Batman and Robin Annual 2

batman and robin annual 2

Today, Greg and Mikyzptlk are discussing Batman and Robin Annual 2, originally released January 29th 2014.

Greg: My friends often make fun of me for liking everything, and they have a good point. If one of them asks me for a movie recommendation, I’ll give twenty, and get at least one “I heard that was terrible” in response. If someone rags on the recently cancelled and critically reviled Sean Saves The World, I’ll pipe in and counter that it was actually one of the best new comedies of the season, prematurely put down. The new Paramore album? On repeat, in my car stereo, no apologies. Sometimes I’ve been criticized as not having enough cultural taste or filtration. My counterargument is that the consumption of media and storytelling fundamentally stems from love and positivity. It behooves a consumer to like things, because of the positive feelings you get. So, whenever I do genuinely, fully, through-and-through dislike something, not only do I mean it, but it pains me to say it out loud. It blots out my blinding sun of naive media love. I’ll put it frankly, no matter how much it hurts me to say: Batman and Robin deserve better than this issue.
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Batman and Robin Annual 1

Alternating Currents: Batman and Robin Annual 1, Drew and Shelby

Today, Drew and Shelby are discussing Batman and Robin Annual 1, originally released January 30th 2013.

Drew: At its best, Batman and Robin is a very straightforward father and son story. Sure, the father is Batman, and the son has homicidal tendencies, but the sense of love and obligation is universal. The strictures of crossover events often force writer Peter Tomasi to contort the story in odd ways to stay true to this theme (which miraculously happens more often than not), but when those distractions fall away, this series can be a moving study of Bruce and Damian’s relationship. Tomasi smartly seizes upon the annual to return Batman and Robin to it’s resting position, delivering a clever, subtly moving story about both Bruce and Damian. Continue reading

Talon 2

Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Talon 2, originally released November 28th, 2012.

Patrick: We spend an awful lot of time on this site unpacking different histories: publishing histories, character histories, creator histories and the bizarre intersections between. Talon is uniquely positioned embrace as much real or imagined history as it possibly can, all with a plucky young hero at the center. But also at the center? A stuffy old man who thinks he knows better. But before it all gets too heady, let’s melt a room full of gold treasures!

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Batgirl 10

Today, Peter and Drew are discussing Batgirl 8, originally released June 13th 2012.

Peter: We are now out of the Night of the Owls. Babs is back in action fighting crime in Gotham. We get a new storyline and tons of new possibilities from here on out. Babara is an incredibly dynamic character so far. Gail Simone has been writing this character for a long time, from Oracle to Batgirl, and has done an incredible job getting Barbara back on her feet. The amount of time and detail that is going into this story is continuously setting it apart from many of the other books in DC’s current line-up.

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Batgirl 8

Today, Drew and Patrick are discussing Batgirl 8, originally released April 11th 2012.

Check out Shelby’s exclusive Gail Simone interview here!

Drew: “Closure” is a word we hear with increasing frequency in modern narratives. Characters reunite with long lost lovers or otherwise return to their pasts in order to move on to the future. This can be a compelling motivation, but it often reduces those characters down to some defining moment or relationship, keeping them rather one-dimensional. Real life problems are much more complicated, forcing us to settle for smaller comforts over the kind of profound sense of closure promised in movies. Batgirl 8 illustrates that point beautifully, providing a return to The Killing Joke that only addresses some of Barbara’s baggage. Continue reading

Deathstroke 7

Today, Shelby and Peter are discussing Deathstroke 7, originally released March 14th, 2012.

Peter: Sometimes I would kind of like to see comic book story lines not follow the expected progression. Most of the time, after about the first half of a story arc, you can guess what is about to happen; maybe not the specifics, but you can pretty much figure it out. That’s what I thought was going to happen with Deathstroke. I figured, “How hard could it be?” he’s an assassin. He kills people. He gets paid. Sometimes he takes on superheroes…for money, or personal benefit. So really I thought I had this all figured out, and then I read Deathstroke 7. As it turns out, I had nothing figured out, and you know what? I am extremely okay with that. Continue reading

Deathstroke 1-6

Today, Shelby and Peter are discussing Deathstroke 1-6, originally released September 14th, October 12th, November 9th, December 14th, 2011, and January 11th and February 8th, 2012.

Shelby: I picked up Deathstroke at the recommendation of my local comic shop. I was looking to broaden our pull list with something the guys weren’t reading. Plus, Deathstroke is a virtually unknown character to me; I first encountered him when I read Identity Crisis last year, and I what I learned from that book was the limit of my knowledge of Slade Wilson. He’s classified as a meta-human, with enhanced strength, speed, tactical abilities, and a regenerative ability allowing him to heal faster than your average blogger from nearly all wounds. I have, in previous posts, compared titles to action movies, but I have been forced to take it all back. Deathstroke is the ultimate killing machine; he does so with precision, accuracy, and impunity. It’s almost kind of refreshing; so many superheroes make a point of not killing their enemies, enough so that on the rare occasion when they do, it’s shocking (Wonder Woman, I’m looking at you). There is something really appealing about a character who exists solely to kill others. Moreover, if this character isn’t a villain, isn’t someone I despise, then I think we’re onto something interesting.

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