Friday, April 10, 2009

Bat-Manga by Chipp Kidd and Jiro Kuwata

Bat-Manga by Chipp Kidd and Jiro Kuwata

During the 1966 and 1967 first run of the television show Batman starring Adam West in Japan, it was decided that a comic based on batman would be produced in Japan. Jiro Kuwata wrote the manga during these two years.

This book is a unique story using a Japanese style manga to create stories on batman. Many of the stories are original with new characters like Doctor Faceless, Lord Death, and Go Go The Magician. The style and feel is slightly different than the original batman. I still like it very much.

There are a few original characters adapted from the western market, Clayface being the most prominent. I like that Clayface turns into a giant mantis in one scene. There is also a focus on the villains stealing art work. One of my favorite scenes is a fight at the Bat Monument which is batmans face on the side of a cliff. I did not know there was one before.

Batman has a few devices that we don't see in his western incarnation. He has tranquilizer shuriken which he throws at the villains. Also in some of the pictures of the advertising posters for the comics we see batman in bat scuba gear as well as Robin riding in the sidecar of a motorcycle with missiles attached to it which I found to be really neat.

The book has many full color photographs of original batman tin toys from Japan. They range from cap pistols, batarangs, bat flashlights, toy airplanes, to little batman robots. The colors are striking and the pictures are really interesting to look at.

This is a really interesting book. I found the drawing to be entertaining and lively. It switches between plain black and white, and a kind of brown, orange, and black earthtone background. It is worth reading. I read it this morning while I was sitting in Barnes and Noble. The book is a large coffee table book.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'd seen mention of this in various places - it sounds fascinating. Your post makes me think it's probably worth reading for the tranquiliser shuriken alone!