Sunday, June 15, 2014

Guest Review - Batman Adventures #13

   Sitting in the Guest Review chair for today is Kyle Johnson, who kindly offered to join the team covering while Chuck takes a short break. 

   Back in 1992 an award winning new animated TV series (or cartoon as we used to say) starring Batman premiered.  

   I was completely hooked from the very first episode. 

   The show had a very distinct style labeled "Dark Deco" by the producers. It was very influential introducing characters like Harley Quinn and ended up spawning the whole DC animated universe which was still going strong in the mid-2000s.

   Around the same time, DC released The Batman Adventures comic to tie in with the new animated series. This was a separate continuity from the ongoing DC Universe. The series would change a little with each change of the animated series, becoming The Batman and Robin Adventures, Batman: Gotham Adventures, and finally just Batman Adventures.  I enjoyed them all, but have a great fondness for the first series which was primarily written by Kelly Puckett and with art by the late Mike Parobeck. 

   I cannot say enough about Mike Parobeck. During the 1990s the comic industry was dominated by the "Image Comics" style and its imitators. Parobeck's clear, clean art and storytelling was like a breath of fresh air. The stories by Puckett were also fantastic. They had some very adult, complex stories, yet nothing that would be inappropriate for children.

   Well, enough history, on to the issue... Batman is investigating a break-in and encounters Talia, the daughter of arch-villain Ra's al Ghul. She tells him she is searching for an object stolen from her father and they agree to travel together to Paris in search of it. 

   After arriving in Paris Talia coaxes Bruce Wayne into spending a very romantic day together, but in the end Bruce withdraws. That night the two of them set out to track down the stolen object. I won't give away the ending, but this leads to a final heart-breaking scene between the two.

   The Batman Adventures was a very solid and always entertaining series. They were mostly, if not all, self-contained stories and provided some top notch writing and art and some great new takes on the heroes and villains from the Batman mythos.

Grade: A

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