Duke Thomas and a team of new Robins recruit their skills to help clean Gotham, and bring back some justice in the aftermath of Batman: Endgame. We are Robin #1 offers:
- Strong lettering and colour choices
- New and returning characters from Gotham City
- Themes of clean versus dirty spaces, mortality, and class
Standout colouring and lettering choices are effective in bringing out the voice of We are Robin #1 and creating an immersive Gotham City. The new team of Robins arrive in a dynamic moment.
Lettering and text choices stand out effectively from the background, with black and yellow. The colour choices for the font bring the letters forward. Combined with the short and to-the-point voice of the title character, getting immersed in the comic happens quickly. Gotham City feels tangible and solid in this comic.
Artwork for Gotham’s streets, alleys, fire escapes, and sewers is typically coloured brown and asphalt grey. Bright and selective costume choices stand out from these dreary shades. Colour choices are consistent with the other depictions of Gotham City in other Batman related comic books.
Another strong moment in the artwork has a team of Robin’s arrive to help Duke Thomas – the viewpoint character.
They are ragtag, and are dressed in various street clothes and sports equipment coloured in red, yellow, and green to match the colours of Robin’s costume. Similar to The Movement, also from DC comics, the youth of Gotham with the skills to make a difference take a stand. Dynamic action marks their first appearance here in We are Robin #1.
Duke Thomas and Doctor Leslie Thompkins think about mortality and responsibility. In the aftermath of Batman: Endgame, several new characters form a team of Robins, and consider Duke Thomas for recruitment.
To the characters of We are Robin #1, mortality and responsibility are at the front of their minds. Duke Thomas has a shifting view of mortality. It changes based on the situation. In a fight at school, addiction to the adrenaline, and how close that pushes him to mortal danger is at the front of his mind. Heights are a fear of his. He makes another comment about mortality when faced with jumping down a fire escape. What he fears more is loss of identity, and the threat that his missing parents might forget who they are, and what they value.
Doctor Leslie Thompkins speaks across to Duke. Despite an age difference, she does not talk down to him. Doctor Thompkins asks Duke to take responsibility for himself, and stop alternatively fighting while searching for his parents. Duke regrets going against her plans. Clearly, she inspired some respect by being
forthright with him, and not patronising.
Ultimately, Duke takes responsibility in hunting for his parents. He comments on how The Batman has bailed on Gotham. Another loss from the aftermath of Batman: Endgame was the disappearance of The Batman and Bruce Wayne.
A range of themes are brought up overall: mortality, class, and clean versus dirty spaces. Cleaning up Gotham seems to be a priority for the Robins. If Duke joined them, he would find a way to act on his values and motivations.
The comic addresses mortality through Duke Thompson, and class from the villain of the comic, who arrives later in the story, and talks about how the attacking symbols of Gotham’s opulence. Clean versus dirty spaces and behaviour is also brought up by Duke Thomas: there is some inconsistency to Duke’s character. A gap between the values he wants to live up to, and the actions that support those values. In this instance, he respects his mothers values of clean speaking, eating, and living. Despite this, he refuses to clean a bathroom, and begins to use slang, what he calls imprecise language. It’s something we all strive for – to step up and take action on the values we uphold.
Robin is an identity Duke Thomas can use to take action. The Robins use precise language. Duke would be on his way to living his values if he joined them.
We are Robin #1 is published by DC Entertainment ($3.99 USD) Lee Bermejo (Story). Jorge Corona and Khary Randolph (Art.) Rob Haynes (Breakdowns). Trish Mulvihill and Emilio Lopez (Colours). Jared K Fletcher (Lettering). Cover artwork by Lee Bermejo.