Well my friends... I think my pull list is about to get a big hit in terms of how many print books I get on a monthly basis. Here's the thing, last Christmas my wife gave me a NOOK from Barnes & Nobles as a present and, even though I loved it, I was kinda ignoring it because I felt that if I read too many digital comics I'd be turning my back on this medium that I love so much. As it turns out, prices on comics keep going up, page count keeps going down, plot lines are being dragged on way too long in order to sell trades and my bank account keeps suffering because of it I feel I have to support the comic book industry. So, last night I got my NOOK, charged it and I said to myself: "the heck with it"! Today i took my NOOK out at lunchtime, downloaded Thor: The Mighty Avenger Vol. 1, read it, took it all in and... I LOVED IT!!! The colors were as vibrant as they were intended to be, the pages moved just like a comic would, the prices are far less than the print versions and more importantly; I can carry 100+ books anywhere and everywhere I go without a problem. I absolutely love my NOOK. So, from this day on I solemnly swear that I'll cut my "pull list" at least in half and I'll be reading the trade version on my NOOK. Thanks Barnes & Nobles and thank you NOOK! (This read like a paid advertisement for NOOk and/or Barnes & Nobles but I swear it wasn't!) LOL!
With all this buzz around the upcoming Superman/Wonder Woman book being published by DC Comics and the Man of Steel's Superman/Lois Lane "relationship" made me think about the comic book relationships I consider "the best". Now let me be clear, there might be others that are just as valid, but this is just a list of the relationships that I can think of without having to investigate too much, these are the most relevant in my mind. If you have other choices feel free to post them on the comments section. Enjoy!
Kal-El (Superman) and Diana (Wonder Woman)
Wonder Woman and Superman have long seemed like they’d make a nice match — they both have blue eyes and blue-black hair, they’re both superheroes with similar powers, they wear matching costumes. But maybe they look a little toomuch alike to work? In any case, since one or both of them are usually romantically entangled elsewhere, any dalliances between Superman and Wonder Woman have been very brief and occurred in their pasts or in alternate timelines where Lois Lane is dead. These include Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Strikes Again and All-Star Batman and Robin, The Boy Wonder (with Jim Lee), and Mark Waid and Alex Ross’ influential Kingdom Come, in which the pair actually have a child together. Superman and Wonder Woman have always remained just really good friends, even when put in the most dire and tempting circumstances.
As previously mentioned, romances between Kal-El of Krypton and Diana of Themyscira have until recently been non-canonical, but they have happened. In 1998′s Superman: Distant Fires, Howard Chaykin, Gil Kane and Kevin Nowlan depicted a post-apocalyptic Earth where Superman and Wonder Woman were among the only survivors, and where they had a son who, like Kal-El, was eventually rocketed to another planet to save him from his homeworld’s destruction. In Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Strikes Again, which also takes place in the future, Clark and Diana had a superpowered daughter called Lara, after Superman’s Kryptonian mother, whom they protected from the government. In typical Miller style, the relationship was memorably… intense. Perhaps most famously, the Kingdom Come graphic novel by Mark Waid and Alex Ross introduced a reality where Superman and Wonder Woman coupled after Lois was killed by the Joker, and where Kal-El and Diana eventually started a family. Indeed, there have been quite a few occurrences of this match, but October’s Justice League #12 by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee will be the first time the love between Superman and Wonder Woman will be presented as canon. In honor of the event, DC partnered with popular online dating site Match.com to create profiles for both superheroes. Here’s Superman’s, along with an analysis by Dr. Helen Fisher, Chief Scientific Officer for Match:
Superman and Wonder Woman are a classic match, as a very high testosterone male and a very high estrogen female. They also have many cultural and biological traits that will fuel their romance. People also tend to fall in love with those of the same background. Although Superman comes from a different planet, while Wonder Woman harks from an isolated island, both are aliens to our modern world. More important, Superman and Wonder Woman share the same values and goals: They are both dedicated to truth and justice and both fight evil to save the good — traits shared by both the high testosterone and high estrogen type. Lastly, both value independence.
The Joker and Harley Quinn
The 1994 graphic novel Mad Love recounts Harley's origin, told in the style and continuity of Batman: The Animated Series and written and drawn by Dini and Timm, the comic book describes Dr. Harleen Quinzel, M.D. (her real name) as an Arkham Asylum psychiatrist who falls for the Joker and becomes his accomplice and on-off sidekick. The story received wide praise and won the Eisner and Harvey Awards for Best Single Issue Comic of the Year. The New Batman Adventures series adapted Mad Love as the episode of the same name in 1999, making it the second "animated style" comic book adapted for the series. (The other was Holiday Knights.) She becomes fascinated with the Joker while interning at Arkham, and volunteers to analyze him. She falls hopelessly in love nearly instantly with the Joker during their sessions, and she helps him escape from the asylum more than once. When the Joker is returned to Arkham after a battle with Batman, the sight of her badly injured patient drives Harleen insane, leading her to quit her psychiatrist job and don a jester costume to become Harley Quinn, the Joker's sidekick. She later becomes fast friends with Poison Ivy, who injects her with an antitoxin which gives her super-normal strength, agility, and immunity to toxins.
In The New 52 event, Harley Quinn's costume and appearance is fully revamped, with a skimpier costume, bleached skin and altered hair color, consistent with her new origin. After a falling out with the Joker, she goes into a murderous frenzy, directed towards people responsible for the Joker's imprisonment. Captured by Black Canary, she is forcibly inducted into the Suicide Squad by Amanda Waller. However, when she discovers that the Joker is rumored to be dead, it takes a further toll in her already addled mind, and betraying the Suicide Squad, she puts their safety and secrecy at risk by turning herself into the Gotham Police Department in a plot to gain access to the skinned face of the Joker. Her plan apparently pays off, and she manages to recover the face, though in a further psychotic episode, Harley captures and ties up Deadshot and places the skinned face of the Joker over Deadshot's face, so that she can carry on a "conversation" with her dead lover. Deadshot lures Harley in close, shooting and severely injuring her during the conversation. After the Joker returns to Gotham, he forces her to disguise herself in his old Red Hood costume and trick Batman into coming to the chemical plant where they first met. Batman then falls into a tank and demands Harley to tell him where Joker is. But she only replies, in tears, that he's not "her Joker" anymore. Since then, Quinn has seemingly entered a relationship with her fellow Suicide Squad member, Deadshot.
Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic) and Sue Storm (Invisible Woman)
While living with her aunt, Susan, at the young age of 17, met her future husband, Reed Richards, a house guest who was attending college. When she graduated from high school she moved to California to attend college, where she pursued an acting career and encountered Richards again. They became romantically involved with each other. Reed Richards, was designing a spacecraft for interstellar travel. Everything was going well until the government stopped the funding of his project. Richards, wanting to see his project through, decided to make an unscheduled test flight. Originally, it was only going to be Reed and his best friend, Ben Grimm, involved, but Susan was instrumental in persuading Reed in letting her brother and herself join them on the dangerous space mission. In space, the quartet was exposed to massive amounts of cosmic radiation. As a result, they had to abort the mission and return to Earth. After the crash landing, they realized that they gained superhuman powers; hers was the ability to become invisible at will. Realizing the potential use of their abilities, the four of them became the Fantastic Four, for the benefit of mankind. Susan adopted the code name "Invisible Girl".
