picon.jpgreviewbubble.jpgBatman and I are friends you know…

When I first started getting back into comic books, one of the very first #1 issues I picked up was a little something called Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight. There was a yellow cover, a pink cover, a blue one, and an orange one, all tempting me with tales of the Batman during his early years. Seventeen years later, I continue my uninterrupted run and reach issue #212.

01.jpgBatman: Legends of the Dark Knight #212
Chicks Dig the Bat
Adam Beechen (w)
Steve Scott (p), Nathan Massengill (i), Mike Atiyeh (c)

Ever catch a glimpse of someone, or only know them in passing, and then you can’t get them out of your head, to the point where you think the two of you are friends? *cough* me neither… But for Fernando Guerrero, catching a glimpse of Batman could be the in he needs to stand out in the crowd.

Beechen has been writing over at Robin and he has a real knack for getting inside the heads of the out of place teen. Take a read of Robin – High Dive and see if you don’t reach the same conclusion – simply brilliant writing. In the case of LODK, instead of the rejected loner, the readers are given the shy lovesick boy, who only wants to impress the girl of his dreams.

Fernando’s tale begins one night when he is out star gazing on top of the Schwartz Memorial Gotham Armory. (Nice nod to Julius Schwartz, long time editor of the Batman titles back in the ‘60s.) While gazing, the lad spots Batman swinging by, apparently out on patrol.

There is something interesting about Batman and Gotham city. While Batman has been seen by reporters and photographers, and fighting alongside Superman and other Justice League members, he is still considered a myth by the citizens of Gotham. Over the years LODK has been a place to tell early tales of The Batman, but it has also been yet another title for the variety of crossovers arcs that have taken place the last couple of years (Knightquest, No Man’s Land, War Crimes, etc). Because of all the jumping back and forth, the timeline is a little confusing and skewed. Based on Nando’s internal thinking, I would guess this story takes place early in Batman’s career. As a myth – a story told at night to keep kids from going down the wrong path, the Batman is a very powerful boogeyman. But when Nando sees Batman, it sinks in and becomes even more real; there is someone out in the night protecting the citizens of the city.

The next night, Fernando goes back to the Armory, and like clockwork, Batman swings by again. For Fernando this is pretty cool, he can see Batman anytime he wants. But what is the fun of knowing this juicy little tidbit if you can show off a little, and maybe even impress someone?

That someone is Sonia. She comes off as one of those superficial girls who only want to hang around with the popular kids and dates jocks, and Fernando doesn’t come off as one of those types. So when he musters up all his courage to finally talk to her, the only way he can get her to “go out” with him is to tell her he can show her Batman, because as the title of this story implies, “Chicks Dig the Bat”.

She agrees and when the big night arrives, the two end up on the armory with Batman a no-show. Doh! How often has that happened to you? *cough* um…yeah… me neither.

As Sonia is ready to leave, angry she would fall for such a lame routine, a gang of masked men arrive to rob the armory. The two try to flee, but eventually get backed into a corner unable to escape. As the gang debates whether to kill the couple or not – even though Sonia tells them she and Fernando aren’t on a date – Nando pulls a daring move telling the gang they’ll have to go through him before he’ll let them harm Sonia.


I rarely laugh out loud, but this scene has probably played out in the head of more than one young man’s head, and the payoff is just classic. I only posted two of the six panel sequence, but this alone is enough to score this issue 5 Stars.

Before the gang can pull the trigger, Batman appears. The reason he’s been patrolling near the armory is because he knew the gang was going to pull a heist. The two teens try to get out of harms way while Batman and the masked robbers fight it out.

Sonia panics and tries to run away, only to be captured and held at gunpoint by the last man standing. What does Batman do? Save the girl and let the bad man escape?


Fernando, hiding in the shadows, jumps out, grabs the gun long enough for Batman to give the crook the ol’ one-two.

With Sonia safe, Batman does the right thing by shaking Fernando’s hand and thanking him for his help. Of course getting a thank you from Batman is nothing compared to getting the girl of your dreams.


Cue the music – “There was something in the air that night, The stars were bright, Fernando!”

I really hope this story takes place during Batman’s first year. If it does, it really makes the “boy wonder” statement that much more profound. Is this the conception of the kid sidekick? Perhaps Fernando’s actions planted the seed in Batman’s mind that he should be on the lookout for a possible partner. I’d like to think so.

Like I said earlier, Beechen does an outstanding job at setting us up, telling the tale, and giving us a great ending. True, it is a fairly predictable ending, but a good one none-the-less. The artwork by Scott is well done, and the pencils and colors by Massengill and Atiyeh bring the story to life. All in all, this is one of the best LODK issues I have read in a while, and give it a 4.5 Star Rating. If you haven’t bought this issue yet, go out and get it this week – it’s that good.


Parting Shot

Discuss this issue in the Major Spoilers Batman Forum.

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

Previous post

Hawkeye and the Scarlet Witch Return in New Avengers #26

Next post

New Comic Releases November 29, 2006

No Comment

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section