Friday, April 3, 2020

Batman: The Adventures Continue #1 Review

Written by: Alan Burnett and Paul Dini
Art by: Ty Templeton, Monica Kubina, and Josh Reed
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: April 1, 2020

With DC Comics shutting down all the print copies of their books for a bit, it's time to turn to the Digital First line for some new comic book action.  Unfortunately, we aren't in the heyday of Digital when DC was putting out a new book each day of the week, but we have a cool one this week nonetheless.  Batman: The Adventures Continue gives us some new stories from the beloved cartoon as well as a new comic book!  So, how is it?  Let's find out...

The issue opens with Batman on patrol, swinging through Gotham on a beautiful, clear night until he runs into Bane!  I was hoping for more of a battle here, but it felt more like the setup for something else than a satisfying thing going on right now.  That feeling doesn't go away as Batman, and the reader's focus is shifted to a giant robot rampaging in the streets below.

I am usually a fan of Ty Templeton's art, and while I understand this is a Digital First book, I was expecting it to look better because of the source material.  Yes, it is going with the animation style we got at the end of the Animated Series, but even then, stuff like the robot doesn't look great.

After making sure Harvey Bullock is okay and seeing an interesting person hiding in the shadows, we get an extended scene of the robot stealing science equipment with Batman giving chase.  For a single chapter of a digital book, this scene took way too long, especially since it wasn't that thrilling.

Later, Batman's investigation into the who and what of his encounter gets interrupted by a cocktail party with a couple of cool guests...Veronica Vreeland and Lex Luthor.  I always love seeing playboy millionaire Bruce Wayne doing his thing, but this is all just set up to give the reader some information.  Tim Drake is Robin at the moment, Superman isn't around, and Lex hates Batman and should never be trusted.  The issue ends with Batman doing a little hands-on detective work that proves at least one of those things is very, very valid, and maybe the end of Batman!

This first chapter was just okay.  DC will collect this for print with the next chapter eventually, and maybe the two combined will give the reader more, but we will have to wait and see.  Still, for just 99 cents and with nothing else coming out, you could do worse.  I just expected something more significant and more critical feeling from the creators and the Animated Series source material.  One of the things you hear the most about Batman: The Animated Series was how it was one of the first cartoons of it's kind aimed at adults.  This didn't feel like that at all.  I was excited to see what this series was all about, but after reading this first chapter, my enthusiasm has waned considerably.

Bits and Pieces:

Batman: The Adventures Continue #1 is an okay distraction, especially since nothing much else is coming out these days, but to me, it was a disappointment.  It didn't feel essential like I'd hoped it would, but this is just the first chapter, and things can change.  Still, I was a bit bummed out after reading it, and while I will be checking the next chapter in a couple of weeks, it's now with hopes of it getting better than just with pure excitement.


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