Welcome...

Welcome...

Friday, December 30, 2016

LEGO Ghostbusters ECTO 1- & 2

Hello Dear OCHO!!

I gave myself a splendid addition to my LEGO Display in the form of the iconic car from the GHOSTBUSTERS, the ECTO-1.
I love the detail.  I love the engineering involved.  I'm the farthest thing in the world from that yet I love the process and the end result.  And the mistake-making which always seems to be from not slowing down & being precise.  And as much as I love the original movies and the cartoon, the Ladies Reboot was so fun.
Hey now my "Dimension" can pass the Bechdel Test, eh?

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Batman Story for Competition 2016

The Detective was Alone.
It was a Dark & Stormy Night.
Robin's curfew was hours ago yet Here He Was.  A Gargoyle in the Rain.  Waiting.
He'd got a good tip from Clark who heard it from Diana who got it from Barry.  Hal is Offworld.
Deathstroke was in Gotham...and He was On The Job.
The Assassin's Targets were in the hotel across the way although 56 stories up.
Who was in the luxury suites at this Gotham hi-rise was a mystery.  Why and How...Unimportant at this moment.
Deathstroke was on the move...
The Batman was on the Case.

The Man and the Woman lay in the darkness, enjoying their solitude, their respite, their embrace.
A feminine, squeaky-voice asks aloud, "Klaus, Klaus?? Is Mr. Hoohah home?"
The bubbling laughter ripples in the Darkness, as if made of it itself then replies, "Hum...I dunno. Lemme check!"
Then the World Came Crashing In.
Two New Bodies, equally sprawled, equally entwined, equally devoted were too at play, yet of a different kind.
The Darkness now penetrated by light from a newly-minted maw on the side of the room
The Batman and the Terminator: Deathstroke!  FIGHTING!!
"A Match fitting a God!!!", the Joker thought aloud with No Filter, bellowing out in sheer delight, wearing only his purple trousers and a smile.  All awhile, Harley Quinn in her nightie is bravely shouldering the duo away from her man muttering, "Don't touch me!" over & over again, rather coyly as well.
The Combatants Stopped for about 3 Seconds in bewilderment at the sight.
(PSST! This scene I ripped off a Cheech & Chong movie. I thought it worked so well here. Thanks!!

Round Two commenced back at street level mere seconds after this intrusion.  Two holes now punctured the pristine mirrored 56th floor of the Bilton Gotham Towers Hotel.
"Ahhh he'll getaway!!!", raged the one-eyed mercenary.
"He always does", countered the Dark Knight flatly.
"After what he's done to you, to the birdboy?"
"Not in My City, Slade.  Not on my watch.", says the Batman as he shifts his feet as boxers do.

As the Armored Prisoner Transport rolls away, Commissioner James Gordon asks his old friend, "Why?"
The Batman agrees..."Why."

3 Days Later and the Rain had finally ceased. Gordon and Montoya pull up to a modest 3-story dwelling common to these parts of Gotham.  The real neighborhoods outside busy Downtown or South Island or whatever hip name "They" come up with this year.  Gordon buzzes the 2nd floor.  A woman, in her late 30's comes to the door.
"Jim!!!"
"Hello, Maggie".
"Hey, Ney!", Maggie waves.  The Lieutenant simply makes a head nod and stays with the Car.
Maggie Infantino was born Margaret Dunphy in this same neighborhood.  Her husband's Memorial picture & Shield on a plaque greet you as you enter their home.  He inherited it from his great-grandmother as Neil was reared there.  His widow inherited from him.
Maggie wasted no time, as real Gotham Girls are Notorious in such serious matters.
"Are ya gonna charge me, Jimmy?  Bring me in?"
"No...but I will give to the D.A. the evidence you embezzled from the Widow's Fund to hire Deathstroke.  He didn't talk but he didn't need to...Batman followed the money."
"I didn't embezzle, Jimmy. We all agreed.  I mean,  We're not just 'widows', we're husbands too.  Partners.  This was all of Us.  We're all in on it, Jim.  Please reconsider.  We were just trying to take this one off of "His" shoulders."
Gordon gets up, reflects on the plaque and leaves, in silence.

