badficwriter: Flying saucer-I WANT TO BELIEVE (Default)
[personal profile] badficwriter posting in [community profile] scans_daily
I promised I'd post this someday.

The Forensic Files of Batman isn't a comic book. Nor even juxtaposed images in sequence. (So I included a scan for legality from Superman/Batman 1) It is a prose novel by Doug Moench.

It ambitiously sets out to be Forensics 101 for the layman, depicting in as much detail as possible realistic forensic methods that Batman has used in cases. The book has no overall story. It is divided into chapters, of which each is a separate case file.

It doesn't have Robin or the JLA. It's set at the beginning of Batman's career. This is not the BatGod, nor the superninja. This is the man who fights crime by being a detective.

The paperback has 384 pages. :P

Some random sections on Joker..

A section on the Two-Face bit for thehefner..

Superman/Batman 1. Writer: Jeph Loeb. Artists: Ed McGuinness, Dexter Vines.

Date: 2010-12-22 01:25 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] omgwtflolbbqbye
Wow. Surprised I never heard of this before!

I just ordered a copy for myself, thanks for the heads up!

Date: 2010-12-22 02:25 pm (UTC)
sherkahn: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sherkahn

THAT was amazing.

I guess I watched way too much TV and going through about 15 years of procedural's to think have every profiler or interviewer talk to Mr. J, and each and every one would be out of their league.

That was so well written in my mind I could still smell the drying blood on the Joker's face, here Hamill's voice shift between mischevious glee to murderous menace, and feel the fever heat coming off of the Joker that would send chills down my spine. Every word from the "profiler" had me thinking: "Do you have ANY idea what that thing on the other side of the desk IS?"

Profiler: "You've been charged with the murdering nine people..."
Joker: "Is that all?"

You got me. Yup, it's him. And I'm delighted and terrified all at the same time.

Date: 2010-12-22 04:22 pm (UTC)
thehefner: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thehefner
Hey, that's my name! :)

I'd seen this book on for a couple years, but I never bothered to check it out. I assumed it was one of those reference or essay tie-in book, like Batman and Philosophy: The Dark Knight of the Soul or The Batman Handbook: Ultimate Training Manual. Essentially, stuff to read while on the can.

Also, because it's by Doug Moench, whose work I generally very much dislike, even though he has written two of my favorite Batman comics of all time.

When I finally did pick this up about a month ago, I was really surprised. I'm going to have to read the whole thing. So far, I've only read the Two-Face one (surprise, surprise), and wasn't surprised that it was the typical Moench depiction of Two-Face as the ranting raving law-themed madman.

Plus, the origin Moench writes omits any psychological depth or motivation. It's just another case where the acid single-handedly drove him insane and evil. Boring and superficial, yes, but that can be somewhat more understandable when taking into account a small... detail... that Moench added to exactly what happened when the acid hit:

... There is no emoticon, no .gif, no convenient YouTube clip that can convey the exact manner in which I just squirmed/shuddered/recoiled at the thought of Harvey's hand fusing to his face. Gahhhhhhhh.

This detail is even more disturbing for the fact that it's in prose. If this were actually depicted in the comic, it wouldn't have the same effect. Heh, maybe that explains why there are never any Two-Face stories in the neglected subgenre of Bat-lit?

The only other story I've looked at in Forensic Files of Batman was the Scarecrow one, which is essentially an origin retelling, I think. This is now literally the fourth time Monech has written the Scarecrow as a prancing revenge killer going after his bullies. Moench really does seem to love that story!

Tonight, I think I'll read the Joker story in full. :)

Date: 2010-12-23 03:58 am (UTC)
thehefner: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thehefner
Thanks for the heads-up. I doubt I'll read the whole thing (too much else to read, and I'm too slow a reader), but if there are any you particularly recommend, I'd be happy to hear 'em.

Yeah, I like sensation, but most of all when I read short stories, I want great characters/character moments, and great storytelling. There were a precious handful that fit these categories in the Further Adventures of Batman volumes. Oh, would that more comics could be as moving and awesome as some of those stories...!

Yeah, I got that indication from the "Bat-God" line, and I agree wholeheartedly. I've loved modern Batman in many stories, but the more Bronze Age stuff I discover, the more I realize that it's that Batman which I prefer. That's probably because TAS Batman is roughly 90% Bronze Age Batman, 10% Frank Miller Batman. A good ratio for a properly balanced Batman, I think. :)

Date: 2010-12-23 04:20 am (UTC)
thehefner: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thehefner
Well, let me know if you get any further and have thoughts, and I will too. Lord knows there ain't anybody else reading this book!

Meantime, I have to finish Crime and Punishment, perhaps start Soon I Will Be Invincible, and intersperse them with short stories by Alan Brennert (I found a collection of his prose! Now let's see what the hell he's been doing instead of writing more awesome comics!) and Harlan Ellison.

I'm glad you threw in the "masochistic" comment. I mean, I've never read anything of Hamilton's, but from what I know... yeah, I couldn't halt my eyebrow's ascent there. :)

Date: 2010-12-23 06:48 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] psychopathicus_rex
You'll enjoy 'Soon I Will Be Invincible', I think. Good book.
Have you ever read anything by A. Lee Martinez? I've recently become a fan of his.

Date: 2010-12-23 07:12 am (UTC)
thehefner: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thehefner
I've heard good things! But only from people who haven't read much in the way of superhero comics. So I have some minor trepidations, you understand.

I never have, no. My reading list is a bit huge right now, as you can see. But I'm always open to new books. Any recommendations on where to start?

Date: 2010-12-23 10:52 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] psychopathicus_rex
Well, all his books are stand-alone, so you can pretty much leap in anywhere. So far I've read 'A Nameless Witch', 'In the Company of Ogres', 'The Automatic Detective' and 'Monster'. They're all good - my favorite so far is probably 'Nameless Witch', but not by much. It depends on what your tastes are, really - 'NW' and 'Ogres' do interesting things with the fantasy genre, 'Detective' is a combination of hardboiled detective melodrama and Jetsons-style futurism, and 'Monster' approaches urban fantasy from a blue-collar gotta-pay-the-rent perspective that you don't often see.

Date: 2010-12-23 06:45 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] psychopathicus_rex
That opening to the Joker interview doesn't ring true. It gets better as it goes along, but I don't think of the Joker as being that... obvious. 'I'd rather tattoo it on your forehead. Etched by hand, with a blunt dirty needle dipped in day-glo acid'? Come on, that's CLUMSY writing. He'd be more likely to say something like 'But I have so MANY names - how can you expect me to choose?'

Date: 2010-12-23 09:54 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] psychopathicus_rex
And most of it, to be fair, is perfectly in character for him - it's just that opening that bugs me.


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