Posts tagged ‘Charlatan’

Detective 782 – Batman vs the Charlatan, and those darn roses

tec_782

Brubaker, Castillo and Von Grawbadger bring their Charlatan story to a close in Detective 782 (July 2003).

tec_782_001

We finally get to see that the Penguin is alive.  I knew he was.  He’s been in hiding the whole time, whining about it making life miserable for Montoya.

tec_782_002

Batman visits Crane while he’s at Arkham, and gets the last piece of the puzzle.  The Scarecrow used Sloan for his experiments, and wound up blocking his ability to feel fear in any way.

tec_782_003

Then it’s off to try to find Two-Face before Sloan kills him.

tec_782_004

Batman does catch up to him, only to find that he was the target all along, and Harvey Dent that bait, just as the plan had been eight years earlier.

tec_782_005

It’s a big, burning finale.  A flip of the coin determines Two-Face’s side, and he leaves Sloan to Batman.

tec_782_006

Sloan survives, and is visited by his fiancee in the hospital.  I called her his wife in an earlier blog.  My mistake.  She just so fills the role of Gilda Dent that I think of her as the wife.

Great mask, but this is the final appearance of the character to date.  I hope.  Certainly that I know of, and I hate being wrong on this.

tec_782_007

The back-up story in this issue, by Jason Hall, Craig Rousseau and Dan Davis, reminds me of a Tales of Gotham City from twenty years earlier.  No specific story, just the style, which centres on a street cleaner, who has noticed the roses that Batman drops off every year.  He has become obsessed with finding out who leaves than, and plans to stake it out that night.

tec_782_008

Alfred overhears, and of course Bruce is impossible to talk to, so he turns to Oracle, who enlists Robin, Nightwing and Batgirl to decoy the man.  Tim pretends to be a lost boy.

tec_782_009

And then Cassandra pretends to be mugged by Dick.

tec_782_010

All of which delays him just long enough to miss Batman leaving the flowers.

I wonder what happened the following year?

Advertisements

Detective 781 – The Joker fills in the gaps, and Gottismburgh

tec_781

Batman has to beat the truth out of the Joker in Detective 781 (June 2003), because that’s the way the Joker likes it, according to Brubaker, Castillo and Von Grawbadger.

tec_781_001

The Joker tells Batman how Sloan got so into the role of Two-Face that he would start fighting with the other villains, the ones he was terrified of as himself.  The Riddler, Penguin, Scarecrow, Mad Hatter and Killer Moth all get cameos in the flashbacks.

tec_781_002

Sloan decided to pull a job as Two-Face, on his own, to prove he could act the role.  Batman’s remembers, and how he suspected something was wrong when Two-Face hesitated after a coin toss, before shooting a victim.

The Joker also tells Batman that he was the one who phoned in the anonymous tip about the theft that night.  He scuttled his own plans, and pulled in Sloan only to pull him down.

tec_781_003

The robbery was blamed on Two-Face, who was furious at being impersonated, kidnapped Sloan, and tortured him for days.  The Scarecrow pronounced him dead, and took away the body.

tec_781_004

The Joker concludes his run of info by telling Batman that Sloan had told him much of this, only the day before, and wanted him to tell Batman, in order to delay him.

tec_781_005

Two-Face escapes from Arkham, after meeting with a lawyer.  Batman joins Renee Montoya at the scene, and sees that the drawing of the lawyer looks just like Harvey Dent.

The story concludes next issue.

tec_781_006

I suppose this was intended to start off a Batman Elseworlds serial in these pages.  The story as it stands, by Jon Lewis and Stefano Gaudiano, certainly doesn’t feel like it reaches its ending.

tec_781_007

The story deals with child factory workers in an Industrial Revolution era world.  Batman exists a legend, the Bat King, in the forest.  There is a prince, who some kids think might be the Bat King.

tec_781_008

The forest is filled with little Robins everywhere, and the Prince turns out to be a dick, and not likely the Bat King.

And then….

Nothing.  End of story, never followed up again, so far as I know.

Nice art, though.

