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The Joker listens to Prince!

Batman & Robin:
One needs common sense...the other needs tights.

Scott - 6.08.01

"Who are you?!"
"I'm Batman."

When those words were muttered, Batman firmly solidified his place alongside Superman as one of the few comic book heroes to ever fully crossover to the mainstream. After I saw the first Batman movie in theaters, I went around for two weeks after that saying "I'm Batman" to anyone who would listen to me, even if it made no sense at all when I said it.

My Mom: Scottie, what do you want for dinner?
Me: I'm Batman!
My Mom: Ok, fine. You'll have to make yourself some cereal if you're not going to give me an answer. Now what should we eat?
Me: I'm Batman!
My Mom: I really never should've taken you to see that movie...
Me: You ever dance with the devil in the pale moonlight?

I've matured since then though. Nowadays, I try to incorporate "San Dimas High School Football rules!" into any conversation I possibly can. Usually, the person I'm talking to just gives me a confused look, but I just sit back and smile. They're the ones who are gonna be shit-out-of-luck when Wyld Stallyn becomes the basis for our future civilization. Laugh all you want now fuckers. Enjoy it while it lasts. Anyways, back to Batman. Regardless of their effects on my social life as a young child, the Tim Burton Batman films made the Batman character look so cool that it was impossible for any child to not like him. In the first two movies, Batman was cool, and the villains didn't try and avoid using any possible semblance of logic either, which is much more than I can say for the Batman and Joker starring in the comic we're going to look at today.

Back in the 80's, a lot of toys came packaged with miniature comic books that would tell a story or give some background information about the toy you had just purchased. Even our beloved He-Man figures came with them. While these comics were a nice bonus, they weren't exactly the highest form of the art. A few days ago, I was playing with my Transformers figures looking at some of my old toys, and I came across a container filled with instruction manuals, mini-comics, and any additional crap that came packaged with the toys that I got as a kid. I found this particular Batman mini-comic in this container. Thankfully, my mom didn't throw any of that stuff away. This comic was originally packaged with one of the figures in the Kenner Toy line called 'DC Super Powers' which consisted of figures from various DC Comic Books. I'm not sure which figure this thing came with, but it doesn't really make all that much of a difference. It's still a shitty comic.

Needless to say, I have a feeling this article is going to basically write itself for a variety of reasons:
1) All the material is here right in front of me. Normally I'm not looking at a movie or a show or a game as I'm writing about it. Since I took the liberty of scanning the entire comic, everything is still fresh in my mind.
2) Robin's old costume. Jesus, I don't think I have to elaborate on this one.
3) Batman is about as smart as a carrot. "World's Greatest Detective" my ass.
4) The Joker is an even bigger fucking retard than Batman, which explains this comic and the reason that he spends approximately 99% of his time in jail.

The image on the left is the actual cover to the comic that I will be covering in today's article, and the image on the right is a cover to a more recent issue of Robin which guest stars the dark knight himself. These two comics help demonstrate how Batman and Robin have evolved over the years. Nowadays, Batman seems darker and more brooding than he has been in the past, and Robin looks like he's actually interested in fighting crime instead of making pathetic attempts to get Batman in bed with him. Plus he actually covers up his legs now too. Thank God.

Opposite one of those amazing mail-in offers that you used to see in every damn toyline that existed back then, our story begins. Citizens of Gotham City fill the streets and are oblivious to the fact that The Joker is on the loose. I'm guessing he recently escaped prison, because if he's isn't committing crimes, he must've been locked up somewhere. Today's evil plan leaves a lot to be desired, so I'm giving Joker the benefit of the doubt and guessing he had approximately thirty seconds to plan this thing. Joker's daily planner must've looked something like this:

    Plan A:
  1. Poison random people on the streets of Gotham City.*
  2. Demand five million dollars in exchange for the antidote.*
  3. Get the money, run, and hide.*
  4. Bring a giant mallet in case Batman shows up.**
  5. *Don't get caught by Batman and Robin while completing this step
    **Steal the mallet from the Gotham City 'Everything's A Dollar Store'

The plan seems pretty good on paper, but there's one thing he fails to account for...

The Joker speeds through Gotham's streets, spraying some kind of gas and turning everyone on the street into an army of Jokers. So far, his plan doesn't seem so bad, and his execution thus far has been flawless as well. Meanwhile, the bat signal alerts Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson to the danger in the streets of Gotham, and they quickly get ready to go spring into action. Here's what I don't quite understand though. The police turn on the bat signal before even looking to find out what's going on. They don't investigate anything or even appear at the scene of The Joker's evil doings. Just how damn lazy is the Gotham City Police Department? First, they allow practically weekly escapes from Arkham Asylum, and now they're too lazy to even make an attempt to catch one of their own escaped convicts? I wish I was on the Gotham police force.

