Tuesday, July 26, 2016

I'm Batman!

Several things have occurred recently that lit a fire under me to complete my 'Black Bat' Batman set. First of all last years initial foray into Topps Kickstarter Mars Attacks Occupation campaign got me thinking about my days as a non-sports collector. When I was a kid the Civil War News (a post on that is coming soon), Batman and Mars Attacks cards were very popular in the playground at St. Mary's School in Nutley NJ.

Then at least one regular blogger (Joe Shlabotnik) and maybe more posted a few from this set. That inspired me to finally dig through my boxes to see what I had. Turns out I had enough cards (20 or so) to make completing the set a viable option.

With some eBay pickups, a little digging at the monthly card show and finally a COMC purchase I was able to grab the last of the cards I needed to finish off this 55 card set.

Obviously I wasn't chasing graded cards. I just want cards I can put into album pages and enjoy that way, flipping thru nine at a time.

You can see images of each of the 55 cards on the set's page at Trading Card Database. They cards run thru 11 card 'subsets' tied to story-lines involving different villains. Click that Shlabotnik Report link above if you haven't already to see his detailed run thru of the Joker story-line.

This 'black bat' series was one of several that were issued around the same time as the Batman TV show became popular. This page at Old Bubblegum Cards summarizes the six sets.

Here is the back of #25. Note that it's label at the bottom as 'No. 1 of 11 Batman vs. The Catwoman cards'.

I'll finish up with one of my favorites from the set. Batman and Robin soaring thru Gotham City. Good stuff.

On a somewhat related note I went with my two grown sons last evening to a screening of the full length animated version of Batman The Killing Joke. Bat-nerds (of which there were plenty last night) and graphic comic fans will recognize that as one of the most iconic (and dark) Batman story arcs. Supposedly it was the highest grossing of Fathom's one-night theater events. So much so that it was held over for a second night in some theaters which is rarely if ever done.

I came away impressed by the animation, the 'voice acting', especially as done by Mark Hamill as the Joker, and the soundtrack. I was less enthused by the 20 minute Batgirl/Batman stuff that opened the film that apparently was written to 'flesh out' the original plot. I could have lived without the ::SPOILER ALERT::  ahem...intimate physical encounter the two super heroes have. But once the story got rolling it was entertaining. Reviews/previews have been decidedly mixed. You've been warned.