Batman Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

Grumpy Old Fan | ‘Grayson,’ Robin and fates worse than death

Through the years

Through the years

This has turned out to be an eventful week for fans of the first Robin (and of the role in general), thanks to a Robin Rises one-shot, leading into the unveiling of … well, whoever’s going to wear the red vest for the foreseeable future, and Dick Grayson’s latest relaunch, a July-debuting ongoing series called simply Grayson, wherein the former Boy Wonder will start a new life as a super-spy.

With each of ‘em about three months away, obviously I’m not equipped to pass judgment on the merits of either. However, I can tell you what I think about Dick and Robin, how those impressions affect my snap judgments, and why you should — and shouldn’t — listen to someone like me.

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Jock is selling Batman screen prints, but only for a limited time

jock-bats-purple-cropped

Attention fans of Jock and Batman: On Wednesday the artist will debut a gorgeous screen print based on one of his splash pages from Batman: The Black Mirror, available for purchase from his website for just 48 hours.

The 24-inch by 36-inch screen print comes in two versions: black and white ($50), and purple ($65). The same panel was the basis for a statue in DC Collectibles’ Batman Black and White series.

Follow Jock on Twitter to find out when on Wednesday the prints go on sale.

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Comics A.M. | What Amazon-comiXology deal means (and what it doesn’t)

Amazon buys comiXology

Amazon buys comiXology

Digital comics | In today’s Amazon-acquires-comiXology article, Rachel Edidin deflates much of the hype, and the panic, surrounding the deal, pointing out that comics distribution is already a monopoly, large corporations already run the comics market, and comics have been available on Kindle all along: “Is the concern [...] a distribution monopoly? If so, the direct market is in no position to criticize: over the last 15 years, Diamond Comics Distributors has consumed almost all independent print distribution in comics, and dictates practices and policy to retailers and publishers alike. The idea that print comics are somehow more independent than their digital cousins — or a scrappy underdog fighting the good fight against evil corporate profiteers — is frankly ridiculous.” [Wired]

Awards | Michael Cavna talks with Kevin Siers of the Charlotte Observer about winning the Pulitzer Prize in cartooning. [Comic Riffs]

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Grumpy Old Fan | The Church Of What’s Happening Now

Put your hand in the hand of the man who changed the course of mighty rivers

Put your hand in the hand of the man who changed the course of mighty rivers

First off, yes, I have read the first issue of Batman Eternal, but since its “pilot episode” includes issues #1-3, I’ll be talking about those more specifically in a couple of weeks. Eternal is one of two weekly series DC will offer this year, the other being Futures End, a look into the shared superhero universe five years from now.

However, we might well ask what difference will there be, one year from now, between an issue of either series and your average issue of a monthly title? When Eternal and Futures End are collected in their entirety two years from now, how different will they be from collections of Court of Owls or Throne of Atlantis?

The obvious differences are time and volume. The year-long weekly comics that DC put out from 2006 through 2009 — 52, Countdown and Trinity — all used their speedier schedule to tell a big story in a (relatively) short time. Instead of letting their epic tales play out over four-plus years, these series each got ‘em done in one.

Now think about sitting down with one of these thousand-page sagas. It won’t take a year to read, but it’s not something to approach lightly. That puts a special emphasis on how they’re to be read. Today we’ll look at DC’s history with weekly series (and some related experiments), with an eye toward what the two new ones might offer.
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Two #1s: ‘Batman Eternal’ and ‘Lumberjanes’

variant coverI have to imagine there were almost as many forehead-slaps as high-fives in the room at the meeting where someone suggested DC Comics devote their next weekly comic to the Batman franchise. There had to be as many people thinking, “Why didn’t I think of that?” as there were people saying, “Good thinking!”

“More Batman” has rarely been a bad business decision for the publisher, and not only is the franchise carrying more than its fair share of the 52-ish books that make up the DCU line, the Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo flagship title continues to perform at crazy-high numbers.  So why not produce another Batman book, and rather than sticking it in a corner of the franchise, far from the main book, the one that seems to “count” the most, why not tie it closely to Snyder’s book? And hey, why not ship the thing weekly? Again, high fives!

I really love weekly comics, although the format has some pretty unique pressures, which we’ve seen play out various ways as DC has tried different  routes over and over to get to weekly comics, with no two efforts—52, Countdown, Trinity, Wednesday Comics, and the bi-weeklies Brightest Day and Justice League: Generation Lost—really being produced in quite the same way.

The most obvious pressure is that getting these things to ship on time like clockwork often means sub-par art, so as much as I was personally looking forward to Batman Eternal, I was frightened as much as disappointed to see the art starting out bad; this was, after all, the issue that should be the best looking.

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Deathstroke leaves a bloody mess behind in fan film

deathstroke-fanfilm

Following the teaser trailer we posted last week, Going Nowhere Studios has released the full version of Deathstroke: Arkham Assassin, a fan-film prequel to the video game Batman: Arkham Origins.

The film features Slade Wilson auditioning for Black Mask, who has put a bounty out on Batman on Christmas Eve. Deathstroke shows off his skills in the action-packed, very bloody and probably NSFW fan film. It’s timing couldn’t be better, as DC just announced a starring role for Deathstroke in Suicide Squad.

Check it out below.

