Once again, the death of a major comic book hero is announced to the world via a newspaper before the book is on sale in the shops. This time it’s DC that’s making the announcement. Yes… we live in a world where DC and Marvel seem to have dueling character deaths. details after a bit of paging down…
OK, that should be enough. The NY Post has the official announcement that Robin, or rather the current Damien incarnation of Robin, buys the farm in Batman, Incorporated #8.
Nothing like an unannounced death to sell out an under-ordered book to one-time shop visitors and Comixology will probably do banner business on Wednesday. While DC is hyping this for all it’s worth to the mainstream media (although I question the wisdom of announcing the book on a Monday when it can be bought until a Wednesday — that lessens the impulse buy factor and requires non-regulars to remember to go looking for the comic a couple days later), I’d like to offer a simpler explanation of what’s going on. DC is simply making a media event out of Morrison putting the toys back in the box like he found them. While Batman usually has a Robin (the recent films being more the exception), he doesn’t usually have an actual son. IIRC, Morrison didn’t originally plan to keep Damien around, either. We’re about to go back to the status quo. It also explains why Rob Liefeld said to look for a Red Robin solo book and not a Damien/Robin solo book as they announce more New 52 replacements. Eventually somebody will do a Damien revival, but it will probably be a few years down the road. Jason Todd came back. Bucky came back. It’s more a matter of when, than anything else. If you were reading Morrison’s Batman run, proceed as normal. If not, nothing to see. Keep moving. Batman will look a little more like what you remember from years past and maybe Tim Drake will be Robin, instead of Red Robin… that way we can stop confusing the character with a hamburger chain.
Todd Allen wears a lot of hats. At various times he’s been (alphabetically), a bouncer, college professor, humor columnist, Internet producer and an NBA/WNBA Beat Writer, among other things. He’s the author of Economics of Digital Comics. You should probably read it.