Last week, it was announced that Batman-News.com was acquired by Techno Buffalo. While we are excited to be part of Techno Buffalo and genuinely look forward to the future of the site, we wanted to take a moment to celebrate Chris. For many of us, we’ve always associated Batman-News with Chris. He created the site, ran the site, and eventually brought in others to help contribute to the site – most importantly, the comic review team (Haha!). So, if you wouldn’t mind indulging us, we’ve each contributed a brief farewell message (or euology as Elena called it, haha) to the guy who created it all – Chris Begley!

It’s an odd thing, seeing a Batman News without Chris. It still looks the same as it did a couple weeks ago when he was here, but then I see a story that excites me or a typo that irks me and I go to send him a text about it only to be reminded that he’s no longer the writer of those little blurbs on the homepage. I still remember when it all started, how there used to be only one Batman website on the net until a scrappy poster on the Superhero Hype message boards announced that he had invented an alternative. Chris’s enthusiasm was infectious and I had to be a part of Batman News. Luckily, Chris let me into his world so I could contribute to his vision and now, even though he’s no longer running things and I’m no longer reviewing comics, I have a whole family of fellow batfans who have made my life all the richer. If it wasn’t for Chris, wasn’t for Batman News, I doubt my love of The Dark Knight would be as strong as it is today. And I know I would’ve missed out on many incredible relationships with my fellow writers and you readers who checked out my reviews. I wish Chris all the best. And I look forward to seeing where our friendship goes now that he and I are both retired (well, semi-retired) from the Caped Crusader commentary game. Andrew

I posted the first-ever non-Andrew review among the team in 2014 (it was Harley Quinn #8), and Chris was right there to congratulate us on the kick-off and tell me how I did an embedded tweet wrong (Ha!). But Chris was never critical nor got upset if something was wonky, and always funny when things blew up. His light heartedness and sense of humor made writing for Batman-News such a joy. Chris: you have a kind and good soul and I know whatever you do next, you’ll put your whole heart into. Even if you’re still around, I’m gonna miss you like we all kinda still miss Andrew and Sean and Terry and how we’re missing Brandon now too. hopefully you’ll read some dang comics now and stay a part of the community!  <3 Elena

When I first started at Batman News, I was practically unemployed and looking for something to do in my free time.  I’ve always had a passion for both writing and comics, so it was a nice outlet to stretch both of those muscles.  Since joining the team, I’ve had a chance to read and write about countless comics, yes, but I’ve gained so much more than that: opportunities to interact with other fans and comics professionals alike; chances to attend conventions; and perhaps most important of all, I’ve made friendships that will last a lifetime.  So, thank you, Chris, for the opportunity to write about characters that I love while being a part of a Batfamily all my own.  Here’s hoping for a bright tomorrow for you. – Jay

I started writing for Batman News as a comic critic, but it was Chris’s coverage of the lead up to Batman v Superman that made me a regular reader of the site. Chris was always very unassuming about owning one of the biggest Batman sites on the Internet, and when Jay and I branched off to start Comics Now, he was very supportive. I wish him the best as he steps away from the craziness of the entertainment news cycle, and hope we can stay in touch. Brian

I found Batman News in 2010 when looking for the latest on The Dark Knight Rises and stuck with the site as I was impressed with how Chris stayed on top of every piece of news that emerged. Then Andrew started the Comics section and I found myself visiting several times a day for the excellent reviews. I only joined the team in January this year but every interaction I’ve had with Chris has confirmed my previous assumptions that he’s an enthusiastic, appreciative, hard-working guy. Congratulations Chris and thanks again for an excellent site. Dan

Chris, you’ve put a lot of time and energy into Batman News, and selling it, to me, is the culmination of all that effort. Congratulations! Thanks for the opportunities, providing the platform for our reviews, and your support. Enjoy some time off, my dude, and if you’re looking to fill that time with some comic-reading, you know where to find our reviews/recommendations! Good luck with your next projects, Chris! Take care! – Casper

My journey to Batman-News is a bit of an emotional one. While I’m sure I’d visited the site leading up to The Dark Knight Rises, I didn’t necessarily search it out on a daily basis simply because my work schedule was too erratic. I had a corporate job that I hated. I worked 15-hour days, six, sometimes seven, days a week. I had just ended a long-term relationship. I lived away from family, and had no (reasonable) time to spend with friends… Simply put, I was depressed. I needed an outlet – something, anything to look forward to. So after nearly a decade of not reading comics, I decided to pick one up… Unfortunately, I didn’t know where to start. After scouring the internet trying to find a reputable site, I finally came across Andrew’s reviews. Based on his recommendations and opinions, I started picking up books, then eventually commenting. It became a daily thing. Reading comics and Batman-News became the thing I looked forward to most each day. And then, one day, there was a chance to join this site as a contributor.

