Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lego Batman The Video Game 2 Coming Soon...

Pic courtesy of Bricktuts.com

Now In Hardcover, the Critically Acclaimed BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR

 Now In Hardcover, the Critically Acclaimed BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR

“Because no matter how good you think you are at drawing a line between work and home, there will always be some cases that stay with you … cases that come howling back at you out of the darkness, like phone calls in the middle of the night.” – Commissioner James Gordon

Few understand the extent of darkness that dwells within the heart of Gotham City like Batman and Commissioner James Gordon do. But when the grave threats that torment Gotham may lie within Gordon’s own bloodline, he’ll be put to the test like never before.

With Dick Grayson behind the cape and cowl of the Dark Knight, it’ll be up to Batman and Commissioner Gordon to embark on one of their most personal missions yet to protect Gotham before the fate of the entire city is completely doomed.

From the acclaimed creative team of Scott Snyder, Jock and Francesco Francavilla, BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR collects DETECTIVE COMICS #871-881 and is quickly shaping up to be one of the hottest gifts for comic book fans this holiday season.

“Though his run as Batman is over, THE BLACK MIRROR will remain the defining chapter of Dick Grayson’s stint as the Dark Knight,” IGN wrote of the book. “Perhaps more importantly is the story’s contributions to Jim Gordon and Gotham City itself – two of DC’s most underappreciated characters – which Snyder and company give a defining appearance not seen in such stunning display since BATMAN: YEAR ONE. By all accounts, THE BLACK MIRROR is the Batman story to beat for the next generation of superhero comics.”

“Snyder knows how to make things disturbing and mysterious while keeping a strong level of action driving the plot forward. He brings a level of sophistication and class to the title,”

Check out the gallery below for a sneak peek at some of the rare sketches and designs included in the back of the book. BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR is available in bookstores everywhere now.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

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The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

A comprehensive look at the greatest comic book villain . . . ever. Since his first appearance in 1940’s Batman #1, the Joker stands alone as the most hated, feared, and loved villain in the DC Universe. Though his true origins may be unknown, the Clown Prince of Crime’s psychotic appearances in hundreds of comic books has shaped the way we look at Batman, comic books, and ourselves. Indeed, a hero is only as good as his nemesis, so the Joker’s heinous crimes, including murdering the second Robin and paralyzing Batgirl, have elevated Batman to the highest levels of crime-fighting, and we, the readers, to the finest levels of quality pop-culture entertainment.

The Joker is the first retrospective chronicling one of the most groundbreaking and game-changing villains of all time, and contains images from his more than seventy years in comics by comic book artists and writers such as Bob Kane, Bill Finger, Jerry Robinson, Dick Sprang, Grant Morrison, Dave McKean, Neil Gaiman, Geoff Johns, Alan Moore, Brian Bolland, Brian Azzarello, Bruce Timm, and Paul Dini. Also included are images from his various film, television, animated, and video game incarnations, such as the timeless interpretations by Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, and Heath Ledger, who won his posthumous Oscar for his portrayal of the Joker in 2008’s The Dark Knight. This book is a must-have for fans and anyone who wants to die laughing.

This new book is the first time we get a focus spotlighted on Batman's #1 villain...the Joker.  Prolific author Daniel Wallace does a masterful job of peppering in dynamic and colorful imagery amidst an in-depth and informative history of the clown prince of crime!  The book covers his inception..all the way through the movies and cartoons to the present day.


The Origins of the Joker

    The Joker was first created by Bill Finger and Bob Kane back in 1940.  He debuted in the Spring 1940 comic book Batman #1.  There is some dispute from Jerry Robinson that he too had a hand in the creation of the character, such things are the subject of much heated comic con discussion.  The Joker was actually modeled after Conrad Veidt's character in the 1928 silent film The Man Who Laughs.  They took the unsettling design and  blended it with the image on a Joker's card and a beloved homicidal maniac was born.  And homicidal he was -- even in that first appearance.   The original plans for the character were to kill him off in his very next appearance, after a prison break, but the forsight of then DC Comics editor Whitney Ellsworth who had them add a last minute panel that made the Joker's death ambiguous, therefore preserving one of the most highly recognizable fictional villains in pop culture.


