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Summer Knights: Bat-A-Thon Part 2

By Geeky Gem

Well as we all know the Dark Knight will soon be leaving us again. As a way of honoring him I thought I would sit through all six movies so far and report back to you.  On this journey so far I have watched Batman, Batman Returns and Batman Forever. In this second part of my epic Bat-A-Thon I shall watch Batman and Robin, Batman Begins and The Dark Knight.  Shall we begin?

Batman And Robin – 1997

This was a harder watch than Batman Forever, as I am not a huge fan of these to movies but they are worth a sit through if just to refresh my mind in perpetration for the awesomeness to come. Joel Schumacher again was at the helm for this one, along with another new Batman in George Clooney. The debate for the best Batman rages on.

The story line for this one is much the same for all of them so far. Batman comes across an enemy that he must take on with loyal sidekick Robin, in order to save Gotham. This time Mr. Freeze and Poison Ivy have their eyes on Gotham. Along with Ivy’s sidekick a very comic and less like himself than he should be Bane. Although Bane is pumped up with Venom he is a mere shadow of the scary man he should be. This Bane could not break the bat.

The main part of the story is that Alfred is dying and there is no known cure apart from that of a cure that Dr Victor Freeze was working on before his accident. Can Batman reason with him and save his friend? Along with is a new sidekick in Batgirl, who in this version of events is related to Alfred not Commissioner Gordon, not sure why but she is. Anyway she joins Batman and Robin in their fight to save Gotham and Alfred, will they succeeded? Well that would be telling wouldn’t it.

Batman Begins – 2005

Now we move on to the good stuff, 8 years after Batman last graced our screens, it was time for a new direction for the Dark Knight, gone was Burton and Schumacher a new age was coming. Christopher Nolan walked in and a new Batman was born. The question on every ones lips was who shall be the Bat? The answer came in the form of little know Welsh actor called Christian Bale. Many people thought, could this guy pull off Batman? We all waited to see.

It would appear that yes, yes he can. I think is helped in part by the script which is pure genius, which was written by Nolan and David S. Goyer. This thing doesn’t give up, instead of using flash backs to tell the story of Batman we are there with Bruce as he trains with Ra’s Al Ghul and the League of Assassin’s not knowing what they really want. On his return to Gotham Bruce has to keep up his playboy life style with that of the Batman. What exactly is Dr. Jonathan Crane up to?   The Batman must find out with the help from Jim Gordon.

The cast in this movie in unbelievable, Bale is joined by the likes of Gary Oldman, Liam Neeson, Michael Cane, Morgan Freeman and Cillian Murphy. All of who bring a darkness and edginess to Nolan and Goyer’s screenplay which leaves the comedy camp stuff behind and hits it hard with a much darker Batman. Don’t believe me then go watch it.

 

The Dark Knight – 2008

Somehow it doesn’t feel like four years has passed since I sat in a cinema with Kirkie Chick and enjoyed this movie in such a way that it will stay with me for a long time to come. This time Chris Nolan was joined by his brother Jonathan Nolan in writing, I think, an even darker screenplay than Batman Begins. David S Goyer helped write the story and it grew from there.

Many of the same cast returned for this outing with some frankly brilliant new additions. One of which it saddens me to say is no longer with us. Taken way before his time Heath Ledger’s Joker will go down in history as one of the best role’s in movie history. There was something in Ledger’s Joker that wasn’t in Nicolson’s Joker. Ledger took the Joker to that very dark place; where he should have been all along and frankly out shines in this movie. Aaron Eckhart joins the team as Harvey Dent the DA hell bent on saving Gotham from the inside and from the Batman. But what does the future hold for this humble but hard hitting white knight?

As the Joker plans the down fall of Gotham and that of Batman, Bruce is forced to use a technology that both Lucius Fox and Alfred are not too happy about. Can they pull Bruce and Batman back from the edge of crossing the line? Only time will tell. In the mean time poor Harvey Dent must come to terms with his new face and it’s time for Batman to run as he is now a marked man. Gotham will need him one day, so he will watch and wait for the day that Gotham will need their Dark Knight again.

 

That Brings us to the end of our epic Bat-A-Thon, I for one have enjoyed watching all the movies again in order to bring this too you. I will no doubt be seeing The Dark Knight Rises a number of times. As Nolan’s time is over as the man that bought back the Batman we have to thank him for these truly fantastic movies and for showing the world that Batman can be dark.

