The Brave And The Bold: Batman And Wonder Woman #4

3

Bad

B&BBatman&WonderWoman4-minIt is hard to imagine any reader of this twenty-two page periodical who didn’t desire a laboriously lengthy crash course in Irish mythology and the Battle of Moytura gleaning much in the way of entertainment from Issue Four of “The Brave And The Bold: Batman And Wonder Woman”. Indeed, as comic book adventures go, especially those teaming up two of “DC Comics” Trinity, Liam Sharp’s soberingly straightforward script arguably just consists of a publication-length conversion between the titular characters and Lady Ethne, which both proves to be a poor usage of two ordinarily dynamically-charged super-heroes, and also fails to actually progress the plot of an increasingly tired-looking mini-series.

Admittedly, the Derby-born writer’s narrative does eventually include a smidgeon of action, when the grieving queen discovers the caped crusaders have ‘desecrated’ her ancestor’s tomb and one of her sour-looking giant Fomorian guards lets loose an arrow at Wonder Woman; “For Tir Na Nog, and for freedom!” Yet such a brief, mere modicum of motion, comes far too late in the fable-telling to debatably energise the rest of this book’s lifeless litany, especially when it only lasts a couple of panels and quickly results in naught more than Batman showing the furious monarch that “it appears that somebody has stolen the Silver Arm of Nuada…”

Unfortunately however, in order to reach even this somewhat underwhelming cliff-hanger, this magazine’s audience must first have endured splash page after double-splash page of exposition from the formidably-tall Ethne, as she waxes lyrical on the historical heritage of her dead husband. This drawn-out, almost text-book commentary covering the invasion of Balor of the Evil Eye, as well as the legendary world’s decision “to cast a lasting spell of forgetfulness over all of Tir Nag Nog”, genuinely takes a considerable patience to peruse properly, and resultantly requires repeated readings before it’s scriptural-like story is finally understood.

Disappointingly, such a semi-religious recitation possibly wouldn’t have been so unbearable if Sharp hadn’t decided to pencil the trials and tribulations it exposes as single panel pieces. These pictures are undoubtedly pleasing to the eye, but lack any pulse-pounding life whatsoever, and in hindsight would perhaps have proved more ‘inspirational’ if they had been drawn as multiple fast-paced sequences, illustrating the actual battles and tragedy within a carousel of smaller sketches..?

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This article is the opinion of the author and does not represent the views of the site owner.
3

Bad

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For the past forty or so years I have been collecting American comics… To begin with they were predominantly black and white British reprints of “Marvel Comics Group” titles such as “Spider-Man Comics Weekly”, “The Mighty World of Marvel” and “Star Wars Weekly”; all six to ten pence editions I could store away under my bed in a large cardboard box. As a result though I was introduced to the teenage angst of Peter Parker, the discovery of a frozen Captain America by Earth's Mightiest Heroes, witnessed the dreadful rage of Doctor Bruce Banner, and even travelled to a galaxy far far away... Later I would be able to afford actual America colour comic books and supplemented my collection of “Marvel” titles such as “Conan the Barbarian”, “Howard the Duck” and “Captain America” with some “DC Comics” issues of “Batman”, “Green Lantern” and “Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew”. There would even be time for Independent publications such as “Wildcats”, “Spawn” and “The Authority”. These days however I must admit to yearning back to the simpler times of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, back to when both artwork and storylines were straightforward, easy to follow and super-heroes were just starting out on their adventures. A time when no-one had yet to be resurrected from the dead for the fourth time. I've written over seven hundred comic book reviews on my blog over the past few years, with them usually following my latest purchases, all wrapped up in a large brown paper bag, as well as occasional ‘flashbacks’ to some of the classic "Golden Age" issues I already own…

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