Silver Age Sillyness

    This was the Golden Age version of the Joker.  The Golden Age of comic books lasted from the late 1930s through the mid 1950s.  The next generation, which was clearly effected by the Comics Code Authority (the industry's alternative to being regulated by the Federal government), was the Silver Age of comic books.  The Silver Age ran from about 1956 to 1970.  One major aspect that set the Silver Age apart was a toning down of most comic book characters.  The Joker was one of the few Batman villains to carry over from the Golden Age, but he was barely recognizable.  He went from a murderous and feindish gangster to a fun-loving and wacky prankster that was essentially harmless.  The Joker's inclusion in the 1966 Batman television show, where he was portrayed by the legendaryily mustached Cesar Romero, did nothing but further this zany image.

The Murder of Jason Todd

    It wasn't until the murder of Jason Todd that the Joker began to regain his mystique.  Jason, the second Robin,  was a wide-eyed blonde boy, athletic and all-american.   The original origin for Jason Todd was pretty much the same as the original Robin, Dick Grayson's,  origin.  His parents were also circus performers, but they were killed by the Batman rogue Killer Croc instead of gangster Tony Zucco.  Eventually, he was given the Robin uniform to wear by Dick Grayson and he died his hair black to emulate the former Robin.  Then, in 1985, Dc Comics underwent one of the biggest and most altering story arcs ever, the Crisis On Infinite Earths.  The Crisis elinimated some characters and changed the origins and relationships of others.   The new origin for Jason was now that he was a young street punk that Batman met when he put the Batmobile up on cement blocks and stole the tires!  The nerve, right?  That should've been Batman's first clue that maybe he was a little too sassy to be Robin, but nevertheless this Jason Todd eventually became the new Robin and lasted for many a year.  This Jason was, unlike Dick Grayson and the former incarnation of Jason, a little twerp.  He was willfull, snarky and sometimes flat out disobedient to his mentor.  He sometimes took risks he shouldn't have and exhibited impulsive behavior.  This son of a overdosed drug addict smoked, drank and cursed!  Not your grandpa's Robin!  His reception amongst fans was very mixed.  Many felt that Dick was the one true Robin and found Jason to be an annoyance.

    Then, in 1988, now legendary DC Comics editor Denny O'Neil realized that the new Robin wasn't very liked and thought up a great gimmick to let the fans decide on whether they wanted DC Comics to make a change.  Thus was born "A Death in the Family", the story arc that was presented in Batman #426 to #429.  They put up an ad at the end of Batman #427 that read “Robin Will Die Because The Joker Wants Revenge, But You Can Prevent It With A Telephone Call.”  They the give two 900 numbers as an option.  If fans called 1-900-720-2660 they voted  for “The Joker Fails and Robin Lives” or 1-900-720-2666 to vote for “The Joker Succeeds and Robin Will Not Survive.”  The cost was 50 cents per call and the voting line was open for two days only on September 15th and 16th.

    DC Comics had two pages produced.  One where Robin lived and one where he died in Batman's arms.  When the smoke had cleared over 10,000 fans called in to vote.  The final vote was 5,343 votes for Jason to die and 5,271 for him to live.  The fans had spoken, Jason's fate was sealed and Batman would never be the same again.    The results appeared in Batman #428, an issue that is now legendary.   Jason Todd, Robin II, died of a severe beating with a crowbar by the Joker and is then unceremoniously blown-up by the Clown Prince of Crime.   This is a great example of the level of brutality that the Joker character was moving towards at this time.  This was a line drawn in the sand and things would never be the same.  The Joker only moves towards being more twisted and brutal and the Batman would never be the same again, moving into a far more dark and brooding tone, blaming himself for Jason's untilmely demise.