For the foreseeable time thereafter, there was no mention of any occurrence in the media until Now with this faithful recounting.

-The End

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

quasi-annual update...

Darnitall, I'm just not very good about visiting the ol' ocho.

Since I last poked my head in, I've landed a sweet job with Cray supercomputers, and now work (with a remote team in Bristol, UK) out of a basement office in my new home in Shelburne Vermont. Send me your updated address at msilvia7 at verizon.net, and I'll shoot you a Christmas card Sully.

Nice Batcave, by the way. My son would LOVE it.

Cheers,
Matt

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Episode WTF!!!

What Moof-Milker decided this?

I get it.  To a degree yet what the Aftermath leaves boggles me.
On April 24, 2014, Disney announced the Re-Launch of the Publishing World of Star Wars.
All Printed Stories published before this date are now relegated to a Limbo now culled into a Property Known as "Legends".
Star Wars "Canon" is best defined at the Wiki.

Yet this leaves all 6 previous movie novelization out in the cold.  The baby is with the bathwater.
To boot, The Force Awakens and Rogue One's novelizations are "Canon" and not "Legends".
This makes very little sense to me.
And affects me deeply.  Very personally.
I grew up on all three original novelization.
We didn't have VCRs until the mid-80s and those who had them before were more well-off than Us.
The Golden-covered Del Rey paperback of STAR WARS written by George Lucas (ghostwritten by Alan Dean Foster, who also wrote EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, Splinter of the Mind's Eye and THE FORCE AWAKENS but iDigress...)
The Toche Station scene opens STAR WARS with Luke, Biggs and the Gang goofing on Luke.  Not much additive in EMPIRE yet JEDI opens with Luke in Obi-Wan's hut, assembling his new lightsabre, talking to Artoo.
Later on...
The prequels offer great scenes not seen in the movies and make them better stories overall, divorced from their production.  PHANTOM MENACE, Anakin saves the wounded Tusken, knowing full well he'll catch a literal beating from Watto.  CLONES adds a puzzle piece around Obi-Wan's investigation of the Kaminoan Sabre-Dart, illuminating the Lost 20 Jedi which Dooku was part of.  His bust in the Temple Library. Also Anakin talking with padme's father about the threat on Naboo.  And RotSITH had the most vibrant Padme scenes cut.  She invented the Rebellion.  Anakin also savors his Fall.  Never sheds a tear.

Even THE FORCE AWAKENS novelization contains a few not-seen scenes...in Act 3 on Starkiller Base, Kylo Ren has a candid story beat in the cockpit of the Falcon.  Great little story beat yet matters a bit, if that stuff matters to you.  The snowspeeder chase on SK-Base.  Poe getting away from Jakku ended up being superfluous storywise yet if you were wondering, it's in there.  It's simply another speeder chase.  There's a charming character moment at Maz Kanada's wherein the group is dining and Rey seems to eat everything on the table...it's impressive.  It then segues into movie-wise Maz asking Han, "Who's the Girl?"  Han shrugs.
I'll read ROGUE ONE after I've seen it yet, what tiny divergences or cut scenes await?

So how can the movie's novelizations be cast away so...
by a blanket edict?

This makes me very sad.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Get in My Belly meets the Tao of Sully

The Tao of Coffee

I love Coffee.

I have recently made the conscious switch.
I now use a French Press.  

Every 5 AM (Saturdays, sometime 9-10AM).  I make 2 mugs of the freshest Jawa Juice on the Planet.  
I go to Starbucks (#DontJudgeMe).
Buy a pound of whole bean, then freshly-ground for French Press.
The rougher ground lends more surface area in which the essential oils of the roasted bean can be released.  That thin sheen of oil beads on the surface of your coffee is not only natural, it should be the goal of a properly-brewed Cuppa.  It's not from a dirty mug, it's a gift of the bean herself...think about it.
Coffee is to be drank Black with No Sugar.
Flipping That, coming from an Irish Household, Tea is to be Black Tea (Salada was my Grandma's table brand yet her sister Helena was Red Rose...), served piping hot at 3PM, with milk & sugar along a small service of cookies (Peak Freans jellies with the creme-filling please?).  

