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Ask Chris #173: The Trouble With The Joker’s Girlfriend Harley Quinn

Ask Chris art by Erica Henderson

Q: What do you think about Harley Quinn? --@Gavin4L

I'll be honest with you, Gavin: Harley Quinn is a tough character to write about. I've been struggling for a long time now trying to figure out how to get started, because there's so much there built around a single character that gets into a lot of tricky, complicated areas, from her almost accidental creation and often mystifying popularity to how much she's changed and been altered in a relatively short period of time, and how you can almost chart the changing aesthetic of the entire company just by looking at a single character. It's a lot to get through, even if you're someone who lived through every bit of it as a fan.

Really, I guess that's as good a starting point as any. What do I think? Well, I like the character a lot, but when you get right down to it, she's one of the most misunderstood and misused characters in all of superhero comics.

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DC Announces New Weekly Series ‘Batman: Eternal,’ ‘Detective Comics’ #27 To Feature Work From Miller, Adams & More [NYCC 2013]

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From 52 to Countdown to Trinity, there was a three year period in which weekly comics were a staple of DC Comics' publishing initiativeNow the publisher is returning to the format, as today DC Comics announced Batman: Eternal, a year long weekly series focusing on the Dark Knight and Gotham City. The title will feature a writing team led by current Batman scribe Scott Snyder, and its launch will coincide with the character's 75th anniversary.

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Animation From Never-Made CGI ‘Gatchaman’ Movie Arises [Video]

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In another universe, a CG animated movie written by Paul Dini and based on the classic anime Science Ninja Team Gatchaman was made by the same studio that made 2007's TMNT. In this universe, though, the studio, Imagi, had a financial meltdown and the project was scrapped.

There are still plenty of artifacts from that movie's production, though, including these four new videos featuring never-used animatics from scenes and some polished demo animation that show a glimpse of what that alternate-universe movie looks like. Check out all four after the jump.

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Filed Under: , , Category: Anime, Movies

The Ten Best ‘Batman: Black and White’ Stories (So Far)

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A new volume of Batman: Black and White kicked off last week, continuing the DC Comics anthology's tradition of high quality. Debuting in 1996, the original Batman: Black and White series quickly set the comics world ablaze with a collection of short, powerful tales told by some of the industry's finest. Edited by Mark Chiarello, the four issues gathered sixteen original eight-page black and white stories from a who’s who of influential creators, including Archie Goodwin, Joe Kubert, Howard Chaykin, Brian Bolland, Bill Sienkiewicz, Neil Gaiman, and several more. It won the Eisner Awards for “Best Short Story” and “Best Anthology,” inspired a ton of great statues (one of which you can win), and two follow-up volumes in 2002 and 2007, mostly made up of backup stories from the Batman: Gotham Knights series.

In celebration of the new series, I read all three volumes of Batman: Black and White (I also did other stuff, I have a life), and after poring over all 600-plus pages, I can confidently say that these are the ten best stories from the original volumes, presented here in chronological order.

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The Fishnets Brigade: Dini & Quinones’ ‘Black Canary/Zatanna’ Graphic Novel Confirmed For May 2014 [Preview]

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Promised for years but continually delayed, Black Canary/Zatanna will finally become a reality when it goes on sale in May of next year. Written by Paul Dini and drawn by Joe Quinones, the original graphic novel finds the fan-favorite DC Comics heroines in their more traditional looks and teaming up to bring down a new threat who puts both of their fantastic abilities to the test.

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Paul Dini and Cort Lane Talk Character Development, Guest Stars & More In ‘Hulk And The Agents Of S.M.A.S.H.’

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As you'd expect, the success of Marvel's film franchises has affected the entire company, across all media, from the Marvel NOW! publishing initiative to next month's Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. debut on ABC. Marvel has also stepped up its animation game, with the popular The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes leading to the launch of Marvel's Avengers Assemble, which airs in the same block as Marvel's Ultimate Spider-Man. Now, following the on the heels of those shows as well as the Avengers film -- which many consider to be the best ever portrayal of the Hulk outside of comics -- comes the company's latest animated series: Marvel's Hulk And The Agents Of S.M.A.S.H. Debuting this past weekend on Disney XD, the new show features Hulk alongside Red Hulk, She-Hulk, A-Bomb and Skaar. The goal of the series, according to Supervising Producer Cort Lane and writer and Creative Consultant Paul Dini, is to blend humor and heart to tell a story that touches several corners of the Marvel Universes but ultimately focuses on the relationships between these five incredibly powerful outcasts, and how they go about trying to find their places in the world while showing everyone that they're heroes.

But what else can we expect from the series? How do you come up with threats big enough for five Hulks? ComicsAlliance will be talking each week to various members of the team, who'll answer all these questions and more. This week, following the "Doorway To Destruction," the two part series debut, I spoke to Lane and Dini about character development, the impressive voice cast, the absence of Bruce Banner, and upcoming guest stars and additions to the team... including Devil Dinosaur.

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‘Rocketeer Adventures Vol. 2′ Collection is the Best Looking Anthology of the Holiday Season

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Released around this time last year, the first hardcover collection of Rocketeer Adventures anthology quickly shot to the top of my list of 2011's best looking comic books. Created by the late Dave Stevens, The Roc

Link Ink: ‘The Variants’ Season Three, More Mickey Rourke As Marv And Custom Baz

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Video: A new teaser video for the upcoming season three opener for The Variants web series features music by friend of CA Adam WarRock, along with appearances by LBFA creators and CA contributors Curt Franklin and

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Rocksteady’s Next Batman Video Game Will Be Sans Paul Dini Script

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Following last month's rumors that Rocksteady Studios had begun working on a DC Comics title featuring Batman (and maybe the Justice League) set in the Silver Age, fans of Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City have been searching for whatever clues they can about the supposed 2014 release. For his part, longtime animation and comics scribe and writer for the first two games has at least cleared up that he won't be penning the story for the

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Ask Chris #116: How To Talk To Your Kids About Hush

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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!

Q: Thanks to his appearance in LEGO Batman 2, my children are asking me to explain Hush to them. How do I do this? -- @jason1749

A: I'm not a parent, and it's

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