Detective 779 – Mark Merlin reveals the identity of the Charlatan, and Superman vs Spore

tec_779

The Charlatan’s story continues to unfold in Detective 779 (April 2003), by Brubaker, Castillo and Von Grawbadger.

tec_779_001

The Riddler heads to Arkham, and has a frantic conversation with Johnathan Crane about the Charlatan.  The Scarecrow does not seem afraid at all – but then, that’s who he is, right?

tec_779_002

And, in a complete cut away from the story, Lucius Fox leaves the hospital.  He has been in a coma.  You didn’t know that?  Maybe because Lucius has not appeared in Detective Comics for over a year, and his period in hospital was never even referred to.  But at least you now, too late to send flowers.

tec_779_003

Batman learns that the Penguin consulted Mark Merlin before his attack, and goes to see him.  Mark Merlin had been a detective with a supernatural bent in the pages of House of Secrets in the early 60s.  His final appearance saw him lose his body to the extra-dimensional Prince Ra-Man, as explained in a DC Comics Presents in the 80s.  This marks Mark’s first appearance as himself since that.

tec_779_004

Mark tells Batman that the Penguin wanted protection from a ghost, of Paul Sloan, a famous actor, who disappeared eight years earlier.

tec_779_005

Bruce Wayne arranges to attend the theatre with Jim Gordon and Barbara, and Barbara casually gets Sloan’s wife to talk about her husband, and his dangerous way of getting too much into his roles, and his strange behaviour, shortly before vanishing.

tec_779_006

And during the performance, Bruce spots something Phantom of the opera-like, changes clothes, and winds up confronting the scarred Charlatan.  Sloan manages to get away, but Batman knows who he is now.

Paul Sloan is clearly a re-working of Paul Sloane, the actor who got scarred while playing Two-Face, and wound up committing crimes in that persona.  Sloane had most recently appeared in this book, shortly after Crisis (shortly after this blog took over form the previous one).

Gagne and Gagne pit Superman against Spore.  Say no more!

tec_779_007

tec_779_008

tec_779_009

tec_779_010

 

Detective 778 – Two-Face says no, and Spore (says nothing)

tec_778

Brubaker, Castillo and Von Grawbadger continue the story of the Charlatan in Detective 778 (March 2003).

tec_778_001

Jim Gordon is now lecturing at a university.  Most of the students simply want to ask questions about Batman.  One brings up Two-Face, and then pulls out a gun.  Gordon defends himself, tearing the mask of his assailant, who runs off, leaving behind another double scarred coin.

tec_778_002

Batman goes to see Two-Face, in solitary in Arkham.  He asks him about the double scarred coin.  Harvey is reluctant to answer, except that he is upset about the way Jim Gordon was dragged into it.

tec_778_003

It was a scheme Harvey wanted nothing to do with, and refused to take part in.  The Joker, Riddler, Penguin, Scarecrow, Killer Moth and Mad Hatter were all involved.  But as he didn’t participate, he doesn’t know the whole story, and sends Batman to the Penguin.

tec_778_004

The Penguin has already fled.  Consulting with Oracle, Batman scours the city until she feeds him a report about the  Penguin’s car having crashed.

tec_778_005

Batman finds the Penguin hanging, and there is another coin in his hand.  Is he alive or dead?

The story continues in the next issue.

And now, more Spore, by Gagne and Gagne.  Hah!  Broke my rule there and listed the artist first and the writer second!

tec_778_006

tec_778_007

tec_778_008

tec_778_009

Detective 777 – The Charlatan makes his move, and Spore

tec_777

Ed Brubaker begins his run on Detective with issue 777 (Feb. 03), re-thinking a classic story, and sequelling it, with Tommy Castillo and Wade Von Grawbadger on the art.

tec_777_003

A nobody little hoodlum comes across Killer Moth’s suit, and decides to use it to commit crimes.  Turns out that was a bad idea, as he gets murdered, despite professing that he was not the original.  Crispus Allen and Renee Montoya are the cops investigating, and get what little info they can from the one witness, an older man.

Next to the body, they discover a two-headed coin, but both sides are scarred.

tec_777_002

The news of the coin circulates quickly in the underworld.  The Riddler comes to tell the Penguin about it, and it disturbs both men greatly, though we do not know why.

tec_777_004

Batman, and the police, determine that the coin does not belong to Two-Face.  He would be the obvious suspect, except for the double scarring.  Batman questions the widow of the victim, but learns little, other than that the man that was questioned by the police apparently does not exist.  Heading to the crime site, Batman finds the remains of his disguise, and realizes that Charlie Tann was really the Charlatan.

The story continues in the next issue.

tec_777_005

And I continue my silent summary of Spore, by Gagne and Gagne.

tec_777_006

tec_777_007

Tag Cloud