Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

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John Mack
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Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by John Mack » Tue Feb 25, 2020 8:36 pm

Not sure how this could tie into the purported Disney/Marvel buying DC thing, but thought the timing of it all rather odd.
Strange thing is, I could care less who owns Batman in his current form. I find this whole horror/fantasy route they've done to Batman unappealing. He's like Dracula with a car. Batdrac if you will. I think if Disney did buy DC, maybe our hero would return to being a detective and his costume may lighten up with this change.
I dunno. I guess it all snuck up on me. From the Aurora model kit from 1964 that has Batman hanging from a dying tree, to all those 1970s stories that some here enjoy with dark, haunted houses and the invention of Ras. I suppose that this element has always been there for Batman. I can hear Andy now..."John---Batman has always had his roots in horror." I suppose he has. I just never noticed it so much being a 60's TV series fan and little more. I always shook my head as a child when I saw that Aurora kit, or saw the latest comic on the rack that showed Batman fighting a zombie or that gorilla. In closing, I have to say the direction Batman is going is not my cup of tea.
Music. BAT! Music.

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SprangFan
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by SprangFan » Wed Feb 26, 2020 6:59 am

I came to comics in the very early 70s when I was first learning to read. At that point, the Adam West series was "in the tank" and a matter of record, Neal Adams was defining the character in comics and the "100 Page Super-Spectaculars" were reprinting tales from *every* era. I feel I was blessed with equal exposure to all forms of Batman and so I've enjoyed many iterations equally. Indeed, Batman much more than Superman is a highly flexible character, equally at home in the realms of horror, noir, adventure, espionage, martial arts and even light comedy. The only thing he's not well-suited for, IMHO, is sci-fi.

That said, the books on the spinner rack when I was a lad often featured spooky or supernatural themes. Werewolves, vampires, lots of ghosts, living scarecrows, demons, you name it. This wasn't unique to Batman -- there was a horror craze in effect at the time -- but it fit Batman a lot better than say, Spider-Man.

The reason it worked, though, was because for all the crazy things he saw, Batman remained at heart a skeptic, with a scientist's mind and both feet firmly planted on the ground. Just as Houdini exposed fake spiritualists because he knew all their tricks from his "day job," Batman adopted the appearance and tactics of a quasi-supernatural figure himself, and so automatically assumed anything else that looked "supernatural" must also have a human agency behind it. Sometimes he was right, sometimes not, and the best stories kind of left it unresolved.

Personally, I loved the aesthetics of a hero who took on the appearance of something more sinister (I also liked that about The Shadow) and it made sense that a guy who skulked around in the shadows in the dead of night would occasionally bump into some pretty creepy stuff. Anyway it was a nice counterbalance to Superman, always flying high in bright blue skies. Monsters and ghosts could never raise goosebumps in a Superman story, but they could and did in Batman and Detective.

I'm not sure where the "BatDrac" label comes from, having not read new comics in quite a while. I know Batman was literally a vampire at one point (maybe more than once) and I didn't care for that. If you're alluding to the forays into what passes for "horror" these days (gratuitous gore and torture ***adult film that is not appropriate subject matter for this board to discuss***), I think I agree. Things like the Joker getting his face ripped off or cutting off the limbs of other characters, or the current storyline that has Batman and the rest of the DC heroes turned into zombies, are definitely not my cup of tea. But for me, that's not because horror has no place in Batman stories, but more because turning these characters into brain-hungry zombies or ruthless killers or world-dominating despots or any number of other recent storylines destroys the foundation of what superheroes were designed to BE. Any superhero story that's fueled by despair, viciousness or depravity is by definition a defilement of the heroic premise, an act of vandalism, the storytelling equivalent of dropping trousers and taking a whiz on the whole superhero ideal. And I can't support that.
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John Mack
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by John Mack » Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:31 pm

I'm just a TV series fan as I said. Never read the comic books much. So to me, Batman was scifi. I understand the horror aspect of the comic book Batman, but as only being a TV series fan, you can see how confused that made me. Oh well, just a character, not the end of the world.
Music. BAT! Music.

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Keith Mayo
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by Keith Mayo » Wed Feb 26, 2020 5:43 pm

DiDio gets the adios from DC on Friday.
Iger is "allowed to step down" from Disney on Monday.
Today, Warner Bros gives Dee Dee Myers the ol' heave ho.
"It's the very essence of our democracy". - Batman, S1 Ep 11

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SprangFan
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by SprangFan » Wed Feb 26, 2020 6:40 pm

John Mack wrote:
Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:31 pm
I'm just a TV series fan as I said. Never read the comic books much. So to me, Batman was scifi. I understand the horror aspect of the comic book Batman, but as only being a TV series fan, you can see how confused that made me. Oh well, just a character, not the end of the world.
Interesting. The chief appeal of the show to me was that it was a comic book come to life, much more so than any other superhero-to-screen adaptation up to that time, and well into the 70s. If I didn't already know the character from comics, I'm not sure how I'd have reacted to the show. Interesting to think about...
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AndyFish
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by AndyFish » Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:52 pm

Ha John you're right-- I'd chime in that Batman has his roots in horror pulps!
I discovered the show first, and while I liked it-- I liked it a lot more after a friend's older brother gave me a really old comic book (at the time) Detective Comics #388 which featured this amazing splash page;

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That story which featured Batman and Robin fighting the Joker on the moon made a huge impact on me-- I was also a big fan of astronauts like every kid in the early 70s. That moody splash page really struck me-- the Joker that giant moon and the Batmobile at NIGHT. I could totally see the TV Show here and even as a kid I noticed the dark shadows of the first season.

The first comic I bought off the stands walking to the tiny mom and pop store near my elementary school was this one;

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Double wow! More mystery and horror elements and Batman using a gun? I had to read this thing even though I could barely read!

So yeah, Batman's always been a horror character to me, but I agree the modern stuff isn't my cup of tea. If you want a further look at why I don't dig modern Batman comics check out this post on my blog;

Modern Batman Just Ain't For Me

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John Mack
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by John Mack » Thu Mar 05, 2020 12:10 pm

When Batman came on TV I was 3. What drew me to the show was the music. Say, anyone remember my "official" Batmusic thread?
Music. BAT! Music.

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AndyFish
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Re: Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO and my thoughts on BatDrac

Post by AndyFish » Fri Mar 06, 2020 7:58 am

I remember it. Still wish they'd do a deep track album release.

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