Monday, September 26, 2016

The Last Batman Story!

There is nearly always an attempt by the creators of comics to imbue centennial issues with special significance. The truth is few comics reach milestones like one hundred issues even so it is special and all. So when Batman hit its three hundredth issue in 1978 they made the comic a bit larger and brought in the rising talent Walt Simonson to illustrated a tale of the near future when Batman has withdrawn from a world increasingly bristling with computers and other technology.

A mysterious attack on the Wayne fortune and its attendant industrial enterprises causes first Dick Grayson (still in his guise as Robin though sporting the Neal Adams costume the character often assumed in alternate environments) runs afoul of mercenaries. Bruce Wayne becomes Batman again to investigate and discovers a complex plot which offers up color as a critical clue. Eventually the Dynamic Duo discover they are battling a group they think is named "Rainbow" but the truth is even more dangerous.

To read this story in its entirety check out this groovy link.

Written by David Vern Reed, this is a story which doesn't to my mind succeed as thoroughly as it ought. The plot seems complicated at times merely for complications sake, but nonetheless it does move along. Reed is a writer whose name I don't remember but I learned here that he was a veteran who had turned his hand at more than one Batman tale among many others.  This story which pits Batman against a techno-society which in many respects seems a bit antique even today does resonate with me as I myself often find new-fangled ways of doing things with the miracle of the virtual world not all that attractive. I'm for it when it demonstrably improves a situation or circumstance, but I don't always find updates do that. Again it seems merely a new way, not necessarily a better one.

Of course this was far from being Batman's last story, but a decent one nonetheless.

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