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“Holy Return Of The Caped Crusaders, Batman!”

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“Well old chum, it looks like it’s time for a comeback”                                                                                                                                                         “Holy triumphant return Batman!”

The Batman of the 1960’s wasn’t a Dark Knight, he wasn’t foreboding or scary, and seemed to have gotten over, fairly easily, the murder of his parents that had haunted him and made him a creature of the night… in fact the Batman of the sixties wasn’t even a denizen of the dark, preferring to run around his native Gotham, during daylight, in tights!

Yes indeedy Batfans, 60’s Batman and today’s modern version are literally day and night, but both are still Superheroes of the highest echelon and downright entertaining, whether it’s the Caped Crusader holding aloft a comical round bomb whilst darting around avoiding nuns and ducklings (!?) or the Dark Knight stalking his prey from the shadows and vigorously snapping limbs…

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Light and Dark, two sides of the same coin… (Harvey Dent would be proud)

And now, the stars of the 1966 epic televisual series, Adam West (Batman), Burt Ward (Robin) and Julie Newmar (Catwoman) are reuniting to Biff! and Pow! their way into a brand new animated movie!  The actors will reprise their iconic characters when Warner Bros release the new movie, Batman: Return Of The Caped Crusaders on Digital HD on October 11, and then on Blu-Ray on November 1. Watch the exclusive movie clip below fellow Batfans and look for a review of the film itself in November, Same Bat-time, Same Bat-channel.

Comic Cover Of The Week: Detective Comics #934

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This week’s wonderfully wrought comic cover celebrates not only the absolutely astonishing artwork of Eber Ferreira & Eddy Barrows, but also the reversion of Detective Comics back to its original numbering. Detective Comics first appeared in 1937, but it was its twenty seventh issue that has become the most important of its seminal run, the first appearance of the Masked Manhunter himself – The Batman.

When DC Comics rebooted its Universe in 2011 with the ‘New 52’ they renumbered all of their issues back to #1’s. Before this back pedal of numbering, Detective had reached the almost incomparably immense issue #881, with the oncoming of DC’s recent ‘Rebirth’  which aims to reinsert the legacy of DC’s long and varied comic history, they have decided to revert the numbering of their two original and most popular comic books – Detective & Action Comics (which itself goes back to #957, tantalisingly close to issue #1,000!)

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Detective Comics 934 finds the Batman attempting to bring together all of Gotham’s Guardians into one cohesive unit of crime-fighting badassery. A rebirth for the classic Bat-Family of old that sees the return of beloved characters like Stephanie Brown as the Spoiler and former Batgirl Cassandra Cain under her new identity of Orphan. Throw in the fiery haired vigilante Batwoman, wayward zealot Azrael and the Caped Crusader’s loyal sidekick Red Robin, and you end up with an almost unbeatable team of spandex clad heroes that will have the Supervillains of Gotham running for the proverbial hills!

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Detective Comics will start shipping twice monthly from June 08, beginning with issue #934. Written by: James Tynion IV. Art and cover by: Eber Ferreira & Eddy Barrows. Variant cover by: Rafael Alburquerque.

Batman: The Killing Joke – Teaser Trailer Released

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DC Comics have released a teaser trailer for their upcoming animated version of Alan Moore’s classic one shot graphic novel masterpiece.

The Killing Joke was written by Moore and illustrated by Brian Bolland and John Higgins in 1988, providing an origin story and psychological motivation for the creation of the Clown Prince Of Crime. It is defined by fans and critics alike as probably the greatest Joker story ever penned and was the recipient of many awards for its conceptual depth and spectacular artwork. The plot revolves around the Joker’s attempt to drive Gotham City’s Police Commissioner Jim Gordon insane, with frequent flashbacks to Joker’s former life before his psychotic break at the hands of the Batman. The tale Explores Jokers assertion that deep down inside all of us there is a psychotic, insidiously waiting to break free from the shackles of sanity.

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The animated film will once again bring together the Dynamic Duo of Kevin Conroy (as Batman) and Mark Hamill (as the Joker) Watch the exclusive teaser below Batfans…

 

Batman v Superman: Grudge Match

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In just two short weeks the greatest cinematic Superhero event ever will take place, when the Caped Crusader and the Man of Steel square up for a royal rumble that will shake the very foundations of the DC Universe. Comic’s two most iconic characters will go head to head in a grudge match that, even though this will be their first live action brawl, has been enacted throughout the decades in both comic book and animated forms.