I didn’t have time to write reviews. I didn’t know how I would make it happen, but I knew I needed to. I’d find a way. And so, I did. Early in our run, we would partner with Chris on every single post/ review. So, every Sunday and Wednesday, I was reaching out to him. Usually it was business, “Hey, Chris, Upcoming Comics is ready for you.” or “I’ve finished my review for Suicide Squad” and so on. But those emails would typically develop into something else – family plans, UFC, movies, the latest news, etc. I lived on the west coast while Chris was on the east coast, and nearly every time I e-mailed him – no matter what time it was – he was up and working on the site. Whenever I thought I was pulling a late night at 1:00am, Chris was either just about to go to bed, or waking up to post the latest news at 4:00am after barely sleeping. After years of knowing him, I’m still not convinced he’s human. But he’s kind. He’s funny. And he’s created one hell of a site that I’m happy to say I’m part of! So, thank you for that. Thank you for creating something that helped me find this weird, new family. And for the sake of nostalgia, “Chris, Upcoming Comics is ready for you.” Josh

Alright, on to business! This week’s releases are listed according to our anticipation scale, with titles listed in alphabetical order within each sub-header. For each title, I’ll include the official solicitation, the talent credits, a random comment (or rant), and the Batman News team member that will be reviewing each book. Following that, you’ll find notes pertaining to other DC Comics titles, as well as our Graphic Novel Watch. And finally, we want to hear from you! What titles are you picking up? Why are you excited? What do you hope will happen in the book? Etc. So, without further ado, review our Anticipation Scale, and comment away!

The Anticipation Scale

NO! – A comic I downright dread reading and if I wasn’t a reviewer, I would never buy it.

“You Don’t Have to Thank Us” – The idea of reviewing it doesn’t make me ill or angry, but it definitely sounds like it’s going to be a chore. Still, I’m reading it for you. I’m putting it at the bottom of the pile, but I’m reading it for you.

Mixed – A middle of the pile comic. It’s probably got the same chance of being dreadful as it does of being stupendous. I’m neither looking forward to it or avoiding it, whatever happens… happens.

Intrigued – I think this comic has potential to be a fantastic read. There’s some slight hesitation there, but it’s definitely going to be at the top of the pile.

TAKE MY MONEY – Everything about this issue has me excited. If I don’t get to read this book on Wednesday, I will be furious. I would pay extra just to have it in my hands right now! That’s how much I’m looking forward to it!

And as a reminder, our review scale is based on a 10-point system. A rating of “5” means the book is mediocre/average, and the more toward “10″ we go, the more awesome/worth buying it is. The more toward “1″ we go the more awful/not worth buying it is. That’s how we rate things. It’s not like most video game review scores where everything under 8 is crap, and it’s not like a school report card where everything under a 7 is failing or close-to-failing. Please keep this in mind when reading our reviews.

OCTOBER 31st

TAKE MY MONEY

Heroes in Crisis #2
Suspected of murder, [REDACTED] and [REDACTED] find themselves on the run from the super-hospital called Sanctuary —with each thinking the other one is the real killer! It’s up to Batman to solve this heinous crime, but suspicion falls on him when Superman and Wonder Woman ponder just how much Sanctuary’s A.I. is telling them. Meanwhile, [REDACTED] tries to make a shady deal to hide from the Trinity, while [REDACTED] searches out an old friend to help him out of this mess—and only gets deeper in trouble.

Written by Tom King
Pencils and Inks by Clay Mann
Colored by Tomeu Morey
Cover by Clay Mann and Tomeu Morey

Josh’s Stance: Whether you’re a fan of the first issue or not, there’s no denying that Heroes in Crisis is well written and, in it’s own way, captivating. I’m still upset by the deaths from last month’s debut, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t looking forward to this book.

