Crimespree on Comics: Kate (and Dan) read BATMAN.

Kate: Hey, Dan! Watcha reading?

Dan: Oh, look who decided to return to the Blog Team. It’s Ms. “I’m gonna write the blogs by myself.” Big shot!

K: I brought you cookies as piece offerings! :smiles widely:

D: :eats cookies, mutters to self : Fine. I’m doing a little prep work for C2E2 and rereading the “Batman” re-launch by Scott Snyder.

K: Don’t you have the first Batman book ever on your Kindle-machine?

D: :wipes cookie crumbs off of fingers: Yes I do. You can read both books only if you promise not to get cookie remnants all over everything…

D: I’ve gotta say, it sure does feel like you’re living in THE FUTURE (dun dun DUN!) when you can read a comic book published in May, 1939 on an e-reader. And while the story and art may be regarded as “quaint” by today’s standards, I think it’s a pretty solid story. And you can absolutely see the seeds of the modern Dark Knight Detective in that first story.

K: So some dude is knocking off a bunch of other dudes? Where are the super-villains? You know, Clown Guy? And Crocodile Face? What about Question Mark Man?

D: Shush.


D: :rolls eyes: You know as well as I do that Batman, or Bat-Man, as he’s known here, is a true offspring of the pulps. He’s always been matched up against “Regular Joes” – gangsters and street thugs.

K: Right… But what kind of regular Joe tries to capture a super-hero in a gigantic people sized glass jar?! :runs upstairs: We’re regular folks, and we don’t have a gigantic people sized glass jar! Hold on. I’m gonna go ask the neighbors if they have a gigantic people sized jar.

D: Why do you want one?

K: So I can capture the Bat-Man!

D: Oh. Well. Good luck with that, then.

K: :Diagramming her very own Bat Trap: So in summary, the Old School Bat-Man fights gangsters, hangs out with a Thurston Howell III looking Commissioner Gordon, throws bad guys off of buildings, and solves the BIG MYSTERY. Sounds pretty much like the current comic.

D: Lets compare!

K: The 2012 version of the Dark Knight still hangs out with Commissioner Gordon, but this commissioner looks more like a character from “Barney Miller” than a castaway with Gilligan. Everything in the updated Gotham is dirtier. Whereas the city in the Kane Bat-Man is brighter and has more color to it. Love the crazy 1939 yellow suits!

D: No doubt. Kane absolutely captures the energy and dynamic vibe of the times. It’s a lot of fun following the panel layouts in the 1939 book.

K: I think the major piece for me is the extensive World-Building that is presented in the Snyder book. As part of the New DC re-launch, this book is supposed to act as the “First appearance of Batman.”, and Snyder runs with it: introducing Gotham, the various Robins, Wayne’s plan to renovate the city, and capping the whole shebang off with a major cliffhanger of a mystery at the end. And all this is in just the first issue. The sheer amount of story is amazing.

D: I thought the fight in Arkham Asylum was pretty wicked. And how bad ass was the modern Bat Cave???

K: Very Bad Ass! So cool how the huge T-Rex, the oversized penny, and enormous playing card are still a part of the Batman legend.

D: And I think that nails it right there: there are so many pieces of Bat-lore that are a part of pop culture. Things that people expect to see in a Batman comic. In Snyder’s book, those pieces are presented in such a way that old readers and new can read for the first time.

K: :lowers welders mask over face, lights torch: Agreed. These comics act as historical bookends for the Caped Crusader, Golden Age and Modern Age. And while there are decades separating them, they both present solid depictions of the Batman. Both comics rule.

D: ABSOLUTLEY! And hey, what are you building?

K: Dude, it’s my Gigantic People Sized Batman Trap!

Dan and Kate Malmon are a happily married couple (unless Dan eats the forbidden cookies) in Roseville, MN. When not working, reading comics and mysteries or watching sports, they hang out with Franklin the dog. You can find both Kate and Dan on Twitter.