The Book

The images in this book are taken from directly from the comic book pages, sketches, animation cels and other work from artists, such as Tim Sale, Sam Keith and Jim Lee.  Even the fan with a fairly  extensive knowlege of the Joker can learn a few things from this great behind the scenes look at the greatest comic book villain of all.  The introduction by Mark Hamill, the most prolific cartoon Joker,  is a great touch in this high-end hardcover book from Universe publishing.  The book retails for around $50.  The cover features a dust jacket with "Killing Joke" artwork that wraps around a purple and green "Ha Ha" cover.  A lot of books are released each year that spotlight Batman, but this rare new look that focuses on the Joker is a welcome breath of fresh air.

How to Buy: Amazon.com

Friday, November 18, 2011

Win A Copy of "The Conscious Catwoman Explains Life On Earth" Signed By Julie Newmar!


Legions Of Gotham has partnered with the great Julie Newmar, Catwoman in the 1966 Batman TV show, to giveaway a copy of "The Conscious Catwoman Explains Life On Earth" Signed By Julie Newmar!  Email us at legionsofgotham.org @ gmail.com for your chance to win!  Good luck bat-fans!

How To Plan A Batman Birthday Party!


We get a lot of emails here at the Legion and one of the top ones is where do I get good Batman party supplies for my kids' party?!  Other than retail, a great place is KidsPartyWorld.com!  We've partnered with KidsPartyWorld.com to feature a few of their great Batman party supply items for you here.  The branding currently is still mainly set in the Brave and the Bold, but they do have a few comic book style items available, as well!  Here are a few items that we think might serve you well and stood out to us...you can get them all at the KidsPartyWorld.com website!

KidsPartyWorld.com....From 1st to a 100, everyone is a kid!  Party supplies for every occasion and birthday party supplies for every age.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Preview of Young Justice #10


In 1968, an air force officer named Nathaniel Adams was convicted of the murder of General Lamar and died in prison. Now, with the case re-opened, it’ll be up to the Young Justice team to discover the truth behind Lamar’s murder and to clear Adams’ legacy. The only catch is that the real killer is targeting anyone involved in the case that might reveal what really happened … including the entire Young Justice team!

Can the Young Justice team survive the traps set for them and get to the bottom of Lamar’s murder before the killer strikes again? Find out in YOUNG JUSTICE #10 by Kevin Hopps, Greg Weisman, Christopher R. Jones and Dan Davis, in stores today.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Batman: Legacy Wave 3 Action Figures

...coming in early 2012

New DC Nation Teaser Commercial!



The Teen Titans return in chibi form...Batman Lego...Gotham City Imposters and more!  Watch for more coverage of DC Nation here on Legions of Gotham.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Gotham City Impostors Release Date and Open Beta Announced





Today Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Entertainment announce that Gotham City Impostors will be available beginning January 10, 2012, on Xbox LIVE™ Arcade and PlayStation®Network, as well as for PC.  
 
An open beta for the game is expected to go live in December.  Fans can go to www.GothamCityImpostors.com to register for their chance to take part in the beta.  
 
Gotham City Impostors is an original download-only first-person shooter where up to 12 players battle for control of an unhinged Gotham City overrun by Impostors inspired by the DC Comics characters Batman and The Joker. Gotham City Impostors is an online multiplayer game unlike any other, giving players the opportunity to engage in unconventional urbane warfare as they personalize their own Impostors.  Gamers will create their very own version of the Bats or the Jokerz characters using unprecedented customization options including insane costumes, homemade gadgets and a wide range of traditional and inventive weapons.  The game will feature maps and modes inspired by DC Comics’ Batman license.

