Happy Batman Day!
As I write this, I am a half an hour away from midnight and the beginning of Batman Day.
75 years ago, Detective Comics #27 hit the stands with a figure that borrowed from the pulps but was given a delirious new form by writer Bill Finger and cartoonist Bob Kane.
Superman may count as the first superhero, and yes, he changed everything. But Batman pushed it even further, taking the evolution of our 20th century mythology and completing it. Superman was the god, Captain Marvel was the demi-god, and Batman was the human hero, the one who could triumph over the others.
To celebrate, you can go to your local comics shop or yes, Barnes & Noble, and pick up a fun mask and a reproduction of Detective Comics #27. There may be more going on at your local store. Definitely there's something going on at Earth-2 Comics.
At Comic-Con, we'll be celebrating all weekend. On Thursday evening, popular radio and podcast personality Ralph Garman will take the stage in Hall H to host Adam West, Burt Ward and Julie Newmar to talk about the long-awaited home video release of Batman The Complete Series, or, as most fans call it, Batman '66.
(For some of us, that's Batman. If you've never encountered Adam West's portrayal, who are you? And you owe it to yourself to at least check out the movie. Or how about The Riddler Frank Gorshin in action?)
Bill Finger's grand-daughter Athena will be on panels to talk about her grandfather's influence on the character, largely unsung in his lifetime. And of course, almost everybody who ever worked on the character and is still around will be gathering in one panel or another in tribute to the Dark Knight.
We will also hear about what Batman really stands for, as documentarians are in the midst of creating a film about the Batkid event in San Francisco last year. Even though Batman appeared during daytime, that sums up the character -- beating back the darkness from the innocents whenever and wherever he can.
So what else does Warner Brothers have to announce this weekend? Will we get an announcement of that rumored new animated series? Or will we just get more wonderful toys?
Whatever happens, it will no doubt be calculated to keep us enthusiastic for another 75 years.