Red Robin #15: Writer: Fabian Nicieza. Pencils: Marcus To.
Review: This issue opens with Tim Drake(in leg braces)going to visit(not bald, not fat and not old)Captain Boomerang in prison. Why? To tell Boomerang to rot in jail. But that really has nothing to do with the main story, so let's move on. Tim, as Red Robin, breaks into Vicki Vale's apartment and discovers that she had seemingly put together all of the members of the Bat-family, from Bruce being Bats, all the way down to Damian being the new Robin. Tim reports his findings back to Dick at Wayne Towers, and they decide that they need to come up with a plan to throw Vicki off their trail. Damian recommends just killing Vicki(HA!), while Tim begins to concoct a plan in his head that might throw Vicki off the trail. And so Tim begins to put his plan into motion by deciding to hold a press conference to announce that he was going to reveal the names of the two crooked detectives in the GCPD who were working with several street gangs. The crooked detectives had hired the assassin Scarab to silence Tim Drake(which Tim had actually set up himself)and the press conference would be the perfect opportunity for Scarab to make good on the hit. With Scarab watching the press conference from a nearby rooftop, Tim begins to talk about his programs to help the youths of Gotham, and then began to turn his attention to the crooked cops, which caused Scarab to raise her gun and target Tim. Just as Tim was about to reveal the names of the crooked detectives, Scarab goes to take her shot, but her aim is messed up at the last second when Red Robin hits her gun with a batarang, leading to Tim getting shot in the abdomen... Wait, Red Robin attacked Scarab while Tim Drake was shot?! Yes, and I'll get to that in a moment. While Tim is rushed to a hospital, Red Robin defeats Scarab with an EMP pulse that fries her armor. At the hospital, the doctors are preparing to operate on Tim, when Dr. Thompkins rushes into the emergency room and tells the other doctors that according to Bruce Wayne, only she was to operate on Tim, which causes the other doctors to vacate the room. With the doctors gone, “Tim” turns into Miss Martian, while Red Robin steps out of the shadows and thanks her for her assistance. With that, Dr. Thompins shows doctored x-rays to the press, which indicate that Tim had suffered a slight spinal injury, which leads to Tim wearing leg braces and walking with crutches. Seeing Tim get shot as Red Robin was battling Scarab also helps to leave Vicki Vale somewhat confused as to whether or not her information on the Bat-family was as sure as she had thought it was. This issue ends with Tim emerging from the hospital and giving up the names of the crooked detectives, which obviously infuriates them, as well as angering Anarky, who was watching Tim on the television, since he was also trying to piece together exactly who Red Robin was.
What I Thought: There was absolutely nothing wrong with this comic. It was what I'd term a perfectly acceptable comic. Several storylines were moved along/closed out here, as Scarab was put in custody, the crooked detectives were revealed, and Vicki Vale's investigation was stymied. Plus Anarky showing up at the end of this comic shows us that Fabian is ready to move forward with a new storyline. And to be honest, I've been waiting to see Anarky since the end of the Robin series, so I'm happy to see that he'll be showing up here. In a perfect world, Anarky will end up being Tim's Joker, but I guess that remains to be seen. Anyway, this was a good if not great comic that should definitely be picking up with future issues.
Score: 8 out of 10.That's gonna leave a mark!