But coffee...is a ritual at this point in my life.
A Morning Meditation.
People ask me all the time, how are you so Enthusiastic and Positive.
Part of it is knowing that Life Sucks.  Not a Nihilistic remark yet a Buddhist Frame-of-Mind.  
It's the First of the Four Noble Truths.  
Yet another factor has gotta be a Good. Waking Cuppa Jamoke...
By The Average 5:22AM, I'm on my first sip.
My mind is in Motion.
My body engaged with the caffeine and my senses awakened with the smell & flavor of the piping hot pour.

So be not offended if I kindly refuse your generous offer of Dunkins or a Keurig.
In the Immortal Words of Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock, "I've got mine."
Namaste...

Saturday, November 12, 2016

LEGO Batcave '66

Saturday, October 01, 2016

I'm very grateful to my family for showing up to Highland Kitchen for Sunday Brunch last week.
I'm proud to be blue collar.  Proud to work, to earn.  Proud to make daily differences in my guests' lives with nutritious & delicious foods from MIT Brain Food Salad Bars to Captaining a Sunday Brunch at one of Somerville's Most Popular Hotspots.
I am a Linecook.  I am a Union 26 chef.  And I live to serve.  Life does get easier when we make the choice to switch our intrinsic values from "What's in it for Me?" to "How Can I Help?".
My parents have been to Sunday Brunch at Highland Kitchen a few times over the past few years.  Sunday Brunch is what keeps me from Easter & Mother's Day so they share theirs with me now.
My cousin Michael pulled this together.  Scoreboard: Table for 9.  My parents, 4 cousins, 3 spouses.
9 very happy people.  I saw a bunch of clean plates.  The best compliment a chef can get.

LEGO Doctor Who TARDIS

Hey OCHO!
How's it going?  ^_^
I've found a great past time.
LEGO!
I've been bitten by the LEGO Bug and I'm shamelessly a Happier Nerd for It.

You might remember The Inciting Incident: The STAR WARS MILENNIUM FALCON my parents gave me last year as an X-Mas present.

I've been a DOCTOR WHO fan since I was a kid, before Star Wars to be sure.  Way before the Modern Era and the Age of the "Whovian".  It's a term I shrink from personally.  I'd like to think of myself humbly as just another one of the Doctor's companions but iDigress...
It used to be an exclusive club and you had to find "the secret door" to get in.  And of course, the room was bigger on the inside, so to speak.
My "secret door" was my PBS station WGBH Channel 2.
And in the 1970's on Sundays, they would play blocks of Doctor Who in the afternoon.  Doctor Who became synonymous with Sunday Dinner at either Grandma's House and What Do I Only-Child Do After Supper?
I'd watch a shitload of Doctor Who, that's where "I went" for a few hours, weekly.
Tom Baker, the 4th Doctor was My First Primary Health Care Provider for the Imagination.
"Jelly Belly?"
Peter recently turned me onto to LEGO Ideas.  An Official Site for Real Suggestions for Future Kits.  It's a really dynamic system and if your idea hold merit, interest and most importantly traction with other members "Likes", your Kit could become Manifest!
The DOCTOR WHO TARDIS Kit is Number Eleven in the LEGO Ideas Series.  A fan thought this design up and lo & behold...$60 Yanquee Dollars Later, it's sitting on display in my room.  ^_^















Thursday, September 22, 2016

Dads

Saturday, September 17, 2016

LEGO Batcave '66

Kit Bag One: The Batmobile.
Mini-Figures include BATMAN and JOKER.
Happy Batman Day! ^_^

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

My Elevator Pitch for the Ben Affleck BATMAN Movie.

Already we know Deathstroke will be in it.

How to include Joker & Harley and not even use them until End of Act 2?
Have Deathstroke be on a paid assignment to...
Kill Joker.  Batman will have to protect Joker from Deathstroke.  In order to bring him to Justice all the while while not killing the villain himself for murdering Robin.
Act 3 resolution: Batman susses out Who Hired Deathstroke?
The GCPD Widows' Fund.  The Wives of the Cops killed by Joker.
Justice?

