FINALLY: THE COMPLETE AND UTTER INSANITY OF ‘BATMAN: ODYSSEY,’ PART 6
By Laura Hudson
This is a post three years in the making. Way back in 2011, David Wolkin and I attempted to deconstruct the madness of Batman: Odyssey, an incomprehensible masterwork by legendary Batman artist (and legendarily terrible Skateman writer) Neal Adams that quickly established itself as the most insane comic we have ever read. When the series was renewed for a glorious second volume, we completed four additional reviews – but stopped just short of the last two issues.
Our recaps were gratifyingly well-received, inspiring fan art, live readings and even cantankerous comments from Neal Adams himself (or so we choose to believe). And for the last three years, people have been tweeting at us, e-mailing us and asking us at conventions when we would finally complete our coverage of Batman: Odyssey.
That day is today.
David: I’d like to start out by noting that since we started reviewing Batman: Odyssey, I’ve been through two major job transitions, met and started dating the woman I would go on to marry, and moved from Brooklyn to Maryland.
Laura: I stepped down as Editor-in-Chief of ComicsAlliance, moved to San Francisco, became a Senior Editor at WIRED for a year and a half, and moved back to Portland.
David: But one thread in our lives has remained consistent: In all that time, we’ve never stopped thinking about the final two issues of Batman: Odyssey. It is the giant whale to my Ahab or something. One of the issues we reviewed was so insane that, if memory serves, I had to adopt a kitten to get over it. That’s not actually a joke. He’s sitting next to me right now, and he’s three years old.
Laura: What backstory do new readers need to know in order to begin this experience?
David: Batman and Robin are pursuing a martial arts expert named Sensei into a strange underground society deep inside the hollow Earth. So far, they have encountered GMO human-animal hybrids who were also the original Egyptian gods, jive-talking wizards, dinosaurs, half-human half-dinosaur lizard people, and little green aliens. When we left off at the end of issue #5, they were in the midst of a tribe of trolls who were holding Talia al Ghul hostage. I’ve left a lot out.
The Cover of Wonder Woman #38 is A Bloody Mess
Half of Wonder Woman’s team, Meredith the writer, was chatting up the new book at NYCC including this interview from VOX:
"David did not intend to say that she’s not a feminist," she said, explaining that Wonder Woman, like feminism, has evolved since the character was created. Finch says that her husband was just trying to make clear that there was no mandate from execs at DC to take Wonder Woman and create a token and hollow-feeling Wonder Woman, who would ultimately make for an empty female empowerment story.
"The experiences women are having in the 21st Century are very different from the experiences Wonder Woman had when she was created. So we just want to focus on telling a strong female story, that I can relate to as a woman, and really, everyone can relate to," she said.
So the meme now is that it isn’t about “Feminism” is now about not making her a “token and hollow-feeling Wonder Woman.”
Funny when Gail Simone wrote her as a feminist that didn’t happen.
Of course women’s experiences are different than when the character was created. But is that meant to suggest the need for feminism has gone away? Can women not relate to men and women being equal?
Really not getting the thought process from this team.
Anyway, in their their hunt to make Wonder Woman someone “everyone can relate to” here’s a cover by Finch from the January issue.
Oh, I can TOTALLY relate to this.