Posts tagged ‘Shawn McManus’

Detective 542 – Jason gets taken, and Green Arrow cons a killer

tec_542

The Batman titles really become pure soap opera at this time.  Villains become secondary to Bruce Wayne’s relationships, and his difficulties in getting guardianship of Jason.

The stories are not awful, it’s still Moench and Colan, but it feels a bit more like Dallas than Batman.

tec_542_001

Harvey Bullock accompanies the woman from child welfare, as she comes to take Jason away from Bruce.  I don’t know if they were expecting Bruce to pull out a gun or something, bringing Bullock seems excessive, especially as all Jason does is cry.

tec_542_002

Bruce calls a meeting of the Wayne Foundation board – which means Lucius Fox and some unnamed others – and gives them a big speech about how getting Jason Todd back must be the main focus of the company.  They all look stunned, as they well might.

tec_542_003

Jason, in an orphanage, sees the Bat-signal, and goes into action as Robin.  He catches up with Harvey Bullock, just in time to save him from a sniper.  Hamilton Hill, upset that Bullock became friends with Gordon rather than driving him out of the force, has hired a hit man to get rid of Harvey.

tec_542_004

Batman is late to join the party, but he captures the sniper.  Jason tells him that they might split up him and Bruce, but no one can break up Batman and Robin.

tec_542_005

Joey Cavalieri and Shawn McManus bring the Death Dealer story to a clever resolution in this issue.

tec_542_006

Oliver gets the dj to start playing a pre-recorded show of his, and that makes the Death Dealer think that they put out the fire.  He returns to the studio, and when he opens it to enter, sees Green Arrow, who he believes managed to enter somehow.  Thanks to the recording, and the Dealer’s confusion, his surprise at seeing Green Arrow,and not connecting him to Oliver Queen, is actually plausible.

tec_542_007

The explanation to the events is a bit lame though.  The dj in the witness protection program happened to work at a station run by ANOTHER guy in the witness protection program, who blamed the dj for him having to go through that.  And though the one recognized the other, neither was, apparently, being monitored in any way at all, to prevent them coming into contact.

Advertisements

Detective 541 – Batman chases the Penguin to the north pole, and Green Arrow gets trapped by the Death Dealer

tec_541

It’s yet another second half by Moench and Colan in Detective 541 (Aug. 84), as Batman pursues the Penguin, who has stolen plans for an advance warning system in the arctic (early bird), and plans to sell them to the Russians.

tec_541_001

Batman’s chase after the Penguin has negative repercussions he is unaware of at the time.  The child welfare agency tries to call Bruce Wayne that night, and even though Alfred explains that he is taking care of Jason, the powers that be are not impressed.

tec_541_002

I do like Colan’s rendition of the Penguin.  And you gotta like any story in which he uses real penguins to delay Batman.

tec_541_003

In the end, this story has more deception than one would think possible.  The Penguin had fake plans to sell, he had no intention of betraying his country.  But the”real” plans the Penguin stole were fakes as well, disinformation leaked by the government.

tec_541_004

Green Arrow begins a 2-part story pitting him against a hit man with a card fetish, the Death Dealer, in this story by Joey Cavalieri and Shawn McManus.

tec_541_005

The Death Dealer is hunting down a man in the witness protection program, currently working as a radio dj, and not overly concerned about hiding his real identity.  Cause that’s why they spent millions to give you a new id.  So you could not care.

tec_541_006

Oliver Queen goes to check on the dj at the radio station, and discovers that the Dealer has locked them both in, and set fire to the place.

 

Detective 538 – is the Cat-Man costume magic?, and Green Arrow, three years ago

tec_538

Doug Moench and Gene Colan take the second half of this Cat-Man 2-parter in an interesting direction in Detective 538 (May 1984).

tec_538_001

Thomas Blake, the Cat-Man was defeated by Batman in the first half of this story, but the news was spread that he had won, because of his costume.  This is all done in order to get a fellow con to lead Batman to where he stored his loot.

tec_538_002

Thomas Blake has a small role, in protective custody with Harvey Bullock, but the man in cat suit for this story is Collins.

tec_538_003

With Batman tailing, Collins breaks into Blake’s apartment, steals the suit, and heads out for his loot.  he takes crazy risks, because he believes in the suit’s magic, and Batman has to save his life, repeatedly, without being spotted, to keep the con going.

tec_538_004

Collins leads Batman to his loot, in a cave, but a collapse opens a tunnel and Collins winds up in the Batcave.  He and Batman fight on the dinosaur and giant penny, as Alfred tries to explain the sounds to Julia, who has recently moved into Wayne Manor.

Collins is captured, and Batman explains the con, but Collins still believes it was the suit that saved his life, and lead him to the Batcave.

Thomas Blake returns as Cat-Man in a couple of years.  Collins is not seen again, doubtlessly shanked in prison by Blake.

tec_538_005

Shawn McManus is now on the pencils for Green Arrow, with Pablo Marcos doing inks, and just in time as Joey Cavalieri tells a poignant story, reflecting back on a dead friend of Oliver Queen.

tec_538_006

The story is split on each page, with the present, as Green Arrow hunts and captures gun runners, on the top.  On the bottom is the story of Oliver and his pop star musician friend.

tec_538_007

When I first read this, when it came out, I couldn’t see any connection at all between the two stories, and it sort of irritated me, until I hit the page above, and realized that the pop star was meant to be John Lennon, and the upper story about the ease with which illegal guns are available in the US.

 

 

Tag Cloud