One of the newest releases from DC comics has been a revival of a popular spinoff to one of its best franchises, Batman. To those of us who were fans of the show by one of the greatest comicbook show producers (Bruce Timm), the news of an ongoing series of “Batman Beyond” seemed like a nostalgic dream-come-true. Though it delivers for the hard-core fans, this new series may not be for first time readers.
The Story So Far
“Batman Beyond” takes place in a futuristic Gotham City, where a new breed of “freaks” still terrorize the night. An elderly Bruce Wayne (too old to be Batman) has taken a new apprentice to the Bat mantle, so the fight can go on. That apprentice, Terry McGuiness, is a high school student who lost his father to the same type of crime that first created the Batman. Though their styles are very different, these two successfully clean up the city as one fighting Bat-team.
The Story Now
In the latest issues of the series, a mysterious new enemy has started to attack people from the Batman’s past, particularly his enemies. Frightening new evidence has started to point to one of Batman’s deadliest foes, Hush. This criminal (Spoiler Alert), was Bruce Wayne’s childhood friend who turned out to be evil and was eventually told who was really Batman, making Bruce’s life quite difficult.
Although this new story may entice fans of the TV series, this series really doesn’t have anything for newcomers. Readers just plop right into a story and universe that they really don’t understand. The series needs a narrative voice from either Terry or Bruce that explain who they are and how they got there. Something like “my name is Terry, ever since my father was murdered I’ve been the new Batman taught by the old Batman”, or something to that extent. If that wasn’t enough, the story needs better and fresher ideas than old Batman villains. On the “Batman Beyond” TV show commentaries, creators explicitly said how they didn’t want revisions of old Batman enemies, but brand new ones they haven’t seen before. That creative process seems to has stopped whether this is the old Hush or a new Hush. If this series doesn’t start using new blood soon, this series may be another short-lived DC project. This series is not for beginners!
http://lansing.citysearch.com/profile/5365503/lansing_mi/video_to_go.html Video To Go. For DVDs of original “Batman Beyond” series.
http://dcbeyond.kidswb.com/video#/Batman-Beyond/Ascension/318361b6-052f-439f-ad68-467cb94916f9 Streaming Episodes of “Batman Beyond”