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Batkid throws out first pitch at Giants home opener

Already off to a 5-2 start, the San Francisco Giants received an extra boost at their home opener Tuesday afternoon: SF’s own Batkid threw out the first pitch.


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Harley Quinn only wants to kill the Batman in ‘Frozen’ parody

harley-frozen

While “Let It Go” has received most of the attention (to say nothing of an Academy Award), Disney’s Frozen has plenty of catchy tunes, including “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?” Now that song gets its moment in the sun (so to speak) with a parody called “Do You Wanna Kill the Batman?,” performed by SydneyAmber as Harley Quinn.

It works even if you’re unfamiliar with the original, as a lonely Harley tries to persuade The Joker to join her in a little mayhem, and perhaps mend their relationship.

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‘Batman: Death of the Family’ collection comes with Joker mask

joker mask2

Just in case those Court of Owls masks weren’t creepy enough for you, DC Comics will release the paperback collection of Batman’s “Death of the Family” storyline with a replica hand-painted vinyl latex mask of The Joker, with sewn-on hair.

Yes, that’s a mask based on the one the Clown Prince of Crime made out of his own skin, after having the Dollmaker carve off his face in the relaunched Detective Comics #1. Even if you don’t follow the comic, you’ll likely recognize the mask from DC’s marketing for Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s “Death of the Family” arc (above).

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Deathstroke goes in for kill in trailer for ‘Arkham Origins’ fan film

deathstroke

Going Nowhere Studios has debuted a pretty impressive trailer for Deathstroke: Arkham Assassin, a fan-film prequel to the Warner Bros. video game Batman: Arkham Origins.

In the game, a bounty is placed on the Dark Knight by the Black Mask, bringing eight of the world’s greatest assassins to Gotham City on Christmas Eve — including the formidable Deathstroke. But as the trailer teases, the crime lord requires a demonstration of his skills.

The short film is set to premiere Monday online.

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Frank Cho recreates scene from ‘The Dark Knight Returns’

cho-dkr

Frank Cho hates Superman. Don’t take my word for it; just ask him. But after years of friendly queries by an art-collector friend, Cho bit the bullet and took on a rare commission of Superman — but only if he could do it his way.

“One day the impossible happened, I was bored and I had some free time and Hawaiian Dave gave me a big wad of cash. On top of that, he told me that I can draw whatever I desire as long as Batman and Superman is in it …,” Cho explains on his blog. “Since I hated Superman so much, the only logical conclusion was to do the scene in the Frank Miller’s masterpiece The Dark Knight Returns, where the old Batman comes out of retirement and beat the shit out of Superman. And off I went.”

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The Joker is straight outta Gotham in mc chris’ ‘Part Six’

joker_wide

Forget Straight Outta Compton, mc chris’ take on the Joker is Straight Outta Gotham!

The rapping, rhyming mind behind Fette’s Vette and the Friends EP — a whole album dedicated to the allies of the Dark Knight — has released an advance look at Foes, an album  inspired by (you guessed it) the villains of the Batman universe, via Soundcloud. Although the recording is decidedly NSFW, Batman fans should definitely give it a listen as it’s a really excellent take on the Clown Prince of Crime that explores his motivations, origins and lifelong battle with Batman.

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Comics A.M. | Police search for man who robbed store employee

Police sketch of the robbery suspect

Police sketch of the robbery suspect

Crime | Police in St. Charles, Missouri, are looking for a man who accosted an employee of the Fantasy Shop outside the comic store Monday morning and demanded she hand over a bank bag. The suspect, who indicated he had a gun, then fled with an undisclosed amount of money, leading to five local schools being put on lockdown for about 90 minutes. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch]

Creators | Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato discuss taking over as the creative team of Detective Comics with Issue 30. “We just want to carve out a small space in the Bat-world and craft stories that resonate with the legions of fans out there,” Buccalleto says. “It’s a tremendous honor to be a part of this legacy.” [USA Today]

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BaneCat is going to have to kill you now

banecat

It’s been nearly two years since the release of The Dark Knight Rises, and we’re no closer to figuring out the reason for Tom Hardy’s bizarre and grating Bane voice (the actor has said it was based on bare-knuckle boxing champ Bartley Gorman, but that doesn’t explain why). Still, it gave Bane the most recognizable voice of any Batman villain since Burgess Meredith’s Penguin, and paved the way for … BaneCat.

Somehow, that voice is less annoying when it comes from a plump, plotting feline wearing a respirator mask and fleece-trimmed coat — one who’s apparently getting his own series.

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Honda unveils anime-inspired, Batman-esque new bike

vultus5

It’s not exactly Kaneda’s iconic ride, but Honda has drawn upon the likes of Akira for its new bike, the NM4 Vultus. The company acknowledges as much in its press release, describing the motorcycle as “a ground-breaking machine inspired by futuristic machines seen in the anime and manga television and film styles, known collectively as ‘Japanimation.’”

Let’s just ignore that “manga television” bit and marvel at not only the design — at least two websites make Batman references — but the wording of the press release, which uses phrases like “future-shock style,” “stealth bomber silhouette” and “brooding menace.” However, the word motorcycle never appears …

While the Vultus may indeed be mistaken for the Dark Knight’s new wheels (particularly if the rider is wearing this Bat-eared helmet), don’t think it’s a concept bike; Honda promises it’ll actually be in showrooms.

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