Archive for batman

Christmas Comics Cavalcade: Batman Family #4

Posted in christmas comics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 10, 2018 by Christopher Pearce

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This week, we’re going to be looking at Batman Family #4, published in March-April of 1976 (ah, the vagaries of copyright information!) by DC Comics.

This one of the DC Giant issues that featured newly commissioned stories in addition to reprints of classic tales, sort of an inexpensive way to publish a big ol’ comic for not a lot of money.

Batman Family was an anthology series which primarily featured solo and team-up tales starring Robin the Boy Wonder and Batgirl. This was a fun period for both characters, well before they would be swept away by their 1980’s characterizations… Robin mainly defined as the leader of The New Teen Titans and Batgirl/Barbara Gordon by her spine-shattering encounter with The Joker in Batman: The Killing Joke.

Indeed, during the 1970’s, various DC Comics’ writers had worked up a pretty fun take on both Robin and Batgirl’s solo adventures. Let’s check ‘em out!

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Christmas Comics Cavalcade: Harley Quinn #10 (DC Comics)

Posted in christmas comics with tags , , , , on December 23, 2016 by Christopher Pearce

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I thought I’d do something a little different for this one. Usually, I dig into the back catalog of Christmas comic books for these posts… this time, I decided to go to the comic store and pick up whatever new holiday-themed comic book I could find for a review.

That goes to explain why today we’re looking at Harley Quinn #10, published in December of 2016 by DC Comics. Written by Jimmy Palmiotti (who inked some of the Spider-Man Holiday Special 1995, don’t you know!) and Amanda Conner, with a bevy of artists attending.

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Cover price was $2.99 and I PAID $2.99 for the book. How do you like that?

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Thrift Store Finds: HPB quarter bins

Posted in thrift store finds with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 29, 2014 by Christopher Pearce

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I did a little digging in my Half-Price Books’ quarter bins recently and pulled out about $6 dollars worth of DC Comics from the recent past.

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Island of Misfit Toys: Batman: The Animated Series (McDonald’s Happy Meal Premium, 1993)

Posted in island of misfit toys with tags , , , , , , , on January 18, 2014 by Christopher Pearce

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A rather cool and simple find this week, we’ll be looking at a fast food premium given away by McDonald’s restaurants during 1993 in conjunction with the premiere of Batman: The Animated Series. I picked this up at a thrift store for $2 bucks.

One of my favorite quotes about McDonald’s was something Graham Linehan, the writer and producer of (among many things) the British sit-com The IT Crowd, said a few years ago. “Every time you have McDonald’s as a kid, it’s a victory. Every time you have it as an adult, it’s a defeat.” This is absolutely true and captures something I was thinking about when I found this Happy Meal toy. During most of the 1980’s, I loved Mickey D’s and would beg my parents to take us there for lunch or… dare I hope… DINNER. My order was always the same: The Chicken McNuggets Happy Meal.

By 1993, I had pretty much aged out of Happy Meals… but I was a tremendous fan of Batman: The Animated Series. Simply put, it’s the best version of the Caped Crusader ever captured in any medium and I watched B:TAS faithfully every weekday at 4:30 on FOX5 out of New York City.

I was excited to find one of these fast food premiums… and arguably the best from the B:TAS Happy Meal promotion. McDonalds offered eight toys in all during this giveaway.

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Four of them were Hot Wheels style vehicles featuring Robin, Poison Ivy, Two-Face, and The Joker. The other four Happy Meal toys were essentially small action figures, based on Catwoman, The Riddler, Batgirl, and the toy we’ll be looking at today, Batman himself.

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HPB Black Friday finds

Posted in thrift store finds with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 30, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

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I hit up the Half-Price Books Black Friday sale every year. My main goal is to pick up stocking stuffers for Ellen and the boys but I have to admit, I indulge pretty heavily in some buying for myself. This year, although they stuck with the standard $5 gift certificate for early bird shoppers, HPB switched things up a bit. Whereas the store normally offers a blanked percentage off your entire purchase, this year you could either get 40% off one thing… or $15 bucks off of a purchase of $50 dollars. I went with the latter sale and above are a few of my purchases.