Reed and Sue's relationship progressed, with the two of them deciding to get married. The wedding was the event of the century, with several of New York City's preeminent superheroes in attendance. Not long after that, Susan and the Fantastic Four encountered Galactus and the Silver Surfer for the first time. Sue later became pregnant with her first child. As a result, she took time off as an active member of the team. Johnny's then-girlfriend, the Inhuman elementalist known simply as Crystal, joined the team, taking over Susan's roster spot. Susan's cosmic ray irradiated blood cells served as an obstacle for her in carrying the unborn child to term. Knowing this, Reed, Johnny, and Ben journeyed into the Negative Zone to acquire the Cosmic Control Rod from Annihilus. Effectively utilizing the device, the baby was safely delivered and was named Franklin, in memory of Susan's father. Due to the genetically altered structure of his parents, Franklin was born a mutant, possessing vast powers of the highest possible potential. Seeking to use the boy's talents for his own sadistic purposes, Annihilus returned and successfully triggered a premature full release of Franklin's latent abilities, which were already in the process of gradual emergence. Fearing that his son could very well release enough psionic energy to eliminate all life on Earth, Reed was forced to shut Franklin's mind down, feeling there was no immediate alternative. Angry with Reed for not seeking her input in the matter, Susan left the Fantastic Four and had a marital separation from Reed.
Oliver Queen (Green Arrow) and Dayna Laurel Lance (Black Canary)
When Dinah met Green Arrow (Oliver Queen). While Dinah at first detested him, they later became romantically involved, despite the difference in their ages. (In the Modern Age Oliver was substantially older than Dinah, the reverse of the earlier depiction. However, the character later died, and later still was resurrected, at which point he was de-aged by an unspecified amount.) Dinah remained a member of the League for roughly six years, including a brief stint with Justice League International (JLI), of which she was a founding member. During that time her mother died due to radiation poisoning experienced during a battle with the villain Aquarius. Her mother's death affected Dinah deeply, and led her to accept that her time in the JLA was over. After the breakup of the Justice League, Dinah moved to Seattle with Green Arrow, opening her own florist shop named "Sherwood Florist". The move to Seattle brought a string of bad luck for her.
During this period, she took part in a failed operation to bust a drug ring. Kidnapped, Black Canary was tortured before being rescued by Green Arrow. The effect was severe: Dinah's vocal cords were mutilated, she lost her Canary Cry, and she became unable to bear children. She required extensive counseling afterward, as did Oliver Queen. Simultaneously, she and Green Arrow had major conflicts in their relationship. She learned that Green Arrow had fathered a son, Robert, with the villainess Shado (albeit against his will), and was taking money from the florist business (Black Canary #1). The relationship ended when Dinah walked in on Green Arrow kissing her shop assistant, Marianne. Later, she learned from Connor Hawke that Oliver had been killed (Green Arrow #101), and that Connor was yet another of his offspring. Although Dinah and Connor later developed a close friendship, the knowledge that Oliver had kept his existence from her remained painful. Though Black Canary continued to fight crime off and on (she became a pen friend of the youthful hero The Ray, who had a crush on her, participating in some of his adventures and even having a brief romance), the effects of her misfortunes took their toll.
The Mighty Thor and Lady Sif
As an Asgardian warrior and lover of Thor, Sif often accompanies Thor into battle and spends much of her time worrying about and searching for him. She has also battled alongside Balder, who has developed an unrequited attraction to her, as she never shows affection for anyone but Thor and certain individuals who have proved worthy to wield his hammer, Mjolnir, such as the noble alien warrior, Beta Ray Bill and the mortal Eric Masterson. Sif and Thor are separated when he is banished from Asgard by his father Odin and begins a life as a superhero on Earth. Many years later Thor becomes romantically involved with Jane Foster. Thor brings Jane to Asgard to be wed, where she is granted immortality but after she fails a final test Odin sends her back to Earth, stripped of her newly acquired powers and without memories of the event. Odin then arranges an encounter with Sif while Thor is battling the monstrous super-strong Unknown, and the two fall in love again.
Reunited with Thor, Sif accompanies him into battle against many of his most formidable enemies. After Hogun the Grim attempts a physical attack, Sif puts herself in the line of fire and convinces Loki if he dies, he would have to kill her too. Loki declines to murder anyone at that point. Thor's attachment for Earth frequently came between them. Sif much preferred the world of the gods to the mundane world of mortals, and, after attempting to adjust to Earth life on more than one occasion, returned to Asgard to live without Thor. Once, when Thor's mortal paramour Jane Foster was dying, Sif lent her, life force to revive the woman, "merging" with her in the process. She did this apparently in an attempt to understand Thor's attraction for this mortal. Jane Foster was separated from Sif shortly thereafter, and sent to the limbo realm of the Runestaff of the Possessor. Sif and Thor have since rescued Foster. Sif and Beta Ray Bill found themselves increasingly drawn to each other emotionally. Sif's relationship with Thor was greatly worsened when Thor, who was forced by enchantment to fall in love with the Asgardian Lorelei, struck Sif in anger. Sif even decided to leave Asgard and accompany Beta Ray Bill back to his people. However, Sif came to realize how deeply sorry Thor, who had been freed of Lorelei's enchantment, was for having struck her. Moreover, Sif finally fully realized that Lorelei was really to blame for Thor's striking her and Sif was also greatly impressed by Thor's heroism in descending into the realm of the death goddess Hela to rescue the souls of Earth mortals. As a result, Sif finally accepted Thor's role as guardian of both Asgard and Earth, and decided to stay behind in Asgard. Sif and Thor once again linked by strong bonds of affection, but what path their relationship will next take remains to be seen.
Dick Grayson (Nightwing) and Barbara Gordon (Batgirl/Oracle)
Babara Gordon first outing in Detective Comics 359. She was introduced as Dr. Barbara Gordon PhD holder... and later became a Congresswoman... yet DC keeps on trying to de-age her and taking away the awesomeness stuff like a Doctorate and former Congress status. Dick Grayson shows some affection but we don't really see too many hints as the age different was thought to be much bigger at the time.
Moving into the 70's Babara went to Washington, became a Congresswoman and she and Dick had a starring feature in the "Batman Family" title. DC came out and said a few times that it was meant as a joke and way to shut Robin up, but lots of fans hated it....then they got some letters from fans who loved it....and Batman Family continued with the slight flirtations over time. It's worth noting that at the time Dick was in an on again off again relationship with Lori Eton. Hmmm maybe all his adultry isn't out of character after all. Many fans suspected Babs was faking and it took them Nightwing Annual 2 (shudder) to be proved right.
After the Batman Family title ended the Dick/Babs romantic stuff cooled it somewhat. We didn't really see much hints of it and Babs was busy with her on again off again Jason Bard and Dick had Dala the vampire to contend with. It was in the 90's when it all came together... Dick and Babs were shown as a couple in "Subzero" and the Batman Animated series, the comics then followed suit. The Dixon/Mcdaniel run on Nightwing is classic and a half and every comic book reader should read those at least once in your life.
Clark Kent (Superman) and Lois Lane
Clark Kent and Lois Lane are among the best known fictional couples. The characters—including Clark's alter ego, Superman—debuted in the DC Comics publication Action Comics #1 (June 1938), and have remained in a complicated relationship ever since. The couple's relationship was based for a long time in a love triangle, in which Clark was interested in Lois, who was taken with Superman. Clark, unable to reveal to Lois that his mild-mannered demeanor was a ruse, was unable to compete for Lois' affection, the irony being he was his own rival seeing that Clark and Superman are the same person.
