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Batman: The Ride makes me wish I was 13 again.

Six Flags Fiesta Texas in San Antonio is getting a new Batman ride, and it looks disgustingly awesome. I remember standing in an hour-long line to ride the Batman ride in the Six Flags Great America in Chicago, but this is totally different.

This ride makes you go up and down and has drops that actually go upside down AND has those spinny chairs reminiscent of the gut churning state fair rides you used to love as a kid but get progressively less fun as you get older. (I mean, srsly, those rides hurt a lot more now as an adult. They're still fun, in moderation, but not like when you're 13 and could ride them all day.)

If you're heading to San Antonio this summer, you should try to get on this thing and report back how awesomebad it is.


The Ten Best Licensed Games of the Eighth Console Generation

Licensed video games have garnered a universally low quality standard; their rushed development cycles to meet narrow release windows result, more often than not, in products that are middling at best. An argument could be made that this trend changed at some point during the last generation of consoles. Though a multitude of mediocre licensed games were released on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii, the eighth console generation brought with it a batch of truly great licensed video games that signal hope for a niche that was previously lacking in the area. Here are, in my humble opinion, the ten best licensed video games to grace the eighth console generation.



Bruce Wayne: “Most likely to succeed”

Bruce certainly was one square-jawed son of a gun.


His track and field form seems a bit iffy, though.

Man of Steel vs Batman Comic Con reveal

I hadn't watched this until today, but if you're going to reveal to the world that Batman is going to be the, uh, villain? in the next Man of Steel movie, you couldn't do a better job than how Zach Snyder and Harry Lennix announced it at Comic Con 2013.

If you haven't read the Dark Knight Returns graphic novel (not to be confused with the Dark Knight Rises movie, which isn't related at all), you seriously need to get up, go down to Merlyn's, find a copy and READ IT. It's not only considered one of the greatest graphic novels ever, it's an even tossup between it and the Watchmen as *the* greatest. The art is great, the story is great, and the EPIC dual between Batman and Superchump is EPIC.

"I want you to remember, Clark…

in all the years to come…

in your most private moments…

I want you to remember…

my hand…

at your throat…

I want…

you to remember…


the one man who beat you."

The movie won't be the Dark Knight Returns, but if they can capture some of the essence of that classic, the next Man of Steel movie will be awesome. I loved the first one, so I'm really excited to see how they manage to do justice to the two duking it out.

In a side note, apparently Wonder Woman will be in the movie too, because Justice League.


Snap. I also forgot to mention that it's in the Dark Knight Returns that you get to see the conclusion to the lifelong feud between Batman v. Joker.

"No, Joker. You're playing the wrong game. The old game. Tonight you're taking no hostages. Tonight I'm taking no prisoners."

Affleck gets the bat signal

Ben Affleck will don Batman’s cape and cowl.

Warner Bros. announced Thursday that the 41-year-old actor-director will star as a new incarnation of the Dark Knight in a film bringing Batman and Superman together. The studio says Affleck will star opposite Henry Cavill, reprising his role as Superman from “Man of Steel.” The movie will also reunite “Man of Steel” stars Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne and Diane Lane.

Production is expected to begin in 2014, and the as-yet-untitled film is set for release July 17, 2015.

Who do you think is the best movie Batman?

Original Batmobile up for auction - Packed full of gadgets

Many a weirdo has built a replica of the Batmobile, some for personal use and others to be sold for a hefty sum to passionate Batman nerds.  George Barris is their king having served as the sole owner of the one and only original Batmobile ever produced.  More impressive yet, he built it himself in 1966.  This year he’s banking on the hope it will make him a small fortune when it’s sold at the Barrett Jackson car auction in January.

Unlike most other TV show cars that are built by the dozen to be abused and destroyed the Barris’ Batmobile was the only original ever made.  Barrett, who’s anonymously famous for creating the Munster Koach for The Munsters and the Beverly Hillbillies’ car, was tasked with creating the Batmobile in a matter of weeks.