Summer Knights: Top 6 Sidekicks

By Geeky Gem

As part of Summer Knights I thought we would take a look at the sidekicks that help our heroes save the day and sometimes the lives of the Super Heroes themselves. Where would these heroes be without their trusty side kicks to get them out of trouble. Here are the the top 6. Yes I know that it is a strange number but its my blog and my rules.

Bucky – Captain America

Bucky is the side kick of the one and only Captain America.  James Buchanan “Bucky” Barnes was created by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. In 2005 the original Bucky was brought back from the dead as the Winter Soldier. In 2008 he became Captian America after Steve Rogers was presumed to be dead. In 2011, Bucky resumed his identity as the Winter Soldier after faking his death.

Kato – The Green Hornet

Kato is the sidekick to The Green Hornet and boy does he kick some ass.  This character has also appeared with the Green Hornet in film, television, book and comic book versions. Kato was the Hornet’s assistant and has been played by a number of actors. On radio, Kato was initially played by Raymond Hayashi, then Roland Parker who had the role for most of the run, and in the later years Mickey Tolan. Keye Luke took the role in the movie serials, and in the television series he was played by that fantastic martial artist and actor Bruce Lee. In the latest movie adtaption he was played by Jay Chou.

Battle Cat – He-Man

Now not every side kick has to be human right. Some can be dogs, I am looking at you Krypto. Anyway, Cringer is every bit a good as the other side kicks on this list, he even has an alter ego. Battle Cat not only allows He-Man to ride around on him, but fghts along side of him. Come on who doesn’t want one?

Robin – Batman Series

What kind of Side kick list would this be without the Boy Wonder. There have been many Robin’s but only one original and that was Richard ‘Dick’ Grayson. Dick ws created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger along with  illustrator Jerry Robinson. Dick was the youngest in a family of acrobats known as the “Flying Graysons,” Dick watches a mafia boss kill his parents in order to extort money from the circus that employed them. Bruce Wayne, takes him in as his legal ward, it is here that Dick learns Bruce’s secret and becomes Robin. Dick would later leave Batman’s side and become Night Wing, however there is another Robin waiting in the wings. There is more to Dick’s story but I dont want to ruin it for people who dont know what happens.

Batgirl – Batman Series

Now I know I have already had one Batman side kick on this list but they are so good I had to include Batgirl. The original Batgirl was Betty Kane and she was was introduced into publication in 1961 by Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff however she was replaced by Barbara Gordon and this is the Batgirl most people know. Her creation came  about as a joint project between DC Comics editor Julius Schwartz and the producers of the 1960s Batman television series. In order to boost ratings for the third season of Batman, the producers requested a new female character be introduced into publication that could be adapted into the television series. At Schwartz’s direction, Barbara Gordon debuted in comics. Batgirl is depicted as the daughter of Gotham City police commissioner James Gordon, her civilian identity is given a doctorate in library science and she is employed as head of Gotham City Public Library, as well as later being elected to the United States Congress. As Batgirl, the character operates primarily in Gotham City, allying herself with Batman and the original Robin, Dick Grayson. Now for fans of the comics and any one who has ever seen Birds of Prey, you will know what happens to Barbara Gordon in Alan Moore’s graphic novel The Killing Joke. If you dont then may I suggest you look away now. In the Killng Joke , The Joker shoots Barbara, the bullet goes through the spinal cord and she is left parlazyed and in a wheel chair. However she will later take up the the war on crime as The Orcale.

Harley Quinn – Batman Series

Yes folks, I have indeed included another Batman related side kick but from the side of evil. I bring you Harley Quinn. The Joker’s ever faithfull and slightly mad girlfriend. Once a brillanit Psychiatrist, working at Arkham Asylum. Harleen Quinzel begins to fall for The Joker and starts to believe that eveything is Batman’s fault. She was first introduced  back in 1992, on the Batman Animated Series she was meant to be a cartoon walk on. However she ws such a hit that she was written into the comics. She is a frequent accomplice and the girlfriend of Batman’s nemesis the Joker, and is also close to Poison Ivy, from whom she gained her immunity to poisons and toxins, as well as her advanced physical abilities.

There we have it folks, my top 6 sidekicks. I hope you enjoyed this look at the people who help our favourtie heroes out of tight spots, and possibly into their tights, they can’t be easy to put on you know.

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