Friday, June 5, 2015

Collection Recommendation #2: Batman/Robin & Green Hornet/Kato sequel; plus, the Two-Way Crimes of Two-Face

Got the hardback compilation of Kevin Smith/Ralph Garman's "Batman Meets the Green Hornet" sequel. With stunning artwork by Ty Templeton and Tony Avina (and cover artworks by Alex Ross), this DC/Dynamite crossover is even grander than the first official outing of the dynamic duos (excluding the earlier Green Hornet/Kato window cameo, of course). 

The dialogue is straight out to the Batman '60s series, and the interaction between Batman/Bruce Wayne and Green Hornet/Brit Reid is so accurate you'll actually hear the voices of Adam West and Van Williams in your head. The same goes for the distinct dialogues of Burt Ward and Bruce Lee. 

Colonel Gumm is back, but has elevated himself to General. Roger C. Carmel's likeness isn't used; instead we discover that Gumm disfigured himself in a glue mishap while in prison. His head is now permanently cloaked by a hardened, pink substance (making him a sort of Black Mask of his time). 

He's teamed with Cesar Romero's Joker, and the words that roll from the Clown Prince of Crime's tongue (courtesy of the obligatory balloon captions) couldn't be more spot-on. 

The story occurs after the Batman '66 movie, and in it own right, would have made a most satisfying, theatrical feature. Great stuff!!!

To add further fervor to my Caped Crusader indulgence, I also purchased the "Batman '66 Lost Episode: The Two-Way Crimes of Two-Face". 

The proposed episode was to have introduced Harvey Dent to the series, but it was then decided that Two-Face's origin might be too intense for kids, so the False Face entry stood in lieu. The concept here is based on an outline by Harlan Ellison, which in its own right places this endeavor in a fascinating, if-only context.

Ellison's outline is, in fact, included in the edition and as you'll see, is well envisioned by superhero specialist, Len Wein. It's also superbly illustrated by Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, with an eye-popping Alex Ross cover. Unfortunately, Dent's likeness isn't Clint Eastwood, whom West had supposedly suggested for the role. (I guess we're granted a generic take for much the same reason Carmel's likeness isn't used for Gumm.)

On the whole, this is a particularly intriguing installment in the ongoing comic series, brimming as much of characterization as zip. It also comes with some swell Garcia-Lopez extras. 

Indeed, if you wish to peer into that curious realm of what-could-have-been (which for all intents and purposes, now prevails), these colorful Bat-editions are guaranteed to deliver!!! 

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