This week sees the start of DC Comics' big The Multiversity event series, and if the related books on sale over at ComiXology -- ostensibly to get everyone up to speed -- are anything to go by, then that thing's going to be chock full of weirdos. Seriously, I already knew they were going to be throwing Captain Carrot in there, and for some reason people can't get enough of that one story where Batman becomes a Dracula, but there are some deep cuts in there, like that one Chuck Dixon comic where the Justice League are all cowboys, and this weird thing from the '90s called Kingdom Come, where Superman fights Cable.
And then there's Kamandi.
But should Kamandi start crossing over into the main DC Universe, it won't be the first time. For that, you have to go back to Bob Haney and Jim Aparo's Brave and the Bold #157, for a story where Kamandi was sent back in time, and ended up being brainwashed, made invulnerable, poisoned with snake venom, joining up with the mob and punching Batman in the face. It... It's a weird one.
I think I've made it pretty clear over the past few years that I'm something of a connoisseur of strange comic book stories. I love comics where things get weird with that sort of cheerful rejection of all logic, where things don't quite add up, but the truth is, I sometimes get to a point where I think I've seen it all. I start to get jaded, and think that nothing can ever match the weirdness that I've already seen. But every time, I run across a story that makes me realize that in all my years, I've only hit the tip of the iceberg of bizarre stories. And it usually happens when I'm reading a Bob Haney comic.
Case in point: Bob Haney and Jim Aparo's "How To Make A Super-Hero," where the World's Greatest Detective decides it would be a good idea to let a homeless Plastic Man fill in for him while he's out of Gotham City, and guess what? It goes horribly wrong.
Over a lifetime of reading comics, Senior Writer Chris Sims has developed an inexhaustible arsenal of facts and opinions. That's why, each and every week, we turn to you to put his comics culture knowledge to the test as he responds to your reader questions...
Who's the most normal member of Batman's vast supporting cast? Well, even during the most bizarre years of Batman's career -- the age of Bat-Mite and Bat-Hound, the Zebra Batman, King Batman the First, Rip van Batman, and travels to alien worlds and different eras in time -- at least one element of the Batman comic books remained relatively Earthbound: Batman's pal Commissioner James Gordon...
This year, the Eisners are honoring the legendary Bob Haney with the 2011 Bill Finger Memorial Award for Excellence in Comics Writing, and if you ask me, that's long overdue. In a career that spanned five decades, Haney's contributions to the DC Universe included co-creating the Teen Titans, Metamorpho and Eclipso and a long run as the writer of The Brave and the Bold, working with artists like Neal Adams and the incredible Jim Aparo.
And he also wrote some of the craziest comic books I have ever read, like the time Batman sold his soul to the devil, the the time they retconned the JFK assassination with shapeshifters, and the time the Atom resurrected a man from the dead by doing gymnastics on his cerebellum.Haney didn't just embrace the wild, anything-goes attitude of the Bronze Age, he strapped a jetpack on it and rocketed it to a headquarters at the center of the sun. He set the gold standard for an entire era of DC comics, writing stories in which no premise was too insane to make a grand adventure and no character was off-limits for a team-up with Batman. So with the award being officially handed down next month, ComicsAlliance has decided to show you just why he's so great with a look at Bob Haney's Craziest Stories!
When I was out in San Diego for Comic-Con, one of the things I was most looking forward to was the playable verision of "Batman: The Brave and the Bold" for the Wii that was set up at the DC Booth. After all, a video game based on the animated series that's essentially a sequel to the 1966 live-action "Batman," but expanded to the entire DC Universe...
For a certain percentage of people who were kids in the early '90s, the defining era of video games is a time when the side-scrolling beat-em-up ruled the earth unchallenged, dealing out Final Fights and Golden Axes before the 3D and the rise of the first-person shooter brought them to an untimely end...
This weekend's episode of "Batman: The Brave and The Bold" explains just why Batman's always found Catwoman so attractive: She reminds him of his mother. Maybe that's because she is his mother... kind of...
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