Comics: Dark Knight versus Arach-KnightWritten by Jim Beard | | email@example.com
Caution: Drinking Limited Edition Batman Dark Berry Mountain Dew while simultaneously consuming Limited Edition Amazing Spider-Man Yum-Azing Vanilla Pop-Tarts may lead to strange, geekish thoughts. Specifically, how do the two titans of tussle stack up in their comics during the same month their new films hit theaters?
Though ultra-rich Bruce Wayne and perennially poor Peter Parker came from opposite sides of the tracks, both lost their parents in childhood and were raised by elderly stand-ins — but that’s where the similarities end. Perusing scheduled comic releases for July — Amazing Spider-Man swings in on July 3 and Dark Knight Rises ascends on July 20 — it seems as if the Caped Crusader has the publication edge. Batman stars in five ongoing titles himself — Batman, Batman and Robin, Batman, Inc., Batman: The Dark Knight and Detective Comics, while the Wall-crawler only webs up two with Amazing Spider-Man and Avenging Spider-Man.
Add to that the seven Batman “family” titles and the Spidey clutch’s two and you have another case of the Dark Knight more than rising to the challenge.
In the realm of graphic novels, the two heroes come out in a tie, with “The Judas Coin” and “Spider-Man: Season One,” as well as an alternate version of each hero starring in one title apiece, “Ultimate Spider-Man” and “Batman Beyond Unlimited.” And for those completists among you, Batman and Spider-Man can each claim one kid-friendly title, one limited mini-series and five new volumes of older collected material.
What does it all mean? Does it indicate that DC Comics is more serious about marketing their most-popular character than Marvel Comics? Or does the latter feel that in the popularity game less is more? Could the two heroes ever work together again after their 1994 inter-company crossover? Caution: Such thoughts, like eating Pop-Tarts while drinking Mountain Dew, may also just give you one helluva headache.