[World of Bats] Batman Book Club: A Lonely Place of Dying 02/29/2020-03/06/2020


2020-02-29T08:00:00Z2020-03-07T07:59:00Z

Greetings, Bat-Fans! I’m back with more World of Bats Book Club, and this time we’ve got a special event for you!

That’s right, it’s the 80th Anniversary of the Boy Wonder, and we couldn’t not join in on the celebration! The hot one has his very own club, and the edgy one and the annoying one are sharing a club like the roommates from hell, but who’s left to pay attention to the cool one? Us, that’s who.

(Also, everybody’s ignoring Stephanie Brown, which is a little sad, but her actual tenure as Robin is probably something best left alone.)

Anyway, back in Year Month, we covered Tim Drake’s technical first appearance in Batman: Year Three, but now we’ll be picking up his proper introduction in A Lonely Place of Dying, which you can find right here.

Now, I’m anxious to hear your thoughts about the story, but I’m also anxious to pick a fight over favorite Robins, and why your choices are wrong and Tim is the best, so come at me.

For questions or concerns, contact @AquamonC137, @BatJamags, or @Jay_Kay.

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Don’t act like that wouldn’t be the ultimate sitcom. :stuck_out_tongue:

Steph’s super, super, super brief tenure as Robin is showing up on the first week of the Characters of DC for this month, along with Carrie Kelley, Earth 2 Dick, and Earth 2 Helena in the New 52.

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ANYWAY, I haven’t read this one before, looking forward to getting into it. :slight_smile:

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Okay, wait…which one is edgy and which one is annoying? Seems like that could go either way. :joker_hv_1:

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Well, I’m inclined to say that Jason is edgier and Damian is annoyinger, but they are both kinda both.

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Ah, back when Tim was only slightly irritating. :stuck_out_tongue:

I regard this story as an attempt to find a middle ground between Jason’s two origin stories. Like the 1983 Todd tale, Tim Drake is connected to Dick Grayson through the circus, and he dons the suit to help out Batman and Dick. Like the 1987 version of Jason’s origin, Two-Face is behind it all. (And after Zero Hour, we find out that Two-Face was a vital part of Dick’s early experiences as Robin, too! Holy coin-ki-dink!)

Anyway, I think the story is a tad longer than it needs to be, but I do approve of the “Batman needs a Robin” theme that permeates the story.

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Ok, now I want to see that show! :rofl:

It will be fun to go back and read these. I remember feeling so bad for Jason (seriously don’t click on spoiler if you haven’t read the story yet)after how that lady lied to him. Also if I remember right things took a weird turn at the end of this story. If I’m remembering things correctly, Joker was at the White House. But you got to love the wacky Joker from this era. The desert tribe and parts in the city/town were cool.

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Now, I happen to know that World of Bats will be jumping straight to the 1991 Robin miniseries after this week, skipping all of the I-Can’t-Believe-It’s-Not-Pre-Crisis-Jason stuff in the middle. :stuck_out_tongue: As an olive branch to Tim fans, I will provide the reading order that I would follow if I were running the Tim Drake Book Club.

Week 1:
Batman: Year Three and A Lonely Place of Dying. Duh.

Week 2:
a. Crimesmith – Batman #443-444
b. NKVDemon – Batman #445-447 (optional: Tim is only in pt. 1)
c. Deja Vu: New Titans #65
d. Penguin Affair – Batman #448, Detective #615, Batman #449

Week 3:
a. C’th – Detective #616
b. Joker – Batman #450, Detective #617 (no Tim), Batman #451
c. Rite of Passage – Detective #618, 619, 620, 621

(We’d skip “Dark Knight, Dark City,” unfortunately. Nary a Tim in sight.)

Week 4:
a. Identity Crisis – Batman #455, 456, 457
b. Robin miniseries (1991)

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I think you’re talking about A Death in The Family, Jason is only in A Lonely Place of Dying in spirit, sadly.

