By James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder, Marcio Takara, Dean White
You aren’t a monster, that’s what they tried to make you. But it didn’t work. You are a hero. Because that’s the path you took yourself.
Batman gives us some solid life advice in a flashback during the newest issue of Batman and Robin Eternal.
Scripting this week is James Tynion IV from the story he’s creating alongside Scott Snyder. The bulk of this issue centers around Cassandra as she continues to try to right the wrongs she made in her past. Throughout this issue we also get a few more glimpses into her past – a bit more heartfelt look into her childhood than we’ve seen in issues prior. We get the feeling that although she was being prepped to become a weapon, it’s never been something she’s truly believed herself to be. That sounds like something Batman would say…oh wait…he did.
Something Tynion does well this issue is create a story centered around action as well as some inspiring scenes. We see Cassandra deal with some dark situations (check out the cover…that’s not red paint), but she’s able to rise above them because of her new friends as well as the words of Batman to inspire her. This issue also shows just how ruthless and merciless Mother can really be.
On the artwork side of this issue we get some great scenes by artist Marcio Takara and colorist Dean White. Something cool they do together during the scenes showcasing Cassandra’s past is present the panels as if they were old pictures, with the edges deteriorating. We see Takara’s use of facial expressions on Cassandra that she’s often times jealous of the other kids, and wishing she could be embraced by Mother like so many of them are.
Another great scene by these two artists features a spread consisting of a bunch of panels showing off some of Cassandra’s fighting moves against a robot as she tries to extract information from it. It also provides a bit of a surprise to readers as we see Cassandra trying to speak! Her speech is done well by Tynion as he sets a contrast with how the robot was speaking, often times cutting words apart like “Chil-dren” or “Act-i-vat-ing”, giving a mechanical/artificial way to how to read them. On the colors side of this scene we also see Dean White using red as the backdrop during Cassandra’s panels of trying to speak which gives a different look to all the other panels around it and creates a stressed look on her efforts.
Issue #13 of Batman and Robin Eternal gives more of the drama we’ve been seeing in this series. Once again it’s an issue absent of Red Hood and Red Robin, so there isn’t much room for comic relief (ba-doom-psh) as we witness more traumatic scenes from both Cassandra’s past and present. Tynion doesn’t hold back in his depiction of Cassandra’s ascent into becoming a hero as he’s accompanied by the skillful artwork of Marcio Takara and Dean White. The action scenes by Takara are as dynamic as they are heartfelt when they need to be – the scene featuring the quote above being a prime example of that.