“We Are Robin” #2 by Lee Bermejo, Jorge Corona, Rob Haynes, Khary Randolph, Trish Mulvihill, Emilio Lopez and Jared K. Fletcher opens with action dancing across the pages and ends with a shadowy mystery creeping into the main tale as the bombs in Gotham continue their countdown.
The main story follows the induction of Duke Thomas into the Robins, as readers join the fray through Duke’s narration. The issue opens during the middle of a scrum between a half-dozen Robins and a gaggle of scruffy homeless guys. The fight naturally name checks all of the characters, establishing the group of Robins as following orders from “The Nest” while trying to rescue Duke. Bermejo gives each of the characters opportunities for dialogue and slips in slivers of personalities through those scraps of conversation. He inserts some lighthearted youthful optimism in the dialogue, augmented in the narration boxes from Fletcher as Duke relays his experience to his absentee parents. Fletcher makes some fine choices in lettering, including a subtly applied “FAKK” sound effect that effectively finishes one of Dre’s lines of dialogue. The story moves through a healthy dose of action, delivers a nice portion of characterization and sets up an organizational framework certain to play out over future issues.
The epilogue involves a scene change, absorbing every bit of shadow from Randolph’s art as Emilio Lopez provides an organic, muted color palette that plays off the colors Trish Mulvihill sets in the lead story. Lopez’s colors are creepier, adding eeriness to Randolph’s art that showcases magnificent shadows and smooth storytelling. Fletcher shifts the dialogue, notably changing the narration from Duke Thomas to a rougher cast voice, gravelly against the landscape of the epilogue.
Corona’s art has hints of Erik Larsen and Humberto Ramos mixed with Rob Guillory, resulting in lanky characters that exude teenage attitudes and ideology. None of these characters are exceptionally polished in their fighting style, but their cooperation and confidence in numbers shines through in Corona’s art. Mulvihill keeps the colors murky, befitting a streetfight, but she doesn’t muddle up the art, using a nice mix of highlights and soft halos. Every “Robin” is clad in some variation or incremental component of the trademark red, yellow or green, gaining depth from the grungy backdrops of the Gotham streets. Mulvihill also works patterns and textures into Corona’s art, adding illuminating glow to fires and electricity.
“We Are Robin” #2 brings action, excitement and plenty of mystery, serving as yet another nice addition to the Bat-catalogue (Batalogue?) despite Duke Thomas being the most Bat-familiar member of this series’ growing cast. The team’s numbers are growing and their mission is congealing under the supervision of Bermejo, Corona, Randolph, Mulvihill, Lopez and Fletcher.