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Though, usually touted as friends and allies, no other comic book duo has fought as many times as Bats and Supes over the decades. They are literally opposite ends of the Superhero spectrum; one is a vengeance driven manhunter, bringing his own brand of justice to a corrupt and dystopian city. dark and brooding, driven on by the tragic deaths of his parents, Batman has given his life over to his mission.

The other is a virtual god, a being from another planet who arrived on Earth as a child after his home was catastrophically destroyed. Brought up in the farm belt of the USA, Kal El uses his almost limitless power to help his adopted kin, fundamentally a force of good and a symbol of hope amongst his many supporters. Batman and Superman literally are Night and Day, completely antithetical and divergent in both motivation and execution of their chosen lifestyles.

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Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice director – Zack Snyder has drawn heavily from these past confrontations for his upcoming blockbuster movie, but the one story that has had the most influence on the film (and the character of Batman himself) is Frank Miller’s classic, genre defying eighties series ‘The Dark Knight Returns’

Dark Knight is Frank Miller‘s opus, and almost single handedly responsible for a dramatic and significant change in the way Superheroes are portrayed. Taking the well loved character and plunging him even deeper into his own psychosis and despair, allowing him to really embrace the darkness that was brought on by the devastating loss of his parents, and use it to deliver a whirlwind of brutal justice on the many corrupting forces that prey on Gothamites on a daily basis. Miller’s Batman is a schizophrenic and driven crime-fighter, an unequivocal force of nature that does not suffer fools gladly, and will allow absolutely nothing and no-one to stand in the way of his war on crime.

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Ben Affleck’s armoured Bat-suit is heavily inspired by Frank Miller’s original design

The Dark Knight Returns shows us a future Gotham City where crime runs rampant, and its one true protector who used to hold back the tide of criminality and lawlessness has long since retired as age and injuries slowly caught up with him. Bruce Wayne now holds back his raging inner demons through the use of alcohol and death defying stunts (when we first see the aged Bruce, he is crashing his race car over a finish line with suicidal abandon.) Unable to cope without his alter ego, and feeling powerless in the face of an encroaching enemy that is seeping into his beloved city and gradually altering its substructure into that of complete anarchy and transgression.

Superheroes have long since been outlawed, and the only one still active is the Government sponsored Superman, who covertly works for the President and keeps the peace with as little media exposure as possible. Brought back from his almost catatonic state, after the demons raging inside him can no longer be contained, Bruce Wayne gives himself over to the one true personality that has always been dominant in his life since that one fateful night… The Batman. Waging a war on crime like never before with unstinting and remorseless abandon, yet his age and a decade of inactivity might make this last heroic struggle, his final denouement.

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With Batman rampaging his way through the underbelly of Gotham City and dividing opinion amongst the Police and citizens, Superman is despatched by the President to put a stop to his vigilante actions… and thus ensues the paradigmatic battle between the two titans, that is reflected heavily in the many trailers for the forthcoming movie.

Director Zack Snyder is a huge comic book fan, especially of the darker and more mature style of story-telling, just witness his previous movie incarnations – the utterly astounding recreation of Alan Moore’s ‘Watchmen’ (still our fave comic to film adaptation) and Frank Miller’s ‘300’. The influence of Miller’s Dark Knight is tangible, and there really could be no better material for him to draw upon for this colossal showdown.

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The many, many instances of Batman v Superman throughout the years

Of course lest we forget, there will be one tempering influence in the film who has also acted as a mediator to the feuding heroes in comics and animation over the years. She is also the character who has soundly beaten both Bats and Supes in one on one combat on several occassions. So before either hero gets too overconfident and supercilious in their own powers and skills, they should really factor in that comic-book’s first lady, Wonder Woman can kick both their arses without even breaking a sweat… just saying!

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New52 Wonder Woman Gives Supes A Lesson In How To Kick Arse The Amazon Way!

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Batman Always Wins… Unless He’s Fighting Diana, Of Course!

The titanic twosome will be knocking heads when ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice’ hits the cinemas on March 25. Best prepare your utility belts and red capes in readiness for what will incontestably be the ‘Greatest Comic Book Movie Ever!’