Posts Tagged ‘Robin’

Posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2022 by Barry

Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day (2003)

For those about to embark upon the remainder of your lives, happy National Graduation Tassel Day.

May 17 is the day. Across the nation a parade of graduates will be commemorating today, or a day like this soon enough, taking their tassel and moving it right to left in a symbolic recognition of their academic achievements.

Those earning graduate degrees will mirror that motion, moving tassels from left to right.

We will symbolize the day with a three issue, mini series published July to August 2003, Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day.

The trilogy was important for several reasons; not the least of which were the deaths of Donna Troy and Omen. It also meant the end of both title books allowing for new Teen Titans and Outsiders books to begin.

While never officially offered as a reason for cancellation, it’s long been rumored Young Justice was given the axe to make way for a new Teen Titans title to compliment the then new Teen Titans animated series on Cartoon Network.

Unlike the above-mentioned story, most graduations are a time of celebration. Nearly four-million high school seniors graduated last year. That same number are expected to graduate from college in the coming year.

About 66.2 percent of those high school students will attend college. The most popular college majors are Business, Health Professions, Social Sciences and History, Engineering, Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Psychology, Communication and Journalism, Visual and Performing Arts, Computer and Information Sciences and Education.

About 136,000 of those high school graduates will enlist in the armed forces.

The Titans began as the Teen Titans in 1964. Over time they changed team members and affiliations. Marv Wolfman and George Perez launched the uber popular The New Teen Titans in 1980 which became Team Titans then the Teen Titans again in 1996 followed by the Titans of this story arc.

The Titans returned in 2008 and were rechristened once more for the New 52 and five years later for DC Rebirth and are currently under the Infinite Frontier banner.

Young Justice was formed in 1998 with members Superboy, Robin and Impulse. They would be joined by Wonder Girl, Secret and Arrowette.

The title would be relaunched in 2011 in an unrelated series as a literary version of the animated show. The comic book would conclude with issue 25, a month before the cartoon ceased to air.

Posted Saturday, January 29th, 2022 by Barry

Detective Comics (1937) 140

Sometimes life is puzzling enough, so here’s a day to celebrate our confusion.

National Puzzle Day was created in 2002 by Jodi Jill, no stranger to creating conundrums. Jill is a professional quiz and puzzle maker, offering her handiwork to classrooms.

Our representative is one of Batman’s colorful rogue’s gallery, The Riddler. Created by Bill Finger and Dick Sprang in 1948, Edward Nigma first appeared in Detective Comics (1937) 140.

Nigma delights in leaving puzzles and riddles prior to conducting his crimes to foil the Caped Crusader. The obsession usually leads to his capture.

During his early years in the waning days of the Golden Age, The Riddler was a straight up costumed criminal matching wits with Batman and Robin. His modus operandi continued into the Silver and Bronze ages until he would be updated for new breed of readers in modern times.

Detective Comics (1937) 140

Detective Comics (1937) 140

Nigma would become more of a broker of information until his reformation following a blow to the head resulting in the Riddler falling into a coma. His new profession was that of a private consultant helping to solve a murder. He would later become a detective.

Another head trauma returned Nigma to his villainous ways just prior to The New 52. In both this reboot and DC Rebirth, the Riddler spends a good portion of his time in Arkham Asylum, until his eventual escape.

For long-time fans, the Riddler will forever be Frank Gorshin and his live-action antics on the 1966 Batman television series. The veteran actor received an Emmy nomination for his portrayal.

Cory Michael Smith was the living embodiment for the Gotham series airing 2014 to 2019.

The late Ted Knight voiced the Riddler in Filmation’s Saturday morning The Batman/Superman Hour. Michael Bell did the honors in Hanna-Barbera’s Challenge of the Super Friends as well as the 1980s version of Super Friends.

John Glover gave the character voice in Batman: The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures, Superman: The Animated Series and Batman Beyond.

Freddy’s Robert Englund was the voice of the Riddler in 2005’s The Batman. John Michael Higgins did the honors during the Batman: Brave and the Bold run.

He was given life by Jim Carrey in Batman Forever in 1995. The big screen box office bomb is a forgettable appearance.

What to do for National Puzzle Day shouldn’t be as, well, puzzling. Catch up with a crossword in the local paper, find a digital dilemma online or just read up on the green-clad cad with the penchant for puzzles.

Posted Friday, January 21st, 2022 by Barry

Batman Incorporated (2012) 1

Continuing with the celebration of International Hoof Care Week, we introduce Bat-Cow, one of Grant Morrison’s more bizarre re-creations.

And, that’s saying something.

