Convergence for the most part has actually been a fun, decent ride. A return of old and familiar faces either forgotten or retconned out of continuity. Beloved characters placed in the scenario of annihilation and survival, Convergence is really a celebration of DC’s vast and expansive history. Convergence: Batman and Robin #2 is not a celebration. It is a catastrophe.
I’m not one to come out and bash one’s work because I can only imagine the time and effort that goes into creating something like this. But after reading this issue, it makes one scratch their head and wonder, “Did DC hold a contest for a lucky fan to write this issue”? To be quite honest, I’ve read better fanfiction than this. I really don’t get it. You have Batman & Robin, the Dynamic Duo. Pre-New52 Jason Todd as Red Hood and his partner in crime, Scarlet. Just off those characters alone I feel that one would have fertile ground to craft a compelling story. Put that up against the simple premise of Convergence, a free-for-all brawl between various timelines, and you got yourself a hit! Instead, what we get is a mishandling of characters, horrible dialogue and confusing panels.
Let’s actually discuss the story. All of the domes have dropped and fighting has commenced. Batman refuses to fight, and then immediately has to prepare to fight. I initially thought that was somewhat funny, but that quickly turned into annoyance. Batman, Red Hood, Robin, and Scarlet begin the fight by defending themselves against hordes of dolls sent by Carny of the Extremists. Shortly after, the Extremists themselves enter the fray. What plagues the fight, and frankly the entire issue, are the conversations. The dialogue is atrocious. I’m not entirely sure writer Ron Marz has a full grasp on Damian and Jason’s characters. It proved to be difficult for him to find their voices as neither one of them seemed to sound like themselves. Both of Batman’s protégés should hve offered way more creative jabs towards one another and it would’ve been nice to see them try outshine the other. The Extremists aren’t even portrayed as that formidable as villains. They get in a few hits here and there, but that’s mainly due to Batman & Company’s inability to watch their backs. These heroes are all exceptionally trained in fighting, yet they drop their guard every 30 seconds in the fight. It was disappointingly frustrating to say the least. Halfway into the issue, Marz completely drop Scarlet out of the book. She mentions her name while fighting, and then the fight is not shown until the end. A terrible missed opportunity for a better dialogue and a great character moment.
In the review of the first issue, I stated that I really wasn’t a fan of the art in this title, but I liked it more than the art from the recent B&R Annual. I wholeheartedly take that statement back. I’m not sure if it was from the sour taste the story left in my mouth or if I just legitimately did not like the pages, but I legitimately did not like the pages. The fight felt very static, and many times I found myself flipping back a page trying to figure what just happened.
- You wanted to finish this story out…I guess
- You’re a glutton for punishment
- You actually enjoyed the story so far
- You’re collecting all of Convergence
I was very disappointed in this tie-in. Batman and Robin has been one of the stronger titles in DC’s monthly line up, and the last issues a few duds. Luckily, the main story ended on a high note so these don’t count. There’s a quick super cameo at the end of the issue, but the conversation seemed a bit off. The entire issue felt like it was rushed. Pre-New52 Gotham was a very fond time in comics for me, yet this comic presented no reason as to why any of it should remain. If this was Telos Idol, I would not vote for this city. Tough break, Batman and Robin.
SCORE: 3 / 10