DCAU #345: Toy Wonder

IN THIS ONE... A young unresponsive boy becomes the GoLeM's new controller.

CREDITS: Written by Hilary J. Bader; art by Craig Rousseau and Rob Leigh.

REVIEW: Look, despite Batman following the clues all the way to Willie Watt, and then to the little catatonic kid, in search of who's been controlling a new, junky GoLeM, the mystery is dead on arrival here. We meet the kid early, he has cyber-gear that allows him to control a toy robot, we see that robot get damaged and crawl away, and next thing you know... We're just going through the motions while Bruce nags Terry every step of the way. But they're the right motions, more how do we get there than whodunit.

But here's the thing. The story of this kid is incredibly sweet and heartfelt. It works. I love the opener where Batman's fight with a giant mech is just Matt playing with his toys. And while you might sit there wondering if the Biffords were seen on the show (they weren't, Mr. Bifford is just one of those Wayne employees who have a criminal record but have been given a second chance, it's just slightly odd that he'd be invited to Terry's mother's place), there's no denying the power of this father-son story. It's the tale of a father who doesn't know if his son is even in there, but discovers through a mad twist of fate he is, and you might even get a little moist-eyed on the final page.

Everything else is secondary, including the under-explained crime plot about illegal(?) tech dumping accidentally framing Bifford.
REREADABILITY: Medium-High - It's got enough heart to overcome its lack of any real mystery.



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