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Star Wars

I'm almost done with S2 of Star Wars The Clone Wars.

I am looking forward (spoiler-free) to ROGUE-ONE.

I noticed something...
It's "Canon".
It's in the Show.

Well Jango Fett's armor and painting of the Slave-1 respect the colors of the planet Mandalore...
Boba Fett's respects the colony of Concordia.  And in the previous "canon", Boba Fett was supposed to have come from a Mandalorian colony called Concord Dawn, right?
Just throwing that out there.
^_~ 

I've Moved!

So I hadda leave my home of 4 1/2 years.
Why?
That's a Story for Another Day...but iDigress.

My mom & stepdad came by with random stuff, including a microwave & a really nice toaster oven.
She also brough slow-roasted chi thighs with crispy skin.
Wow.

I've been bowled over with my friends and family these past 2 days.

My new sitch.  Is really cool.
I got the Sundance Channel on our Cable and last night was a Law & Order marathon.  Original.
Saturdays are for Hitchcock.  I watched Vertigo and Rear Window as I folded my clothes.  The Birds come on next.

I'm reporting to you from my usual Saturday Blogging Place: My Local Pub.
I moved an 8 minute walk away from my Local.
a 21-minute walk away from my beloved Sunday gig, Highland Kitchen.
and a 25-minute walk (mind you, in sandals!) from Davis Square.

I kept my Neighborhood.
Thank you, Magoun Square.
This is what it feels to be an immigrant. I'm from a Place...
Yet I came here & stayed here.
Namaste...

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Star Wars

I've just started watching the Clone Wars.

I'm almost done with season 2.  And I am very impressed.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Star Wars

Hey Space Cowboys and Girls!

I just finished the amazing monthly edition "Lattes With Leia", 2 savvy ladies talking about Star Wars for an hour.  My cup of Jawa Juice.
This Edition: "Best of..."  I played along at home.  Maybe you can as well.  I'd love to hear your Lattes' -Inspired Best of List.
So do what I do, give the Lattes Ladies a Spin and Play Along at Home!
The Force will be with you.  Always.  ^_^
Cheers!





















Saturday, August 06, 2016

Suicide Squad

Spoiler-Free:

Suicide Squad was a great accompaniment to the eventual over-story of the new DC Live-Action Movies.
A PG-13 attempt at matching Marvel's Deadpool with some pottymouthed fan service.
In the end, it was a simple movie, told in three acts with relatable characters.  I think it better use of the action figures in this Movie Universe's Toybox.
MoS, BvS and the introduction of "metahumans" is the familiar backdrop and this story tells itself.  The stakes are in the backstory.  The exposition is seamless.  The Big Bad is Believable if you know your DCU.  The threat was a CGI-Frakfest yet the strength was in the roles & their actors.  The Story was Color-By-Numbers in 3 Acts.  You know...a movie.
Will Smith I knew was gonna steal this show.  He was Lawton, the Deadshot.  Really filled the role with depth & humanity.  As this movie went, I was most interested in seeing him.  He's a good actor.
Margot Robbie really was Harley Quinn.  Nailed it...POW!
I'm sorry if you were disappointed with it...really.  I don't know what you're expecting.  It's one of the reasons I go into movies Spoiler-Free.  I don't prejudge.  I like movies.  And as dumb action movies go, this is good.  Act 2 is a mini-remake of "Escape From New York".  Hey, I liked Jared Leto's Joker and his apparent devotion to his moll.  Harley's Origin Story is Important to Me as a Fan....a Bat-Fan.  And they did it right, or close enough.  Harley was never a victim of Joker like the New 52 Version.  In the original source Batman: The Animated Series, Arkham Asylum psychologist Dr. Harleen Quinzel was a Conscious Choicemaker and fell in love with Her Puddin.
Their screentime together is actually quite charming.
Amanda Waller, Captain Boomerang, Katana. They were spot on.  Killer Croc was really cool.

It's just a Summer action movie.  Go, Enjoy.  Get some popcorn.  Stay for the Stinger.  I dunno how Infinitely Rewatchable it is yet I'll give it a second spin, it's only 'when"?

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Star Trek Beyond!

