Batman & Robin. Pat Gleason/Mick Gray. 2011.
Insightful comic book cover art analysis by go-to smartypants Timothy Callahan in effect yo:
First, let’s address the cover imagery. Issues #1 and #3 are standard superhero covers with action poses or fighting freeze-frames, but the other three covers are compellingly odd. Of the three remaining, the cover for #5 is the most generic, at first glance, but it’s really a masterful image, even if understated. It shows Nobody and Robin, crouching atop the Bat-signal, but besides the solid poses and clean rendering, what makes it work is that Robin’s cape sways back around Nobody and curls upward, giving the villainous pseudo-father a hint of a scalloped Bat-cape all his own. And then there’s the most important touch — the outstretched arm and poised hand of Nobody, who is either balancing himself or preparing to clutch Robin in a protective grasp. Or he may be getting ready to wrap his arm around Robin’s neck, like a maniac holding a hostage. The pose implies all of those possibilities, and that’s what gives it its power. The cover of “Batman and Robin” #2 is a radically-foreshortened Batmobile racing toward the reader, looking like a snout and eyes and the tail fins seem to be ears. It looks shockingly like Cerebus the aardvark from Dave Sim’s controversial opus. Or some bizarre twist on Nemesis the Warlock from “2000 AD.” I don’t know what to make of any of that, but there’s certainly plenty to say about masculine roles and hubris if it’s a “Cerebus” allusion, and plenty of say about dynamic oddness if it’s “Nemesis,” and yet it might have nothing to do with either. Sure is a strange-looking cover for a Batman comic, though. But then there’s the cover of issue #4. Bats. A city-scape. A reflection in the watery abyss, but what is that image in the center. Is that Robin screaming and clawing his way out of…a Bat-gina? What the heck? A violent birth image of Damian Wayne squeezing himself out of a virtual Batman-head cervix and out through the nether regions of Gotham? I can’t see that cover and interpret it any differently, mostly because that’s exactly what it looks like, and because it is the ultimate metaphor for the themes within this series. But, yes, what a shockingly unconventional cover image for a DC superhero comic of any era.http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=36689