Review of Robin issue 4: “Training day with Ra’s al Ghul”

robin Number 4 picks up where the previous number left off. Connor Hawke, who at first appeared to be friends with Damian, threw him off a cliff. At the last moment he was saved before hitting the rocks and waves below. Ra’s al Ghul has something to do with rescue, but what’s his angle? What does he want from Damian?

There will be some spoilers below.

Robin number 4While robin number 4 doesn’t have much action, the plot moves forward with only more mysteries and questions. What is the League of Lazarus really trying to accomplish? What secrets do they keep and what do they hide from tournament competitors? Why was the League of Lazarus kept away from Damien? According to Ra, there are a lot of things Damian doesn’t know about their family’s past. Will Damian get the answers to any of these questions? Will he solve these mysteries?

robin Issue 4 begins with a full page of the Shoujo manga that Damian wrote. I was happy to see this again as it was something we hadn’t seen in the third issue. These manga panels are a dream as Robin himself appears in a panel in a terrifying way. I continue to strongly believe that the manga panels in this series give us a glimpse into the mind of Damian.

Damian wakes up because his pet dragon, Goliath, licks his face. Damian hasn’t seen Goliath in a while, so they have a cute, brief reunion before Damian leaves the tent he woke up in to search for answers. He meets his grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul, whom he is not at all happy to see. Ra’s tries to warn Damian not to participate in the tournament. He says, “No good can come from your participation in this tournament.” But Damian won’t listen. “After everything you’ve done to me. My father. My mother. Which are you give me any life advice?!”

Back on Lazarus Island, Ravager notices that Robin is missing and tries to find him. Nobody’s seen him since the beach party. When she tries to interrogate Connor, he ignores her. When Rose is unable to find Damian after some time, she goes to a cave alone to try to communicate with someone. Unfortunately, Respawn shows up and calls her to try to get in touch with someone outside.

On the island of Ra’s al Ghul, Damian finally sees his window of opportunity to leave, firing a “Batman” at his grandfather as he quickly and quietly leaves. He doesn’t even leave footprints in the sand. Impressive! But now Damian has more questions than answers and who’s following him?

It is obvious that the writer Joshua Williamson really writes a hero’s journey for Damian which is full of self-discovery. Damian may like the Shoujo manga, but his story is a bit more Shonen-style. At least for now anyway. As with the previous issue, Williamson excels not only in action, but also in exposition. It makes the reader not only care about the story, but also about the individual characters. We find out who they are and what their motivations are.

The artist of this issue is Jorge Corona. (Gleb Melnikov did the cover art and will be back on the interiors for issue 5.) Jorge does a great job of keeping the general vibe of previous issues of the comic. It looks like a Shonen manga. It looks straight out of a fighting game. His characters are expressive and full of life. And Jorge is also apparently responsible for designing what many on Twitter are calling “the attractive Ra’s al Ghul.”

robin number four gives us more questions than answers. To me, this seems to promise us some insight into the history of the al Ghul family. I think we will learn more not only about Damian’s family, but also about Damian as he discovers more about himself. Also, with a certain person dying for the first time in the middle of the issue, that means the Lazarus Tournament has now truly begun!

Overall I found robin number 4 is mysterious and intriguing. I can’t wait to see how Damian’s story develops. It is definitely a process! I think my only real complaint is that all of these numbers are just too short! Also, I’m super excited to see how Damian interacts with the group of people who caught up with him at the end of the issue. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Author: jessica rae

Jessica holds a Bachelor of Music degree with a major in voice and spends her day composing, editing, writing and hosting webinars. Jessica mainly reviews anime and comic book series. It also offers information on various movies, books, games, and other geeky topics.

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