Following John Byrne's The Man of Steel re-boot, Clark's character became not only the more dominant personality of the Clark Kent/Superman character, but also more outgoing, aggressive, and assertive (more in line with George Reeves' portrayal on Adventures of Superman). This allowed a more natural romance to develop between Lois and Clark. Finally, Clark proposes to Lois and decides to reveal his identity as Superman to Lois, and so they began a long engagement which was complicated by the death of Superman, a breakup and several problems. At last, in 1996 Lois and Clark got married and Superman: The Wedding Album was released. The event was also made to coincide with the wedding of Clark and Lois on the television series Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman.
In 2011, DC Comics main continuity was rebooted for The New 52 initiative. In the relaunch, it is revealed that Clark and Lois are not married. Lois views Clark as a friend and respects him as a journalist, but regards him as a loner who has difficulty letting people get close to him, and displays no existing knowledge of his dual identity. Clark and Lois' friendship becomes strained after Clark quits the Daily Planet. Superman Unchained, the new book by Scott Snyder and Jim Lee, will explore Clark's connection with Lois in the new DC Universe.
Tim Drake (Robin/Red Robin) and Stephanie Brown (Spoiler/Batgirl)
Stephanie Brown is the love interest of Tim Drake, the third Robin, the third Batman and later, Red Robin from the Batman comics. She started out as Spoiler. She first met Robin in the Batman comics from the 90s. She later becomes the new Robin, and then Batgirl until the New 52 era where Barbara Gordon finally went back to walking and became Batgirl once again. Sigh... yep. During the No Man's Land event, following Gotham's destruction during the earthquake, Tim begins to realize his growing feelings for Stephanie Brown. This causes him to to break up with his girlfriend Ari, and begin a relationship with Stephanie. Tim began a romantic relationship as Robin with the daughter of a criminal named Cluemaster. Stephanie was secretly "Spoiler". This was quite complicated for Tim by not being able to reveal his true identity to her.
Batman would not allow Robin to reveal his identity to Stephanie. During this time, he and Spoiler frequently work together on cases, until she reveals her pregnancy which spurs him to forbid her to be Spoiler as he assumes the alias Alvin Drapper to take her to Lamaze classes.
However, Jack Drake decides it's time for his family to leave Gotham, forcing Tim to move to Keystone city, during which he works with the The Flash to battle The Riddler and Captain Boomerang. While in Keystone, Stephanie goes into labor while Tim is rushed back to Gotham by The Flash in time for the delivery. Tim helps her through childbirth but eventually the child was given up for adoption.
Peter Parker (Spider-Man) and Mary Jane Watson
Peter meeting MJ or Anna Watson's niece was an ongoing gag in the early Lee stories with Peter looking for excuses not to meet her. He meets Gwen in college and she becomes his first girlfriend although he also eventually meets MJ and goes out on a date with her. MJ was originally supposed to be the third wheel and a rival for Peter's affection in order to create drama with Gwen being the primary love interest because of how well the fans took to her. Howvever, Gwen is killed by the Green Goblin in 1973 and he marries MJ in 1987 and has since become Peter's "Lois Lane" although Gwen was originally supposed to take up that mantle according to Stan Lee (his accounts have changed over the years). Because of MJ being much more synonomous with Spider-Man than Gwen, in the movies they made her the primary love interest with Gwen taking MJ's original place in the comics in SM3. I kind of wished that they acknowledged that Peter had another love besides MJ in Gwen, he also dated Betty Brant before Gwen. For his first three years, Peter dealt with other problems besides love and relationships. He was pretty much a loner with zero confidence and trying to help his Aunt make ends meet while also balancing school with his superhero activities. It'd be awesome to see that on the big screen for at least one movie.
In spite of Peter and Mary Jane's mutual worry that they were marrying too early, Peter's concern for her safety, and her unwillingness to give up her "party girl" lifestyle, they married. She attached Peter's surname to her own, making her Mary Jane Watson-Parker. Spider-Man wore his black costume around this time, but after Mary Jane was frightened by a stalking Venom, she convinced him to change back to his old costume. Due to this stress, the recent death of Harry Osborn, and the seeming return of her husband's parents, Mary Jane began smoking (a habit she had quit in high school), only increasing the tension between her and Peter. Peter ultimately convinced her to stop smoking when he tricked her into visiting Nick Katzenberg suffering heavily from lung cancer (he presumably died; Peter encountered his ghost in an out-of-body experience). When his parents were discovered to be fakes, Peter was unable to cope with the knowledge and disappeared for a time. Mary Jane visited her sister Gayle and her father for the first time in years, and finally reconciled with them. Meanwhile, Peter overcame his problems on his own. When she and Peter reunited, both were happier than they had been in a long time.
Cliff Secord (The Rocketeer) and Betty (Page)
The Rocketeer is Cliff Secord, a stunt pilot who discovers a mysterious jetpack that allows him to fly. His adventures are set in 1938 Los Angeles and New York, and Stevens gives them a retro, nostalgic feel influenced by the King of the Rocket Men movie serial, the syndicated Commando Cody TV series (both from Republic Pictures), and pinup diva Bettie Page. With the aid of his airplane mechanic buddy Peavy, he debuts an air show stunt act as the Rocketeer to make enough money to keep his bombshell "art model" girlfriend Betty (as in Betty Page!) happy, but soon runs afoul of mobsters and Nazi agents who want to steal the rocket pack. Oh, the Feds and Doc Savage (along with Savage's assistant Monk and Ham) want the rocket pack, too. Cliff, headstrong and passionate, doesn't always make the wisest of choices. Mayhem ensues. And that's just the first story arc. The second, "Cliff's New York Adventure," follows up immediately on the first with Cliff chasing his now-estranged girlfriend to New York City, where he runs into that other great pulp character, the Shadow, who enlists Cliff's
help in thwarting a serial killer.
Stevens was careful never to name or overtly identify any of these trademarked characters, but the homage is clear enough to anyone with even a passing familiarity with the genre. In 1991 a well-regarded movie version was put out by Disney, which combined elements of both storylines to craft a more cohesive plot. The "Betty" character was changed to "Jenny" and her overt sexuality toned down, while Cliff was somewhat less of a lunkhead in the film, but other than that, the spirit of the film is remarkably faithful to the comic, evidence of Stevens' close involvement with the project (one thing that surprised me is that there is not Neville Sinclair/Errol Flynn analogue in the comics. I'd heard the Errol Flynn connection for years, obviously from people who'd never actually read Stevens' original).
Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Selina Kyle (Catwoman)
Batman and Catwoman became strongly romantically involved during the Batman: Hush story arc. Batman ended their romantic relationship because he was unsure if Catwoman had been a willing participant in Hush's plot. Even when their romance rekindled later, Batman still suspected that Selina's reformation could be a result of a personality-altering mindwipe by Zatanna. In pre-Crisis continuity, the Earth-Two versions of Batman and Catwoman were shown to have married in the 1950s, and later Selina gave birth to a daughter, Helena Wayne (Huntress) in 1957. In Batman: The Animated Series, Bruce Wayne regularly dates Selina Kyle. In Batman Beyond, Bruce hints at a relationship with Selina in his past, as well as comparing that relationship with Terry's and the current 10 of the Royal Flush Gang.