Beyond Expectation and Anticipation lies only Story.
And if the Story isn't Driving...then What Is?

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

I grew up in the day when Music wasn't Digital.
It was Analog.

You could Feel it.
It was Tactile.
From the LP
through the diamond needle
pass the wires
to the Speakers...

That Happened!
There is a magic about LPs
I remember the story "why" Metallica's "...And Justice For All" is a Double LP
It's to accommodate the drums and the bass.
That Happened!
Literally captured on Analog Tape.
Sure it was Digitally manipulated, somehow/
Yet have you ever known how "...And Justice For All" can rumble your shirtsleeves?

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Star Wars!

Hey Jedis and the Occasional Pieces of Sith,

It's time for another strong-in-the-Force cup of Jawa Juice as Lattes With Leia 'casts again.
This time one of the subjects is "Debate This!".  The Ladies bring up some Hot Topics that have been bandying about the lore.
My favorite part of the podcast though was when Amy Ratcliffe told us about her interview with comics writer Charles Soule.
Amy writes for Star Wars Dot Com (so cool!!).
I thought I swore off the Books.  Yet I got sucked back in a little bit.
Mr. Soule writes POE DAMERON and it's drawn by one of my favorite artists Phil Noto.
Soule writes dialog for BB-8 which then gets translated into Boops & Tweeeps!  It's so engaging in the pilot & droid's relationship.

So check out the Lattes Ladies Latest Cup of Goodness.  And play along at Home!
Cheers!
Debate This!! ^_^

Hey there Lattes Ladies & Lads!

Let's Debate!

On Ewoks: remember that David Lynch was tapped to direct Episode VI? Just Imagine... http://www.slashfilm.com/david-lynch-talks-about-not-directing-return-of-the-jedi/

On Slave Leia: that imagery has been in the Public Domain, Zeitgeist & Nerd Culture for SO LONG....it's a dead issue. Or it can be any issue you wish to "dress up".  What I saw as a child and as an adult was Princess Leia choking that slimo with his own chain.  Leia rules. 'Nuff Said.

On Jar-Jar: I love the guy. What can I say? Episode I might have it's problems yet the greatest threat was Story then Acting, not the Characters. And as delivering a performance, Ahmed Best did a great job, IMHO.

On Jedi Celibacy: My robes do not come with a Chastity Belt! ;) Remember, Lucas was trying to smuggle Hindu, Zen & Buddhist Ideas. Look at character names: Qui-Gon, Padme, Shaakti and in that vein later on Asohka. Anakin suffers from Attachment and its ultimate consequence Loss & Grief. I betcha there was some serious "shipping" going on at the Jedi Temple for a 1,000 years. ;)

Han Shot First. I was there. It was the late 1970s. It was of its time. Dirty Harry with Clint Eastwood. Death Wish with Charles Bronson. And Han Solo. These characters all share a time in Cinema that they could be correlated into an archetype: the Maverick with a Gun who ain't afraid to use it. Remember in Firefly when Captain Mal kicked that guy into the engine? Han would have approved... More?

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Chicago 2016

I only took a few Chicago pics this year.
Why?
I wanted to remember this time like I'm supposed to: with my Smile ^_^

In the Hotel Room was a Pizza Party.  The sink was filled with Miller Lite cans & Ice.
And we painted the Town red...
Karaoke Kings of Chee-Ka-Go!
Pete, Emily, Anna & Myself.
2nd Annual Friends Reunion in the Windy City.
So much fun was had.
The Short List of Karaoke Songs.
Anna did an amazing "Life on Mars?" by Bowie.
Anna and Emily rocked the house down on Salt 'n' Peppa's "Shoop".
Peter closed the show with "Freedom '90" by George Michael.  We all sang backup & did Interpretive Dance.
Me:
Goody Two Shoes by Adam Ant
Sweet Dreams by the Eurythmics
Bad Case of Lovin' You by Robert Palmer
Fat-Bottomed Girls by Queen (2nd year in a row, the only repeat but iDigress....)
Pete blasted the nuts off the crowd the night he did Santaria by Sublime!
And Pete and I got our Rolling Stones song, 2nd year. Last year it was "Satisfaction".
This year was "Jumpin' Jack Flash".
We're a Mick/Keef combo anyway.
Kermit & Fozzie too so you figger it out.
Cheers.







