Red Robin #25
Title: 7 Days of Death Part Three: The Bigger Picture
Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Pencils: Marcus To
Inks: Ray McCarthy
Colorist: Guy Major
Letterer: Sal Cipriano
Cover Artist: Marcus To
Editor: Rachel Gluckstern
Publisher: DC Comics
Red Robin has been captured by the Daughters of Acheron, and the half-sister of Ra’s al Ghul himself wants to appropriate him for her own purposes. Fortunately, Tim has an ace in the hole – Cassandra Cain, alias the Black Bat. Assuming, of course, that she doesn’t kill him first.
Staring down the barrel of the DC relaunch, Fabian Nicieza seems to be using this issue to set the stage for next issue’s finale. The long-running subplot concerning Tim’s relationship with Tamara Fox reaches a conclusion, and Tim takes a few major steps towards establishing himself as his own hero. Ironically, this is just the sort of thing that you would expect to see if the book was continuing on – the establishment of his own headquarters, vehicles, and arsenal to allow him to operate more independently of Batman, Inc. It’s really rather curious, and it’ll be interesting to see if the final issue gives closure to that sort of thing, or if it’s one of the (sadly, many) threads of plot throughout the DC Universe that will remain frayed when the universe shifts on August 31.
Tim and Cassandra’s relationship is the centerpiece of this issue, and it actually works very well. There’s a real feel of connectivity to them, but not the sort of forced romance some people would expect. The relationship has a sibling quality to it, like Tim and Cass are both the middle children who have been kind of cut loose to fend for themselves as the eldest are already established and the youngest need most of the nurturing at this point.
Marcus To continues to show himself to be a workhorse superstar, delivering solid artwork dependably month after month after month.
It’s good that Tim will still have a showcase after the relaunch, with Teen Titans, but I’ll miss seeing him in his own series, and I’ll miss Nicieza’s version of the character. It’s worked well.