Grant Morrison is a polarizing guy. You either love his work or find it completely incomprehensible. When you try to get someone to explain, a typical answer is “it’s Grant Morrison” as the owner of my comic store, The Phoenix of Westchester and Comix 411 colleague, Joel Rosenberg learned. So where does Morrison’s “Final Crisis” fall in the scheme of his work? A little from column a and a little from column b.
Reading the first three issues of “Final Crisis” was like watching a five-car pile on. Morrison hit you with one thing after another without explaining anything. I felt like I missed an issue (and the tie-ins didn’t fill in any gaps). Then issue four hit and “Final Crisis” started making sense. So if you still don’t understand what’s going on, here’s a little primer to make sense of the basics so far…
Right now this is my favorite Batman story being published. I was underwhelmed by Denny O’Neil’s “Last Days of Gotham” and I’m confused with what Grant Morrison is doing over in “Batman”. So this story has been a nice cleansing of the palette.
As per my previous blog on this story arc, it’s written by Andrew Kreisberg; mostly known for writing various television shows over the past few years. The story he’s crafted is fantastic. It’s tight and each issue has ended with me wanting more.
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I have read a lot of comics over the past 55 years and I don’t think I ask for much. Everybody has their own preferences for artists and writers, but I like a well-plotted out story, which makes sense. Consistency is not the hobgoblin of little minds when you are dealing with a 70-year continuity in the comics universe. I can accept any premise as long as the story flows from it consistently. I can accept coming from a larger planet with a red sun causing the last son to have super powers. I cannot accept tossing plastic Ss or teleportation after 50 years or so. I can accept being bitten by a radioactive spider giving someone super powers, but not a demon reordering the entire universe so someone’s marriage can disappear.
So Batman 682 hits the store and I go “WHA?!?!?!”
The next day I get my regular call from DC, which usually means they are trying to sell me something. I, also, get to ask them any questions that we get that we can’t answer. So I asked my rep what he hell is going on in this book. Is Bats dead or not (comic dead, that is)? It seemed he got his helicopter blown up in 681, but ends up being tortured in 682. Does RIP take place before or after Crisis? He’s in Crisis so it’s unlikely RIP takes place before, but the world is supposed to be quite a different place after Crisis and it doesn’t seem to be here. What gives?
So, I got three different people from DC arguing and we all came to the same conclusion. We don’t know. I can live with the story being a jumbled mess that is supposed to make one think about what the author is trying to say, but this goes way over the line. Maybe in 683 he’ll be Bat-Baby and we can start all over again.
With the release of “The Dark Knight” on DVD and Blu-ray today, the director Christopher Nolan did an interview with USA Today to promote it. Of course with every interview comes the question if he’s doing Batman 3 and when will it be coming out? For now, Nolan states that there are no immediate plans to get the ball rolling on Batman 3. Nolan is nervous about doing another Batman so quickly because many third installments of franchises tend to stink (Superman 3, Godfather 3, etc).
In the article, he says he’s jotting down notes and doing some outlines for a script right now, but there is nothing so far that makes him want to put it on film. Nolan feels that doing a third film too quickly will result in the film being sub-par to the first two and that would be “disrespectful to the fans.” These statements make me believe that Nolan is committed to doing a third film, but he wants to do it right.
Read More | USA Today
Another issue of “Batman” by Grant Morrison that has me going, “What the #$@&?!!” Although I’m a bit confused, I think I got a grasp of what’s going on. I think.
This is part one of the storyline “Last Rites”. The solicitation for this issue reads, “In his last hours, Alfred the Butler tells the life story of the Batman as you’ve never seen it before in this two-part adventure, which bridges the gap between the events of “Batman R.I.P.” and FINAL CRISIS. Learn the secrets of Batman’s early years! Witness the nightmare of a Gotham City where Batman never existed!”
I’d like to thank Evan C. Price for contributing to Comix 411 with Part One of this “Batman and Robin” argument. It takes a real man to admit that on some level he liked “Batman and Robin”. I promised him that I wouldn’t bash him and call him an idiot for liking the film because we all have our likes and dislikes. I didn’t like the Lord of the Rings movies. I thought they were long and boring. I’m in the Kevin Smith camp on this one. (If you saw Clerks 2 you know what I’m talking about.)
Well, when I first saw “Batman and Robin,” I hated it. And after viewing it in its entirety after the first time since I saw it in the theaters, I still don’t like it. Just like other comic fans who have talked about the film over the years I agree that the film is campy, poorly acted, and poorly written. So I will start off with my short list (and it will be short) of the stuff that I did like about the film.
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We have yet to come across anyone who didn’t appreciate this movie (and we’re sure they’ll come out of the woodwork in the comments now that we said that,) and it is with good reason. The Dark Knight has so much going for it in terms of entertainment value and action. Batman’s voice aside, everything about this movie screamed “awesome.” This is why we have to recommend it in our Holiday Gift Guide. Now, primarily we are recommending The Dark Knight Blu-ray, because that is going to give you the amazing visuals and sound you come to expect from a movie like this. That said, we understand that not everyone is equipped with the latest in high definition gadgetry, so we will also recommend The Dark Knight Special Edition DVD as well. The Blu-ray version retails for $35.99, but we found it on Amazon for 33% off at $23.99. The special edition DVD version sells for $34.98, and we found it for 40% off on Amazon at $20.99.
It’s been a busy week for me. Between the birth of my second son this past Monday, as well as Thanksgiving, I haven’t had much time to read or write about comics. Today after coming home from the pediatrician, I went and got the mail and in my mailbox was this month’s “Wizard” magazine. On the cover was a picture of the new “Justice League” comic, which will be written by James Robinson. I completely forgot about this book as the announcement for it came early this year.
James Robinson is responsible for writing one of my all-time favorite comic books: “Starman”. “Starman” only lasted 80 issues, but it was not canceled because it stunk. Robinson created a story that had a beginning, middle, and end that DC allowed him to tell - similar to Neil Gaiman’s run on “Sandman,” Robinson had carte blanche when it came to that book and it’s protagonist, Jack Knight.
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The conclusion to “Batman: RIP” is finally here. The last issue saw Batman entering Arkham Asylum as his back-up personality The Batman of Zur-En-Arrh to rescue Jezebel Jet from the Black Glove and the Joker.
Grant Morrison stated in an interview with Comic Book Resources that what would happen to Batman in this storyline would be “so much better than death. People have killed characters in the past, but to me, that kind of ends the story! I like to keep the story twisting and turning. So what I am doing is a fate worse than death. Things that no one would expect to happen to these guys at all.” When I read this, I became very intrigued. What would happen to Bruce Wayne when the story was over? Well, the story is over and I’m still wondering what the big deal was.
Read More | Comic Book Resources
This issue was written by Peter Tomasi with the art provided by Fernando Pasarin. It’s a very good issue featuring Lance Corporal David Reid who was resurrected as Magog in the current “One World Under Gog” storyline. I liked the introduction of David Reid to the team by Geoff Johns and Alex Ross. The character is the great-grandson of President Franklin Roosevelt who was a part of the formation of the Justice Society of America (JSA). I love American history and I always love comic stories that weave real history into their storylines.
This issue has some JSA members following Gog on his “mission” to help the people of the world. The group comes across a river with dead bodies floating in it. They discover that it has been poisoned by militants and it will kill everyone in the immediate area who use it for water if they don’t block it’s path. The river is blocked by Gog and he and the JSA members make their way to locate the militants.
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