Saturday, December 26, 2009

Now Robin Knows How a Piece of Toast Feels Tuesday!

When it comes to comics, there are your readers who like "daytime" heroes and those who prefer "night-time" heroes. Your "daytime" heroes are along the lines of Superman, Captain America, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four and the like. Your "night-time" heroes are more like Batman, Daredevil, Ghost Rider and the Secret Six. It's strictly a metaphor, but you get the idea.

Batman, having based his whole shtick on a nocturnal animal with liberal borrowing of Dracula, was a character clearly meant for grim, "night-time" stories. But that didn't seem to discourage anyone in the slightest. Cue the mechanical dinosaur!:

The stories were embarrassingly bad, but you have to admit.... Gotham City College must have had one awesome Mechanical Engineering Program.

The other problem I had was with the sheer ineptitude of Batman and the like when they were forced to be happy and carefree vigilantes driven by the memories of having their loved ones murdered right in front of them. We've seen Batman trip on a banana peel, but let's give Robin his moment to shine:

I've had a cat or two in my day, and I'm not discounting how relatively ferocious they can be. But again, they are only "relatively" ferocious considering their size. Yes, they have sharp teeth and pointy claws, but even the most aggressive cat can be dispatched by someone who.... oh, I don't know.... is outfitted with an arsenal of weapons designed to take down hordes of armed criminals. Just hit him with the anti-shark spray and get back in the game, Robin!

Did I mention the mechanical engineering feats that take place on a regular basis in Gotham City? I'm not just blowing sunshine up your skirt, Mary Lou!:

What amazes me is (a) that these things actually work and (b) Batman will never use a gun, but has no problem sucking human beings into a giant vacuum cleaner. And how does Bruce know the specs of these things, anyway? I think he reads up on them, and then plans his assaults accordingly. Let's see, if I jump the gang at their hideout, we won't be able to jump into the giant toaster....

Oh, Silver Age. My cup runneth over.

See you tomorrow!


Aurora Moon said...

If I recall, there was mechanical dinosaurs in the more serious stories as well, especially in some of the animated series. of course, the episodes was written far more better than the usual golden age comic story. The dinosaurs in those were actually far more menacing, and harder to take down... and the villain who controlled those dinosaurs were less goofy too.
At least Batman got a new trophy out of it... who wouldn't want a giant dinosaur in their bat-cave? :p Now that's just pure awesome.

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Zocktastic said...

Y'know, the cleverness of the whole "Now I know how a [blank] feels!" phrase doesn't work if you're just copying it verbatim from whatever situation your actually in. Robin's in a giant toaster, erego he knows how toast must feel. That's not wit, it's just a statement. Now, if he were being launched from a catapult or slowly cooking to death in an incinerator or some such thing, then it would be clever.

Yeah, the whole concept is lame, but let's not forget that the execution can be terrible, too. :P

Pippy said...

Good to see batman doesn't get toasted on the job but I bet as soon as the last panel ended he was straight back to the repair the toaster and get totally crispy