Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Batman '66 #32 Review

Written by: Jeff Parker
Art by: Jonathan Case
Cover Price: $1.99
Release Date: April 16, 2014

Gotham Goes Ho Ho Ho

The Joker and Catwoman have escaped Arkham using the Joker's laugh ray .  After their uncontrollable laughter wears off, the Dynamic Duo and Batgirl do a quick switcheroo and are on the case.  It's apparent that the Joker and Catwoman are not content with just freedom, but have a plan that involves pickpocketing, blackmailing the Mayor and more.  To make matters worse, the Dynamic Trio quickly realize that the Joker is trying to take the plan to the next level with stolen equipment that will amplify the laughter. They do just that, aided by psychiatrist, Holly Quinn and send a direct invitation for the heroes to meet them for a showdown. Of course, the Joker is not going into battle empty handed.

For an issue about attacking Gotham with a laugh ray, this issue has the fewest jokes of any Batman '66 I've read.  That is not only a good thing, it's a great thing.  This arc is easily the most cohesive, most complete story that Jeff Parker has written for Batman '66.  It's taken awhile, but I think that by no longer relying on the cheap campiness of the source material, he has freed himself up to tell a good Batman story.  Don't get me wrong, I love the camp and the laughs, but not at the expense of good storytelling.  There are still some chuckles, mostly at Robin's awkwardness and we get Holly Quinn.  What a great addition to the Batman '66 Universe.

Jonathan Case does a bang up job on art.  Everything looks like it jumped out of the TV show and kudos to the motion aspects.  I have probably talked too much about it, but you are missing out on something special if you wait for the printed, collected book.  The motion comic is made for this book and vice versa.

Bits and Pieces:

Batman '66 #32 continues what is the most complete story this series has seen.  This is becoming a good Batman story, period.  Throw in good art and we have a winner.  Do yourself a favor and get it digitally so you can experience as a motion comic.  It's worth it.


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