The big trend in promoting comics has been taking a series or issue and turning it into a “Motion Comic”.Â This is where the art is scanned or imported into a motion graphics application like Adobe After Effects, and then manipulated to give the illusion you are watching an animated feature.Â I’ve seen some really good stuff, and I’ve seen some absolute drek.
The latest comic to get the treatment is the old Batman: Black and White series from DC Comics.Â I’ve watched the trailer and it does look pretty good, and will more than likely check out the ten episode series.
Complete press release and trailer after the jump.
Warner Premiere and Warner Bros. Digital Distribution announced the acclaimed graphic album â€œBatman: Black & Whiteâ€ debuted today as a Warmer Premiere Motion Comics series. Available exclusively on iTunes and coming soon to other distribution channels including Amazon Video On Demand and Verizon Wireless VCAST, â€œBatman: Black and Whiteâ€ Motion Comics features 10 stories created by comic book legends that include Alex Ross, Dave Gibbons, Ted McKeever, Paul Levitz and others. The stories are available on iTunes as five episodes of two shorts each and can be purchased and downloaded for $0.99 per episode.
In addition, comic book fans can download a free podcast, also available on iTunes (http://tinyurl.com/batman-b-w-motion-comic), featuring â€œBatman: Black & Whiteâ€ illustrator Alex Ross. Hosted by John Siuntres of the popular Wordballoon comic book podcast, Alex discusses Motion Comics, his work on the best-selling series and his current projects.
Warner Premiereâ€™s Motion Comics are a new way for comic fans to connect with their favorite characters and the stories they know and love through short-form digital content. The Motion Comics slate draws on a deep reservoir of source material to bring a new visually engaging experience to life through the use of subtle movements, voice-overs, sweeping music scores and stunning comic book artwork.
â€œBatman: Black & White is one of the most visually stunning graphic albums created and weâ€™re delighted to bring it our expanding Motion Comics slate,â€ said Diane Nelson, President, Warner Premiere. â€œOur production team worked closely with DC Comics to ensure the rich artwork and story of the original creators are as authentic as possible.â€
A new addition to the Warner Premiere Motion Comics slate, â€œBatman: Black & Whiteâ€ is taken from three award-winning volumes of short stories starring the Caped Crusader. Animated by Sequence Post Studios, the Motion Comics reflect the original and diverse visions of various artists and writers as they tell stories in the now-infamous world of Gotham City.
The â€œBatman: Black & Whiteâ€ stories range in theme from the unsettling drama of solving a brutal murder to the light comedy of fighting bad guys with a broken nose. These short episodes also touch on elements of romance, mystery and even the supernatural. And like any exciting Batman story, classic villains such as The Joker, Harley Quinn and Two-Face make heralded appearances. Itâ€™s Batman as seen through the prism of some of todayâ€™s most eloquent graphic artists and writers.
â€œBatman: Black & Whiteâ€ Motion Comics features ten engaging shorts:
- “Here Be Monsters” – Written by Paul Grist, art by Darwyn Cooke
Madame X, attempting to poison Gotham’s water supply, doses Batman with a strange toxin causing him to hallucinate and see everyone around him as monstrous villains.
- “Broken Nose” – By Paul Pope
Alfred treats Batman for the first broken nose of his illustrious career, right before the Caped Crusader has to go out and confront the metallic-armored Mabuse in a furious fist fight.
- â€œTwo of a Kindâ€ – By Bruce Timm
Two-Face has his face reconstructed and is seemingly rehabilitated, but is tempted back to the dark side by a femme fatale.
- “Case Study” – Written by Paul Dini, art by Alex Ross
The Arkham Asylum staff discusses the origins and dubious sanity of The Joker.
- â€œThe Black and White Bandit” – By Dave Gibbons
A painter who has lost his sense of color due to toxic paint fumes exacts his revenge in a series of black-and-white themed crimes, where everything he steals has a black-and-white motif.
- â€œPunchlineâ€ – Written by Doug Alexander, art by Rob Haynes
Told silently, Harley Quinn attempts to trick another criminal out of their ill-gotten gains by inspiring the fear of Batman in them.Â Her attempts to mimic the Caped Crusader, however, cannot match up to the man himself.
- â€œGood Evening Midnightâ€ – By Klaus Janson
As Batman embarks on a dangerous assignment on his birthday, Alfred reads a note Bruce’s father had written long ago for his son which echoes the future for Batman.
- “Hide and Seek” – Written by Paul Levitz, art by Paul Rivoche
At the scene of a train wreck which may well be the result of malice rather than an accident, Batman seizes on the smallest of clues to follow someone’s trail through the train system and up into the light. Here he finds a small boy and reassures him that he is now safe, telling him that he knows what it’s like to be young and lost.
- “Night After Night” – Written by Kelley Puckett, art by Tim Sale
Bruce Wayne canâ€™t shake the nightmares he has night after nightÂ that recall how his parents were killed, and uses the anger from it to fuel his crime fighting against the likes of The Joker.
- â€œPerpetual Mourning” – By Ted McKeever
In this Eisner Award nominated story, Batman conducts an autopsy on a murder victim to help find her killer.