Without adequate time to design the caped crusader’s ride from the ground up Barrett decided to build upon Ford’s 1955 Lincoln Futura concept car, which was based on a Lincoln Mark II.  Looking at the two cars side by side shows Garrett really didn’t change the Futura all that much.  Nonetheless the Batmobile was a hit, in large part for packing an option list of gadgets that made James Bond’s 1964 Aston Martin DB5 appear tame by comparison:

The Bat Turn 

Batman didn’t believe in emergency brakes.  Instead he would pull a handle to release the parachutes and spin the car 180 degrees.  When the turn was completed the parachutes would detach and be left in the street.  In later episodes, after fans of the show questioned why Batman would litter in such a fashion, Alfred would show up in a maintenance van to retrieve the parachutes. 

The Bat Ray

When activated in a chase the Bat Ray will render a ne'er do well’s car stone dead.  If they tried to start up again the ignition wouldn’t work leaving them to flee on foot or face Batman to exchange ‘Blams’!  Most modern day monster trucks are now equipped with a Bat Ray that can be activated from the pits, although they’re now referred to as kill switches to avoid copyright infringement.

Automatic Fire Extinguisher

When the Batmobile caught fire as it frequently would, the car would set off an automatic fire extinguisher to keep Batman’s spandex suit from permanently fusing to his body.  This was a critical gadget as appearing in pedestrian attire for periods of time were a necessary part of Batman’s double life.

The Mobile Bat Computer

Batman invented the fax machine.  If he needed to retrieve official crime-fighting documents from the Bat Cave he could download them to the Batmobile with the Bat Computer. He may have also invented the computer.

The Bat Beam

Perhaps the most violent gadget, the Bat Beam was the thing looked like a fly swatter on the antenna.  When activated the Bat Beam could destroy anything in its path:  Buildings, roadblocks or whatever it happened to be pointing at when Batman would slap Robin’s hand away from changing the radio station.  

Emergency Tire Inflator

Batman doesn’t get flats.  He denies them with the flip of a switch.

Bat Smoke Screen

Although smoke screens are old hat by now in the world of crime fighting super cars this classic gadget was an effective evasive tool Batman had in his arsenal. It also blinded innocent motorists, but along with property damage and streets littered with errant parachutes the people of Gotham understood its necessity. 

The Battering Ram

A classic double entendre used to bash through doors to warehouses where hostages were being held.  It was a tactical alternative to the Bat Ray as well as the most dangerous gadget when Batman was drunk.

Police Band Cut-In Switch

Batman commandeered what he wanted when he wanted.  That included barging his way onto the police radio band and disrupting other emergency calls to speak directly with the force on the Bat Phone. 

Bat Phone

Talking on the phone while driving was legal in those days.

Voice Control Batmobile Relay Unit

Gotham weirdoes loved the Batmobile and would steal it more often than was normal in other shows.  Little did they know Batman usually had the Batmobile Relay Unit – (a next-level Bat Ray) tucked into his utili-belt fanny pack.  The gadget allowed him to give voice commands that operated the car remotely.  

When the original Batmobile goes up for auction in January bidders will have the chance to take advantage of all these gadgets and probably a few more we’ve never heard of – A masked man always has another trick up his sleeve.

Regardless of is rarity, Jonathan Klinger, of the collector car insurance firm Hagerty Insurance, thinks the Batmobile will probably only sell for a few hundred thousand dollars, which isn’t much considering a 1964 Aston Martin DB5 used in James Bond films sold for $4.6 million in 2010. (1)

The problem Klinger believes is that too many people have already built top-notch Batmobile replicas, the best of which sell for under $100,000.

"I could be wrong," said Klinger. "I'll bet George Barris hopes I'm dead wrong." (1)

If gadgets are taken into consideration he just might be.


(1)    CNN Money

Catwoman with a cat

A case could be made that this is Halloweeny.


