Synopses & Reviews
From his debut in a six-page comic in 1939 and to his most recent portrayal by Christian Bale in the blockbuster The Dark Knight Rises
, Batman is perhaps the worldandrsquo;s most popular superhero. The continued relevance of the caped crusader could be attributed to his complex character, his dual identity, or his commitment to revenge and justice. But, as the contributors to this collection argue, it is the fans who, with the patience of Alfred, the loyalty of Commissioner Gordon, and the unbridled enthusiasm of Robin, have kept Batman at the forefront of popular culture for more than seven decades.
Fan Phenomena: Batman explores the unlikely devotion to the Dark Knight, from his inauspicious beginnings on the comic book page to the cult television series of the 1960s and on to critically-acclaimed films and video games of today. Considering everything from convention cosplay to fan fiction that imagines the Joker as a romantic lead, the essays here acknowledge and celebrate fan responses that go far beyond the scope of the source material.and#160;And, the contributors contend, despite occasional dips in popularity, Batmanandrsquo;s sustained presence in popular culture for more than seventy years is thanks in no small part to his fansandrsquo; ardor.
Packed with revealing interviews from all corners of the fan spectrumandmdash;including Paul Levitz, who rose through the ranks of fan culture to become the president of DC Comics, and Michael Uslan, who has executive produced every Batman adaptation since Tim Burtonandrsquo;s blockbuster in 1989, as well as film reviewers, academics, movie buffs, comic store clerks, and costume-clad convention attendeesandmdash;this book is sure to be a bestseller in Gotham City, as well as everywhere Bruce Wayneandrsquo;s alter ego continues to intrigue and inspire.
"Film producer Uslan tells of how a New Jersey kid turned his youthful obsession with the 1950s and '60s superheroes of DC and Marvel Comics, like Batman and Captain America, into a 'lifetime career' culminating in his current role as executive producer of all the Batman movies, from 1989's Batman to the Dark Knight Rises, scheduled to premiere in 2012. The problem is that Uslan spends too much time on the details of his youthful and college-era obsession and not enough on his current peak. Three-quarters of the book is a highly detailed account of the author's life in Jersey, his work at Indiana University teaching one of the first college-level courses on comic books, and a stint as a young writer at DC Comics. Only in the book's last quarter does Uslan tell some fascinating stories about the difficulties he had in convincing Hollywood film executives of the potential success of a movie based on the original comic book's characterization of 'a dark and serious Batman,' as opposed to the '1967 pop version' found in the Batman television show. Uslan's writing is friendly but conventional, but his relentless linear reporting style keeps his focus all too narrow." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Is any superhero cooler than Batman? He's a crime-fighting vigilante with a tragic past, a lawless attitude, and a seemingly endless supply of high-tech gadgetry. In this fully illustrated memoir, author Michael Uslan recalls his journey from early childhood fandom through to the decades he spent on a caped crusade of his own: to bring Batman to the silver screen as the dark, serious character he was at heart. Uslan's story traces his path from the wilds of New Jersey to the limelight of Hollywood, following his work as Executive Producer on every Batman film from Tim Burton's 1989 re-envisioning to 2012's The Dark Knight Rises. Through it all, he helped to create one of the most successful pop culture franchises of all time.
About the Author
Michael Uslan is a film producer with numerous award winning projects to his credit. He is Executive Producer of all of the Batman features from Batman to The Dark Knight Rises and won an Emmy Award for TV's "Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?" He has been a speaker at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, and at the Smithsonian Institution, and taught the world's first accredited college course on comic books.