Characters Appearing: Batman, Robin, Alfred, Calendar Man
Issue(s): Batman #384
At least they don't try to do it themselves. They call someone known as "The Monitor", who hooks them up with a top notch villain.
I don't know who the Monitor is, but DC has been building him up for a while now, apparently in anticipation of a big upcoming event, and all i can say is that if the Monitor is cool enough to set up Dr. Fang's goons with Calendar Man, he must be pretty awesome.
Calendar Man, of course, has deep motivations of his own. You see, there's an inherent contradiction in trying to line up the solar calendar with the lunar calendar and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...
Meanwhile, Batman is busy standing up his informants...
...because he's worried that Catwoman seemingly died fighting a guy in the worst Halloween dog-kangaroo mask ever made.
Batman, being fucking awesome, managed to throw his parachute out of the plane after Catwoman...
...and he confirms in this issue that she caught it.
But while Batman is doing all of that, Calendar Man is up to some absolute nonsense.
Batman returns to find that a bank vault, which was of course nicknamed Father Time, has been robbed.
Batman obviously has it all figured out already. He must wake up every morning and thank his bat-god that he has such goofy predictable villains that insist on leaving clues for him to follow. And what a set of clues.
Poor Robin. The things he has to do.
In doing some research, Robin learns that Calendar Man is a lot like the Riddler. And that's actually what i love about Calendar Man. I often read Riddler appearances and think to myself, "This guy is ok, but i'd like him a lot better if he could somehow be campier.".
Since Calendar Man's first attack was [based] on New Year's Day, Batman figures out that the next one will be on Groundhog Day. Robin notes that in Calendar Man's previous appearances, his attacks were first based on seasons and then on the days of the week, so Robin thinks that the months of the year should be next. But since Batman is Batman, he knows best, and specific holidays it is. So the only adventure we're having tonight is in our PJs.
Batman actually spends the night thinking about Nocturna. He makes a careful distinction to Alfred that he, or rather Batman, is in love with Nocturna, not her civilian identity Natalia Knight.
What is with all this dual personality stuff? Geez. Marvel should recruit the writer of this book to work on Moon Knight.
Batman's love interests are an embarrassment of riches. He was thinking about Catwoman earlier (although he decides that he's no longer obsessed with her now that he knows that she's alive), and then Nocturna, and there's also Vicky Vale, who calls to tell him that they're broken up after he missed their last date. And on top of that, Alfred is creepily pushing his daughter on Bruce, saying that he wants to see them strike sparks together.
I thought that Calendar Man's first attack was on New Year's Day, but it seems like the next day is March 16th.
I guess Calendar Man doesn't actually wait for the next holiday to attack; he just picks a target that has something to do with the next holiday in sequential order. This is supposed to be about Groundhog's Day, but he's targeting a magic shop, that, based on some inane leaps of logic, Batman has determined has something to do with the holiday. I guess i have to admit that Calendar Man is too complicated for me. I'd be sitting around waiting for it to actually be Groundhog's Day. So thank god for Batman.
In any event, it's time to fight Calendar Man...
...and his absurd giant card gimmicks.
Calendar Man escapes with a "disappearing box" from the magic shop on his - oh god! - Lunisolar Cycle. Ha ha ha ha ha!
Batman figures out that the next holiday target for Calendar Man would be Lincoln's Birthday, so that naturally means an attack at the Lincoln Theater. And of course he's right.
By the way, one of the best aspects of the Calendar Man is that he wears a different costume with each appearance. They're all horrible, but let's see you come up with a unique super-villain costume every time you go out in public.
Calendar Man manages to escape again, this time because Robin is getting eaten by a tiger.
The issue ends on a cliffhanger, with Batman learning that Robin is Calendar Man's next target.
Out of the tiger frying pan, into the super-villain fire. That's what adolescent sidekicks are for. It may be a little unethical to constantly put them in mortal danger, but watching him soil his tighty-greenies while being attacked by a tiger makes it all worth it, and being targeted for death by Calendar Man is inherently hilarious.
This is, of course, the greatest comic ever invented. What i love most about it is how it's such a joyless serious slog. Lesser writers would say that if they were going to use a villain like Calendar Man, they might as well have some fun with it. But not Doug Moench. To him, Calendar Man is a villain to be taken seriously, almost drearily, interweaving earnest ongoing subplots about Batman's multitude of relationships with a guy wearing the sun on his head as a costume and getting security guards naked all in an extremely complicated plot to fulfill a contract from a guy in a giant floating space-station. It's pure genius, and it's why i became a DC fan for life when i got this as one of my earliest comics.
Quality Rating: A+
Chronological Placement Considerations: In this story, Calendar Man only attacks on holidays. Like, say, April Fool's Day.
Continuity Implant? N
Reprinted In: N/A
You spelled Calendar wrong.
Posted by: Well meaning person | April 1, 2016 4:28 AM
One of the scans isn't coming up.
Posted by: Well meaning person2 | April 1, 2016 4:29 AM
This issue was reprinted in the "The Best of Times: Calendar Man's Greatest Days" tpb.
Posted by: Well meaning person3 | April 1, 2016 4:30 AM
*Sputter!* Doesn't anyone read the insanely long and rambling site Rules?
Posted by: fnord12 | April 1, 2016 4:31 AM
This site is available over the internet, therefore it's owned by the public, therefore it's owned by me. I demand that the grade for this comic be removed.
Posted by: Jackass | April 1, 2016 4:32 AM
As a personal friend and official spokesperson for Calendar Man, I have my own line of calendars that were once seen in the background of a terrible sitcom. So i think i know a thing or two about calendars, LOL. Rick Hoberg could learn a thing or two from Rob Liefeld. Is my brand promoted yet?
Posted by: Kidneystone CEO, CFO, C3PO, Hot Sauce Guru, All Around Dudebro | April 1, 2016 4:33 AMComments are now closed for this post
Maybe there's further discussion in the forum.
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