There have been five men to portray Batman in the character's eight live-action feature-length films, from Adam West in Batman '66 to Christain Bale in 2012's The Dark Knight Rises. All five actors came with their strengths and weaknesses, but the best was Michael Keaton, who played the DC Comics superhero in 1989's Batman and 1992's Batman Returns.
In the first major scene of Batman '89, Keaton famously grabs a terrified mugger by the collar, holds him off the side of a building, pulls him close to his face, and hisses, "I'm Batman." As a 12-year old watching that moment on a VHS tape in my living room, I believed Michael Keaton. And I still believe him as a grown man watching it on DVD in my office 25 years later, even after having seen a half-dozen different Batman movies since.
I realize declaring Michael Keaton's performance as Batman to be not only my favorite Batman but the best Batman is a somewhat controversial statement, even (especially?) among my fellow writers at ComicsAlliance, but allow me to make my case.
Following a few incidents of costumed characters in Times Square committing crimes --most recently, one where a Spider-Man allegedly groped a tourist, which came after another Spider-Man was convicted of harassment -- the president of Times Square Alliance, Tim Tompkins, is putting his foot down. He's calling for all the Times Square characters -- superheroes, Sesame Street characters, Disney princesses and all others --to be licensed and regulated.
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn't enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here's The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he dives into comics history to explain why you're wrong and he's right.
This week, a viewer writes in with a question about where to start with the King of Comics, Jack Kirby. With a career that spanned six decades and a masterpiece (or three) in every era, the sheer amount of work that Kirby produced can be daunting for a new reader. Fortunately, we've got some suggestions.
Rapper Froggy Fresh (formerly known as Krispy Kreme until a certain vendor of fried pastries told him he couldn't do that anymore) has released a music video that should certainly appeal to fans of Power Rangers, Predators getting kicked in the chest, and hip-hop. (In other words, probably the exact sort of person that reads ComicsAlliance.)
In "Street Rangers," Froggy Fresh and his best friend Mike discover a pair of Morphin' Watches and find themselves blessed with the ability to become super sentai sorts. Soon after, they come across a Predator bullying a kid at a playground, as Predators are apt to do when they're not destroying large sections of South American jungle or wreaking havoc in Los Angeles.
In the summer of 1989, primed by "Kiss" and "Alphabet St." and "Sign 'O' the Times" to expect brilliance from the first taste of new Prince music, I raced out to buy "Batdance," the first single to be released from his soundtrack to Tim Burton's Batman. It seemed like a great idea at the time.
I remember my feeling of dazed disappointment the first time I heard "Batdance" lurch to an end. "Batdance" isn't even a song, as such, but a cluster of unrelated chunks of underdone rhythm tracks, ineptly pasted together with chopped-up samples of film dialogue, a couple of lines flown in from other songs, Prince singing the hook from Neal Hefti's '60s Batman theme, and (in its album mix) a very aggressive guitar solo that has almost nothing to do with what's going on around it. Prince and Batman together? How could that not be awesome? What just went wrong here?
In celebration of the 25th anniversary of Tim Burton's Batman movie, The Arkham Sessions takes a break from analyzing the psychology of Batman: The Animated Series to pay special tribute to the legendary film that influenced the style, music, and dark themes of the animated show. Consistent with her measured, analytical approach to the characters and stories of BTAS, Dr. Andrea Letamendi offers psychological conceptualizations of Burton's Batman and Joker with the help of co-host Brian Ward.
Is the film, as Burton once described, a story about the intertwined paths of Batman and the Joker, culminating in a "fight between two disturbed people?" Furthermore, how does Keaton's Bruce Wayne compare to Kevin Conroy's version when it comes to the maintenance -- or fusion -- of multiple identities? How is Nicholson's Joker more destructive and dangerous than Hamill's? Listen to this special edition of the The Arkham Sessions and reminisce about Batman '89 in a whole new way.
The latest trailer for producer the Michael Bay-produced, Jonathan Liebesman-directed Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles gives us the most clarity we've seen yet on the new film based on on Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird’s enduringly popular characters. While fans may never accept the lusciously lipped, Shrek-like designs for the TMNT, some may be relieved to learn the apparent fact that the Japanese villain Shredder will not be played by the distinctly non-Japanese William Fichtner, as previously reported.
The world of comics fans who also love larger-than-life horror rock acts from the 1970s (so everyone who read Kiss: Psycho Circus) was abuzz Thursday upon news of a new Dynamite Entertainment Alice Cooper comic series by writer Joe Harris (The X-Files), artist Eman Casallos (The Ninjettes) and cover artist David Mack (Kabuki).
Dynamite's description of the new series, which launches in September, touts it as the story of Cooper's secret role as "The Lord of Nightmares." He's apparently been locked out of his kingdom by a usurper and is struggling to regain his title. That sounds pretty cool, but does it really encompass all that is Alice Cooper? We don't think so. Here are some other aspects of Cooper we hope to see in the comic's pages.
Each week, ComicsAlliance’s Chris Sims and Matt Wilson host the War Rocket Ajax podcast, their online audio venue for interviews with comics creators, reviews of the books of the week, and whatever else they want to talk about.
This week, you folks are lucky enough to get a full episode a day early! Click on the player above to hear Chris and Matt talk about their experience at this weekend's Heroes Con in Charlotte, North Carolina. They'll talk about all the stuff they bought, how this year's con compared to previous years, a bit about how Special Edition NYC may change the con landscape, rap videos, and much more!
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn't enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here's The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he sits in his living room under a framed portrait of Destro, drinking a cup of coffee and sharing his opinion on comic books.
On this week's show, Chris revisits a previous episode to examine why FrankenCastle, the story where the Punisher became a grumpy Frankenstein monster with a giant metal arm, works much better than Angel Punisher, the story where the Punisher became a grumpy angel with a coat full of heaven guns. Believe it or not, there is a difference.
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