cyberghostface: (Two-Face)
[personal profile] cyberghostface posting in [community profile] scans_daily

I personally think J. M. DeMatteis is one of the most underrated comic writers out there. His most famous work is probably 'Kraven's Last Hunt' for obvious reasons but he was also responsible for 'Going Sane' with the Joker and this story, 'Crime and Punishment', featuring Two-Face.

Warning for child abuse and suicide.

The story was written in 1995 in part of DC's promotion for 'Batman Forever'. The less said about that the other but it is an interesting contrast to how the comics were handling the character at the time versus how Tommy Lee Jones played Two-Face.

As an aside I'm lifting these scans from 'About-Faces' analysis of the comic here as I don't have any other scans on me and Comixology has yet to make this available in digital format. If you're a fan of Two-Face you should give his blog a look.

In the present but flashing back Two-Face crashes a live TV broadcast of a Maury Povich style talk show, focusing on interviews with abused children.

When Two-Face asks him who told him that, the kid responds that his father did. "How do you like THAT, Gotham? Did that go down well with the chips and beer? His Daddy beats the CRAP out of him... and tells him it's HIS fault!"

Two-Face starts a crime spree that is linked to attacks connected to opposites; a poor neighborhood with a rich one, etc.

Batman eventually discovers that the attacks are circling around a wealthy district in Gotham where Harvey's dad lives.

We go back to the beginning with Two-Face jumping off the building. Batman grabs him.

"Let. Him. Die."

Date: 2017-08-26 10:06 pm (UTC)
riddler13: (Default)
From: [personal profile] riddler13
Yes, aboutfaces is a very cool resource on Two-Face, although it's been some time since he last updated it.

This is a good story, riffing on The Eye of the Beholder. I find Scott McDaniel's Two-Face weird, though.

Date: 2017-08-26 11:36 pm (UTC)
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
From: [personal profile] alicemacher
Agreed 100% on DeMatteis being an underrated writer.

I like the complex and nuanced portrayal of Harvey's father. (All child abusers, qua abusers, commit acts that cannot and must not ever be excused, but not all child abusers are 100% devoid of conscience or love, as so often portrayed.) I also like Batman's bluff at the climax.

Date: 2017-08-26 11:56 pm (UTC)
zechs80: (Mayuri)
From: [personal profile] zechs80
This is my favorite DeMatteis Batman story.

Date: 2017-08-27 01:46 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] zachbeacon
"Warning for child abuse and suicide"

Well it IS a DeMatteis story.

Morbid joking aside, Two-Face does seem exactly like the kind of Batman villain that would interest DeMatteis. I'm surprised this has been collected since it doesn't seem he's done much with Batman outside the Justice League and we did get that Going Sane collection about ten years back.

(Still not as astonishing as Marvel's refusal to reprint most of his Spider-Man work aside from Kraven's Last Hunt and the story by committee stuff like Maximum Carnage or the Clone Saga. Seriously, would a Spectacular Epic Collection kill them?)

Date: 2017-08-27 01:59 am (UTC)
starwolf_oakley: (Default)
From: [personal profile] starwolf_oakley
It's not here, but at some point Two-Face says to the TV audience, "If any of you had half your face burned off... Well, you'd get really depressed for a while, but you wouldn't end up like ME!"

Date: 2017-08-27 06:56 am (UTC)
deathcrist2000: (Default)
From: [personal profile] deathcrist2000
Ah JM DeMatteis, one of the hidden gems of the comic book scene (and I'm not saying that cause I'm doing a blog project on one of his more well known works). Strangely, given the rest of his work, this is actually quite kind to Batman (whereas other takes at the Bat include "Batman is emblematic of Grimdark and must be discarded in favor of Superman," "Batman is an inhuman, unforgiving creature who will stop at nothing to get his target and rejects the possibility of redemption," and "Batman is literal, actual Satan").

Date: 2017-08-27 07:54 am (UTC)
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
From: [personal profile] alicemacher
The only other Batman story of his I've read is Going Sane, which also treats the character sympathetically even as it's mostly about the Joker. Strange then that DeMatteis would take such a negative stance on Batman in his other stories.


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