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:joy: Oh yes, that’s right! I’ve read this one as well. Tim does a good job at connecting the dots between the two robins and figuring out Batman. Liked how he made the correlation between seeing Dick at the circus and seeing Robin doing the somersaults on TV. As much as I like Dick and would also like to see Damian take over the Cowl, Tim always seemed like the best fit for the job.

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I really liked this story when it rolled out, and still enjoy it today, although not as much through my adult eyes. Tim was my favorite Robin, I loved how he didn’t luck into the role, but earned it through his intelligence.

One aspect that was a bit jarring to me was how different the art styles are between the two books. I like all of the artists involved, but they don’t really jive well with each other.

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Huh, only read the first two issues so far, but I didn’t even notice any art changes. So far I think it works well enough because so far with the exception of Starfire, none of the other Titans have really shown up in Batman, so it feels like two separate worlds.

What might also be an issue is that it’s freaking hard to be on equal footing with George freaking Perez.

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Okay, I just looked it up, and how the frick did I forget that it was Jim Aparo doing the Batman issues? Take back what I said earlier about equal footing, Aparo is definitely in the same league.

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Eh, Aparo’s good, but Perez is the best in the medium. And I can see how their styles wouldn’t quite gel with each other (Aparo is a little more stylized and can verge into same-face syndrome), but I can hardly complain about the art.

This is an odd distinction, but I’ve found that Marv Wolfman is the writer I’ve seen paired with the widest variety of really good artists. Perez, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, and Eduardo Barreto on New Teen Titans/New Titans, Aparo on Batman, Steve Erwin on Deathstroke, Dan Jurgens on Nightwing (say what you will about his writing; his art is generally excellent)… You could make a totally legitimate best-ever list of just artists who worked with Wolfman.

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Ah, yeah. That starts to get to me if I read too many Aparo issues in a row.

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Also, I never knew this book has one of my favorite out of context panels in comics. :rofl:

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Just for the record, I’m definitely not complaining about the art, just couldn’t help but notice how different the styles between the books were. I think one of those Titans issues was Tom Grummet, a style that jived well with Perez, where Aparo’s clashes somewhat.

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Specifically it was Grummet finishing Perez’s layouts, so you still see a lot of him in that way. Like the sequence showing Jericho signing is totally Perez’s style.

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So I finished the story – overall it’s not bad, a solid 3/5. I think it helps sort of climax the character arc that Bruce has been going through since A Death in the Family, and shakes up the status quo, even if like @AlexanderKnox said, the provisional part of this reads a LOT like what Conway and Doeg Moench did with Jason back in Pre-Crisis.

I will say that in reading this, I think I’ve figured out why Tim has always sat so low with me in terms of interest in him as a character. It’s because, in a lot of ways, he feels like a self-insert. Reading him in this story, he reads like the fantasy of what your standard, nerdy teenage boy thinks of or wants to be of himself. He’s so smart he figures out who Batman & Robin are, he’s already good at martial arts, in this story he has no real responsibilities or parents to deal with, he’s able to talk enamor himself to these well established characters even though he’s only known them for like five minutes, and he’s able to do things like knock Two-Face flat on his back with one punch. It just feels like I’m reading a daydream.

And to be fair, that kind of is the purpose of Robin, he’s the kid that the kids can put themselves in the shoes of. I just wish that there was more to the character than that in this story, some sort of struggle that he’s going through, complications in his life, other than just swooping in and saving the day with the power of belief.

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That’s fair, in some ways. But on the other hand, that was sort of the only character that could work under the circumstances. Batman was not in a place where he’d seek out a recruit for the green pixie boots on his own initiative, so Robin had to be someone who could prove himself quickly and independently.

I definitely see your point about his lack of personal struggles, especially compared to Jason, but I think that’s something Chuck Dixon recognized and fixed in his work with the character, especially starting with the latter couple miniseries. But I know you don’t like his stuff either, and that’s a subject for the next few weeks, so we can cross that bridge when we get to it.

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