This Week in Comics — 2011/06/08

Batman: The Brave and the Bold #8

Bat­man and Aqua­man team up on a Quest to recov­er the fabled Amulet of Ari­on to break the curse that has bound the ghost­ly for­mer pri­ate Cap­tain Fear to wan­der the Earth until he has earned redemp­tion. Aqua­man knows where the Amulet is locat­ed, but the dan­gers involved get­ting there have pre­vent­ed any­one from doing so in the past. Those (seem­ing­ly rather tame) dan­gers include mon­ster fish, a whirlpool and a trio of enchant­i­ng sirens, all of whom are quick­ly over­come. But Bat­man and Aqua­man were fol­lowed by Black Man­ta, whose sud­den attack allows him to seize the Amulet and attempt to direct its pow­er against them. Only by the inter­ven­tion of Cap­tain Fear are they res­cued, at the cost of destroy­ing the Amulet and los­ing a chance to break his curse. How­ev­er, his self-sac­ri­fice was the final ele­ment of his redemption.

Com­men­tary: Its always good to see ref­er­ences to old DC char­ac­ters, includ­ing Ari­on (who had his own com­ic “Ari­on of Atlantis” drawn by Jan Duurse­ma back in the ear­ly 1980’s) and Cap­tain Fear.

Not direct­ly relat­ed here but def­i­nite­ly worth men­tion­ing: this fall, DC Comics is plan­ning a major reboot of their entire line this fall. Called DC New Uni­verse, the announced changes go well beyond any of the pre­vi­ous con­ti­nu­ity revi­sions and changes.

One of the comics will be “Jus­tice League Dark” and will involve (cen­ter right) John Con­stan­tine, (upper left) Dead­man, (above, what appears to a malev­o­lent appear­ing) Enchantress, (below) Madame Xanadu, (upper right) Shade the Chang­ing Man and (cen­ter left: note the bare­ly vis­i­ble fish­net arm­lets) Zatan­na. I have always been a fan of Madame Xanadu ever since her own com­ic, and, of course, Zatan­na, so I am sort of look­ing for­ward to this, although I still have my doubts about the whole con­cept of a com­plete uni­verse reboot.

Note: Many years ago, I com­mis­sioned Phil Foglio to draw a car­toon of Des­tiny rip­ping pages out of his Book cor­re­spond­ing to all of the sub­se­quent con­ti­nu­ity changes to the DC uni­verse: whole pages enti­tled “Crises”, “Earth Two”, “Inva­sion” and “Zero Hour” went fly­ing. Now it looks like he’ll be need­ing an entire­ly new Book.

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