Thursday, July 14, 2005

The Emperor Without Clothes


All-Star Batman & Robin #1 is atrocious.

The art is lovely. The lettering is exemplary. The writing is overwhelmingly crappy.

I don't know any woman who talks like this version of Vicki Vale, and I hope I never do. "How lame is that?" "That's so cool!" Frank Miller may be writing her for the slavering adolescent fanboys of Wizard Magazine ("It's got a lot of babes in it!"), but that doesn't mean she should talk like them. It undermines the character's credibility, particularly since she's supposed to be a high-class columnist.

Frank. Repeating things does not make them meaningful. Repeating things does not make them meaningful. Repeating things. Does not. Make them. Meaningful.

Batman's been stalking Dick Grayson? Waiting for his parents to die, or what? You're just creepy, Frank.

There was classic comic book irony to the original death of Dick's parents, by falling. The "Flying" Graysons became the Dying Graysons. Shot in the head by snipers? Nothing Frank can pull out of his butt in this storyline can possibly justify this needless and savage rewrite of the second most important moment in the Batman & Robin mythos.

*Sigh*. Did Robin's origin really need corrupt, child-abusive cops, Frank? Is watching your parents die in front of you not enough?

Everyone who's seen the original scene of Batman comforting Dick after his parents have died will never forget it. Everyone who's seen Frank's version of Batman "drafting" Dick as a "soldier" in his "war" will spend the rest of their lives trying to forget it. Yes, Frank, "Jason was a good soldier"; or to Carrie, "Good soldier". We get it, Frank. It's stupid, unrealistic, and makes Batman horribly unsympathetic. Stop it, or go write Captain America.

No one wants "Batman & Robin" to succeed more than I do (well, maybe DiDio). But I know an Emperor Without Clothes when I see one. I just hope the title survives Miller's idiocy and that no one gives the book to any children until it's got a new writer.

9 comments:

Harvey Jerkwater said...

Does this version of Miller Batman always stress the last words of each sentence? He did that in every Batman story. Wrote in short clips. Each phrase ended hard. Frank seems to think this works. Adds power.

Yeah, right.

Do any crazy people run around muttering the word "lunch?" Another Millerism.

I had high hopes for All-Star. Dang it.

Shane Bailey said...

Eh, I liked it. It wasn't great, but wasn't bad. I liked seeing a smiling Robin for a while again, until his parents died at least. All Star Superman will be better I think.

The regular Batman title this week wasn't too good. Was this a fill in team before the big War Games fallout think?

Vincent J. Murphy said...

I read it, and it was like cotton candy: there, then gone, with no lasting taste. I'll probably review it in more detail later, but it wasn't very good.

Writing was bad, the art was eh. I like a more totally corrupt Gotham, though.

Jhunt said...

I was under the impression that the All-Star line was supposed to appeal to readers of all ages, giving them fun, light books without the confusing maze of current DC continuity. Clearly that is not the case. That opening sequence of VV in her underwear posing around her apartment was just embarrassing. Seriously, I felt dirty. And not in the good way.

Ron said...

"Shot in the head by snipers?" Boston Brand's already got that territory covered, Frank. Find something original.

k26dp said...

Yeah, gotta agree. ASB&RTBW was a huge disappointment. I hate "Dark Knight Returns" with a vengence, but I've always like Year One. I thought maybe this would continue in that vein. Instead we get Miller's crappy, unfeeling uber-Bat that has destroyed the character to the point I was delighted to see the snot kicked out of him by a mind-controlled Superman this week (Action Comics).

I will also echo JHunt's comments. I thought the idea for "All-Star" was to let ANYBODY pick this up and jump into the story. Well, that "anybody" won't be under the age of 17 thanks to the pointless nudity and violence.

What a colossal misfire.

Ray Palmer said...

Why would anyone have high hopes for a new Miller Batman story? Dark Knight Strikes Again soured me on reading any of him new work ever again.

The Comics Shrew said...

Checking back in now (because I had skipped this entry until I'd read the book)... oh, yes. Yes. To everything except the part where you hope the book survives Miller. I hope the book disappears with him.

Speaking of the silly constabulary... I want to find a way to use "sexpot" in normal conversation. Not that it's an odd word written, but when was the last time you heard it spoken aloud? By a blue-collar civil servant at that....

Ed said...

On a more positive note...

The new Robin costume rocks.