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Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Brave and the Bold #184 [1982] (Random Comics Theatre)

Random Comics Theatre

The Brave and the Bold #184 [1982]

This is always a good time of year for Christmas comics, especially one which features Batman and Huntress beating up Santa Claus. Ah, what a sweet father/daughter moment (except, of course, that this Batman isn't actually this Huntress's father).

"The Batman's Last Christmas" is by Mike Barr and Jim Aparo, one of those stories where Batman has a crisis of faith when he finds out, in a series of coincidences, that his father may have lent money to a mob boss. Fortunately the daughter of his deceased Earth-Two doppleganger is visiting, and manages to restore his faith in his mission and determination to find out the truth, which is what you'd expect, with one of those Mike Barr mystery reveals which aren't quite as impressive as when I was 11 years old. Still kind of fun, and Aparo's art is even more impressive than I thought back then.

The last page has a Christmas illustration signed by I guess everyone who hung around the DC offices that week.

Also in this issue, a back-up as part of the Nemesis series that ran in the book for a few years. "Outfoxed" is by usual team Cary Burkett and Dan Spiegle. I love Spiegle's art in this series. A regular monthly book with art by both Jim Aparo and Dan Spiegle? Good times. The story is pretty good action oriented spy drama, about a former agent forced to go underground and wage a private war against a criminal syndicate after his brother was framed for the death of their mentor. In this episode, a French assassin Greyfox has led Nemesis into a trap using his mechanic as bait. A great compact story with a lot of exciting set pieces, exploding planes and helicopters.

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