Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Sheffield's Most Wanted. Part 17: Batman #259.

Batman 100 pages, The Shadow
Yes! Yes, Mr Cover Designer! I CAN spot Bruce Wayne in that picture! He's clearly the man in the scarf, holding the gun and looking a bit miffed at everyone. I am me and I demand my prize!

If there was one 1970s Batman story I wanted to read more than his team-up with Manhunter, it was his collaboration with the Shadow. I wanted to be Batman. I wanted to be the Shadow. I also wanted to be the Spectre but I'd have to die to be that, so I was happy to settle for being either of the other two. Therefore how could I not love them being in one story together?

Actually, were they in one story together? Nick Cardy's cover for Batman #259 leaves it in some doubt as to whether DC's nocturnal knights would ever meet.

Sadly, I never got to find out because I never got to read the comic. But what a magnificent treat I have no doubt it was.

But let's be honest, who cares about  the Shadow and Batman? One look at that cover tells us what we really want to see - the feature where DC unveils new costumes designed for Robin by me the readers.

Bearing in mind the less-than-stellar costumes I the reader inflicted on poor old Supergirl when given the chance to design new costumes for her, one can only shudder at what nightmares I the reader inflicted on Robin, bearing in mind he wasn't necessarily the most dignifiedly attired man in the first place.


Anonymous said...

IIRC, Batman and the Shadow did meet face to face at the end of this story. But then, they had met before, in Batman #253. That's Bruce Wayne (dressed as Buster Brown) cowering in the foreground on the cover. The flashback revealed that young Bruce was traumatized when he witnessed a terrifying gunfight between the Shadow and some bank robbers, and that the experience left him with a phobia of guns. Apparently, Denny O' Neil decided that seeing one's parents gunned down by a mugger would not be enough to give a person a negative attitude toward firearms. (But seeing a shoot-out in which no one got hurt but the bad guys would?)

Gey Blabby said...

For me, alas, both of the Batman/Shadow team-ups from that time were a bit disappointing. The stories were only passable and Irv Novick's artwork lacked the inspiration that Adams or Kaluta might have brought to it. Even Nick Cardy's cover wasn't up to his usual high standard.

Anonymous said...

As a kid this was also a book that I wanted to get but sadly I never managed to track it down, that was until a mere 39 years(arghh!) later when I saw it in Glasgow (around February 2013), was it worth the wait? was it fuff - a very average story and as previousl ystated with not the best (not bad though) art by the great Irv Novik and Dick Giordano. Even the back up reprints were mostly average ( albeit by the great Dick Sprang) - the highlight of the comic was the 1/3rd page Henry Boltinoff strip "Casey the Cop" with the 2 pages of readers Robin outfit designs and a one page comedy covers section making me wonder how DC survived at times compared to Marvels output at this time - overall you didn't really miss that much in 1974 - McScotty

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