Friday, 23 September 2016

Batman: Man In The Eternal Mask

Here's a great, operatic tale from Frank Robbins' time on The Caped Crusader, with the perfect pairing of Bob Brown and Frank Giacoia on art duties. And like many a story on this site, I first read this tale in a hardback UK Christmas annual, so even though there's no real surprises here, I'll always regard this piece with yuletide affection. Anyway, it's always good to see the actual 'detective' side of Batman, even if the solution is blindingly obvious.
Plus, Brown's characters are always, always in motion ( which is just one of the reasons I always liked his drawing style ), in fact they're generally in completely over-the-top, all-limbs-extended motion, like in the excellent fight scene here.
People are very rarely just standing around in a Bob Brown strip, and even when they are, they seem just about to spring into violent action. Note also the page where the villain reveals himself, and the smirk on the portrait looking down on him. THAT'S a storyteller.


  1. The only thing that irked me about this story was how Batman was supposed to keep his cape in mid-air sweep when posing for the painting or pretending to be the painting.

  2. I always enjoyed Bob Brown's version of the Batman. I actually enjoyed everything he drew. Very underrated artist.

  3. Massively underrated. That cape always annoyed me too, I guess, but maybe Reene was more of an impressionist...?

  4. I always enjoy Bob Browns art and I especially remember some excellent black and white art he did at Marvel on some of their horror titles (Vampire Tales I think) as well as filling in at very short notice on the Avengers v Defenders story line (not his best work but considering he had to do a full book in a few days its amazing) I recently picked up a few (tatty but clean) "Challengers of the Unknown" comics (for 50p each!!) that are excellent - a great story teller indeed. McScotty