Chad Nevett: Oh my god, we're discussing Grant Morrison again! What a surprise! I am so shocked! This never happens! Ever! Seriously! Er... so... yeah... "Batman and Robin" #1 and "Seaguy" #3. Want to kick things off, Tim?
Tim Callahan: "Batman and Robin" #1? Oh, did that come out?
Honestly, I haven't been anticipating a comic this much since "Final Crisis" #7, how about you?
The first thing that pops to mind is, "yeah, had Quitely drawn all of Morrison's 'Batman' run, our brains would not have been able to handle the awesomeness." Boy, is he the perfect guy to take this Morrisonian weirdness and make it sing. And, yeah, this issue immediately renders all of "Battle for the Cowl" moot, filling in just enough plot details to get everyone up to speed, and then jumping right into the action. This is definitely a much more accessible Morrison Batman comic, with very little in the way of subtext beyond the Dick/Damian relationship and the new strangeness descending on Gotham in the absence of Bruce Wayne. But Morrison's "Batman" run started out simple too, with a Man-Bat Ninja attack and the introduction of his hitherto-unknown son. I think people forget that when they complain about the dense and indecipherable earlier Morrison Batman comics (which, as we both know, were slightly dense but hardly indecipherable). Still, this is a "Batman and Robin" comic for everyone to enjoy. I didn't even miss Jamie Grant's colors as much as I thought I would -- Alex Sinclair does a nice, bold job with the color palatte here, and perhaps Grant would have made it too ephemeral for a Batman comic (although I probably shouldn't assume that, since a pro like Grant would have changed his approach to suit this series).
As much as I liked "Batman and Robin" #1, I think I prefered "Seaguy" #3, though. "Batman and Robin" #1 was great and all, but it seemed to be pretty much exactly what I expected going in -- based on the preview art and the interviews. I never know what to expect from "Seaguy," and this final issue (of the middle series) had it all: action, madness, thrills, nonsense, satire, and most of all, romance! I loved the heck out of this "Seaguy" series. What about you? "Batman and Robin" #1 or "Seaguy" #3? What takes the Nevett Award for Best Morrison Comic of Early June?
CN: Yeah, "Seaguy" was the better comic. I was looking forward to "Batman and Robin" more, but "Seaguy" is just too damn good for a lighter superhero book to really match up. And "Batman and Robin" is very much a light superhero book -- a very good one, but, in many ways, I don't think it quite matches up to what Morrison did up until this point on "Batman." As you said, it's very superficial and lacking in subtext, which is fine and good, but a book like that is always going to look inferior next to one that is so rich and deep like "Seaguy." I love both, but one is going to get reread this weekend and the other isn't.
Actually, there's something about "Batman and Robin" that felt off for me. I didn't mention it in my review of the issue, because I was going for something a bit more objective -- and because I haven't been able to figure out what feels off yet. Maybe it's the lack of subtext. In many ways, this comic feels too easy, too self-explanatory. Too unchallenging. One of the things that we've loved about Morrison's "Batman" run has been that it demands that the reader step up and engage the comic in a far more active way than he or she usually would. Now, maybe we'll discover later that there really was tons of stuff going on here -- because, as you said, Morrison's "Batman" run began similarly -- but, I was maybe just expecting more. That said, "Batman and Robin" is a very smart, well-executed comic that reads briskly. I don't think it's as groundshaking as others have said, but it's a very strong start to this book and this new dynamic duo. Are you missing the subtext like I am?
To Be Continued at GraphiContent!
To Be Continued at GraphiContent!