As in the comic books, sexual tension between their costumed characters is a major story point in Batman: The Animated Series. In Batman: The Brave and the Bold, the two regularly flirt, which others notice. Alfred even goes so far as writing a story about them where they marry.
In The Dark Knight Rises, Selina (played by Anne Hathaway) does not develop a romantic interest in Bruce until later on in the film. In the end the two are shown to have developed a relationship when Alfred sees them sitting at a table nearby him at a cafe in Florence. -__-
Hawkman and Hawkgirl
Hawkman and Hawkgirl are cursed to find each other, fall in love, and then get murdered or killed. Rinse and repeat every generation via reincarnation or something. Thousands of years of this nonsense. As we reach modern day, Hawkman lies dead. Hawkgirl, now Kendra Saunders, has recently taken over the superhero mantle from her great-aunt. It's the love without end, although that's part of the problem. Hawkman and Hawkgirl are a couple of superheroes in a state of permanent rebirth. But knowing that's your destiny is one thing, and feeling it is another, especially when you don't necessarily like the other person. DC's most recent incarnation of Hawkman and Hawkgirl ignored the pressure and expectations of fate and brought new meaning to "on-again, off-again" romances (Mostly by ignoring that "on-again" part), only managing to admit their love seconds before being killed in Blackest Night. Ouch..
Aliens from Thanagar (the planet where their wings and maces come from) figures now’s as good as time as any to bring back Hawkman. This is love at it's most insanely passionate and indescribable, they know they'll die and be born again, and yet they still run towards each other with a passion unparalleled. Sometimes superheroes show us how we should do things and I think that Hawkman and Hawkgirl are showing us how we should love our partners... passionately!
The X-Men's dream couple are proof that sometimes love isn't enough. Teenage sweethearts, Scott Summers and Jean Grey kept getting separated for various reasons that included her being replaced by a cosmic entity, his getting married to someone who turned out to be a clone of her, his having a telepathic affair with another woman and her death. Even in alternate realities, it doesn't work out; parallel reality series X-Men Forever showed that Grey cheated on Summers with Wolverine and, following Wolverine's death, then hooked up with the Beast. Maybe they simply got together too young. The relationship between Scott Summers and Jean Grey was complicated and caring. In the beginning the two truly cared for the other, and it all started to unravel when James Logan (Wolverine) joined the X-Men, Jean had an immediate attraction to him, which caused big problems for her and Scott, they eventually reconciled, but that didn't last long. Jean's powers started going out of control, and during this period, she gradually drifted away from Scott, leaning to Logan more often than Scott, while dealing with her problems.
And things continued to get worse, when former Hellions leader Emma Frost was taken into the X-Men, and was appointed to help Scott better control his powers, and in the process the two began having an affair. Shortly after the two ended their relationship. Though the breakup was messy, the two acknowledged they were both drifting apart, and were better off as friends..
Well folks, today i want to talk about the most famous sidekick in the world of comic books; Robin. There's been many incarnations of the mantle and I'd like to give you a brief history on who my choices for Top Robins are and my thoughts on why I placed them in that particular order. I imagine some of you may disagree with me and that's fine, but I do have my reasons. I hope you enjoy and maybe, learn something you might not know about Batman's sidekick: Robin!
5. Stephanie Brown
The daughter of the criminal Cluemaster, Stephanie Brown originated in 1992 as an amateur crime-fighter called Spoiler. She later served briefly as the fourth Robin and, in 2009, became the third Batgirl. From 2009 to 2011, she was the star of her own ongoing Batgirl comic book series. She was introduced in a three-issue story arc in Detective Comics #647-649 in which writer Chuck Dixon reinvented a villain called the Cluemaster. Dixon created the Cluemaster's daughter, Stephanie, as simply a plot device for this story, seeking to "spoil" her father's plans. Even so, the character was well received by fans. The following year, Dixon launched the first ongoing Robin series and featured the Spoiler as a foil and love interest for Tim Drake. The character was at the center of a high-profile teen pregnancy storyline in 1998, which caused Wizard Magazine to name Robin the best ongoing comic book of the year. Stephanie remained an integral part of Robin's supporting cast for over a decade, until her death in the 2004 crossover storyline Batman: War Games. Her death was revealed to have been faked in a 2008 story, and in 2009, she became the eponymous lead character in the Batgirl series written by Bryan Q. Miller, with pencils by Lee Garbett. The title was canceled after 24 issues and replaced with a new Batgirl series starring Barbara Gordon.
Creating a homemade Robin costume, Stephanie sneaks into the Batcave and demands that Batman train her as the new Robin. Batman reluctantly accepts her as the new Robin, puts her through several months of intensive training, and makes her a better costume with roughly the same design as Tim's. As Robin, she patrols with Batman, but he thinks she is too unskilled to be an acceptable replacement for Tim. Batman later fires her after she disobeys his orders during two missions. In an effort to prove her worth to Batman, Stephanie steals one of his long-term plans for dealing with the entirety of Gotham's criminal underworld, arranging a meeting to bring them all together. Since this plan is predicated on the involvement of "Matches Malone", who, unbeknownst to her, is a persona that Batman uses to infiltrate the underworld, it quickly spins out of control. The result is a city-wide gang war in which Stephanie is captured by the Black Mask, who tortures her extensively to get information about Batman, as well as learning enough information to allow him to take control of Batman's plan and assume command of the gangs himself. Although she escapes and makes her way to a hospital, she is severely injured, and supposedly dies in a hospital bed as Batman sits beside her. Batman later finds evidence that vital medical treatment that could have saved Stephanie's life had been denied by Doctor Leslie Thompkins. When Batman confronts the doctor, Thompkins claims she willfully withheld such treatment to send a warning to any of Gotham's youth intending to follow Stephanie's example.
4. Jason Todd
Following the revamp of the Batman mythos due to Crisis on Infinite Earths, Jason Todd is recast as a young street orphan who first encounters the Dark Knight while attempting to steal the tires off the Batmobile in Crime Alley. Jason, the son of Willis and Catherine Todd, lives on the East end of Gotham, in the Park Row district called Crime Alley. Todd's mother was a drug addict who died of an overdose some time before he began living on the street. His father Willis was working as hired muscle for Two-Face and had disappeared suspiciously following a botched assignment. Bruce Wayne sees to it that Todd is placed in a school for troubled youths which turns out to be Ma Gunn's School for Crime. Jason earns the mantle of Robin a short while later by helping Batman apprehend the gang of thieves. However, Todd does not wear the Robin costume (an improved version of the classic) until six months of training.
Batman notes that while Todd doesn't possess Dick Grayson's natural athleticism & acrobatic skills, he can become a productive crimefighter by channeling his rage. He also believes that if he doesn't help the boy, Todd will eventually become part of the "criminal element." In the revamp period, Todd is portrayed as the "rebel" Robin. He smokes, swears, and fights authority. He is prone to defying Batman's orders, sometimes to success (bringing in Scarecrow singlehandedly) and sometimes failure (botching a raid on a drug lab by jumping the gun too soon). Todd also aided Batman while Gotham City was temporarily overrun by Deacon Blackfire as shown in Batman: The Cult. The most controversial moment prior to his death occurred in Batman #424. It involved a serial rapist named Felipe Garzonas, who escapes prosecution due to his father's diplomatic immunity. One of his victims, a girl named Gloria, hangs herself amid the threat of a third rape from Felipe. Todd discovers her hanging and makes a beeline for Felipe, ahead of Batman, who arrives just in time to see Felipe take a 22 story fall to his death, with Todd as Robin at the edge of the balcony. Todd maintains "I guess I spooked him. He slipped." This highlights an earlier exchange in Batman #422 where he uses excessive force on a pimp about to slash one of his working girls and Todd asks Batman if it "would've been such a big loss if I had (killed him)?" Whether Todd pushed the rapist from the roof is never known.
