Bat Out of Hell

Batman and Robin #7

Batman — as in Dick Grayson — has taken Batman’s corpse — as in Bruce Wayne — to Jolly Olde England. While there, he teams up with the Knight and the Squire, England’s versions of, well, Batman and Robin, to foil some terrorist attacks. While there, he visits an imprisoned criminal called the Pearly King of Crime. After getting a surreptitious clue to the location of a mysterious coal mine from the King, Batman and the Squire fight their way into the mine, where they join up with the Knight and a surprise guest star — Batwoman, who ain’t real happy to hear why Dick brought Bruce’s body into the mine — he’s found a secret Lazarus Pit, and he’s going to use it to bring his mentor back to life…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Always fun to see Grant Morrison write about Ol’ Blighty. The Pearly King is just a grand character, the surprise appearance of Batwoman is well done, and everyone gets a chance to shine. Next issue, though, when whoever-it-is gets out of that Lazarus Pit, might be a bit rough…

Batman: The Brave and the Bold #13

Things start off really cool, as Batman makes a short team-up with, of all people, Angel and the Ape. Unfortunately, Bats gets a broken leg when a tree falls on him, leaving Gotham City without its regular protector. But Batman has lots of friends, and Green Arrow, Plastic Man, Aquaman, and Captain Marvel decide to lend a hand. But rather than doing it in their regular costumes, they all dress up as Batman. And from that point on, it’s just pure unbelievable awesomeness.

Verdict: Thumbs way up. The high concept alone is worth the price of admission. You get a ton of superhero guest stars and a ton of Bat-villains running around to get beat up. One of the coolest thing about this issue is how all the heroes still retain enough elements of their regular costumes to keep them recognizable, even while they’re dressed up in a Batsuit. And there are also all the other guest stars who show up on the last two pages, too. If you haven’t gotten this yet, go pick it up. It’s tons of fun.

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