Product Review: 13" Tonner Catwoman Doll


Product Review: 13" Tonner Catwoman Doll

About the Doll: Tonner®'s latest SELINA KYLE is taking one a whole new look.  13" CATWOMAN™ prowls they roofs of GOTHAM in a sleek zip-up bodysuit with high collar and matching belt, molded goggles, changeable black and natural hands, and faux leather boots.

Our Take: Here is our look at one of the first dolls in the new Tonner 13" scale dolls.  They come in at a lower price point, since they're at a smaller scale and the sculpt quality is still there!  This is the first Tonner Catwoman in the modern suit.  You can find her on the Tonner site for sale.

Image Gallery:

Exclusive preview of HUNTRESS #2


In the first issue of HUNTRESS, you were introduced to Helena Bertinelli, who just arrived in Italy in hopes of tracking down a ruthless criminal.

In issue #2 (on sale today), Helena’s mission continues as she stalks her prey and attempts to sabotage the secret delivery of a weapon shipment to him. But with Moretti’s men in full protection mode, can Helena stop him from receiving the weapons while also saving the innocent people he is exploiting?

HUNTRESS #2 is written by Paul Levitz and illustrated by Marcus To and John Dell.

courtesy of DCU: The Source blog

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Batman Dies At Dawn!

from DCU: The Source blog  
 
Desperate times call for desperate measures.

In BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #13, Batman’s life is hanging on by a thread. In order to help save him, The Phantom Stranger summons all of the people who have worn the Robin mask in the past, present and in the future. Together, these Robins must restore their mentor back to full health before it is too late.
So how do they intend on doing so? By taking him to The Lazarus Pit, which Batman’s enemy Ra’s Al Ghul has used to stay alive for centuries. But can the team of Robins move beyond their personal differences to take on the League of Assassins and save Batman?

Find out by picking up BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #13, by Sholly Fisch, Rick Burchett and Dan Davis, in stores tomorrow.

Batman: Arkham City - PC Dates Confirmed


Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Entertainment today confirmed that the Games for Windows PC version of Batman: Arkham City will be available in North America beginning November 22, in Australia beginning November 23, in France and Benelux beginning November 24, and in other European territories beginning November 25.  
 
Published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and developed by Rocksteady Studios, Batman: Arkham City builds upon the intense, atmospheric foundation of Batman: Arkham Asylum, sending players soaring into Arkham City – five times larger than the game world in Batman: Arkham Asylum – and the new maximum security “home” for all of Gotham City’s thugs, gangsters and insane criminal masterminds. Set inside the heavily fortified walls of a sprawling district in the heart of Gotham City, this highly anticipated sequel introduces a brand-new story that draws together a new, all-star cast of classic characters and murderous villains from the Batman universe, as well as a vast range of new and enhanced gameplay features to deliver the ultimate experience as the Dark Knight.
 
Batman: Arkham City is based on DC Comics’ core Batman license. Fans can visit http://www.batmanarkhamcity.com  to sign up to receive updates regarding the game.  

Monday, November 07, 2011

WIN a copy of The Draw the DC Universe Book!

Legions of Gotham has teamed with our network site BookLegion.com and Klutz to give two lucky fans FREE copies of the great new Draw the DC Universe book.  Check out our review posted earlier today for details on the book.  If you'd like to enter, just drop us a line, comment here on the blog or on facebook.  Good luck!

POLL: What Do YOU Think Of The New Harley Quinn Design?

 
Dc Comics has revamped their characters and none quite so much as the lovely Harley Quinn!  We all know and love her, but this new version is quite the departure.  What do you think of her?  Like?  Dislike?  Comment on the blog, on facebook or drop us an email and we'll share the feedback!

Draw DC Universe: Learn to Draw the Heroes and the Villains Book Review

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Draw DC Universe: Learn to Draw the Heroes and the Villains Book Review

About the Book: This book is a complete how-to-draw package, jammed with expert tips and techniques, tons of practice space, and of course, a universe of DC heroes and villains. The draw-right-in-it book comes with everything you need: a sketching pencil, a drawing marker, artist’s pencils in six colors, a big block eraser to fight crimes against the page, stencils, and translucent overlays scattered throughout for can’t-fail tracing activities.

