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Batman Fell Off The Moon And Boy Is He Mad

Batman has been in a hell of his own making for months now, ever since writer Chip Zdarsky took the reins on the character’s flagship series. As drawn by Jorge Jimenez, the Caped Crusader has battled “Failsafe”, an unstoppable robot designed by Batman’s own emergency backup personality to activate and kill him if he ever breaks his rule against killing.

Failsafe has so far chewed through Batman (multiple times), the entire Batman family, and even members of the Justice League like Superman himself. In the last issue, Batman lured the machine to the Justice League’s former satellite near the Moon, and this month’s issue opened with Batman stranded, adrift in space between the Moon and Earth. So he did what any of us would have done in that situation.

He found a way to re-enter Earth’s atmosphere and make it to the ground alive.

What else is going on in the pages of our favorite comics? We will tell you. Welcome to Monday Funnies, Polygon’s list of the books our comic editor enjoyed this week. It’s part superhero lives society pages, part reading recommendations, part “check out this cool art.” There may be some spoilers. There may not be enough context. But there will be great comics. (And if you missed the latest edition, read this.)

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Batman falls through the upper atmosphere, his suit igniting, thinking

Image: Chip Zdarsky, Jorge Jimenez/DC Comics

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How did Batman return to the Arctic? Grabbing an oxygen tank and an unhoused rocket booster from his wrecked ship to cling to for propulsion, he relied on the batsuit for insulation and protection (wrapping his trunks around his face as the oxygen mask melted upon re-entry ), and I guess it did. a batch of the mathematics of orbital mechanics on the go.

He even managed to land a short distance from the Fortress of Solitude. Nobody tell Tom Cruise about this.

Iceman, Firestar, and Spider-Man watch as their defeated enemy: the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, transformed into an evil monster, burned, and then frozen into a giant block of ice.  “I saw him eat Santa Claus,” says a little boy.

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Image: Gerry Duggan, Rod Reis/Marvel Comics

I love a superhero story set at Christmas, and one where the mundane objects of New York City are turned into Toon Town-style nightmares, like dark web, is particularly funny. The central concept of this series, the embittered clones of Jean Gray and Peter Parker teaming up to make things worse, is dark, but the series itself seems to know how ridiculous it is.

The part that will stick with me for a while is this true Real New York Problems example of superhero collateral damage. Not a collapsed building, not a blown-out bridge: a huge eyesore at a major landmark that takes way, way, way too long to clean up. It is perfect.

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Little Yuna and her mother discuss where you go when you die.  “It could be something like wrestling,” she finally answers, “A lot of people think wrestling is about the result.  The end.  Predetermined.  Why bother looking?  But we all know where we're going in the end.  We eventually die.  Our outcome is always known,” she says in Do A Powerbomb #7 (2022).

Image: Daniel Warren Johnson/Image Comics

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make a powerbombAlready one of my best comics of 2023 (because the trade won’t arrive until March), it says a sweet goodbye this week, with electrifying action and heart-wrenching drama all the way to the end.

Two guys talk vaguely to each other in a restaurant about what a serious and dangerous thing they're about to do.  They are dressed nondescript, except that one has a big old beard and fancy mustache, and the other has unnaturally colored skin and hair.  “You and everything normal,” she murmurs, sipping coffee, “what's normal?”  “You guys beat me,” says a face in a sudden puff of gas, in Danger Street #1 (2022).

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Image: Tom King, Jorge Fornes/DC Comics

From the team that brought you rorschach comes from danger streetnominally an ensemble thriller miniseries only about shmoes from DC Comics’ darkest and most unconnected series: characters like Lady Cop, Atlas (not the Greek one), and Star Man (not the one you’ve heard of).

It’s an odd illusion, given that I’m very familiar with some of these characters (Metamorpho, Warlord, and Doctor Fate, for example), but the overall experience reminds me powerfully of something like top ten either watchmen or even an old Wildstorm book. Somehow, writer Tom King and artist Jorge Fornés have made the DC Universe feel like an ad hoc original superhero setting inspired by, mocking and celebrating the oddities of the DC Universe.

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The modern Avengers, and Squirrel Girl, sit around a table as Maria Hill demonstrates her new Skrull detector in Secret Invasion #2 (2022).

Image: Ryan North, Francesco Mobili/Marvel Comics

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Don’t think I didn’t notice Squirrel Girl’s unlined Avengers cameo in Ryan North and Francesco Mobili. secret invasion. Because I did. I see it, I’m here for it, and I love it.

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