Batman and Deathstroke fight in the Batcave locked away from everything everyone until they decide or admit who Robin’s father is or kill the other first.
The conclusion to the convoluted paternity storyline involving Batman, Robin, and Deathstroke continues and for once ends this issue with no more dangling plot points forgotten for several issues only to return much later, like the death of Étienne. I don’t understand why Christopher Priest made this storyline tighter and neat in the end. That is not like him. He also ended the story with a reversal of roles between each man and the respective mother of their child.
This is a story that dragged too long although since we are discussing Deathstroke by Priest, it’s not even a criticism anymore. It is just the way things are with his kind of genius. Deathstroke continues to require a bit more cerebral power processing power than most comics but Priest toned down the complexities this issue to make sure new readers would follow. Perhaps that’s why all of the Defiant and Étienne’s murder stuff was ignored for a while.
Priest tried to do a better Batman-Deathtstroke confrontation than the classic one done in the first Deathstroke series by Marv Wolfman and Mike Zeck. It is a different story filled with parallelism. They add something tacky to the story like an immediate way for readers to recognize themes and happenings. It reads more like a buddy book by the end of the issue.
Carlo Pagulayan was allowed to complete the layout this issue. He’s not bad at all on his own. His realism is pleasing and help make Deathstroke a book that matters.