This... this will not end well. DC comics has just announced that Frank Miller, one of comics’ greatest creators who has since devolved into one of the comics’ world’s weird crazy uncles, is creating a third volume in the saga he began with The Dark Knight Returns, to be titled The Dark Knight: The Master Race.
This... this cannot possibly go well. Even if you ignore the fact that Miller wrote All-Star Batman, in which Batman had sex with Black Canary on a filthy pier, called Robin “retarded” and had Wonder Woman refer to men as “sperm banks” — or his Holy Terror comic, in which a faux-Batman beat and tortured countless Muslim extremists, The Dark Knight Strikes Again was... really, really not good. See the panel up top? That’s from TDKSA. I can best sum it up by this actual drawing that Miller did of Wonder Woman’s rib cage:
As Wonder Woman’s crushed, shattered torso is to a regular rib cage, so was Strikes Again to The Dark Knight Returns.
The good news is that Brian Azzarello will apparently be co-writing with Miller, presumably in hopes of heading off the horrifying shitstorm of cultural insensitivity that is almost 100% certain to follow. But for god’s sake, it’s called The Master Race. I feel like the chances of Frank Miller being... well, being Frank Miller are pretty goddamn high.
The fact that this thing is subtitled The Master Race should be filling DC executives with abject fear. I mean, it’s no great mystery what DC is thinking — this is the 30th anniversary of The Dark Knight Returns, and despite the fact Strikes Again was an incomprehensible mess it made money — but man. This will bring nothing but disaster.
Here’s the official press release. All the good stuff is in-between the lines:
SUPERSTAR WRITER/ARTIST FRANK MILLER
RETURNS TO BATMAN!
“THE DARK KNIGHT III: THE MASTER RACE”
Completes Trilogy in Legendary “Dark Knight” Saga
BURBANK, Calif. (Friday, April 24, 2015) – DC Entertainment announced today that bestselling, iconic Batman writer and artist Frank Miller will write the epic conclusion of the celebrated THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS saga.
The “THE DARK KNIGHT III: THE MASTER RACE” is the sequel to Miller’s 1986 classic THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS – heralded by TIME Magazine as one of the 10 greatest graphic novels of all time – and its 2001-2002 follow-up series BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT STRIKES AGAIN.
Miller will be joined by acclaimed writer Brian Azzarello (100 BULLETS, JOKER, and WONDER WOMAN) on the eight-issue comic book periodical, to be published twice a month under the DC Comics imprint. Marking the 30th anniversary of THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS original series, this periodical is slated for publication beginning in late Fall 2015.
“Batman remains my favorite comic book hero and a sequel to Dark Knight is going to be daunting,” said Miller, “but we’ll do our best.”
“We are thrilled to have Frank back home at DC writing Batman,” according to Dan DiDio and Jim Lee, Co-Publishers for DC Entertainment. “The story he and Brian have crafted is an astounding and triumphant conclusion to this seminal body of work which influenced and shaped generations of readers and creators alike.”
According to Azzarello, “It’s been an amazing experience collaborating with Frank these past six months. I think we have an epic story that these characters truly deserve.”
Artists for the project have yet to be announced.
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