Monday, May 30, 2016

Bats in My Belfry...


Another tidbit I dropped over on Imzy as part of the Arkham Sessions community.  ^_^  Cheers

I just read this totally awesome & worth the time essay on one of my favorite Bat-Subjects. Jason Todd.
As the 70s turned into the 80s, I went from a mere kid to what we'd now call a "tween". Robin grew up to be Nightwing and by the time the Crisis on Infinte Earths came about, it was almost time for my Bar Mitzvah. Alright, Irish-Catholic Confirmation where I took the Saint's name Matthew to make me Ma happy but iDigress...

I was a BATMAN reader then as I am now. I remember the visciousness Crazy Quilt had coming after an ill-preparred 2nd Robin, the villain not knowing the difference. I remember going "what the heck" with the diplomat's son. And then the Ad with the Phone Numbers: Live or Die. I didn't call. My Ma wouldn't let me. She wouldn't let me 1-800-DIAL-MTV either.

One thing the author didn't mention was how Judd Winick got to adapt his own BATMAN arc into the animated "BATMAN: UNDER THE RED HOOD". From the confusing meta-mess of retcon punches comes the simple elegance of atonement as Ra's Al Ghul places the dead Robin in a Lazarus Pit, feeling responsible for the Detective's Loss as you'll see in the movie.

I think the subject of Comicbook Death is something we should plumb on the couch of the Arkham Sessions? What ya say, Bat-Gang?

Thank you,
Sully
Hub o'the Multiverse

"Later On..."
In the decade plus between HUSH and "Now", Jason has had a really tough road back to a more stable life. I don't know if his problem was "resilience"...it's something else. The only anxiety Jason seemed to suffer was the usual post-Lazarus Madness, or so it seemed. Yet before the New 52 re-cast Red Hood as the Deadpool of the DCU, Jason was having difficulties adjusting to Life. And I mean that Literally.

"BATMAN: Under the Hood" takes place around the publication of INFINITE CRISIS. I see it as Continuity as Before IC. Why? Fits better? Retcon Punches effected history.

In the "One Year Later" relaunch post-INFINITE CRISIS, NIGHTWING picks up in Manhattan. Why? Dick was almost murdered by Alex Luthor and Bludhaven was nuked by Chemo. He comes home early from a year-long family bonding trip with Bruce & Tim, antsy to get back in the fray. Yet there's an imposter. And he's killing. And guess what....it's Jason!

Jason was a tagalong in the Challengers of the Multiverse story in the COUNTDOWN to FINAL CRISIS drek that I bought every issue but iDigress...Good Guys with Ray Palmer, Kyle Rayner & Donna Troy. Yet he was playing a good guy with his "new look". Brown leather jacket, expressive red helm & Two Guns.

Then in BATMAN AND ROBIN, Dick as Batman & Damien as Robin square off against Jason in a new "heroic-looking, caped" Red Hood outfit with Scarlett, a survivor of Professor Pyg's machinations. I'm pretty sure this is the last appearance of Jason until the New 52 where he wears a Bat on his Chest and his part of the Family. There might be one more yet...then comes the New 52 Version.

RED HOOD & THE OUTLAWS was something I started the New 52 with. BATMAN wasn't! I was picking up ACTION COMICS and that was it. I picked up Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo & Co.'s BATMAN in trades yet ended in Monthlies. That speaks for itself. Yet Somewhere, Jason is brought back to a better emotional place over Time. Talia al Ghul left him with some Hand Ninjas or the DCU Equivalent after his resurrection if New 52 "...and the Outlaws" can still apply.

Yet Jay-Bird...as Roy Harper nicknames him...how do you feel?? You were Dead. Now you're back. Can you describe your feelings?

Thanks.
Namaste

The Smoking Puck...

Tonight starts the 2015/'16 Stanley Cup Finals.
The San Jose Sharks versus the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Guess who I'm rooting for?  Cheers!  And looking forward to this series!!

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Bats in my Belfry...

