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Thursday, May 06, 2021 

Damian Wayne enters a Mortal Kombat-style arena

Polygon is fawning over a new Batman tale where the son of Talia al Ghul conceived by Grant Morrison at least a decade ago does what the site calls journeying to an equivalent of a video game I've found insufferable for many years:
Robin — Damian Wayne, son of Batman and Talia Head, grandson of Ra’s al Ghul himself — is in a tough place right now. He was trained as an assassin, but gave up his League of Shadows birthright to be Robin, but now he’s really, really mad at Batman for letting Batman’s alternate-universe dad let Bane kill Alfred. But really, Damian is mad at Batman because he feels responsible for Alfred’s death. What’s a Boy Wonder to do?

Well, in Joshua Williamson and Gleb Melnikov’s new series, Robin, Damian travels around the world entering supervillain cage matches until somebody invites him to the DC Comics equivalent of Mortal Kombat.
And it all culminates with the following offense:
The final page of Robin #1 features new teen supervillain Flatline ripping Damian’s still-beating heart out of his chest shortly after their arrival on Lazarus Island (probably a clue that Damian will still be around next issue after all). But I’d like to highlight another important canon moment of Robin #1: Damian Wayne is a fake nerd who reads horizontally flipped manga.
What difference does it make if he's still around? This is disgusting enough as it is. And all in a title that, when Chuck Dixon wrote the original 90s volume, was usually more family friendly and not built on sick shock tactics like this modern tale in a PC era is relying upon. Did they do this to coincide with the new movie based on the game that's just come out? Because, since it's been brought up, NY Vulture cited an example of the film's hypocrisy when it comes to race:
One of the distinct joys of the video games is the diverse breadth of their characters. This makes the profound lack of Asian women in the film curious, given that the entire franchise takes inspiration from Asian culture. One of its greatest characters, Kitana (my personal favorite), is nowhere to be found. [...]
Well that's Hollywood for you, where the double standards on social justice propaganda run deep. I don't like the source material, but that still doesn't mean this was approvable. First Post also cited this troubling moment involving one of the villains in the character cast:
Of the few things in the film that work, Josh Lawson’s Australian mercenary Kano is undoubtedly the highlight. He’s a foul-mouthed, obnoxious asshole, and anytime he’s on screen, the movie begins to feel alive. For some boneheaded reason, he also achieves his “arcana” — his laser eye from the games — by being really angry and racist towards the film’s Asian characters. It’s both absurdly hilarious and downright ugly, and if nothing else, it at least dismantles the notion that Mortal Kombat is some kind of progressive Asian empowerment film, a bizarre idea the marketing team began leaning into (going as far saying the film “boasts a diverse international cast” before listing its Asian leads) in the wake of recent anti-Asian hate crimes. I’m sorry, Warner Bros, but the best part of your movie is a white guy who gets his superpowers from calling a Chinese man “Kung Pao,” which isn’t going to do much to #StopAsianHate. It’s not that kind of movie, and it’s pretty cynical to pretend like it is.
Well it sure sounds like they thought applying such atrocious personalities to a villain would make it palatable, but decidedly it's nothing of the sort. It's just a grimy example of cheap sensationalism, and I don't want to waste my money on something like this, all clearly written as a horrible excuse for an R-rating by extension. And this is what the current Robin writers pay tribute to? Just goes to show how a DC series Dixon wrote to excellence has since had its best values thrown to the winds for the sake of repellent shock value that's not suitable for children.

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I'm guessing you've never seen anything like this before in your life?


Any ideas on why you've been loosing commentors?

Well, if you want video game commentary: https://www.deviantart.com/devilkais/journal/Speedreading-on-KOF-847893285

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