Saturday, June 04, 2005

Doin It and Doin It and Doin It Well

My quest for a randomly enjoyed superhero comic has met a successful end!

Well, it begins again anew with every trek to the comics shop, whether it ends in success or failure, but this week, at least, it ended well. I picked up #2 of BATMAN: DARK DETECTIVE by Steve Englehart, Marshall Rogers, and Terry Austin. I picked it up because I liked the cover--because the cover looked like a superhero comic I would have bought 20 years ago, even though I've never been a big Batman fan. It shows a bunch of Batman villains--the Joker, the Penguin, Two-Face, and more--ready for battle. In the foreground, as if we're looking over his shoulder, is the side of Batman's face--he's a little taller than us and we can just barely peek under the nose of his cowl. The title on the cover: "by love . . . BETRAYED!"

Hell, yes!

I didn't kow what his min-series was, but the art looked pretty John Severin-like as I flipped through it. Apparently it's a reunion of heavy hitting 70's bat-team, but it's set in present-day continuity. BUT, even though it's set in the present, I was so-not-lost, even though I haven't been keeping up on all of the latest pre-INFINITE CRISIS hullaballoo.


(. . . this is the best part . . .)

Stuff happens in the book! Stuff happens in the book, and it's fun to read, and it makes sense, and it's self-contained in a way that doesn't leave you confused, yet moves the story ahead, yet makes you want to read the next issue. Will Two-Face kill the Joker if J. doesn't drop out of the governor's race? Will the *other* candidate for governor find out that Batman/Bruce Wayne is rollin' around on the ground with his lady, and Bruce's ex, Silver St. Cloud? What the heck is the Scarecrow up to, dressing as policemen and planting slow-acting gas on Batman's cape?

I mean, egads, folks! Them's is good comics!

My other attempt this week was #4 of Spider-Man/Human Torch, because it seemed to be set in the post-Secret Wars era black costume/Black Cat days. It was, but alas, it didn't live up to those stories I used to enjoy. I'll pass on more issues of Spidey/Torch, but Dark Detective is one I'll be returning to.

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