In 1988's "A Death in the Family" storyline, Jason Todd discovers that Catherine Todd was not his biological mother, and runs away to find the woman who gave birth to him. After following a number of leads, including an Israeli Mossad agent and Shiva Woo-San, Todd finally tracks his mother, Sheila, to Ethiopia, where she works as an aid worker. While Todd is overjoyed to be reunited with his real mother, he soon discovers that she is being blackmailed by the Joker, who is using her to provide him with medical supplies. Sheila herself has been embezzling from the aid agency and as part of the cover-up, she hands her own son, who arrives as Robin, over to the Joker. The Joker beats the boy brutally with a crowbar, and then leaves him and Sheila in the warehouse with a time bomb. Sheila and Robin try desperately to get out of the warehouse but are still inside as the bomb goes off. Batman arrives too late to save them, and finds Jason's lifeless body in the rubble. Sheila lives just long enough to tell Batman that Jason died trying to protect her. The bodies are taken back to Gotham City for burial. Todd's death haunts Batman, and he considers it his greatest failure. He keeps the second Robin's uniform on display in the Batcave as a reminder. The murder of Todd, along with the maiming of Barbara Gordon, the first Batgirl, in Batman: The Killing Joke, intensifies Batman's obsession with the Joker.
3. Damian Wayne
Damian's origin is unknown to Batman. Genetically perfected and grown in an artificial womb, Damian was intended to be a formidable warrior. He is raised by Talia and the League of Assassins. He becomes a talented martial artist by the time he is a pre-teen, at which time Talia reveals Damian's existence to Bruce Wayne and leaves him in Batman's custody in an effort to disrupt Batman's work.
Precocious, spoiled, and violent, Damian battles Tim Drake, whom he wants to replace as Robin, and sucker punches Drake off the stuffed Tyrannosaurus in the Batcave when Tim stops fighting to help him. Damian then escapes, dons a variant Robin costume made of Jason Todd's old tunic and mask and assorted League of Assassin gear, and gets into a fight with and decapitates the villainous Spook. Although misguided and malicious, Damian seems to genuinely want to aid Wayne's war on crime as he sees himself as Wayne's son and wants Wayne's approval. Unfortunately, because of how he was raised, Damian lacks any sort of common sense in regards to social behavior, and believes that in order to be accepted by Batman, he must kill any rivals, which included Tim Drake. Eventually, Batman confronts Talia to confirm Damian's true identity, but both Talia and Damian are soon caught in an explosion. They survive the explosion. But Damian's badly injured body requires transplants of harvested organs, which his mother orders her physicians to carry out. Damian makes a full recovery.
Following the Flashpoint event, Bruce was returned by writers to being the only Batman, while Dick was returned to his previous role as Nightwing. Damian still serves as his father's partner as Robin. After reading the letter written by his father from an alternate timeline, the Dark Knight decides that it is time to take steps to put his past behind him. He tries to teach Damian the same values his parents have instilled within him as he finally assumes his role as a father. However, despite Bruce's attempts to build a relationship with his son, Damian remains cold and distant with his father, which Alfred worries about. This relationship is further strained when Damian kills the villain Nobody. During the "Leviathan" story arc, when his mother Talia puts a price on his head and is targeted by the most dangerous and skilled assassins, Bruce faked Damian's death and secluded him in the Batcave in order to protect him while he goes undercover to confront Talia and her minions. But against his father's wishes he escapes, donning a new costume under the name ofRedbird. Along with the mysterious Wingman and most of the Bat-family, Damian manages to rescue his father and defeat most of the League of Shadows. However, Batman explains that the temporary defeat of the League will not stop a larger force to attack later and destroy the city, so he came to the extreme decision that the only solution possible is that Damian to return to his mother, a decision that caused an emotional reaction on Damian like never before.
Damian was killed battling a brutal enemy, the Heretic (an adult Damian clone) in issue number 8 of the Batman, Inc. comic book, which went on sale February 27, 2013. Minutes after Damian's death, Batman is seen holding his son's body and he then angrily screams up at the sky as it begins to rain. According to the story's writer, Grant Morrison: “He saves the world. He does his job as Robin. He dies an absolute hero.” The later storyline, Requiem, deals with the aftermath of Damian's death and Batman's thirst for revenge against Talia as well as his own increasingly unbalanced mental state resulted by this loss. Batman is also unwilling to accept his son's death, and begins seeking the means to resurrect Damian at the cost of his relationships with his friends and allies, and had not yet made the information of his death public. When Batman and Nightwing finally confront Heretic, they overpower him, and the clone suffers a brutal beating from both in retaliation for Damian's death. Batman, despite desiring to kill his son's murderer more than anything and Nightwing made no attempts of stopping his mentor, spares the villain's life after seeing his resemblance to Damian, realizing the clone is what is left of his son. However, Talia later kills Heretic for his failure to kill Batman, and challenges Batman to a duel to the death in the Batcave.
2. Dick Grayson
The youngest in a family of acrobats known as the "Flying Graysons", Dick watches a mafia boss kill his parents in order to extort money from the circus that employed them. Bruce Wayne/Batman takes him in as his legal ward, retconned in some cases as his adopted son, and eventually as his crime-fighting partner Robin. Throughout Dick's adolescence, Batman and Robin are inseparable. However, as Dick grows older and spends more time as the leader of the Teen Titans, he retires as Robin and takes on his own superhero identity Nightwing to assert his independence (others would fill in as Robin). As Nightwing, Dick leads the Teen Titans and later the Outsiders.
Following the events of the Zero Hour miniseries, he temporarily replaces Bruce Wayne as Batman, beginning in Robin #0 (October 1994) and extending throughout the Batman: Prodigal storyline. In an eponymous series, launched in 1996 and continuing until 2009, he becomes the protector of Blüdhaven, Gotham's economically troubled neighboring city. Following the destruction of Blüdhaven, at the command of Deathstroke, Nightwing relocates to New York. Following "Batman: Knightfall", Dick Grayson takes up the mantle of Batman while Bruce was recovering from a broken back as he considers Dick his prodigal son. After the events of "Batman R.I.P." and Final Crisis, Dick moves operations to Gotham to protect the city following Bruce's apparent death. Despite Bruce's will instructing him not to, the chaos in Gotham following Bruce's disappearance prompts Dick to take up his mentor's identity once again as Batman. With Bruce's return, Dick once again picked up his previous identity as Nightwing.
