Category: Batman


I love mysteries. I love the character of Batman. (Hey, I just talked about him yesterday. And he gets the most entries I publish!) So it wasn’t a surprise when, about a year ago, I came across the story of a well-to-do collector of all things Batman who was found murdered in his hotel room, and I was gripped by it.  This guy had warehouses–you read that right, warehouses–full of Batman stuff, including a life-size replica of the 1960′s Batmobile.

Now, if you’ve ever watched the CBS show 48 Hours Mystery, you know that the person you should be looking at, and investigating hard, should be the spouse. I mean, it is almost always the husband or wife. But I read a story some time ago that this collector’s wife had been cleared of not only her husband’s obvious murder, but his mother’s “accidental” death as well.

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As a long-time Batman fan, it does this heart good to see The Dark Knight doing well. His comics are selling, his movies draw big crowds … and he gets to participate in great stories!

Michael Keaton, who played Batman for a time, ought to know what makes the character tick. And he had some interesting things to say about Christopher Nolan, the man who helped return Batman to his rightful place and also has the number one movie at the theaters this week, Inception.

Here’s the article from Access Hollywood:

>>LOS ANGELES, Calif. –

A former Batman has some high praise for the franchise’s current director.

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Toy Story 3 collected an estimated $153.8 million around the world during its first weekend of release, pushing up the U.S. box office 30 percent over the same weekend last year, according to Variety.

The Disney/Pixar sequel brought in an estimated $109 million in the States alone, with overseas figures coming to a total of $44.8 million in only a quarter of the international market. Toy Story 3 is now Pixar’s highest-grossing opener around the world.

On the other hand, Jonah Hex, based on the DC Comics character, captured only $5.1 million in the U.S. Theater observers called the opening “more than disappointing,” but word had come out that the film was not going to be The Dark Knight, but more like Catwoman.

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This series of articles has been outlining how much of an influence the character of Batman has been in my life. I’d like to include just a few more thoughts before I turn my at­tention to other areas of interest.

The Batmobile. I know that “chicks dig the car,” but automobiles are often a “guy” thing.

I have already discussed how much I love the Batmobile on my blog in a previous entry. But let me add a few more points about it.

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When we last spoke on this topic, Batman: The Animated Series (B:TAS) was about to debut on Fox.

Monday, September 7, 1992. I lived for that date.

That was the day the first episode of Batman: The Animated Series was set to debut on Fox.

As I mentioned last time, I had seen a copy of an episode at a local Trek convention, and I was stoked! It looked great, and I counted the days until the show hit the airwaves.

I was so excited that week and so focused on that Monday that I didn’t follow my usual practice at that time of read­ing the TV Guide from stem to stern. I hated missing programs! And I knew that nothing was going to compete with B:TAS.

Finally, the day came, and my VCR (yes, it was that long ago) taped the premiere half hour. It was “On Leather Wings,” the same episode I’d seen at the Trek con. I was thrilled to have it on tape, the first of many.

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Previously on “Images Of Batman:” Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns rocked the comics industry and led to a hit feature film.

During the early ’90s, I used to comb the Internet looking for any news on Star Trek for the COMSTAR, the monthly publication for the U.S.S. Chesapeake club. I’d print every credible item I could find about the franchise in the newslet­ter. Of course, while I searched for Trek news, I’d look up other topics of interest, including Batman.

After the Batman movie had earned a huge take, word came across the web that Fox was going to air a new animated series about the Caped Crusader.

As a long-time Batman fan, I’ve seen pretty much every animated show based on the character. And it hasn’t been pretty.

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Last entry, I began to explain just how much of an influence Batman has had on my life. When I ran out of energy, Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns was about to be pub­lished.

Now, I had given up comics prior to this event, as I pointed out previously. But Batman’s sidekick, Robin, was instrumental in me getting back into buying them again.

The New Teen Titans comics, with Robin as the team leader, was a hot item for DC Comics. My brother Randy never stopped col­lecting comics even though I had. So, when he had trouble getting New Teen Titans #1, I was recruited to go to a local comics specialty shop to buy one.

That was a significant change for com­ics fans. Having a store dedicated to comics meant not having to rifle through drug store racks or shelves. It also meant being able to get nearly all the comics you wanted without missing issues, which often plagued and discouraged collectors.

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It’s always a bittersweet thing when some­thing you love comes to an end. You know, that kind of thing makes one nostaglic.

For example, the recent release of the entire Justice League and Justice League Unlimited DVD set and Bat­man Beyond collection makes me happy because I now have all of the Bruce Timm animation of DC Comics characters ever shown on TV tucked away in my DVD collection.

But it also means the end of an important era of creativity and some of the best storytell­ing I’ve ever seen. Now, I dearly loved the recent direct-to-DVD Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths, which was based on a script intended to bridge the gap between JL and JLU, but no more JLU and BB episodes or movies are expected to be made anytime soon. (A Batman Beyond comic mini-series will be out in a few months, so that will help ease the pain some!)

I can’t help but think back to Batman: The Animated Series, based on my all-time favorite comics character, the Dark Knight.

And I realized just how much influence Batman has had in my life. Let me share some of that with you.

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“Where does he get those wonderful toys?” — The Joker in Batman

The first thing I ever read was a Batman comic, so I guess it comes as no surprise that I am fascinated by and love to collect things associated with the Dark Knight. But the thing I enjoy the most is Batman’s transportation, the Batmobile.

How I love this one!It seems like every artist who draws an issue of a Batman comic has to create his own version of the Batmobile. Some have been terrific, while some have been silly. I mean, who could drive a car with huge and intricate spikes jutting out of the thing? Not even Batman can pull that off!

I’m going to list some of my favorite versions of the Batmobile next. And if I can find some of the silly stuff, I’ll post that, too!

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