So a month ago, I started to explore to themes of Harvey being the Trial by Fire for the Robins, starting with Jason and then Tim. Now, of course, there is no Robin who has a more bitterly personal connection with Harvey than the first, Dick Grayson. It seems, in fact, that Two-Face is now officially Dick's arch-nemesis.
But why? How did this come about? What is it about Harvey, one of Batman's very worst enemies (second only to the Joker, IMO), that makes him ideally suited to be Dick's # 1?
I was going to post scans from "Prodigal" (the first "Dick as Batman" story from the 90's), but before I do that, I think it'd be best if we actually went back a bit further. Starting with the prelude to "Prodigal"--ROBIN #0 from 1994--and including the expansion/revisions of that story in the more-popularly-read ROBIN: YEAR ONE, both of which are helmed by Chuck Dixon, whom I believe we can therefore credit for inventing this particular archenemy dynamic.
Now, I consider Dixon to be one of the finest Batman writers, the only one of the 90's trio of Dixon, Moench, and Grant to be worth a damn (and the three of them working on "Prodigal" next week will be further proof of why I feel that way). And yet
, he also writes what I consider to be one of the worst depictions of Two-Face ever put to print.
This might be due to the fact that Dixon, as far as I know, has never written a villain sympathetically. They're all either criminal masterminds (Blockbuster, Two-Face) or shifty losers (the Riddler Year One annual, Cluemaster). Best as I can tell, Dixon writes expressly for the heroes, which he does wonderfully. Problem is, that means the villains, even antivillains like Harvey and Mr. Freeze, suffer as a result.
Not that there aren't strengths to this depiction of Two-Face...( Read more... )
And thus the stage is set for the imminent rematch between Dick (who will be assuming the mantle of Batman for the first time) and Two-Face in "Prodigal." Hopefully next week, after over a month of talkin' about it, I'll finally get to those scans as well.
char: two-face/harvey dent
char: batman/bruce wayne
char: robin/nightwing/dick grayson
char: robin/red robin/tim drake
creator: chuck dixon
creator: scott beatty
creator: javier pulido
creator: tom grummett