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Zero Hour Revisited – Robin #10


90srevisited_zerohour

robin_0010Two Birds One Stone

Story: Chuck Dixon
Pencils: Tom Grummett
Inks: Ray Kryssing
Colors: Adrienne Roy
Letters: Albert DeGuzman
Assistant Editor: Jordan B. Gorfinkel
Editor: Denny O’Neil
Published by: DC Comics
Cover Date: September 1994
Cover Price: $1.50

This is probably one of the most "iconic" covers for me of the Robin run…as well as (loosely) one of my favorite issues. I’ve "always" enjoyed Tim and Dick’s interactions, and having their ages/experience somewhat reversed here (while playing with Tim’s relative inexperience solo anyway) just makes for an interesting, entertaining story.

We open on Robin (Tim Drake) pursuing a lead, but he encounters another Robin…one that turns out to be a young Dick Grayson. Realizing this is another instance of a time anomaly, Tim invites him along on the case. While pursuing "Weasel," the two bond a bit, and even learn some from each other. As the case wraps up, almost with a positive ending, outta nowhere, things fade to white.

Story-wise, this fits right into stuff with Zero Hour and the Batman family of titles, in that we have a solo Tim/Robin story, set during Zero Hour, that involves something not easily explained EXCEPT for "Zero Hour time anomalies." We see Tim in action, still early in his "solo career" as Robin (defining "solo" with the start of his ongoing series, having had solo adventures in the past across annuals and three mini-series, as well as Dick Grayson Robin having had solo outings years prior in backups and whatnot). We see that he’s still learning, still growing, and get some character development through that as he interacts with Dick. I also find it interesting Tim noting that he has more experience at the point this story takes place, than Dick does for the time he’s from. That’s the sort of thing MY mind does, pulling up such comparisons (it’s been longer now since Tim’s ongoing series ended than the entire time I knew OF any Robin character, prior to Tim’s ongoing).

This issue being part of a crossover/event serves to enhance things, allowing for character development and forward-movement that would not be possible in a single issue without the established backdrop OF the event. Additionally, this is basically a one-shot/done-in-one story, where you really don’t need to know anything about the previous issue nor what comes next…you just get a story of Tim as Robin by himself, encountering a time-anomaly Dick Grayson, and the two go after some criminal. This doesn’t feel like something continued from a prior issue’s cliffhanger, and it ALMOST ends without a cliffhanger.

Yet the cliffhanger ending is the concrete tie-in to Zero Hour, outside of Dick’s appearance.

The art is certainly up to par with what I’d expect from this "era" of the title. I quite enjoy Grummett‘s work with Tim, and find that his style is what I tend to think of when I picture these early issues of the title. While the characters do have similar appearances, and the costumes have their differences, there’s still just enough hint of the physical differences that I could probably tell them apart with little difficulty. Of course, the rest of the art team helps in this regard, and colors make a difference along with the design differences of the costume.

All in all, this is one of the better tie-ins to the event, as well as being a darned good issue of Robin, period. If you come across this in a bargain bin, it’s well worth picking up. And if you’re a fan of Tim particularly, that goes extra.

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3 Responses

  1. I love that you’ve been reviewing all of these Zero Hour tie-ins. I read the main storyline but didn’t get much in the way of the ancillary tie-in issues (I’m not sure if they’re even collected in trade). Reading your reviews has helped expand on the story so much more, and makes me want to go back and read some of these. This comic especially seems right up my alley. I really like the Dick/Tim interactions, and getting to see them fight side by side when they’re BOTH Robin is a novelty that I’m guessing I won’t be seeing anywhere else. They’re each such unique Robins, and it would be cool to see how they respond to situations in their own way. I’ll definitely have to keep an eye out for this one, or any compilation of all of the Zero Hour tie-in stories. Based on your reviews it looks like they’d definitely be worth the read ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Wow…I am way behind in responding!

    Thanks for the comment! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Yeah, I am not aware of really any of these being collected in trades/hardcovers at all, outside the core series.

    Given what you say…I would DEFINITELY recommend the issue as worth tracking down just for the enjoyment (I’d hope you could find it for under $4-5 *including* any shipping).

    I think at this point probably my general thoughts are that the best of the tie-ins are: Batman, Robin, Superboy, Man of Steel, Green Lantern, and Booster Gold. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. […] Arrow #90 | Guy Gardner: Warrior #24 | Darkstars #24 | Damage #6 | Legion of Super-Heroes #61 | Robin #10 | Justice League International #68 | Catwoman #14 | Action Comics #703 | Anima #7 | Showcase […]

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