Gotham Adventures #42

Once again, one of my favorite bloggers has taken a few quick looks at one of my old issues. In this case, it's Gotham Adventures #42, illustrated wonderfully by guest penciller Craig Rousseau.

This issue has a slightly unusual origin. Some organization, I don't recall who or what, contacted DC Comics about getting some issues to include in some sort of package or packet or something, and they requested a lower violence level than usual. It was going to be a pretty heavy order of books—doubling or more our normal print run, if I'm recalling correctly—so going along was highly encouraged.

I liked the idea of selling more, of course. But even more intriguing was the challenge: I loved the idea of trying to do an entire issue that had every bit as much action as usual but absolutely no violence. I'll be honest: I was always the youngest in my class—and, back then, small for my age—so seeing Batman beat up badguys, whether supervillain or street criminals, was one of the things that first drew me to the character, as well as comics in general, back when I was a wee lad. Although I grew out of that (for the most part), it was still an integral component of how I viewed the character...not to mention an easy and satisfying way to get the visual excitement so important for this kind of story.

So I came up with the idea of having Batman battle a series of fires plaguing Gotham, brought about by a solar storm, rather than villains. And Craig did a fantastic job of bringing it to life.

A few reviews at the time thought the idea of solar storms being dangerous was simply silly. I therefore felt vindicated when, a few years ago, it turned out we'd narrowly dodged a bullet, as a large solar storm almost really nailed us. What's more, it was reported that a solar storm back in the 1800s had caused massive infrastructure damage, and that such a storm of similar size today could conceivably knock out the entire grid for years. Boo-yah!

Mainly, of course, I liked how the Batman was even more badass than usual.

The kicker, of course, is that the deal fell through, so the books never even got into the hands of all those potential new readers, and it was all for naught. Only, not really. Not even close.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed The Batman Adventures because it focused on the tragedy and turmoil of each of the villains, and made each villain - except The Joker more sympathetic. The Gotham Adventures raised the bar by telling stories with a valuable lesson and moral.

    Wish more comics did that.