Batman Incorporated (2012) 1

Batman Incorporated (2012) 1

She was originally featured as part of the Tiny Titans’ Pet Club and the Just Us Cows. An ordinary cow, she stole a cowl from the Bat Cave. Thus, she began her career as Bat-Cow.

Bat-Cow’s in-continuity debut was Batman Incorporated (2012) issue one. While the updated Dynamic Duo trailed Professor Pyg, they found the soon-to-be bovine bat-family member. Believing the beast to be tainted with a mind-altering toxin, Batman took it back to the Bat Cave for testing.

Robin, Damian Wayne, took a liking to the animal and made it a pet. She now lives on the Wayne estate in a barn.

Bat-Cow has no super powers, but is distinguished by a bat-shaped patch on her face and star-shaped brand on her side. Her nick name is the Battlin’ Bovine.

Dairy cattle spend much of their life standing. They require special treatment so they do not become lame or experience sore feet, foot rot or toe injuries. Those who specialize in the care of hooves are known as farriers. They care for hooves by trimming them and putting shoes on them, if necessary.

The American Farriers Journal began hosting its annual International Hoof-Care Summit in 2003. The American Journal also founded National Farriers Week, held the second week in July.

International Hoof Care Week is held the third Tuesday in January, running through Friday.

To celebrate, read more about Batman’s bovine buddy in Tiny Titans issues 17, 21, 23, 28, 38, 40, 43, 45, 48 and 50; Batman Incorporated (2012) 1, 3, 6, 7, 9 and 13; Robin Son of Batman 1, 9 and 10; and Batman and Robin 35 and 40.

Posted Thursday, August 26th, 2021 by Barry

Batman (1940) 92

Founded in 2004 by pet lifestyle expert (is there such a thing?) Colleen Paige, National Dog Day is commemorated to recognize man’s best friend.

Last year’s emcee was Krypto the super dog. This year Batman and Robin’s sidekick Ace, the Bat-Hound, is the spokes dog.

Ace first appeared in Batman (1940) issue 92. Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff are the creators of the colorful canine. Taking a nod from such famous four-legged sleuths as Rin Tin Tin and Ace the Wonder Dog, the duo made the four-color Ace a German Shepherd.

Batman (1940) 92

Engraver John Wilker was Ace’s original owner. Following the kidnapping of his master, Ace was recruited by Batman and Robin to find Wilker. Because of a distinctive star-shaped marking on Ace’s forehead, he was masked when working with Batman and Robin.

Ace became a permanent resident of the Bat Cave when Wilker willed his pet to the crime fighters. He would continue exploits into the beginning of the Silver Age before disappearing for two decades.

He returned briefly as a service dog in the early 1990s. Then he was returned to limbo following the No Man’s Land storyline.

Ace became part of the DCU again under the New 52 banner. Damian Wayne would adopt the kennel find, though he would be named Titus.

Most recently, Ace has found a home with the Waynes once again. His origin this time had him serving as a guard dog for the Joker. Each of the pooches had a card symbol; Ace, of course, had an Ace. Butler Alfred Pennyworth rescued him from the pound. Despite his employer’s wishes, Alfred trained the dog and presented him to Bruce Wayne, complete with mask, for Christmas.

Ace has appeared in the animated DCU as well. He was a faithful companion to Bruce Wayne in Batman Beyond, cameoed on Static Shock, guested on Krypto the Superdog and Batman: The Brave and the Bold and starred in various DC Nation Shorts.

To observe National Dog Day, participants are encouraged to honor their furry companions and even consider adopting one.

Posted Thursday, July 8th, 2021 by Barry

Video Game Day

Need we say more?

Well, we’re gonna.

There’s no real history for the day, but there are a plethora of games that can be sampled. Rather than bore you with a lengthy dissertation, we’ll let Nixian’s YouTube offering on the Evolution of Superhero games give you a sampling.

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Posted Friday, April 9th, 2021 by Barry

Batman (1939) 433

A National Day of Silence bounces around the calendar, but its meaning is loud and clear. The day asks persons to respect the choices made by others and cease bullying and harassment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.

We recognize the day with the first true story arc following the death of Jason Todd, the second Robin, in Batman issues 426-29. Issue 430 was told through a visual depiction of events rather than modified with dialog or exposition.

Batman (1939) 433

Batman (1939) 433

Todd replaced Dick Grayson after the elder ward became Nightwing in the Teen Titans. Todd first appeared in Batman 357 and donned the costume in Batman issue 366.

Following Crisis on Infinite Earths, Todd’s character was tweaked. Fans still disliked who they felt was a usurper. They had their say in Batman 427 when the editorial staff allowed readers to choose the fate of Todd who had been severely beaten and left in an exploding building by the Joker.

