DC Comics and Warner Bros. Animation bring fans of the Dark Knight his latest adventure “Batman vs. Robin.” Writer J. M. DeMatteis does an incredible job blending together Grant Morrison’s “Batman & Robin: Batman vs. Robin” and Scott Snyder’s “Batman: The Court of Owls” graphic novels into one action-packed thrill ride through the darkness of Gotham City. It doesn’t hurt that the ever angry and charismatic Damian Wayne and his strained relationship with his father Bruce are parts of the main focus of the story.
In “Batman vs. Robin,” Damian Wayne has a hard time accepting his father’s no-killing rule. He soon starts to believe his destiny lies within a secret society. The Son of Batman finds himself the target of a vigilante calling himself Talon. The mysterious man wants Damian to take his place as the lead assassin of the enigmatic Court of Owls.
I loved the way filmmakers incorporated parts of “Damian: Son of Batman” into “Batman vs. Robin.” There’s a small “dream” (or “nightmare?”) sequence where Batman finds himself face to face with a grown-up Damian who dresses in a new version of the cape and cowl. A touching showdown between the two ensues which addresses the Dark Knight’s insecurities about the way he’s raising his offspring.
“Batman vs. Robin” is rated PG-13 for intense action and violence, suggestive images and thematic elements. There are some instances where dark silhouettes cover up nude bodies in the context of insinuated adult situations. For all intents and purposes, think of “Batman vs. Robin” as having the same content as “The Dark Knight Rises,” but as a cartoon.
There are a few special features exclusive to the Blu-ray edition of “Batman vs. Robin.” They include two featurettes entitled “Gotham City’s Secret: The Mythic Court of Owls” and “The Talons of the Owls.” Audio commentary for the movie is found as well. We get four bonus cartoons from the DC Comics Vault from “Batman: The Brave and the Bold,” “Young Justice,” and others. It also contains a sneak peek at the DC Universe’s next animated feature “Justice League: Gods and Monsters.”
“Batman vs. Robin” is a worthy follow-up to “Son of Batman.” I love the character of Damian Wayne and feel there’s a lot more they could do with the character in further animated features. Might I suggest an animated adaptation of the “Damian: Son of Batman” graphic novel? The explosive relationship between Bruce and Damian is something that will not only find teens being able to associate with it, but fathers who struggle with their rebellious and independent-minded sons as well.
“Batman vs. Robin” is available now on Blu-ray, DVD, and as a Digital Download.