When Amateurs Should Turn Pro

February 23rd, 2010 by | Tags: , ,

I couldn’t think of what to write for this entry.  First I scanned links on When Fangirls Attack, and Scans Daily, and various news sites, but I couldn’t think of anything I really wanted to write about, so I just clicked random links and googled random things for an hour, until I found myself, once again, reading the-blackcat’s Batman and Sons series.

The Black Cat, posting on deviantart and on livejournal (as the_dark_cat) did a series about Bruce, Dick, Jason, Tim, and baby Terry living together as a family and the wacky domestic adventures they get into.  It’s syrupy and ridiculous.  It runs completely counter to the Batman tone and almost everything that is happening in comics right now, and it is one of my favorite things to read. 

I cannot believe how much I love this series and everything in it.  It’s not just the silly adventures – it’s the artist themself.

This is an example of someone how knows their comics so well that they have clearly gone nuts with it. 

That’s a scene at Chris Kent’s birthday party.  Yes, that’s the Creeper handing out balloons to Jade and some kid I don’t recognize because I don’t know comics as well as this person does.

Later Terry gets into a scuffle with the youngest Arrow kid, not only because in the limited number of strips that The Black Cat has created he has been established as a kind of pushy baby, but there has also been established a feud between the Bats and the Arrows, with the Supers acting as peacekeepers.

Let me put this bluntly:  This is a person who should be hired.  To do this.  Because this is freakin’ fantastic. 

There are in-jokes, there are sharply delineated characters, there are visual gags, there is a sense of timing and flow to the panels, and every strip tells a story.  Some stories are poignant, and some are sweet, and some are mean, and most are funny.  I recognize that this is not everyone’s kind of story, and that it has to lean on the Grim Bat Mythos to stand.  Still, this artist has it all, and is giving it to us in these strips.  I wish they could get paid for it.  And I wish that I could pay for an issue every month.

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12 comments to “When Amateurs Should Turn Pro”

  1. The kid next to Jade is her brother Obsidian…

    I think I ran across this once way back when scans_daily was still on livejournal. The baby Terry bit seems familiar. I’ll have to try and track it down again…

  2. Boooooo on not linking to what you’re talking about!

  3. Someone light the Simone Signal.

  4. For what it’s worth, I’m pretty sure that Obsidian next to Jade…

  5. I know what you mean about wishing they were being paid to write a comic-book version of that stuff that you could buy. There was another fan comic along the same lines not too long ago, “Loli Loves Venom”, which I feel the exact same way about.

    Sadly, it’s no longer being written even as a fan made free series. 🙁

  6. I completely agree with you Esther. This is such a great series, and I often wish that someone at DC would pay him for some of this work. Someone should email this to Geoff Johns, maybe that’ll help.

  7. On the bright side, she is at least taking commissions: http://theblackcat-gallery.deviantart.com/

  8. I had pretty much the same reaction when I discovered this. Really great stuff. Would love to see the bat books do like a mini-marvel style page and let Black Cat run an ongoing strip.

  9. I’m a huge fan of comics like these, Tiny Titans and Mini Marvels always ended up finding the top of my read pile, but something about this rubs me the wrong way. I think it’s just the fact that they’re just so saccharine that I feel like throwing up.

    I mean it just reminds me of Family Circus with Batman, which actually sounds kind of awesome when I think about it that way.

  10. @david brothers: You don’t tell me how to do things, Brothers! YOU DON’T TELL MEEEE!

    @PeterV: See, I’m kind of concerned that it will end in a lawsuit.

    @Debaser: But that’s part of the appeal. I like the ridiculous sugariness of the series. Mostly, though, I like the various little rivalries and feuds in the Batclan. And the background art is always fun. Still, I can understand it not being to everyone’s taste.

    Thanks to everyone who let me know about Obsidian.

  11. Tommy Monaghan as the gym coach is the awesomest thing in Awesometown.

    Also, Terry’s “origin” story is heartbreaking. I need to go give Selina a hug.

  12. Baby Cassandra is my favorite part of that comic.