1. Tim Drake
From 1989 to 2009, he was known as Robin in the Batman comics, becoming the third character to take up the identity. Tim Drake made his first comic book appearance in Batman #436 in a flashback as a child who was in the audience when Dick Grayson's parents fell to their deaths. Following the events in Batman: Battle for the Cowl, Drake has taken up the identity of Red Robin. Tim Drake is the son of Jack and Janet Drake, coming from the same social class as Bruce Wayne. When he was a young child, he visited the circus for the first time with his parents. The Drakes asked the Flying Graysons for a photo together, resulting in a momentary bond between Dick Grayson and Tim Drake as they met for the first time.
After reaching the age of nine, Drake deduces the identities of Batman and Robin as Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson after witnessing a gymnastic move by Robin that Grayson displayed while performing with the Flying Graysons. Noting that Batman has grown reckless and violent following the death of second Robin Jason Todd, who was murdered by the Joker, Drake decided to intervene and Batman eventually enlisted him as the third Robin after the death of his mother and the crippling of his father. Jack Drake also appeared in Identity Crisis. When Jean Loring sent him a gun he used it in self-defense and killed Captain Boomerang, but at the last second, Captain Boomerang threw a boomerang that killed Jack Drake. As a result Tim became an orphan, continuing the long held tradition that Robin is an orphan.
He is "the smart one" of the Bat-family, the thinker and planner. I mean, of course Bruce Wayne/Batman is what he is, and Tim isn’t quite there yet, but Tim at 17 has a more developed intellect than Bruce at 17 did. That’s not to say Dick Grayson or Barbara Gordon are dumb, of course they’re not, but Tim’s level of thinking is a bit... thicker... than theirs. For me, Dick is about superior reflexive thinking, Barbara about superior operational thinking and Tim is about superior comprehensive, or all-encompassing, thinking. What I love about Tim is that he shares some of the strongest traits of various Bat-family members. The intellect and detective skills of Bruce, the ability to lead others and be a friend to others like Dick has and even the ability to make cold, harsh decisions like Jason does. -Fabian Nicieza (comic book writer)
At the age of about nine years old, Tim Drake was able to deduce Robin's secret identity as Dick Grayson when Robin performed a quadruple somersault, in which Grayson was only one of the three people who could perform such a flip. This deduction also allowed Drake to deduce that Grayson's guardian Bruce Wayne was Batman. Drake's intellect has allowed him to deduce a majority of other heroes' identities including Flash and Superman. In addition, after foiling Ra's al Ghul's master plan to assassinate everyone Bruce Wayne cared about and ruining the Wayne Family fortune, Ra's has addressed Tim as "Detective", a title the villain once only reserved for Bruce Wayne. His intellect has enabled him to excel in computer science and a grasp of assorted scientific techniques, including biology, engineering, and genetics, which he has been shown to use in his attempts at re-cloning Superboy. Tim also speaks several languages beyond his native English, including Cantonese, Russian, Spanish and German. Drake, like Dick Grayson, has served as leader to Young Justice, the Teen Titans, and even being placed in charge of the rescue efforts of Blüdhaven by Superman, following the attack made by Deathstroke and his fellow villains.
I believe that Tim Drake is the best Robin for many reasons, but one sticks out the most and that is, Tim WANTED TO BE ROBIN! He didn't want to be Robin for a while and then move on, no, he wanted to be Robin forever, he knew the importance of being Robin, being Batman's sidekick. This is something he'd been thinking about for a long time and he trained his mind to be the best detective to ever live. As of now, Tim still isn't a better detective than Bruce, but he's pretty darn close. Even Bruce says that Tim will eventually be the better detective. Tim has proven himself sine day one against the cream of the crop of Batman's rogue's gallery and he's come on top; on his own. I consider Damian a pocket size weapon of mass destruction, but he's not smarter than Tim, Jason was strong and passionate, but he couldn't outsmart or beat Tim in a fight, Stephanie Brown has a great fighting spirit, she's courageous and relentless, but in a fight against Tim she's simply outclassed. Dick Grayson is the only one who could beat Tim in a fight since he can go toe to toe with Batman, which isn't an easy feat. But, I give the advantage to Tim for the simple fact that he's a crime fighting student, much like Bruce, in the sense that he studies his opponent's weaknesses and advantages, and he exploits them. And the fact of the matter is that, this isn't who is the best fighter or character, this is a question of who's the better Robin, and Tim Drake is hands down the better Robin in my opinion.
Agree? Disagree? Leave your argument below and we'll read it on the next installment of the Truthful Comics Podcast.
For the past two months me and two of my internet buddies have been doing a podcast delving into the world of comic books, movies, video games and everything else pertaining our geek culture. I've decided to announce it here on the blog now because I wanted to make sure we were going to stick with it and also, see if it would even work and so far; it has! We still got a lot to learn in the world of podcasting but we'll have fun getting there and hopefully you'll join us along for the ride. I'd like to introduce the Truthful Comics Podcast crew to everyone and the reasoning why we decided to do this.
First off we have the man with the most podcasting knowledge, the mastermind if you will, Aaron Hoover (a.k.a. Uncool Aaron). This is the man responsible for the recording and editing the podcast as well as being the master of ceremony if you will. But that's not all he does, Aaron is the co-host of another podcast called confessions of a Movie Snob and he recently launched the Nerdvana Network, a website dedicated to all things geek that also serves as homebase to his podcast as well as his blog. If you like movies, comic books and everything else geek, you should check it out: http://nerdvananetwork.com/
Then there's our young ward, Nolan's Batman #1 fan and Truthful Comics Podcast's boy wonder himself: Cory A. Gaitan! This dude has an encyclopedic knowledge of the Nolan Batman Universe as well as anything related to the Dark Knight. This self proclaimed DC fanboy is also writing his own comic book as well, so pretty soon we'll all be reading his work alongside our regular comic books. Cory is also an avid gamer and DC Comics connoisseur, so if you're thinking about picking up any DC book or maybe jumping into the New 52, it might do you a lot of good to listen to this young man.
And last but not least is me, Manuel A. Carmona. As you might or might not know, I'm the co-founder of Truthful Comics as well as President of a non-profit organization called Comics For Christmas (http://www.truthfulcomics.com/comics-for-christmas.html) and I'm also a comic book artist (Captain Action, Phazer, Project: New Wave). I'm a huge Star Wars fan as well as a longtime comic book fan. I read comic books on many genres and companies from Marvel to DC to Image to Dynamite and I'm a self proclaimed crusader of Ultimate Spider-Man (Miles Morales), The Mighty Thor and Stephanie Brown (Batgirl) LOL!
Listen to the Truthful Comics Podcast HERE: http://www.truthfulcomics.com/podcast.html
I hope you join us on this crazy ride and enjoy our podcasting shenanigans. If you have any comments or suggestions, please leave them on our comments section, we'd really appreciate it!
Today was one of those days when I just wanted to take my family out for a long drive without a specific destination and just wing it. Fill up the gas tank, lower the door windows, open the sun roof, turn the volume and just enjoy the ride; so that's what we did! We drove for a while and my wife spotted a dance studio (she's a professional dancer) and asked me if we could stop real quick, to which I replied: "Sure". Of course, I immediately spotted a book store right next to the dance studio and I told her I wanted to check it out afterwards. The books store was independently owned and it looked inviting.
There were tow male clerks who immediately acknowledge me and my family and were very courteous, something that employees from every field are missing more and more these days! I looked around for a few minutes and they asked me if I needed help, but before I could ask them, I noticed that one of the clerks had a pile of at least 50 comics in front of him! All I could say was "Yes you do!" He looked at me funny and I said "Comics, do you guys carry comic books?" And he said "Yes we do!" He showed me three aisles full of comics ranging from Batman to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to The Mighty Thor to Wildcats! It was a beautiful thing!!!
