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That felonious feline Catwoman is in the clutches of the Cybermen* Cybernauts.

Can the Dynamic Duo rescue her in time?

Will agents Steed and Peel instead free the femme fatale?

Does Chief O’Hara make a hasty judgement?

Will we see which rogue is behind the sudden onslaught of rigidly robust robot men?

The answers to these questions and more are contained herein, allies of justice, as Batman ’66 Meets Steed and Mrs. Peel releases its third bi-weekly installment.

It should come as no surprise that Catwoman indeed escapes and our heroes fend off the encroaching Cybernauts, but this has never been a series about surprises.  Instead, the primary draw of Batman ’66 has been its presentation.  In that regard, Ian Edginton and Matthew Dow Smith continue to prove that even with their own creative touches, they still have a strong handle on these characters.

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Like the previous two installments, I’m consistently impressed at Edginton’s remarkable ear for dialogue.  From the flirtatious banter between Batman and Catwoman to Chief O’Hara’s bewildered exclamations and everything in between, almost every line is whip smart and pitch perfect.   There’s one line from O’Hara that reminds me of Gordon’s “scarcely dare give it utterance” line from Batman: The Movie, aka “the best line from a movie forever.”

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Or maybe I just wanted to share that clip.  Whatever, it’s great.

And then there’s the one line that brings everything full circle, a reference to Batman Forever which itself was a reference to the TV series.

Yes, that’s right: Robin says “holy rusted metal!”

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Pack it up, folks.  Things can’t possibly get better than that.

Except they totally do.  Not one to let Batman and Robin hog all the glory, Edginton wisely continues to make Steed and Peel equal players in the game, using their knowledge of the robotic (I think?) assailants in tandem with the Dynamic Duo’s problem-solving prowess to beat the Cybernauts.   It’s a clever resolution, and Smith’s pencils make it a fun action scene where few punches are thrown.  I know Smith’s style is unique, but I like it more and more each passing issue.  The oil painting quality of Wendy Broome and Carrie Strachan’s colors is a nice creative choice as well, making the characters and surroundings distinct and recognizable while not being strictly married to spot-on likenesses.

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With the final page appearance of the “mystery” villain (just read the issue’s title), the worlds of Londinium and England align and bring the heroes’ respective enemies together.  The last time this Bat-rogue was seen in any worthwhile capacity was back in the ok-but-not-great Batman ’66 #19, so hopefully he’s a greater threat here.  Given the strength of these first three installments alone, I’ve no doubt he will be.

Recommended if:

  • You love Batman.
  • You love Steed and Peel.
  • You like great dialogue and interesting art.
  • Full-circle references are your speed.

Overall: Fun, involving, and snappy, each installment builds on the strengths of the last and continues to move this story forward.  While it’s too early to tell how involving the plot will be, the spot-on dialogue for both Batman and Avengers properties makes the book an enjoyable read.  The genuinely great lines and clever references and fights are just a welcome bonus.

SCORE: 8/10

*I don’t know why I keep wanting to call them Cybermen.  I don’t even like Doctor Who.