiple people leap to their deaths through brainwashing, and stop the inmates from drowning in glowing white liquid in their cells.

This new villain and story arc has been one of my favorite things to read in a Batman title, and in any other comic this year. The White Knight is the perfect example of how someone who has been tainted by the villains of Gotham City can take it upon themselves to not only rid the citizens of the current villains, but prevent any others. Dick Grayson takes this very personally, and he and Damian have many words about nature vs. nurture in terms of Gotham's heroes and villains. Damian, who was raised to be a villain, made the choice to do good instead. Of course he's still learning to be less violent, which is showcased as he debates whether or not to stop the Arkham inmates from drowning and carves up Victor Zsasz with his batarangs a little.

Tomasi's work on this series is taking it to new heights, and I'm sure that it's making Grant Morrison proud. We're getting to see a whole new set of villains introduced that reflect Dick Grayson's Batman, and that's what Batman villains are all about. Dick's need to prevent bad things from happening is reflected in the actions of the White Knight, who eventually falls prey to his own designs. The artwork is beautiful, the pacing is incredible, and I've found myself cheering for the Batman & Robin of the next generation.

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