Robin tagged posts

Young Justice (1998) 3

0

Another in a string of Happy Halloween reminders to Four Color readers. Today we’ve tapped Young Justice to herald the holiday.

Young Justice began as a bridge between Teen Titan teams. Originally the group consisted of Superboy, Robin and Impulse first tossed together in the GirlFrenzy one-shot. They next teamed in the World Without Grown-Ups mini-series before earning an ongoing title in 1998.

Young Justice (1998) 3

Young Justice (1998) 3

Red Tornado became their “guardian” and were later joined by Wonder Girl, Secret and Arrowette.

Young Justice ended as it began, serving the greater good of the Teen Titans. Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day was a three-issue mini leading into a new Teen Titans cartoon. Though billed as a maturation process for the characters, licensing proved too lucrative for art.

Issue three worked as an early example of what would come. Peter David and Todd Nauck crafted a Halloween tale that has little to do with October 31, but everything to do with the title.

Mr. Mxyzptlk makes a guest appearance in The Issue Before the One Where the Girls Show Up. Young Justice has agreed to host a Hallow-Teen Party. The fourth-dimension’s most notorious resident works on his thesis of three-dimensional primitive life forms only to be unwittingly shocked back to his former state of prankster.

This is a priceless bit of late 1990’s fun courtesy of Mr. David. The dialog is witty and relevant, right down to the Hason reference by Impulse.

As mentioned above, all good things must end and the series was cancelled by issue 55.

Drown your sorrows with some sugary treats and remember the good times that included several specials to compliment the regular series.

Read More

Secret Origins (1986) 44

0

It’s time to get a little muddy today – in honor of National Mudpack Day.

Mud Pack is the colloquial name for Basil Karlo, Preston Payne and Sondra Fuller, the four original Clay Face personalities. That’s how we’re tying in National Mudpack Day and comic books.

The unofficial holiday celebrates the practice of mixing water and dirt to smear on one’s self. Mud packs are reputed to be therapeutic. Rumored benefits include increased circulation, the easing of muscle tension, releasing of toxins and boosting of immunity.

Secret Origins 44

Secret Origins 44

Our Mud Pack is a fictional group of Batman villains.

The Golden Age Clay Face is Karlo, first introduced in Detective Comics (1937) 40. The addled and aging actor was not invited to reprise a movie role and goes on a murder spree.

He next appeared in Batman (1940) issue 208 and Detective 496.

Matt Hagen is the heir apparent, first appearing in Detective Comics 298. Rather than acting, the second Clay Face is a treasure hunter. His discovery of a radioactive ooze does not go well and he finds himself a literal clay being.

Preston Payne is next in line for the title. His first appearance is Detective 477. A STAR Labs employee, his is a more tragic origin. The search for a cure goes unfulfilled and ending in tragedy.

Sondra Fuller is the fourth installment in the line-up. She first appeared in Outsiders (1983) 21, transformed into a shape changer by Kobra technologies.

Cassisus “Clay” Payne is the love child of Payne and Fuller. He first appeared in Batman 550.

Clay Face number six also debuted in Batman 550. Dr. Peter “Claything” Malley is a clone of Cassius Payne.

Todd Russell premiered in Catwoman (2002) issue one. Russell is more of a serial killer preying on prostitutes.

Finally, to date, is Johnny Williams. Williams first appeared in Gotham Knights 60 and was a former firefighter who became the mud monster after a mishap at a chemical plant fire.

Several other versions have cropped up throughout the DCU and in other media.

So, if you’re getting dirty, make sure your hands are clean before reading any comic books featuring the above-mentioned villains.

Read More

World’s Finest (1941) 215

0

As if Superman and Batman didn’t have enough problems, Bob Haney and Dick Dillin saddled the superheroes with sons in World’s Finest 215.

World’s Finest (1941) 215

World’s Finest (1941) 215

The junior superheroes were near clones of their fathers down to their uniforms. The two appeared off and on in World’s Finest until issue 263 when Denny O’Neil revealed they were computer simulations created by Batman and Superman.

The concept would later be revisited in an Elseworlds book in 1999, then shelved until 2011 when the New 52 came about with Chris Kent and Damian Wayne living on Earth-16.

DC unveiled yet another incarnation in 2017. The super sons would go by Jonathan Kent, Superboy, a product of Clark Kent’s union to Lois Lane; and Damian Wayne, Robin, the son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul.

The series went 16 issues with one annual.

In August of 2018 a 12-issue mini was launched, helmed by Peter Tomasi with Carlo Barberi and Art Thibert handling art chores.

What does all of this have to do with Four Color Holidays? Just that today, April 23, is National Take Your Sons and Daughters to Work Day.

Enjoy the time you have with your children.

Read More

Detective Comics (1937) 359

0

Okay, this is not a federal holiday.

National Library Worker’s Day is recognized within schools and community organizations with lunches, donations to libraries and other biblio-themed functions.

To honor those trusted with the keeping of stories and adventures, Four Color Holidays uses Detective Comics (1937) as a banner for the librarians of the world.

This issue, of course, is the first appearance Batgirl, aka Barbara Gordon. Bill Finger and Sheldon Modloff had originally created Betty Kane as the first Bat-Girl in 1961. Babs, as Police Chief James Gordon’s daughter, has become the more commonly recognized Daring Domino of the Bat-family.

Detective Comics (1937) 359

Detective Comics (1937) 359

Her comic book appearance was not by chance. When producers of the Batman television series decided to add the character on screen, she was given a home in the printed DCU as well.