From something I posted as part of the Arkham Sessions community on Imzy yesterday.  The Arkham Sessions are hosted by Brian Ward and Dr. Andrea Letamendi and psychologically analyzes every episode of BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES!
Come and check out this week's new podcast "LOCK-UP"!
Good Morning, Gotham!

I am on a Staycation.  I got 2 weeks off so I've been sleeping in, drinking that extra cup of jawa juice and catching up on BATMAN movies, courtesy of HBO GO.  This month's featured for animated offerings are: BATMAN: YEAR ONE.  BATMAN: UNDER THE RED HOOD.  And parts 1 & 2 of BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS.  The former two need their own "shows" for their formidable animated adaptations from Bryan Cranston in Y1 as Jim Gordon to the ever-wonderful John DiMaggio as Joker in UTRD.  I had yet to see the cartoon version of the beloved Frank Miller story.

One thing I love about our Arkham Community is that not only do we appreciate the metaphor to Mental Health, we also seem to have a deep love of Animation and their Qualities.  Brian Ward amazes me on the podcast with his nigh-fathomless well of animation knowledge.  Frames, cells, artists, history, voice talents...you name it, I'll ask him if I got a question.  Brian would probably know.

I have just wrapped up an amazing double-header of BATMAN animation in the form of TDKR.  In 1986, I was 13 years old.  Mazel tov!  And there was nothing...I mean nothing on the shelves quite like DKR besides WATCHMEN...and then a year later MARSHAL LAW but iDigress.  People don't really remember how long DKR took to finish its initial publication.  I remember waiting for what felt like forever for the next installment!  People really took to the trade paperback that followed.  Yet the 4 individual magazines were something else, fresh off the rack.  The covers, their paper stock, the colors.  It was an amazing experience, completely free of the jaded lens of nostalgia.  It literally What Was Happening.

Decades later, DKR has like Batman himself become Bigger Than Itself in some regard.  It's become the mark in the strata delining the Sea Change.  Yet this animated adaptation is completely faithful to the source.  So close that I believe the animated does DKR justice by de-mystifing the Myth!  Returning DRK back into a Great Batman & Robin Story!!  What DKR Animated lacks in terms of narative voice is Bruce's Interal Monologue, which is probably where we get the idea of this being a Sick & Twisted Future.  Yet stripping the Story of that device bring DKR back to us on the streets of Gotham and not just in the mind of a hero.  I think we've unfairly judged DKR as "Dark" because of the Internal Monologue...remove that and it's a brand-new story all over again.  I wept at one point...Jim Gordon beseeches his neighbors to stop hurting and start helping each other.  It was Moving.

Peter Weller's old man Batman was soooooo good.  Delivering those lines, sounding "just right".

I must admit I'm weird.  I kinda like 2001's DK2 a little better than DKR.  It's vibrant color, it's adjustment to the Future We Were Starting to Become as we entered the 21st Century for real.  The only thing I hated was Dick Grayson's characterization.  But hey...this is the Frank Miller Batman World.  I felt Dick would never made those choices & it just betrayed every notion.  Bedises that, DK2 really opened the Toy Box up to see how these action figures aged.  And know what?  I'm completely In for DK3.  I'm loving it.  Now, Frank Miller can use 9/11 as Metaphor.  It's in the backgrounds, esp the smoldering Pentagon in issue #4.
 And Frank Miller is a better storyteller than Zack Snyder to use Our SuperFriends as Action Figures in their 9/11 Story.  MoS & BvS is Zack Snyder saying something about 9/11.  Frank Miller has had something to say about 9/11 since 9/11 yet as DK2 was being wrapped up, production-wise...9/11 happened.  DK2 #1 was delayed in its release because of 9/11.  Batman crashes his flying Batmobile into Lex Luthor's skyscraper in order to confront the villain.  I bet you can see why, now.  Frank Miller, a New Yorker was deeply troubled by and very vocal about 9/11 yet none of this is reflected in DK2, Storywise.  In DK3, I think he's getting his Chance.  

So I really believe the animated DKR an improvement on the Comic, if you can beleive that!

Cheers!

And Thank you!

Sully

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