Writer of ComicsAlliance favorites The Wake and Batman, Scott Snyder is enjoying a kind of imperial phase of his comic book career, where everything he releases is met with commercial popularity as well as critical success. A long form collaboration with artists Greg Capullo, Danny Miki and FCO Plascencia, Batman has been the unquestionable leader of DC Comics' "New 52" line of superhero titles, routinely appearing in the #1 spot of monthly sales charts and just completing a wild and operatic revision of the Dark Knight's origin story in "Zero Year" -- an arc that CA's resident Batmanologist Chris Sims suspects may go down as one of his favorite Batman stories of all time.
But beneath Batman's twisty plots and memorably big moments lies the true trademark of Snyder's work; a conscious, almost intuitive sense of his characters' psychology and inner lives. It's Snyder's fundamental understanding of his heroes and villains that drives all the occasionally over-the-top action of his series, and of Batman especially.
Dr. Andrea Letamendi is a clinical psychologist and co-host of The Arkham Sessions -- the ComicsAlliance feature focused exclusively on psychology as expressed in Batman: The Animated Series -- and she sat down with Snyder at Comic-Con International in San Diego for a chat about the themes of mental health in not just his work, but in his own life.
After decades of waiting, fans of the beloved Batman television show of the 1960s -- or Batman '66 as it is known -- will finally be able to own all 120 episodes on home video, and in high definition. After protracted litigation with series owner Fox, DC Comics' parent company Warner Bros. has set November 11 as the on-sale date for the completely remastered Batman '66, which will be available on Blu-ray, DVD, digital, and, of course, a super expensive collector's edition that comes with all sorts of groovy stuff, including a selection of photos from star Adam West's personal archives (when you're as mature and sophisticated as West, you get to have "personal archives").
What if Batman had a fur-lined cape? Or had Scribblenauts on his cowl? Or was Rorschach?
All those questions and more were answered at the Cape/Cowl/Create Exhibition hosted by DC Entertainment, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Vice magazine at Comic-Con International in San Diego. The whole thing was a promotion for the new Batman: Arkham Knight game, and used the cape and cowl designs from the game as a basis for the artwork. The concept resulted in some pretty cool stuff, and the opulence of the event was a vivid expression of just how big the Arkham games have become -- often, installations like these are reserved for big tech franchise announcements.
LEGO, the world's greatest toy, has now officially revealed all the ways it intends to drive fans and collectors into fury, anguish, and despair at this year's San Diego Comic-Con with its range of exclusive sets and minifigures only available on the con floor.
The main draw this year will surely be the ridiculously cute Batmobile set, which comes with Batman and Robin minifigs and an innate sense of joy and delight.
The hits keep coming out of DC Comics' west coast digital comics division, whose senior editor Jim Chadwick announced at Comic-Con International that the next release from his Batman '66 line will be The Lost Episode. What makes this a big is twofold: the lost episode is indeed a lost episode of the classic 1960s television series starring Adam West and Burt Ward, and it was written by none other than Harlan Ellison; award-winning television, writer, novelist, comics scribe, and notorious litigant. Secondly, the special issue will be drawn by José Luis García-López, one of the best comic book artists of all time. Adapting the script for comics will be Len Wein, a legendary comics figure in his own right.
DC hasn't released clean images from the project yet, but we know that Ellison's unproduced script would have introduced Harvey "Two-Face" Dent into the television series.
The cunning folks at DC Entertainment snuck an exclusive new image of Ben Affleck's Batman out into the world by hiding it in plain sight at this year's San Diego Comic-Con. The DC booth features a montage of Batman images celebrating the Dark Knight's 75th anniversary -- and in among those images is a never-before-seen picture of Batfleck's impressive Bat chin in profile.
We already saw a fuzzy glimpse of Batfleck from Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder earlier this year -- and we noticed at the time how very Frank Millery it looks. Earlier today we also gawked at Batfleck's cape and cowl on the convention floor -- and it was but a spectral apparition without a meaty Ben Affleck to fill it.
If you're one of the unlucky millions who can't be in the giant steaming San Diego convention hangar this weekend, you probably won't get a chance to get up close and personal with the glass cabinet containing a bit of Ben Affleck's costume from next summer's Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice. Sucks to be you! No proximity to Afflatex for you!
The small DC nation state on the con floor is showcasing a lot of Batmemorabilia to mark the Caped Crusader's 75th anniversary -- including the new movie Batman's actual crusading cape and crime-detecting cowl from Zack Snyder's sure-to-be poignant summer batbuster.
Okay, so there's good news and bad news. The good news is that ComiXology is having a massive sale on Batman comics, and has knocked a bunch of them down to 99¢ each, which means that you can grab some great stories on the cheap. The bad news? Since this whole thing is in honor of Batman's 75th anniversary, they've put 750 comics on sale, plus a handful of graphic novel collections. All things considered, that's a pretty good problem to have, but still, that can be pretty overwhelming.
Fortunately, we're here to help. As the World's Foremost Batmanologist, I've sifted through the sale to bring you safe bets for what you should be grabbing during the sale. Assuming you've got the obvious ones -- like The Dark Knight Returns, Batman: Year One and the recent runs by Morrison, Snyder, and Capullo -- here's what to grab next!
The folks over at Mondo are having a busy year celebrating all things Batman. Not only did they host an anniversary screening of Mask of the Phantasm and recently announce a limited edition pressing of the Batman: The Animated Series soundtrack on vinyl, but they're kicking things into high gear, just in time for Comic-Con. Today, they announced a full-on gallery show devoted to Batman's 75th anniversary, drawing inspiration from Batman's long and illustrious career across all media.
And to promote it, they're hitting the floor at Comic-Con this week with a new poster by artist Jason Edmiston, featuring Cesar Romero as the Joker in all his moustachioed, purple-pinstriped glory.
There was a lot to be wary of when Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, Danny Miki and FCO Plascencia's "Batman: Zero Year" was announced. The most obvious reason was that it was the story that was set to replace my all-time favorite comic, Batman: Year One, going back to cover ground that had been stomped into concrete by one of the most influential stories of all time. Even the name was a response to Year One, and the expansion of what Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli had done so elegantly in four issues to a full year of comics felt like it could've easily been symptomatic of the trend towards decompression that drags everything out for the bookstores. Why sell one hardcover when you could sell three, right?
At the same time, I liked what Snyder and Capullo had been doing on Batman enough that I was looking forward to reading it, and from that first shot of Batman on a dirtbike, something that I am genetically hardwired to love on sight, I was hooked.
This week, the final issue came out, and while we're still too close to it to really tell how well it'll stand the test of time, what I know right now is that I love it, and there's a good chance that it'll end up not only as my favorite version of Batman's origin, but as one of my favorite comic books of all time.
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