Saturday, December 31, 2005

I don't get it.

Everyone in the Blogosphere loves ALL STAR BATMAN AND ROBIN (although they always preface positive reviews by saying "I know everyone else hates this" or "I must be the only one that Gets The Joke" or "I know what he's trying to do here- everyone else is missing the point"). I am led to believe that there is some sort of "satire" or "commentary" or "just crazy fun fun big crazy comics!!!". Everyone else out there seems to be laughing out loud and in on some sort of ur-joke that I am missing.

Is this comic actually funny? I am aware that it is ridiculous and over-the-top and whatnot, but I am missing the Big Hilarious Satire that everyone else seems to be reading. I am not a prudish DC nerd upset that Batman is an angry Goddamn Batman. I am not a humorless tee-totaler upset by the (implied) sex and (grisly) violence. I love Sin City and I love insane Comic Booky nonsense.

But I am missing the joke here. I am not laughing out loud. I am looking at this ALL STAR BATMAN AND ROBIN, and thinking that it is written for some other demographic than the one I am in. It's like watching the REAL WORLD or a LIFETIME original movie; it just makes no sense to me. It is possible that Miller just pooped this out, and is spending more time signing checks than doing re-writes, correct? Can we all agree that that is at least a possiblity?

The pacing is bizarre, the strange repetition of phrases is very, very (very) weird, and three issues in, we're still sitting in the Batmobile. I'm mostly bored by this book, and often befuddled. I guess it's me. I guess I'm not "in on the joke". It couldn't be that this simply isn't all that well constructed a comic. That would be impossible, I guess.

I am willing to admit that am just missing the brilliant satire here.

I even sorta enjoyed the absurd shenanigens of the first two issues, but the third issue's interlude with Black Canary just lost me. Is it possible the joke isn't some large parodic commentary, but maybe a big laugh at the reader, for slogging through shit that makes no sense? Because if that's the case, the joke isn't just on the DC nerds who are up in arms... it's on the guys who "get the joke" as well. I am just not seeing the difference in quality between this and say, any other poorly plotted, bullshit comic about Men In Capes.

I mean, as long as it sells well, I guess I should be happy. I just think that the sales might be a hair better if there wasn't suddenly a fifteen page sequence about a bartender getting hassled in the middle of what was previously a cool scene between the Goddamn Batman and Dick Grayson. (And seriously, what the fuck was up with the Superman epilogue? Is this shit really so hilarious to everyone?) I can only imagine the sales if it wasn't trying so hard to be clever and "funny", and just gave us a solid, action-packed story about Batman and Robin. Remember how fun those used to be? I guess I've reached a point in my life where I get my laughs from other sources than mainstream superhero comics.

Maybe someone can explain it to me. I am, after all, a bear of very little brain.