Over time, Barbara/Batgirl has served beside the Dynamic Duo as well as shone in solo adventures. In 1988 Alan Moore stepped away from Swamp Thing and penned a one-shot in which the Joker shot and paralyzed Babs.

She would remain in a wheelchair until the New 52 reboot in 2011. Between 1988 and 2011 Barbara served as Oracle, aiding the Bat-Family with information. Later, she would serve in the same capacity with the Birds of Prey.

While incapacitated the Batgirl cowl did not gather dust. It was donned by Cassandra Cain, Stephanie Brown, Helena Bertinelli and Charlotte “Charlie” Gage-Radcliff.

In the end, the mantle will always be Barbara Gordon’s.

So, happy National Library Worker’s Day. Read a book, preferably a Batgirl comic book, and visit your local library to thank those who toil away as the guardians of knowledge and entertainment.

Read More

Batman (1940) 181

0

National Flower Day won’t make most people’s radar. It’s doubtful any of you reading this even know there is such a thing. But, for the one who would embrace the day as her own, we’ll look at Poison Ivy’s debut.

Bob Kanigher, the man behind the Silver Age Flash’s origin and three decade’s worth of Sgt. Rock tales, spins Beware Of—Poison Ivy! Sheldon Moldoff handles the pencils. Of the two, Shelly can at least hold his head a little higher.

Batman (1940) 181

Batman (1940) 181

Not wishing to speak ill of the dead, it’s still hard not to bash the accomplished writer for the horrid tale introducing such an acclaimed character. Much like a young actress breaking into movies, Ivy has to be embarrassed by the dialog she is forced to mouth.

Batman and Robin are even worse. There’s no evidence of the Dark Knight to come as he pines for the leggy flower child. Robin can chalk part of his verbiage to age. It’s not much worse than Bob Haney’s hip mid-60s rap for the teens in the original Titans book.

The less said about the book, the better.

National Plant a Flower Day is celebrated March 12 each year. It is a time to begin thinking about what flowers are to be planted in the spring garden. If Batman 181 didn’t cost so much, it would make good compost.

Read More

Detective Comics (1937) 58

0

With today National Umbrella Day, the Penguin is the obvious choice to act as ambassador.

Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot originally bore some resemblance to his current countenance, but was a doughier rapscallion in Detective Comics (1937) 58.  Mr. Cobblepot has firmed up a bit over the past 70 years. He has also moved on from his days of out-and-out larceny to become more of an underworld consort, catering more than cavorting.

Detective Comics (1937) 58

Detective Comics (1937) 58

In his first appearance, the Penguin begins his criminal career as an art thief, stealing under the noses of Batman and Robin themselves. He moves on to jewels in a crime spree that not only confounds the Caped Crusaders, but implicates them.

In the final showdown, Penguin manages to elude Batman, though the Dark Knight does clear his name.

Penguin does little with his bumbershoot other than spray some acid this issue. It is in subsequent appearances he and his decorative accessory earn its spot in the pantheon of weapons. Of all his assorted implements of violence, the Bulgarian umbrella is his favorite.

The umbrella has been in use since 21 AD, first seen in China as a useful and decorative cover for a four-wheeled carriage. The invention has evolved little over the years having been perfected right out of the gate.

Read More

World’s Finest Comics (1941) 111

0

Not as well-known as New Year’s Eve, Tick Tock Day is celebrated Dec. 29 each year to remind us time is a commodity. One that will expire shortly when the current year is retired.

Rather than use Father Time or Baby New Year to represent the (non) holiday, Four Color Holidays has chosen the Clock King. Both of ‘em.

World’s Finest Comics (1941) 111

World’s Finest Comics (1941) 111

The Clock King was originally presented as the Silver Age Green Arrow’s arch enemy. Like so many early villains, William Tockman was doomed to a life of crime based on his name alone. He became caregiver to his ailing sister only to find he was terminally ill with six months to live. Using Breaking Bad’s plot, Tockman robbed a bank to ensure she would be cared for after his passing.

Later he learned his medical records were switched with another patient’s and sought revenge on the doctor and Green Arrow. The nefarious plan failed and the evil Clock King was escorted to Arkham Asylum where he would regularly escape to bedevil the Justice League and various DC heroes.

He was later reinvented as Billy Tockman when DC rebooted its universe during the New 52. In addition to renewing his origin, Tockman is given precognition four-seconds into the future.

To celebrate Tick Tock Day, complete any unfinished business from the year and post to #TickTockDay.

Read More

Teen Titans Go! Naughty Elves And Santa Claus

0

The Teen Titans add a little holiday fun with some Tannenbaum tropes:

Read More

Nerdsync: Batman – The Search for Santa Claus

0

Read More

DCU Halloween Special 2010

0

Though it never reached the heights its predecessor achieved, the 2010 DCU Halloween special made a respectable showing.

It followed more of a supernatural Brave and the Bold or DC Comics Presents format. Batman and Robin co-star with I…Vampire, Flash and Frankenstein team together, Wonder Woman meets Deadman, the Teen Titans side with Klarion the Witch Boy and Superman is aided by the Demon.

DCU Halloween Special 2010

DCU Halloween Special 2010

The Scarecrow is on the other side of his fear toxin in “Trick for the Scarecrow.”

Damian Wayne sides with Batman to take on a legion of vampires.

Flash and Frankenstein work together to stop a killer in “Time or Your Life.”

“A Night to Remember” gives Deadman a chance to experience some of his past life courtesy of Wonder Woman.

Teen Titans team with Klarion, the Witch Boy, in “Medusa Non Grata.”

The Demon helps Superman in “Fears of Steel.”

Again, not on par with the previous year, but still worth the time.

Read More