Com. Gordon: It looks like The Joker, Killer Croc, Scarecrow, and an assortment of other villains have escaped from Arkham again.
Me: Is it Saturday already?
Com. Gordon: We've got to find them and put those scum back behind bars where they belong!
Me: Can't Batman do it? I just ordered a pizza, and the football game is on.
Com. Gordon: He can't do everything you know. Besides, we get paid to do stuff like this. Batman does it for free.
Me: What about Robin?
Com. Gordon: Don't you understand? Every single prisoner has escaped from the prison! We should be out on the streets patrolling already!
Me: Nightwing? Batgirl?
Com. Gordon: Well I'm going to find these criminals and put 'em back where they belong with or without your help!
Me: Can't we get some outside help like Aquaman?
Com. Gordon: Dammit Scott, Aquaman? Now you're just wasting my time.
Me: Azrael?
Com. Gordon: Ok, I'm leaving now, lazy ass.

Luckily, Alfred has already ironed their costumes for them. Is there anything that man doesn't do? Why isn't he Batman? Since there's nothing more important than being able to fight crime with wrinkle-free tights and capes, Robin even remarks, "Alfred, what would we ever do without you?" My guess is you'd have to iron your own fucking superhero costumes you stupid pansy.

I have a feeling the whoever wrote the narrative parts of this comic knew how awful it was going to turn out to be, so he made every attempt to save face and allow Batman to retain some semblance of credibility. Unfortunately, there's nothing the narrator can do to explain what transpires next.

Batman and Robin arrive at the scene, and Robin naturally let's lose one of his trademark lines. Both of our heroes hop out of the Batmobile directly into the heart of the possessed crowd. Jesus, those two have got some balls. They just dive, without the slightest thought or hesitation, right into the middle of a shitload of zombies trying to kill them.

Speaking of hesitation, how come Batman and Robin don't take any precautionary measures before diving into the fray? What if The Joker had more gas? I'm assuming Batman and Robin didn't bring their gas masks along, unless Robin has them stored in his damn bikini briefs. If the Joker was around, it's a pretty safe bet that they would've been turned into possessed freaks as well. All I can say is they're damn lucky that the Jokermobile was no where to be seen at this time.

Oh yeah, one more thing. While I haven't been able to check my official 'Stopping Crazed Mobs and Riots Handbook', the logical part of my brain tells me that the people who are trying to stop the riots DON'T FUCKING PARK THEIR CAR IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ENRAGED MOB. Couple this with the fact that Batman and Robin are driving the older version of the Batmobile which also happens to be a convertible, and you've got recipe for disaster. Batman decides that he and Robin should crowd surf on the mob to get the other side. There's only one problem with this plan: crowd surfing doesn't work when the mob is trying to kill you. Also, Batman seems convinced that the cure is on the other side of the crowd for no apparent reason. How does he know this? Why should they even attempt to get the other side? If they have to get to the other side, why not try and drive around them? They're greatly outnumbered, and this definitely isn't one of Batman's finer performances under pressure. Once again the narrator attempts to assess the situation in a positive light: But, despite Caped Crusaders' amazing agility... Listen. I don't care how fucking agile you are. Agility isn't going to save you when you dive headfirst into a group of people who have every intention of beating you to a bloody pulp.

Of course, Batman and Robin get mauled by the mob, but in typical comic book hero form, Batman feels the need to describe every little thing that is happening to him...out loud. Does he really need to say that the mob is pulling them down by their capes? Then he feels it is imperative that they escape the clutches of the deadly mob. Good call Batman. Did you think of that one all by yourself? Jeez, I feel like I'm yelling at the television when I watch the Chicago Bears play. There's only so much idiocy you can watch without getting pissed off.

Batman is supposed to be the World's Greatest Detective, yet he's surprised that this evil mob, who all look exactly like The Joker, are actually under the control of The Joker himself? Plus, only two pages ago, Batman said, "It's easy to see who's behind this Robin!" So what's the big surprise when they find out that The Joker is the mastermind of this riot? Thankfully, Joker proves to be in the same villainous class as Skeletor and Cobra Commander. God forbid any of these three actually develop a plan which uses some sort of logic, but I guess Joker's got an excuse due to the fact that he's certifiably insane. Either way, no matter how much Batman and Robin fuck up, Joker's gonna manage to fuck up worse.

