Episode 63 – Spawn/Batman

Welcome to the sixty-third episode of The Overlooked Dark Knight. The is a non-index index show where the hosts, Andrew Leyland and Michael Bailey, look at Batman comics that rarely, if ever, get talked about.

This time out Andy and Mike continue their informal series of episodes looking at Batman stories where he teams up with a character from another fictional universe.  In 1994, Frank Miller and Todd McFarlane teamed up to produce the first official crossover between Image Comics and DC Comics.  Frank, for good or ill, redefined Batman for the next two, going on three decades.

Todd drew several chapters of Batman: Year Two.

So, they both had at least some experience with the Dark Knight.

Todd also had a creator owned character that was setting the sales charts on fire called Spawn.  So, the two creators teamed up and produced something that could definitely be called a comic book.

Snarky?  Yes, but this comic was hardly Watchmen and it definiely wasn’t The Dark Knight Returns.

Actually, Andy and Mike give the book a fair shake.  They talk about the story, such as it is, and the comic book culture that produced it.  Mike seems to think that part of this episode was therapy because he definitely had conflicted feelings on the story.  The guys laughed.  They cried.  The comic became a part of them.

Not really.  But they had some fun for a little over an hour.

Below are the covers and select pages from the comic discussed during this epiosde.

Andy and Mike want your feedback on this episode so they can read it on an upcoming show!  You even have options in how you leave your feedback.  The most direct way is to leave a comment right here on the site.  You can also send all questions, concerns, fears and trepidations to overlookeddarkknight@gmail.com.  Then there’ the Facebook page, where you can also leave a Batman related question for Andy and Mike to answer at the beginning of the show.  If you talk about this show on the social medias please include a #overlookeddk so the guys know where to find it.

The beginning and ending theme to the show is “The Descent” by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

If you want to subscribe to the show here’s the RSS Feed and the Apple Podcast link.  If you use iTunes please leave us a review.  Not only will we read that on the air like the other feedback but it really helps the show out.  The show is also available on the Google Play Store and Spotify.

Next Time: Andy and Mike continue the crossover fun and prove that sometimes image isn’t everything.


  1. Impressive podcast most impressive.This is Liz Anne Oswalt. Ms. congeniality herself. The woman was a nice humble well-adjusted personality. Ah, the bat man and spawn team up. The cover is cool though it’s just kind of a homage to the dark Knight returns cover. This time with a close-up and spawned right below bat man. It’s not the most dramatic pose but it works. This definitely looks better than the DC version of the cross of. With way better art to. I saw that version in a Walmart. I flipped through the pages. Then thought well maybe the story good. I’m not sure who wrote it, but no ,no it wasn’t. I quickly walked on. Had I seen this version I may have taken up for the artwork. While this version of Batman does not look as good as other versions of Batman that Todd has drawn. This is leagues better than the DC version. Oddly enough this is not the first time a doctor love has been used in a comic featuring Todd MacFarlane.

    The villains within infinity Inc. were also created by a doctor love. This includes Mr. bones and Tao Jones. I’m guessing MacFarlane was a fan of that saw Dr. love by the rock group Kiss. Any rate the look of Alfred and Bruce looks decent enough. The establishing shot of the backend works well enough. As does the bit where Batman’s Cape is taking over this one picture with the tall buildings. And the bats fly into frame. It leads EIA well enough to be thoughtful and whatnot. Well technically the caption boxes. But, they’re basically treated as thought balloons so. Spies done well enough in this. Though there are wage many splash pages in this comic. Though I wouldn’t expect Todd MacFarlane to do a bunch of 9 pound grids. Even this gets a little bit on pushing inside with the giant freaking splash pages. Though he gets to the four panel things they work well enough.

    The giant guns that Jack Capen a giant chance all take the Todd playlist. The big image right before a flashback. With spawn is downright 70s-esque. And is kind of missed nowadays. He does a lot of stylized borders. That can become jarring. Those are generally used to draw your eyes to beginning or the end of the panel. After not following throughout the story they become jarring. So for someone who’s not a seasoned comic book reader this might become jarring. Be completely blacked out gutters works in this story since its spawn versus Batman. But, sometimes image way overused that. In areas that point where Batman elbow spawn in the back and ahead yelling in your dreams. Where you’re not sure how spawned gets out of it but it looks like he’s challenging Batman to a dance off. And then somehow the gets his hand behind Batman head and slams him forward.

    I’ve studied the martial arts for 39 years. I have no idea what in the world this move is supposed to be. Though small and simple is everywhere it almost looks like the Batman symbol in the old cartoons. Back to this fight. Then somehow after slamming him forward he turns him over and has slammed Batman it to the ground. About to mount and pommel him. And then somehow while he’s on top of Batman gets him spawn hits him so hard that he slides from under him and up into the air. But, it’s a comic book fight and I guess it’s showing off how angry the two characters are in each other. As a fight it makes no sense. But, I guess it does give you a storytelling think about the two characters. The battering to face is kind of funny. But, this happened during the 90s Batman. I can’t remember if Az Bats had already happened are not. Probably. But, I know battle for the Cale not happened yet.
    So Bruce’s kind of acting a little weird here. As much as I liked The Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot . At this point Miller had gone away from his lone Wolf and cub. Or hard-boiled detective type storytelling. And gone straight into Mickey Spillane on acid. Party was to believe it’s the whole him joking around with his hard-boiled style. And him having fun with the audience. But, the thing is he did put out holy terror at this point. That would’ve been Batman holy terror. Still DC the brakes on it saying hold up, Frank this just isn’t going to cut it. And he published it through any other publication. So if this is parody then this is some Andy Kaufman level stuff. At any rate is still the legend that is Frank Miller. And while Todd does take himself way too seriously.

    And definitely seems to be more about the media. Then the work. He hasn’t had that level of welder by the time to switch to decaf. That Miller seems to have as of recent. Who knows? Maybe it is all just Miller taking everyone’s chain. Far as Andy might say taking the pis. Don’t me wrong Miller is still a legend in the comic book world. And this is well earned. But, at this point it was kind of like time to dial it back a notch Frank. Still, none of this takes away from his legacy as a great comic book writer and artist. And though Todd has decided to become a media guy. A lot of his stuff is pretty cool. And I have found myself putting a lot of his McFarlane toys on my shelf. Specifically the ones for DC universe. So is it just weren’t a collaborations between two legends. So yeah and first image had become a little bit to over-the-top with edge Lord type artwork. And though I hate to give him credit once Larson brought in different writers like Kirkman. And the other guys found different very talented indie guys.

    Image comics has pretty much become the place to be. For comics that are not part of the big two. Whether this was great design are happy accident is not relevant. It’s just good to see that things are getting better. Though right now I’m not reading comics because it become a little bit too well not for me. At any rate can’t wait to hear the next podcast.

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