Comic Review: BATMAN ’66 MEETS THE GREEN HORNET #1

Batman '66 Meets The Green Hornet #1
BATMAN ’66 MEETS THE GREEN HORNET #1/ Written by KEVIN SMITH & RALPH GARMAN/ Art by TY TEMPLETON/ Published by DC COMICS & DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT

It’s a peaceful afternoon at stately Wayne Manor, where billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne is tending to the education of his young ward, Dick Grayson.  A collection of rare dinosaur bones is about to be shipped from the Gotham Museum of Natural History to a special exhibit in another large city and Police Commissioner Gordon fears a theft is imminent!  Naturally the safest place to keep the fossils until they are due to be transported is in the home of Gotham City’s richest and therefore most trustworthy man!

But Dick Grayson is more interested in young ladies than old bones and what little interest he has in fossils is due to his lady of the moment being an amateur paleontologist.  Luckily for Dick, Bruce believes that interaction with the fairer sex is an important part of a young man’s development and is all too willing to handle the task of guarding the exhibit by himself.  And as Chairman of the museum’s Board of Directors, Bruce Wayne can easily ride along on the train carrying the rare fossils without arousing suspicions that he is really The Caped Crusader – Batman!

It is here that Bruce Wayne runs into an old rival – billionaire playboy Britt Reid.  The publisher of the newspaper The Daily Sentinel, Reid is there with his valet Kato, to cover the exhibit for his paper.  And unbeknownst to Bruce Wayne, Reid fights his own shadow war on the forces of evil by pretending to be one of their own as The Green Hornet!  And a good thing too!   For a familiar foe of both Batman and The Green Hornet has his sights set on the collection and it will take both The Dark Knight and The Green Hornet to save the day.

Those familiar with writer Kevin Smith and his film work may be surprised by this clean-cut comic.  Known for his ribald sense of humor and frank language, both Smith and his podcasting partner Ralph Garman play things surprisingly straight with their script.  Granted, the Jay and Silent Bob fans may laugh at the pink-clad commandos serving the special-guest-villain of the week and the gigantic glue-cannons they wield that spray super-sticky fluid everywhere, but any adult humor that comes from this is left strictly in the subtext.

batman-66-meets-the-green-hornet-interiorArtist Ty Templeton – best known for his work on the classic Batman: The Animated Series comic – does a masterful job on the pencils and inks for this issue.  Templeton proves a skillful caricaturist, perfectly capturing the likenesses of Adam West, Burt Ward, Van Williams and Bruce Lee.  More, Templeton is a great fight choreographer and the issue is filled to the brim with amazing action sequences, packed with colorful cartoon balloons of all the usual sound effects one expects of a Batman ’66 story.

Although the first issue of this mini-series is now available in the comic shops, a digital version is also available on-line.  Printed in a motion-comic style, with the artwork changing slightly with every click, the digital edition of Batman ’66 Meets The Green Hornet is worth a separate purchase.  The final effect is very much like watching an episode of either of these classic superhero shows.

Rating 4

About Matt Morrison

Matt "Starman" Morrison is The Grand Exalted High Macha of Raspur - a non-existent but real-sounding country. He has been writing about comics since before the word "blogging" was coined. He enjoys acting, role-playing, movie-riffing and sarcasm. You can follow his adventures on Twitter, @GeekyGeekyWays.

3 comments on “Comic Review: BATMAN ’66 MEETS THE GREEN HORNET #1

  1. You’re definitely right about the digital version being worth a buy alone. This comic and Batman 66 are the first I’ve read as digital comics that actually offer something more than their paper versions (besides ease of storage and portability, of course).

    I don’t know why more digital comics aren’t embracing this and playing around with what can be done with medium. Sure, not every comic would benefit from motion effects, and maybe it’s best suited for these funny, slapstick comics, but I’d like to see other creators and publishers give it a try.

    1. I think because it requires more effort. 😉

      Nah, but seriously… I’m not sure this would work well with most regular comics since so many of our modern artists pride themselves on doing intricate snapshots rather than suggesting motion as Jack Kirby and so many of the Silver Age artists and those who use a classic style (Ty Templeton, Mike Allred, Bruce Timm…)

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