Saturday, June 27, 2015

Batman v. Superman: A Priest's Perspective

(hat tip to Rick O.)

I really love this analysis.

It reminds me of the second essay I ever wrote on this blog.  (you can read that one here).



  1. Hey I trust your opinion so what comics can you recommend for Batman/Robin/nightwing? I liked the Young Justice show and how it refrained from lacivious content. Most batman and company comics I find have sexual stuff in it. What's a good series you recommend?

    1. It is tough to find things revolving around the first Robin Dick Grayson that avoid lascivious content. Through most of the 1980's he spend most of his time with his scantily-clad alien girlfriend Starfire.

      But, here are some recommendations. I'm sorry if there are some unsavory parts that might be in there, but I think most of them are very low in terms of sexual content.

      Batman 408 - This is a retconned introduction of Jason Todd who would take over for Dick Grayson.

      (For some more background, I would also recommend the Judas Contract storyline from The New Teen Titans, but again there is Starfire and her attire. Not to mention Deathstroke having an affair with a 16-year-old psychopath).

      Batman 416 - This is a great issue where Dick Grayson and Jason Todd meet.

      Batman: A Death in the Family - this is an excellent story from the late 80's, but it is rather violent.

      Batman: Year 3: This explores how Dick Grayson became Robin and his relationship with Bruce after A Death in the Family

      A Lonely Place For Dying: This is a follow up to Year 3 and is among my favorite stories that crosses over with The New Teen Titans. Great art by George Perez and Jim Aparo.

      Let me know if you like those and I can recommend more. If anything I recommended doesn't fit your tastes, I am sorry.

  2. Any Batman comics (with or without Robin) you recommend? The new batman and detective comics are kinda disturbing with the gore haha

    1. Either current or 1980s or whatever. I don't find the very first batman comics enjoyable at all (especially the bad art). I just finished Flash: Born to Run and enjoyed the tone and didn't mind the art. Anything comparable to that in the Batman comics? sorry if that sounds weird. I'm new to this.

    2. Born to Run is a great storyline. If you like Flash stories, I would continue on with Mark Waid's run up until right before the Cobalt Blue storyline. I would then recommend reading the entire Geoff Johns run on the Flash. It is even better (though it takes him about a dozen issues or so to really find his voice).

      Regarding Batman, the problem is that his stories are darker by nature. Where the Flash is a big bright hero who has his own museum, Batman operates from the shadows, grappling with Gotham's dark underbelly.

      Did you check out the recommendations I made earlier in the thread?

      There is a very dark, but very good story from Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight called Venom. Batman decides to use power-enhancing drugs to help in his quest with disastrous results.

      Knightfall is also a classic story that was around the same time as The Death of Superman. The follow up Knights Quest is not very good, but KnightsEnd isn't bad.

      If you want to see Batman more out of the shadows, you should probably check out Justice League comics. JLA: A Midsummer's Nightmare by Mark Waid, followd by Grant Morrison's JLA: New World Order, JLA: American Dreams, JLA: Rock of Ages, and JLA: Strength in Numbers.

  3. Fantastic thanks. I read Batman 416 and liked it a lot. I couldn't find Year three on the Nook but hopefully it has the other recommendations. I also enjoyed the movie they made Under the Red Hood. That kind of tone I'd be cool with. It's just that the New 52 with Court of Owls (as was the other New 52 batman) was pretty disturbing and Batman and Robin (Damien) had sexual stuff in vol 1. Just trying to avoid temptations and enjoy superheroes at the same time.

    1. Also, did you find the whole Jean-Paul Valley thing irritating since they made the character an evil (as far as I could tell) religious fanatic who was corrupted by some order named after a Saint. This was obviously putting Christianity/religion in a negative light. I feel like it was doing the same thing as the new JLA is doing with religion. But then again, I've only read a bit of the Jean-Paul batman thing.

    2. I understand what you mean about Jean-Paul Valley. I probably would have found it more annoying if I found his character more interesting. He seemed like a such a poorly written and developed person. He was typical 90's-violent in the mold of anything by Liefield. I never attached to him, so I didn't give the religious angle much thought. But you are right, it is annoying.

    3. As a teen trying to figure out what's moral or not, is it moral/not sinful to read stuff that negatively potrays religion or has sexual content if it isn't your favorite part about it? Thanks for the help.

    4. That is an excellent question that I have been wrestling with for most of my life. I am currently writing a series on this blog in the style of a Socratic dialogue about this very topic.

      Take what I am about to say as a simple opinion for myself and not as advice, since I am also seeking guidance and light here. As Jesus said about the blind leading the blind, I do not want to lead you into my errors.

      But for me, as long as there is no danger of the thing in question influencing me toward sin, then I am willing to at least engage it. For example, I read "Ready Player One" a novel with a very anti-religious screed at the beginning. I do not believe that this book injured my faith in any way. I simply found it annoying.

      But when it comes to sexual content, that is another story. For some, even the slightest provocation can lead to sin or a near occasion of sin. Even watching some network television shows are too much. You have to be aware of your own temptations and limitations. For example, if I am at a movie and there is any nudity, I will turn away until it is over. It is helpful that I always see movies with my wife, because she is a wonderful holy reminder that I should be ashamed to look upon such things.

      But as I said, that is only from the weakness of my conscience. Reading books that are not Christian or anti-Christian can be helpful. I understand atheistic existentialism and nihilism much better because I've read Watchmen. This helps me be a better defender of the faith against them. But if these pieces of art pulled me further away from God, then they should be avoided.

      How can I know which will do so in advance?

      You shall have to do a self assessment on that. And discern with lots of prayer.

      But ultimately, giving up an piece of art is nothing compared with the richness of Heaven.

      I hope that helps. If anything I've written is not helpful, please ignore it.

  4. Very helpful! I've enjoyed Year three and am working on Lonely Place for Dying. Are the Batman and Robin with Dick and Damian clean?

    1. It has been so long since I've read them, that I don't remember how clean they are. I know that there are a few scantily clad women, but I don't remember any explicit sexual stuff. But I can't say for sure. I know that the dynamic written between Dick and Daminan is very good.

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