Batman’s at it again, and dirt cheap.

General Information

Title: Batman: The 12 Cent Adventure

Author: Devin Grayson

Illustrator(s): Ramon Bachs (penciller), Paul
Fernandez & Rodney
Ramos (inkers), and Steve Buccellato (colorist)

Original Publication Date: Originally published on
August 4, 2004.

Cover Price: $0.12 US, $0.20 Can

Past comic reviews can be found here.

Premise

Batman prevents terrorists from stealing particle
accelerator
technology, while Spoiler observes a meeting of all
the major
underworld players in Gotham.

This issue kicks off the “Batman: War Games”
cross-over event that
will be in many of the Batman titles. The writers
recognized that
many people who aren’t reading the bat books now will
pick it up by
price alone, so there’s a lot of exposition to fill
in the recent (and
not-so-recent) history of the title.

High Point

Justfying Batman’s sidekicks. This probably isn’t
the first place the
justification has been presented, but as someone who
hasn’t read many
bat books, I’ve always wondered if there was a
story-based reason for
such an isolated loner to have a sidekick. (I know
Robin was
introduced to make the book more kid friendly.)

Low Point

The whining in the personal exposition from Spoiler.
No wonder Batman
fired her.

The Scores

This doesn’t seem that original to me. I
think they’re
playing it safe in a comfortable corner of the
Bat-verse for the sake
of new readers. We’ve seen the gangland meeting, and
we’ve seen the
high tech robbery in so many areas that this doesn’t
do anything new
with them. It tells you where the bat-books are
right now, but that’s
it. I give it 2 out of 6.

The artwork is good. It doesn’t amaze me,
but there’s no
question of who’s who and what they’re doing.
Batman’s jaw seems
skinnier than Bruce Wayne’s in places, but it’s
otherwise good. I
give it 4 out of 6.

The story is mostly back-story that’s
already been told.
They were really wanting to get new readers
comfortable with the
situations, I think. It works, but it doesn’t blow
me away anywhere.
It certainly reads like a prelude, and not like a
complete story.
I give it 4 out of 6.



The characterization of Spoiler is pretty
clear, but we don’t
see much of anyone else, including Batman, which is a
big piece to be
missing. I give it 4 out of 6.

The emotional response is weak. We know
something bigger is
building, but we don’t see enough of what that is to
engage us in
what’s going on here. Instead, we get a character
many readers
wouldn’t know about, a history of all the Robins, and
a little bit of
Batman action with very little Batman character
depth. I give it 3
out of 6.

The flow was interestingly done. We get
Spoiler’s
hypothetical descriptions over what Batman is really
doing, which is a
common enough joke but still good for a small
chuckle, and some nice
parallel action. If the action wasn’t constantly
interrupted by
flashbacks, it would have worked well. I give it 4
out of 6.

Overall, it’s not a bad issue, but it’s not
good enough to
pull me in for the rest of the story. I give it 4
out of 6.

In total, Batman: The 12 Cent Adventure
receives 25 out of 42.