As soon as I turned that corner where the clerk told me to, I was suddenly in front of what can only be described as a comic book hidden treasure! Even more so when it's located in Virginia Beach, so to me it felt like I was a pirate, and I discovered an abandoned treasure chest full of comic book gold! I'm talking about hundreds, if not thousands of comic books, and at great prices too! It's too bad that I had just went to my local comic shop and spent a pretty penny there, because I only had so much extra cash to spare. But rest assure, I'll be stopping by this book store on a more regular basis and I'll be getting a bunch of those comics they had in their store.
So, next time you're in Virginia Beach and get the mood to buy some comic books, visit AFK Books, Music and Movies.
They're located at:
4801 Shore Drive, Suite D
Virginia Beach, VA 23455
Press Release- Apr. 3, 2013 - OLATHE, Kan.
You can find out everything there is to know about the Nerdvana Network by visiting: http://nerdvananetwork.com/
By Aaron Hoover | March 22, 2013 |
We are joined by Cory Gaitan and Manuel Carmona wherein we are tasked with the hypothetical job of producing and creating a Justice League movie by Christopher Nolan.
There are a lot of rumors flying around about the now-back-in-development Justice League movie from Warner Brothers, and we take a crack at what we’d like to see, and what we’d like to do with this superhero franchise that seems to be teetering on the edge of a knife, one step away from being amazing, and one step away from falling into colossal failure.
Click this link to listen to the episode: http://confessionsofamoviesnob.com/
//About the Justice League
The Justice League, also called the Justice League of America or JLA, is a fictional superhero team that appears in comic books published by DC Comics. First appearing in The Brave and the Bold #28 (February/March 1960), the Justice League originally featured Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash (Barry Allen), Green Lantern (Hal Jordan), Aquaman and the Martian Manhunter. The team roster has been rotated throughout the years with characters such as Green Arrow, Captain Marvel, Black Canary, the Atom, Hawkman, Elongated Man, Red Tornado, Firestorm, Zatanna, Hawkgirl, Cyborg and dozens of others. The team received its own comic book title in October 1960, when the first issue was published. It would continue to #261 in April 1987, which was the final issue. Throughout the years, various incarnations or subsections of the team have operated as Justice League America, Justice League Europe, Justice League International, Justice League Task Force, Justice League Elite and Extreme Justice.//
By Alvaro Cortez Ortiz Jr.
Last summer I attended the Puerto Rico Comic Con (PRCC) for the first time. It was the third edition and that one was the biggest yet. And it was the first con that had the big show feel to it. Big name creators attended like Greg Capullo, Joe Madureira, DC comics co-publisher Dan Didio, from Japan Toshio Maeda, and a slew of local talent selling their merchandise. It was a great atmosphere with the biggest attendance the con ever had. It was a runaway success and an experience I will never forget. You can read more about it at this link http://www.truthfulcomics.com/1/post/2012/05/puerto-rico-comic-con.html That being said, that did not prepare me for the craziness that was New York Comic Con (NYCC) 2012.
My girlfriend and I went for the 4-day pass, 2012 being the first year they decided to extend the event an extra day. On Thursday, day 1, she had to work at a booth so I spent the entire day by myself. That first day easily surpassed the amount of people that I saw in PRCC by a lot. And still, it was a relatively “slow” day in the eyes of the vendors and the attendees! How did I start that day off? By going to a comic booth and purchasing Batman #0, of course. I actually spoke with the vendor and he was the one that expressed that while things looked a little slow, he was actually surprised he saw a nice amount of people, and was very happy I was the first customer of the day.
J. Scott Campbell signing stuff!
As I made my way through the show floor and looking through the comic bins and video game presentations, I found out when J. Scott Campbell was going to be there. As some as you may know from my PRCC blog, I have that special Wizard Magazine insert of the Cliffhanger! preview comic that has a jam cover done by Humberto Ramos, Joe Madureira, and J. Scott Campbell. I had already gotten Joe Mad’s signature on it, so I went for Campbell’s as well. As I nervously made my way to his table, there was a fan in front of me with like 70 comics. No kidding. A box full of comics for Campbell to sign, I was going to be there a while. But before that, he looked at me and saw me only holding that preview comic and a copy of the volume 1 Danger Girl trade (the one that has only the preview and issue 1-2), and he politely asked the guy in front of me if he’d let me go ahead of him, to which he didn’t mind at all. He looked at the Cliffhanger! preview and his eyes actually lit up! “Wow, this is old!” he said with a big smile. We actually engaged in some small chit chat about the old times, what he was planning to do in the future with the other fan as well. I was just plain star struck. After my girlfriend finished working at the booth, we walked around before the first day officially came to a close.
Awesome Gundam is awesome!
Day 2 on Friday was pretty much the “official” first day of the convention. We arrive there early, and to her shock (she had gone to the 2010 NYCC), she sees the mountain of people waiting to go the con and tells me that easily this crowd was bigger than the Saturday crowd of 2010, and Saturday is the busiest day of the cons, to which she said that the following day was going to be insane. As we waited to go inside the Javitz Center, there was a nice group of wrestling fans that started chanting “YES, YES, YES!” in homage to WWE wrestler Daniel Bryan as a new group would be allowed to enter the convention. That was awesome! That day we got quite a lot of freebies from different booths like anime posters, DC were handing out pins and various reprints of comics. One thing that caught my attention, DC was randomly giving out owl masks from the “Court of Owls” story from the first year of the N52 Batman! Believe me I would constantly hound the area for a chance to get a mask! I strolled around artists alley because Tony Daniel and Jay Anacleto were going to be there. I missed out on both that day, but I did meet Mexican artist Carlo Barberi, who drew Impulse and a handful of Superman comics, who is now working for Marvel. He signed an issue of Superman and spoke a little bit about what he was currently working on, he was very nice. Then we went to make the line at the DC booth for the Scott Snyder signing, where we found out that earlier in the day, we had to make a different line to get bracelets to meet certain creators at the booth. Yes, to meet certain creators you had to make two lines!
But fortunately enough, we made it in time for the Jim Lee signing line for the bracelets. After that we killed some time walking around and getting some comics and mangas. We spoke to some indie creators and vendors. Then I went to the Aspen booth to get Peter Steigerwald’s autograph. I couldn’t talk with him unfortunately because, and I am dead serious here, there was a guy that was in front of me that he was already signing for, that had what seemed to be over 1,000 trading cards. And he was signing each one. One by one. The poor guy looked tired, and the dude in front of me had this condescending look on his face like “yeah, you BETTER sign them all!” After a small while, Steigerwald just glances up and sees me standing there with just a solitary “Soulfire: The Definitive Edition” volume 1 in my hands (a birthday gift from my girlfriend, actually, one of the best birthday presents I've ever had), and he asks the guy if he didn’t mind if he quickly signed my trade. He just looked at me and scoffed in a “whatever” kind of way, got my trade signed, and I was out of there.