Neely: Don’t Blame Journalists

I’ve glimpsed on Facebook these last two weeks the occasional pledge to boycott news organizations that make any mention of the Aurora, Colo., shooter’s name. This impulse appears driven by compassion and sensitivity to victims’ families. And yet it’s all wrong. Here’s why: It is during life’s most difficult and traumatic events that we need the power of journalism most. At the beginning of a major tragedy, we overcome the anxiety generated by rumor and conjecture by gleaning facts that not only define the scope of the event, but also provide its reassuring limitations. When my husband and I watched early news reports of the Aurora shooting, we were riveted by video of the former University of Colorado student’s apartment complex. At first, the newscast wasn’t clear about the exact location of the building, which eerily resembled the brick UC apartments where our daughter and son-in-law live this summer. If that image had simply popped up in the swirl of random Facebook posts and tweets, our anxiety would likely have accelerated. Instead, journalists soon clarified that the apartment complex was located in Aurora near CU’s Anschutz Medical Campus, not CU-Boulder where our family members live/Jamie Tobias Neely, SR. More here.

Question: Do you ever blame journalists for coverage of senseless tragedies, like Aurora?

Hollywood Skirts Massacre Blame

There seems to be very little of the blame-it-on-Hollywood backlash in the wake of the Colorado theater massacre that so often occurs when people struggle to make sense of a senseless, violent act. Many agree that you simply can't hold the art form itself responsible in the shooting that left 12 people dead and 58 others injured at a packed midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises." The alleged shooter, 24-year-old James Holmes, appeared in court Monday for the first time since the bloody attack of early Friday morning. While his hair was dyed the kind of bright, orange-red shade you might see in a comic book, authorities say it could take months to determine a motive. Still, the film industry seems to recognize the potential for scrutiny and has shown sensitivity in response to the tragedy, if not some defensiveness/CBS Money Watch. More here. (AP photo from "Dark Knight Rises")

Question: Does Hollywood deserve any of the blame for the Aurora massacre?

Batman To Show At Riverstone?

Batman impersonator Danny Lopez, 24, from Los Angeles, left, poses with fans in front of a vehicle featured in the film, known as a Tumbler, ahead of today's opening for “The Dark Knight Rises,” the final installment of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy, outside the AMC Cinemas at Universal CityWalk in Universal City, Calif., earlier today. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

For those keeping score at home, Huckleberries hears that … Lenny Robinson, AKA Batman (who appeared in the Fourth of July Parade) is still in Coeur d'Alene and intends to drive his Batmobile to the Riverstone theater sometime between 9 and 10 this evening to greet the movie goers attending the opening of the movie Dark Knight Rises."

Question: Do you plan to see "The Dark Knight Rises"?

‘Batman’ charged w/ trespassing in Mich.

PETOSKEY, Mich. (AP) — Holy trespassing, Batman!

A 31-year-old man dressed as the comic book Caped Crusader was arrested Wednesday in Petoskey after he was seen hanging from the top wall of a downtown business. 

The Petoskey News-Review reports officers went up on the roof about 12:40 a.m. and pulled the 31-year-old man back onto the building.

Public Safety Director John Calabrese says he believes the man "enjoys doing this."

Officers confiscated a baton-like weapon, a can of chemical irritant spray and lead-lined gloves.

The Harbor Springs man, pictured after his arrest, is awaiting arraignment on charges of trespassing and possession of a dangerous weapon.

He's being held in the Emmet County jail.

Petoskey is in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula, about 225 miles northwest of Detroit. ;

1st Batman Comic Book Sells For $493K

In this photo released by Heritage House Auctions, a copy of “Detective Comics #27” with the first appearance of Batman is shown. Originally purchased by a 13-year old Robert Irwin in 1939 for 10 cents, the comic was sold to an anonymous collector for $492,937 today by Heritage Auctions in Dallas. (AP Photo/Heritage Auctions)

Question: Which comic books did you collect as a kid?