YMMV: All-Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: It's entirely possible that the Batman we're seeing on page is not in fact the real Batman. Some have theorized that he's actually a crazy hobo named Steve who found a Batman costume and won the lottery, becoming inspired to be Batman.
    • The fact that Batman keeps laughing like a maniac while Joker never even smiles makes you wonder if the two have swapped costumes before the story started.
  • Arc Fatigue: With all the characters, sideplots that may or may not have anything to do with the narrative, confusing time frame, and fairly bad schedule, it took a while for Dick Grayson, age 12, to even become Robin.
  • Awesome Art: Say what you want to about the writing, but the art is amazing, both Lee's interiors and Miller's covers. The art is what's been selling the book. All the critics who absolutely hated the writing said DC could do the fans a better service by reprinting the books with blank speech bubbles.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Neo-Nazi woman with swastika pasties standing guard outside a motel door. ...Huh.
  • Bile Fascination: A major selling point for the comic book: once word about it began to spread, people who haven't read it yet just can't believe it's that bad.
  • Broken Base: There are presumably still people who are fans of Frank Miller, since All-Star Batman and Robin continues to sell. However, between the lengthy delays, the questionable writing, the even more questionable actions of the "heroes" of the story, and the sexist undertones pervading throughout, that number has been dwindling.
    • Sales could be due to the series now being Snark Bait; it's hard not to avert one's eyes from a trainwreck.
  • Canon Sue: Batman. By all logical reasoning, he should not be able to roam free the way he is, and other super heroes exist only to be incompetent and make him look better.
    • Jerk Sue: Anybody who calls Batman out for his actions is treated as an idiot.
  • Crack Pairing: Batman and Black Canary
  • Crazy Awesome: What a lot of Batman's actions appear to be intended as.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: When both your protagonists are at best sociopathic jerks without sincere empathy for other human beings, it's hard to feel genuine sympathy.
  • Designated Hero: Batman. He's psychotic, unstable, an all round Jerkass, who kidnaps the twelve year old Dick Grayson, age twelve, gleefully commits murder (a lot of the victims being innocent policemen), and barely does anything heroic, and yet somehow the reader is supposed to side with him.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Many fans like to believe that this story (and The Dark Knight Strikes Again) is in no way connected to Batman: Year One and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.
  • Faux Symbolism: The close up on Vicki Vale's panties reveal that the design is that of a Bat.
  • Fountain of Memes: It is, after all, Batman Turned Up to Eleven — now with extra crazy flakes.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The 1994 Batman/Spawnnote  crossover had Batman riled up at Spawn's lethal methods, vexing him to the point where he chucked a batarang in Spawn's face when Spawn asked to shake hands. At the time it was understandable; in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and Batman: Year One he never used lethal force. After his child abusing, cop-killing antics in All Star Batman his attitude towards Spawn killing seems flat out hypocritical.
    • Likewise, a lot of scenes from Year One. Especially the scene early on where Bruce breaks out of a cop car but winds up crashing it and still goes out of his way to save the two unconscious cops inside, even one of which is shown to be somewhat of a dick because of his willingness to let Bruce bleed to death, in light of the cop-killing scene early on in ASBAR.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • The love scene between Batman and Black Canary also count. In the story, they have make out while keeping their mask on. The scene might be Squick, sexy, or even outright funny to some people. Fast forward three years later, Batman and Catwoman have SEX with their mask on. The scene is here if you want to check it out (NSFW)
    • Although the "I'm the Goddamn Batman" is the most remembered part of the quote, right before it, he says "Who the hell do you think I am?"
    • As Linkara pointed out, Frank Miller once said he considered Batman the most pure and good of all DC superheroes. Fast forward to this comic and suddenly we have the Goddamn Batman smirking gleefully as he slams the Batmobile into cops, abducts Dick Grayson, Age Twelve, and generally runs around acting so brutally out of character Linkara dubs him 'Crazy Steve' because even Batman In Name Only is still too much like Batman.
    • When 12-year-old Dick Grayson initially creates his costume with a hood, Batman cynically tells him to drop it, since according to him, this would be impractical in a fight. Flash-forward to Grant Morrison's run, when Damian Wayne becomes the new Robin. His costume includes a hood. Linkara has theorized Morrison might have done this on purpose as a Take That to this comic.
  • Idiot Plot: A lot of the story would be over fast if Superman or Green Lantern didn't act like morons.
  • Memetic Molester: It's often been pointed out that the way Batman treats Robin can get really uncomfortable. Says he's been watching him before Robin was orphaned, takes him away without the kid's consent, smiles as he thinks about putting the kid through hell...
    "Fast hands, my little Robin. Fast hands, big mouth."note 
  • Memetic Mutation: Several lines in the series, as well as the series itself.
    "I'm the Goddamn Batman."
    • Dick Grayson, age 12.
    • And then Miller had exactly the wrong reaction to the Goddamn Batman meme, as he threw the word more and more into Batman's lines until it's practically a Verbal Tic.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Batman.
  • Older Than They Think: Some readers take exception to the Joker being emotionless and grim, a far cry from his usual depictions. However his early Golden Age appearances did have the Joker as a more morose character compared to how he would later become known.
  • Padding: The series suffers from this. One critic noted the book felt like Miller was spreading 4 issues of story across 20. To put it in perspective, Batman meets Dick Grayson, age twelve, in Issue 1. They arrive at the Batcave in Issue 4. The time in between (the entirety of Issues 2 and 3) is focused on either inner monologue which repeats itself or scenes focusing on other characters (despite this being a book about Batman and Robin). Black Canary's introductory scene takes up half of Issue 3, but all that happens is her getting harassed and her beating up a room full of people.
  • Signature Scene: Guess. Come on. Guess.
  • So Bad, It's Good: The fact is that most people think this is a bad Batman story; that doesn't stop them from finding it absolutely hilarious.
  • Snark Bait: Virtually every other panel has some.
  • Stealth Parody: While the claim of "It's a parody" is mostly said by die-hard fanboys, once you read the comic it is possible to see where they're coming from. Everything is so over the top, edgy, dark, etc. that it's kind of hard to take seriously. The fact that Frank Miller has proven long ago that he can write the caped crusader very well also leads people to think he was trying to write a parody.
    • Though, considering Miller also wrote Holy Terror and Dark Knight Strikes Again in total seriousness, it's rather hard to believe it.
  • Strawman Has a Point: When Green Lantern confronts Batman, he points out that Batman is hospitalizing people with his excessive violence and endangering a boy as young as Dick Grayson, age 12.
  • They Just Didn't Care: Frank Miller has become so obsessed with making Batman "better" than the police or any other superhero, that he's stopped caring about making Batman actually do anything heroic.
    • During the story, 12 year old Dick Grayson's face is on a Milk Carton... While he's still being driven to the Batcave, meaning that either the trip takes several days, or Batman's car drove into a time warp.
    • The Batcave has a wall of weapons that Batman in any normal story would never use, including guns in it. That's all.
      • The axe that Dick Grayson Age 12 picks up has a blade shaped like Batman's logo. This means that it wasn't just seized from another criminal or even bought off the shelf, Batman had it custom made.
    • Other superheroes such as Black Canary, Plastic Man, and Wonder Woman appear in the comic, and Frank Miller writes them all as psychotic murderers with no regard for who their mainstream counterparts are.
  • Watch It for the Meme: Many fans just read it to see Batman declare "I'm the goddamn Batman!"