Afterwards we killed some more time looking around until the Jim Lee signing. Then it finally happened, I was about to meet Jim Lee! The problem was Lee was at a panel and he arrived late to the scheduled signing, so his time was up and had to leave to keep the schedule of the other artists that were scheduled for the spot after him. And this is how awesome Jim Lee is. He actually told the people in charge of the line at the booth to keep the fans in the line, and the he would walk up the line and sign everyone’s memorabilia! Of course I got the NYCC book signed, along with WildCATS #1, and actually a promotional graphic novel of Everquest he did back in the Wildstorm days that I had bought years ago at Electronic Boutique long before they were bought out by Gamestop. He signed the graphic novel, proceeded to sign WildCATS when he suddenly looked stumped, and he actually flipped back to the Everquest graphic novel. “MAN this is old!” he exclaimed with laughter. Then he actually asks my girlfriend and me if we ever played the game as he continued to sign other comics. We exchanged some laughter and I nearly wet myself. Jim Lee is that awesome. Also, I believe it was colorist Alex Sinclair that was doing the signing with Lee also was signing at the line. That was cool. So after that incredible high, it was time to call it a day a little afterwards. And yes, I was searching high and low for the owl masks at the DC booth.
This was in the morning to get in! YIKES!
Day 3 on Saturday, it was absolutely crazy. I had never seen the amount of people I saw that day. I almost felt claustrophobic. We went to a DC panel and later we went to a Kodansha panel where my girlfriend heard delightful news on Sailor Moon and other releases. On that day Puerto Rican artist Amin Amat was going to do a signing. The ironic thing is I always miss his signings here in PR. And it looked like I had my chance finally! But I thought he was going to be signing for an hour, so I made it to the Zenescope booth like maybe 10 minutes after the signing ended, which lasted half an hour. Once again I missed out! Oh, well, next time, Amat, next time! Then we made our way to make the line for the bracelets for the Scott Snyder signing later that evening. Owl masks were handed out but missed out again. Then we went to Artist Alley, there we saw American Vampire Artist Rafael Albuquerque. He signed volumes 1-4 of American Vampire and we actually chatted for quite a while. Enough that I actually even gathered the courage to ask him what advice he could give to an aspiring creator. “Never, ever, give up” he told me. And we kept on talking a while longer and he was very nice and encouraging. After the conversations and the handshakes, came a huge moment for me. Tony Daniel was at his table just on the next row behind where Albuquerque was.
It's TONY DANIEL!!!!
For those who know me personally for a long time, know that as far as artists that influenced me goes, Tony Daniel is right up there with Joe Quesada, Greg Capullo, Todd McFarlane, Humberto Ramos, Michael Turner, and J. Scott Campbell. His work on F5 and The Tenth is some of my all-time faves. I was a nervous wreck waiting on the line to meet him. Then it finally happened. I got to meet Tony Daniel. I took F5 #1 and 4, because those were my favorite cover s he had done and also because I just loved that mini-series. He was excited to see the F5 comics and commented how much fun he had doing that mini and told him about how it was one of my all time faves. We talked quite a bit about those times when he was doing his creator owned F5 Entertainment stuff as I tried to convince him to one day rerelease a hardcover F5 trade, have my fingers crossed on it happening one day! My girlfriend was so amused by my sheer fanboyism that she actually bought a Batman poster he was selling and he signed it for me as well. That was an experience I will never forget. And later on, it was on to Scott Snyder! As we make our way back to the show room floor, I actually ran into a familiar face. Back in PRCC I had gotten some Toshio Maeda prints and had him sign it personalized for my girlfriend as a present, to which he and his wife were so excited about. I had totally forgotten he was going to the NYCC as well. When we approached the table and saw me, he actually remembered me from the PRCC! The four of us talked for a little bit and she bought a manga from him, and it was just awesome and surreal at the same time, but in a good way. After that we went to the HUGE line for the Scott Snyder Signing.
Scott. Freaking. Snyder. That is all.
It was the longest line we made yet. I was carrying around the “Batman: Black Mirror” trades as well as Batman issues 1&2, the American Vampire volumes and my Girlfriend bought his novel, Voodoo Heart. We had small talk with other fans waiting on the line. The owl masks came out again and my girlfriend darted to where they were and FINALLY I had an owl mask! Anyway, again, those that know me personally know how high I hold Scott Snyder. I had never read his work before Batman. I had stopped buying mainstream comics for many years until DC announced Greg Capullo as the new artist on Batman. And from issue 1, I became a BIG fan of his work. As the series progressed, I can honestly say he has turned into my all-time favorite comic book writer and inspired me to look for ways to better myself and challenge myself as well. And then the moment finally came. I met Scott Snyder. He was very nice as he signed my comics, and I just out right told him the words I typed here. He looked incredibly humbled and even asked what my name was, and we actually started talking for a little bit along with my girlfriend. And even though the booth at that point had said to not take pictures to make the line move fast, he was kind enough to actually take a picture with me, and shook my hand when I left. I hope that one day I can be half the writer and professional that he is. And with that day three came to a close. Afterwards we went to the Darkness and Light Exhibition which was in its final day in New York and saw the paintings and sculptures for the We Can Be Heroes campaign.
Day 4 Sunday, the final day. That day was pretty insanely full as well. We went to a DC panel with Dan DiDio and jim Lee. When the mics wer eopened for questions, I actually asked DiDio and Lee questions. That was pretty sweet! I had asked DiDio about how digital comic sales may or may not influence cancellations of series, to which he responded not really because he found that sales for the digital versions are actually usually on par with the physical sales of the comics. Then I asked Lee if he would ever consider bringing Max Faraday into the New 52 universe. He responded that while he loved the character and would like to introduce him, it would have to be at a time where he himself could do the character because he held that story and characters close to his heart. After the panel was over we made our way to the Batman panel, but we couldn't get in because it got filled to capacity. We decided to eventually check out the The Walking Dead and right after it the Firefly reunion panel, but unfortunately we discovered to our horror, that contrary to previous years, the auditorium was not emptied after the panels and screenings. So that means that there were hundreds of people that stayed there since 6 in the morning and went through screenings and panels they did not even want to see, just to see the panels of The Walking Dead and Firefly which were in the evening and night. Yeah, that sucked. So we just took advantage of the last day sales on comics and graphic novels throughout the various comic bins.
The awesome David Mack!
I visited Artist Alley one more time and got to meet and briefly chat with Ben Templesmith! He signed my copy of 30 Days of Night trade and was very nice. Then back on the show room I met Tony Moore and he signed my volume 1 trade of The Walking Dead, and we talked a bit as well, which was awesome! I gave one last tour of artist ally and found another artist that inspired me, David Mack! He signed an issue of Kabuki as we talked for a bit, and took a picture of him because a good friend of mine loves his works and she had asked me to take a picture of him, he was very cool to talk with. And in a nutshell, that was my NYCC 2012 experience.
I hear that last year was weak compared to the previous two years. But to me, it was a rush. It was almost like coming home. Returning to my roots, this being only the second time I had gone to New York since I moved to PR as a teenager. To that first love of. Of doing what you only talked about with fellow fans and friends, meeting the writer and artists that entertained and influenced you so. There was a common theme, almost a mantra throughout this con. “Never give up”.
If there is something I can say I took from this experience is to never give up. Who knows? There are many stories about creators who attended as fans one year came back the following year as a professional. So, if you read this far into the blog, I say to you, and I say to myself as well, don’t give up, if this is your passion, your goal, your dream, don’t give up.
This is the Blog about all things Truthful Comics. Looking forward to reading your posts!