A surprisingly good animated story about the union of Batman and the Magician, the daughter of Ra’s al Ghul. Ra’s you will recall is one of the Bat’s greatest enemies as well as one of his teachers. This story shows us that a chance encounter or rather manipulation of Bruce Wayne by Talia produced a son, named Damian. And what a child he is.
Damian has all the warmth and compassion that you would expect being a child of Talia and the grandson of the leader of the League of Shadow, actually League of Assassins in the film. He also has the resourcefulness and tenacity to complete that his father Bruce Wayne has as well as that intellect. He proves this at one point when he tells his father that he had been hacking into the Batcave computers ever since he was 4 years old. Batman just gave the kid the “It figures” look and continued on since he couldn’t do anything about it anyway.
As the story progresses we learn that even though Batman may have enjoyed the encounter with Talia, it was not a true consensual encounter. She got what she wanted and Bruce didn’t remember most of it, except for maybe the good parts as was said in the film. Batman might be a bit miffed about it and the fact that Talia keeps calling him “Beloved” but he knows that any child raised by Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Shadows is going to need all the guidance that he can give. Even before Talia tells him to keep their son Bruce insists that he take charge of the child. Something he starts to regret almost immediately as Damian’s self will comes right out at the beginning, especially with his insistence that he, a six year old, already knows how to drive and that he will drive the Batmobile. Batman’s response? “NO!”
He said No a lot to Damian, so much so you can keep hearing it in your head hours later.
The child will not listen to his father, keeps breaking into the computer, hacking Wayne Towers and going where he is not supposed to go. Meanwhile his mother is out to find Deathstroke, aka Slade Wilson who was once named as the successor of Ra’s al Ghul. Deathstroke raided Ra’s al Ghul’s compound at the beginning of the film and actually managed to kill Ra’s. Ra’s couldn’t make it to the Lazarus Pit in time to recover from his wounds. Talia fearing for her life and the life of her son takes Damian to Batman so she can track the whereabouts of Deathstroke. While we don’t get to see all of her searching we do get to see her get captured at one of the Leagues mountain hideaways. It is also there that we see a mother and daughter being held captive to make sure another completes a task assigned to him.
Kirk Langstrom has been working for the League of Shadows trying to perfect a formula to create manbats. I can only guess that Ra’s al Ghul wanted something to strike terror in his victims in much the way that Bruce Wayne chose the bat to strike terror into the hearts and minds of the criminals that he chased. The film doesn’t go into that detail but one can only surmise that it would be the case. After the death of Ra’s al Ghul, Deathstroke pays a visit to Langstrom to get the formula for himself. Finding it not yet completed he gives the doctor some added incentive by kidnapping his daughter Rebecca and his wife Francine. Knowing his family is in danger he redoubles his efforts at creating the formula. What Ra’s and Deathstroke don’t know is that Kirk has not been working as diligently as they thought. He has been delaying the project for as long as he could.
These ladies are important to the plot in that it is Rebecca that is used to deliver a message to Damian after Deathstroke figures out that Robin is actually the son of Batman. A fact that Nightwing hates as well. Dick Grayson don’t like anyone wearing his old costume but puts up with it because Bruce tells him to. In reality it is the only way to keep a leash on Damian and to keep his face out of the news since Damian is as single minded about revenge as his mother is.
In all this film is quite entertaining and gives a fresh new twist to the Batman Character. I hope that we will see many more films of this magnitude and plot twists. Maybe the might even remake Birds of Prey? That would be cool so see Damian and Helena working side by side as the son and daughter of Batman.
I give this film a Musing review of