I just finished re-reading the graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns, written by Frank Miller. Just because.
I had read originally in 1986. Every Batman movie that came out since then owes it's existence to Miller's rehabilitating the Adam West version (a version that is good in its own right, in it's own way.)
He also took Superman down a peg.
If you younger readers of mine don't remember the 1980s, this comic book will evoke the mood for you. New Wave and punk stylings, fear of an explosion in crime, anxiety over the Soviets and nuclear Armageddon. Reagan is depicted as a slightly doddering president and westerner ex-actor. People smoke. Indoors. The Political Correctness cult is only in its infancy. [If you want to know what the 70s felt like, try this movie.]
Gun content. Cops used revolvers back then. Revolvers weren't ubiquitous, but they were nearly so. The book makes it feel like a workingman's tool. Semi-autos were... not exotic... but as though they still need seasoning? No that's not it. And this after 75 years of 1911s and everything else semi-auto. I guess when every cop has a revolver, and people take their cue off of the cops, semi's feel... other. Something soldier used or people with a special purpose, like a young police commissioner that need something more compact. Or by a villain that doesn't hold to convention. Of course the OLD police commissioner used a revolver.
Back to the story. Batman has been retired since Robin (Jason) died a dozen years prior and political pressure cause costumed heroes to hand up their cloaks. Except Superman who works for the DoD. Jason had replaced Dick Grayson who is estranged from Bruce Wayne. Rampant crime depredations brings Batman out of retirement just as Commissioner Gordon is being eased out. Gordon is 70, Bruce is maybe 55. A new Robin, Carrie, emerges. It's hard fighting crime as a 55 year old.
There are four 'chapters' originally stand alone comic books, assembled into one cover. The villains/antagonists thus four in number: a 'healed' Harvey Dent (plastic surgery and psychiatric rehabilitation by a Liberal psychiatrist), a leader of an immense street gang reminiscent of the Lord Humongous, the Joker, who emerged from catatonia when Batman re-emerged, and, finally, Superman.
In a fight between Batman and Superman, who do you think would win?
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