In a close count, Todd was written out of the DCU.

For a time.

Under the Red Hood was a story line that brought Todd back over a period of time under the guise of new anti-hero. Depending on whether his return is followed in comic book form or the animated, direct-to-video movie, Todd was back among the Bat Family.

But, in 1988 Batman was still stinging from Todd’s death. Writers were unsure how to continue with the character allowing John Byrne to pencil the silent issue.     The Many Deaths of the Batman, as the story arc was dubbed, lasted three issues, putting Batman back on the streets of Gotham.

To observe this National Day of Silence, take a vow of silence to demonstrate how bullying silences a victim. Or, promote the day, making others aware there is a problem.

The day was first observed and organized by a body of students from the University of Virginia.

Posted Sunday, December 27th, 2020 by Barry

Detective Comics (1937) 826

The Joker takes Robin for a ride during the 2006 Christmas season in Slayride.

Detective Comics (1937) 826

Detective Comics (1937) 826

Paul Dini pens a dark comedy with the madman behind the wheel while Don Kramer fleshes out the visuals.

It’s a long night when Robin ducks drug dealers only to find himself captive of the Joker. The clown bids the Boy Wonder welcome as he banters away the evening.

The dialog is a one-sided give-and-take of hate. All the while, the Joker is careening through the streets of Gotham randomly littering acts of lunacy.

By story’s end, the Joker’s fate is undetermined when he pulls a Michael Myers and leaves no body at his death scene.

If you haven’t read this and have some extra Christmas money, find it, buy it and read it. This is an unrealized classic. Dini’s characterization and dialog are seamless.

Dini is best known for his work in the DC Animated Universe and creation of Harley Quinn. His resume includes work on Batman: the Animated Series, Superman: the Animated Series, The New Batman/Superman Adventures, Batman Beyond and Krypto the Superdog.

He would later work for Marvel on Ultimate Spider-Man and Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.

Dini began his career penning episodes of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe then moved on to work on the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. He also wrote for the Transformers and G.I. Joe. Later he would author Ewoks episodes. In 2007, Dini worked on Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Posted Friday, December 25th, 2020 by Barry

Merry Christmas from Four Color Holidays and special guests

Posted Sunday, October 25th, 2020 by Barry

Super Friends (1976) 28

Masquerade of Madness is a true Halloween story.

Super Friends (1976) 28

Super Friends (1976) 28

Published Oct. 25, 1979, E. Nelson Bridwell and Ramona Fradon craft some late Bronze Age cheesiness. Basically, werewolf Jimmy Olsen, Jayna and Zan end Felix Faust’s plans to defeat the Super Friends once and for all.

The Super Friends began as Saturday morning fodder for sugar-addled brains starved for a more kinetic version of their comic books. The original series premiered in 1973 after the Dynamic Duo tested on Scooby-Doo and Wonder Woman on the animated Brady Kids.

It was rechristened as The All-New Super Friends Hour from 1977-78. Further name changes included Challenge of the Super Friends from ’78 to ’79, The World’s Greatest Super Friends ’79 to ’80 with a return to simply Super Friends from 1980 to 1983.

Hanna-Barbera finished out its run with Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show from 1984 to 1985 and, finally, The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians, 1985-86.

While loosely based on the Justice League of America comic book, Super Friends did not translate into a comic book itself until 1975. Even that relied heavily on the JLA. Super Friends began as part of the Limited Collector’s Edition (C-41) series, reprinting JLA issues 36 and 61 with Bridwell penning a bridging tale to bind the stories together. Alex Toth provided pencils.

DC finally greenlit a Super Friends comic book series in 1976. The title ran till 1981. The comic complimented the cartoon rather than rely on JLA continuity.

Not sure if this is a trick or treat, but if you happen across it in a back-issue bin, enjoy some past history.

Posted Saturday, October 24th, 2020 by Barry

You Can’t Beat This Halloween Treat!

DC rolled out the red carpet for Halloween 1979.

Featured in the house advertisement are Secrets of Haunted House 20, House of Mystery 276, Weird War Tales 83 and Ghosts 84. Showcased was Super Friends 28 touted as a “Hair Raising Chiller!”

According to the hype, “The Super Friends Battle 5-Fearsome Foes…and their Mysterious Master!”

To learn more about the issue, tune in tomorrow for the full synopsis.

In the meantime, continue to dig out DC’s anthology House books and Marvel’s serialized monster soaps with Universally-recognized names. Let them take you back to the days of Ben Cooper costumes, plastic Jack o’ Lantern candy buckets and gobs of sugary candies.

You Can’t Beat This Halloween Treat!

You Can’t Beat This Halloween Treat!