Now that Batman and his trusty sidekick are pinned down and helpless, Joker can hop on down and kill both of them right? Wrong. I never used to think of any of the Batman villains as completely idiotic, but Joker has sure as hell makes a strong case for himself in this comic. First, Joker doesn't kill the dynamic duo even though they're helpless. Second, he tells them where the antidote to his special gas is. Third, he conveniently brings the antidote to them. Fourth, he demands five million dollars in exchange for the canister in his possession. News flash clownface: Batman and Robin are vigilantes. Why the hell would you try and bargain and negotiate with them? It makes absolutely no sense at all. At least Joker's still in control of the situation. Even though he has fucked up a prime opportunity to kill his most hated enemies, Batman and Robin are still pinned down by an army of possessed citizens of Gotham City. How are they going to get out of this mess?

Enter Wonder Woman and her futuristic invisible jet.

Ok, this isn't really fair anymore. Wonder Woman has actual super powers, but no one else here does. Plus, when did anyone call her for help anyways? That's like going through the entire Batman Knightfall storyline, but instead of Batman fighting Bane at the end, Superman shows up and wipes the floor with Bane in about five seconds. Any person who has ever read a comic book knows stuff like that just doesn't happen without warning. Wonder Woman uses her Golden Lasso on the mob of people, and taking a cue from Batman, feels the need to describe her every action to anyone willing to listen to her inane babbling. I give her bonus points for making images of Linda Carter dance around in my head though.

The great thing about Batman is that he has no real superpowers. He's just some psycho who has more money than you or I will ever see in our lifetimes and a cool car along with some other nifty gadgets. Oh yeah, he knows karate and some other shit too. Big fucking deal. Knowing kung fu doesn't quite have the same effect when you're in the same universe as people who are superstrong, invincible, or superfast. The batmobile is a cool car, but one of Superman's farts would probably shatter it to pieces. Thankfully, the majority of Batman villains are simply people who have gone crazy just like he did, only they chose to commit crimes instead. I'm all for fighting crime and doing good deeds, but when your friends can punch you a thousand times in the blink of an eye and shoot laser beams out of their eyes, it's an entirely different ball game.

This also helps explain why he decided to get a sidekick as well. In a place where people have the power to realign planets, warp time, and talk to fish, it's pretty easy for a guy to feel inferior. Enter Robin. Any time Batman's feeling down, he can just take one look at his crime fighting partner, and all his problems are solved. I swear, the old Robin must've shaved his legs daily. They look as smooth as Wonder Woman's in this comic. He also wears smaller panties than her too.

So Batman and Robin swing up to the rooftops to take care of business and put an end to The Joker's nefarious scheme, but Joker's not going down without a fight. That's where the gigantic mallet comes in handy. It would've been funny if his mallet had a huge punching glove spring out the front like the one in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, but The Joker just isn't that creative with his weapons. Let's face it. He isn't the sharpest knife in the drawer, but compared to a lot of the other villains that have been featured on this site, he's an evil genius. He decides to fight both Batman and Robin at the same time with only his giant mallet. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but has Joker ever beaten Batman in straight one on one combat? I don't think so, and now he expects to take Batman and Robin at the same time? He's got a mallet that I saw at the dollar store by my house last week. If this fight is any longer than one panel, I'll be greatly disappointed in the dynamic duo.

Batman and Robin kick the shit out of The Joker and save the canister over the course of two panels. So much for a climax to this story. I guess the whole mallet thing didn't really work out. I'm sure he's gonna get an earful when he gets back to prison.

Joker: Yeah, so then Batman and Robin double-teamed me and beat me up...
Two-Face: Well, why didn't you just shoot them?
Joker: I didn't have a gun.
Two-Face: Why not?
Joker: I had a giant mallet instead.
Two-Face: A giant mallet?
Joker: Yeah.
Two-Face: Jesus...

The police finally show up too. How convenient. Wonder Woman helps the them escort The Joker to his prison cell, and Batman and Robin head home after a job well done, unless you count the fact that they were nearly killed by a bunch of pedestrians and they needed Wonder Woman to save them. Other than that, they were flawless. But they're alive and Gotham City is once again safe from The Joker, until he escapes again in a few days.

mmmmmm....Linda Carter...mmmmm...

- Scott
AIM: dupayosh13

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