‘Dark Nights: Death Metal Robin King’ Review: A Robin to Die For

Writer: Tony Patrick & Peter J. Tomasi / Artist: Riley Rossmo & Daniel Sampere / DC Comics

This is the third one-shot tie-in that I’ve read for the Dark Knights: Death Metal event, and I am here to inform you that it is also the third book that I’ve really enjoyed. 

I don’t know what it is, but these tie-ins are hitting different than they usually do. The general consensus is that they still aren’t necessarily needed to get the whole narrative. But they also feel like more than just supplemental stories. They’ve got some nuance to them. And I’m not mad at it. 

Robin King tells the story of a Robin from a world where he killed his parents and then went on a crusade to kill all old people because they suck. His words, not mine. He was then recruited by The Batman Who Laughs to join his team of Bat adjacent murderers from the multiverse. 

But Robin King isn’t about just killing old people. He wants to inspire other young people to kill the elders in their life too. He sees himself as an example by which others can follow. And by the end of the issue, he gets exactly what he wants. The Batman Who Laughs has a Legion of docile Robins, and the Robin King was able to get them to sing his tune.

I really enjoyed how fun this story was. It was written (in-part) by Peter J. Tomasi. And if his run on Superman focusing on Jon Kent told us anything, it’s that the man knows how to write children well. But it turns out he can write sadistic children even better. 

Riley Rossmo was on art, and the last time we saw a large quantity of work from him was on his Martian Manhunter run with Steve Orlando. I was really happy to see him take on a story like this. It’s tonally different than what he did on Martian Manhunter, but that allowed him to really swing for the fences. My favorite thing was the way he drew the Robin King’s evil smirk. It’s simple, but it goes a long way in convincing the audience that this kid is absolutely insane. 

Robin King is another one-shot in a long line of one-shots for the Dark Nights: Death Metal event that was super enjoyable. It adds context and nuance to the character that I honestly wasn’t expecting to get. 

9 Cheers out of 10 

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