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

Justice League/ Aquaman: Drowned Earth Special #1
“Drowned Earth” part one! The Ocean Lords—ancient sea gods with a grudge against Aquaman and Wonder Woman—invade the Earth with an alien army and flood the globe. As Batman, Superman and the Flash race to stop the waters from rising and turning everyone into aquatic monsters, Mera seeks the advice of an old enemy, and Arthur must face down Black Manta…or lose his connection to the ocean forever!

Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Howard Porter
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Hi-Fi and Howard Porter

Josh’s Stance: I’ve been loving Justice League and Justice League Dark, so I’m looking forward to this. If you attended or paid attention to any of the Cons recently, then I feel like you know how this story will end based on what will be taking place in the Aquaman book in the near future…

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

Justice League Dark and Wonder Woman: The Witching Hour Special #1
Just in time for Halloween, it’s “The Witching Hour,” a five-part weekly event that will rewrite the future of DC’s magical heroes!

Hecate, the witch-goddess of magic, always knew a day would come when the monsters she stole her magic from would return. Now she must activate the Witchmarked, humans within whom she secreted vast stores of power. And the most powerful of the Witchmarked? Wonder Woman!

Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Fernando Blanco, Miguel Mendonca, and Jesus Merino
Colored by Romulo Fajardo, Jr.
Cover by Jesus Merino and David Yardin

Josh’s Stance: In the last chapter of “The Witching Hour” our heroes managed to find some hope. I’m curious to see how Tynion wraps things up, because I don’t see a clean resolve taking place… And I’m ok with that.

Batman-News Critic: Dan

 

 

INTRIGUED

Batman Secret Files #1
Delve into Batman’s case histories and discover brand-new stories by some of comics’ most exciting talents. The BATMAN team of Tom King and Mikel Janin provides a framing sequence, setting up our hand-picked teams of creators to take a look at Bat-mysteries past and present. Featuring a bevy of Batman villains, including a look at how the Scarecrow’s fear toxin affects the common man, and a special story written by Tom Taylor with art by Brad Walker that  teams the Dark Knight Detective with Detective Chimp.

Written by Jordie Bellaire, Cheryl Lynn Eaton, Tom King, Tom Taylor, and Ram V
Pencils by Elena Casagrande, Jorge Fornes, Mikel Janin, Jill Thompson, and Brad Walker
Inks by Elena Casagrande, Jorge Fornes, Andrew Hennessy, Mikel Janin, and Jill Thompson
Colored by Jordie Bellaire, Trish Mulvihill, and Matthew Wilson
Cover by Mikel Janin

Josh’s Stance: A collection of Batman stories by solid talent? Hell yeah! You better believe I’m excited for this!

Batman-News Critic: Casper

 

NOTES:

  • DC/ Hanna-Barbera crossovers will release this week. We will provide a brief review of each chapter in a Break (from) the Bat
  • Additional releases from DC Comics: Doom Patrol #12, Injustice vs Masters of the Universe #4, The Terrifics Annual #1, and The Wild Storm #18.

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:

Batman: Haunted Knight New Edition – The creative team behind Batman: The Long Halloween and Batman: Dark Victory brings you their prelude to their all-time classic graphic novels in Batman: Haunted Knight!

Batman faces off against his most demented and wicked foes in three dark tales of horror and intrigue. Taking place on the most evil of holidays, Halloween, the Dark Knight Detective confronts his deepest fears as he tries to stop the madness and horror created by The Scarecrow, the Mad Hatter, the Penguin, Poison Ivy and The Joker

Collects Batman: Legends of The Dark Knight Halloween Special #1, Batman: Madness #1 and Batman: Ghosts #1.

 

Red Hood & the Outlaws Vol. 4: Good Night Gotham – Is the Dark Trinity–Red Hood, Artemis and Bizarro–meeting their end? With their Superman clone on the brink of madness, do the Outlaws need to go on a recruiting drive?

So, have you been thinking about breaking bad? There’s never been a better time to help your favorite super-villain take over the world, defeat an archnemesis or rob a bank. Even the bad guys need a little help, and with the Henched app you can find the perfect evil boss for you! Just don’t be surprised if Red Hood and the Outlaws show up to your budding henchmen convention and stop your dreams dead in their tracks.

Longtime writer and industry legend Scott Lobdell joins forces with dynamic young artist Dexter Soy for this next installment on their hit series, Red Hood and the Outlaws Vol. 4! Collects issues #19-25.