*This review is courtesy of our network site BookLegion.com

Our Take: We love Dc Comics here at Book Legion and over at our network site Legions of Gotham.  This book was brought to our attention not from a press release or an email, but by my son.  We were walking through a local craft store and my son ran, not walked, ran up to me waving this book.  Well, I was instantly hooked, so we partnered with the fine folks at Klutz to check it out and shrare our results with you all.  

I love to draw.  I drew during school, I drew during work and in my adult life I'm a gallery exhibiting painter.  My first love is comic book style art, but I must confess I've never been all that great at it.  Well, let me tell you this Klutz book changed all that for me!  Firstly, my son did a few drawings..he started with the simple line and shape drawings in the book and followed their step by step instructions through to the final detailed drawing and it was amazing.  He has talent as it is, but this book helped him learn and understand things about bodies and porportion that set his skill level up quite a few notches.  So, I tried it out and it did the same for me, I'm embaressed to say, since this one is geared towards kids, lol.  

This book rocks.  It comes with colored pencils that you can utilize in your drawings and a marker that we found didn't work so well, but that was inconsequential.  The characters you can draw range from Batman and Supes to Scarecrow, Robin, Flash, Green Arrow and more!  This book is great for collectors and a must for any adult or kid that wants to improve their comic book style drawing skills! 

This book comes With: pencil, drawing marker, 3 double-tipped pencils in 6 colors, block eraser, 2 pages of stencils

How to Buy: Amazon.com

The Conscious Catwoman Explains Life On Earth Book Review

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The Conscious Catwoman Explains Life On Earth Book Review

About the Book: This book contains the secrets of her nine plus lives.  The how...to end all HOW TO books!
*This review is from our network site BookLegion.com

Our Take: Julie Newmar is an amazing actress.  She is one of my personal favorites...you see I'm a Batman maniac.  I mean that in the worst way!  lol.  Julie Newmar is, of course, most famous for her role as the sexy and classy Catwoman in the 1966 Batman television show.  Ms. Newmar has had a very prolific career since and has become something of a cultural icon.  You may have seen the film "Too Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar.   This book is full of Julie's thoughts on life...everything from writing, health, wealth, parents and pursuing your dreams.  She has very practical and positive views on how to live your life and its really refreshing to read.  The book is a light read, clocking in at just over 70 pages and with a very loose format that includes pics of the actress and spaced out quotes.  The very last chapter, dedicated to Julie's son, is absolutely touching and really shows her character as a mother and a person.  This book is fantastic and I recommend it to all Batman fans and not just that, but people in general.  This book would make a lovely gift and should definately be remembered this Xmas.  Something else fun?  For an extra fee on Julie's website you can have the book autographed and personally inscribed to yourself or someone else!

How to Buy: Julie Newmar's Official Website

Friday, November 04, 2011

Get an EXTRA entry into our Batman: Arkham City Video Game Giveaway!





The entries to this great contest we're hosting with Blockbuster have been overwhelming.  We'd like to give you the chance to enter twice!  Just go like us on facebook.  We will give everyone that also likes our page on facebook and comments on this post there another entry!

Win a signed copy of Batman: Arkham City!


Legions of Gotham and Blockbuster have joined to bring you a great new giveaway!  We are giving away copies of Batman: Arkham City on Xbox 360 AND PS3 signed by the crew at Rocksteady Studios!  

Blockbuster is running a cool special that if you buy a game there, you get a free month of unlimited game and movie rentals until November 22!

http://www.blockbuster.com/arkhamcity

For your chance to win one of these great collector's items just email your entry to us at legionsofgotham.org @ gmail.com (remove the spaces).  Include your platform preference, address and favorite section on Legions of Gotham.  Good luck!
 

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