Elektra Lives Again is an out of print hardcover; although the material has been reprinted in some Daredevil collections, it hasn’t been presented in this original, oversized edition since 1990. That was good enough for me. Although Miller’s Batman work remains some of my favorite superhero comics, I have to admit, I haven’t read much of his Daredevil run – an isolated issue here or there is about as far as I’ve gotten. I will say this: the book is absolutely GORGEOUS. This was right before Miller started working primarily in black and white over at Dark Horse and as such, the last time Lynn Varley’s coloring really did anything for me. Super glad to have this big book in my collection.

I was excited to locate a copy of Spaceballs: The Book published by Scholastic Press under their Point imprint in 1987. The book was written by “Jovial Bob Stine” who we all know from my previous Thrift Store Find post on movie storybooks, is in fact Goosebumps writer R.L. Stine. I especially wanted a copy of Spaceballs: The Book because it’s clear the people behind this effort were completely in on one of the biggest jokes of Mel Brooks’ send-up… the omnipresent marketing machine behind Star Wars. This paperback looks like it came straight from the scene on Yogurt’s planet (“Spaceballs-the T-shirt, Spaceballs-the Coloring Book, Spaceballs-the Lunch box, Spaceballs-the Breakfast Cereal, Spaceballs-the Flame Thrower”) and that’s kinda cool.

Finally, I picked up Batman: Chaos in Gotham for the GameBoy Color… although I’ll be playing it on my GBA:SP. Batman’s weathered some fairly awful games over the years but most of his carts for the GameBoy system are surprisingly solid… and Chaos in Gotham is no exception. It’s a side-scroller with puzzle elements and it’s clear the design team went the extra mile on this one. The animation of the Batman sprite is fluid and appealing. He has a variety of moves and weapons and although I haven’t played very far into the game, there’s apparently a great level variety, with driving stages added into the mix later on.

Chalkboard Drawings: The “Homecoming” edition

Posted in chalkboard drawings with tags , , on September 29, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

I draw a picture of myself on my classroom’s chalkboard everyday. I collect those pictures as camera phone photos and post them on Sundays. See the rest here.

This past week was Homecoming at my high school. We have a week-long build up to the Homecoming Game where every day is themed. Students and teachers have a lot of fun participating and I decided to get into the spirit with my chalkboard drawings.

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Thrift Store Finds: The Best of DC Blue Ribbon Digest #10 (DC Comics)

Posted in thrift store finds with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 28, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

This week, we’ll be looking at The Best of DC Blue Ribbon Digest #10, a digest-sized collection of comics published by (you guessed it!) DC Comics in 1981.

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Cover price is .95 cents… I paid $4 dollars.

I know what you’re thinking: $4 bucks is kind of a big purchase for me book-wise, you’re right! When I’m at thrift stores, I mainly stick to lower priced paperbacks. I found I couldn’t resist this one, mark-up be damned.

DC Comics got out of the digest business in the mid 1980’s but for years, digest sized presentations of their comics were a regular feature at newsstands and grocery stores across the country. These days, Archie Comics is the last company standing in regards to the digest… and there’s a very definite reason for that. Most Archie comics are meticulously drawn in a house style pioneered by cartoonist Dan DeCarlo. Comics drawn by the company today match DeCarlo’s style from the 1960’s. This gives Archie Comics a wealth of back catalog from which to draw for their current digests.

The art and writing for superhero comics has always been a bit more faddish – trends and artistic styles come and go with the times. A Superman comic from the 1960’s looks almost nothing like a modern day Superman comic, save for some cross-generational touches (the “S” shield, the cape, and so on). While Archie can seemingly reprint stories forever with consumers being none the wiser, most of DC’s back catalog has been rendered quaint by time.

This Best of DC Digest is subtitled Secret Origins of Super-Villains and contains six stories focusing on the baddies of the DC Universe. The majority of these stories look to be drawn from DC’s Silver Age of comics but although creator credits are given, the digest doesn’t give any notation of where and when the stories come from. I found this to be somewhat annoying but it makes sense given the time this book was published that this information would not have likely been at the forefront of reader’s minds. Some Googling does reveal the sources of these books and I’ll include them in my appraisals, but as far as I can tell, the first comic story in the collection is original to this digest.

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