The Batman... the tragic tale of young Bruce Wayne, who witnessed his parents gunned down in front of him, and who vowed to fight crime eventually using his family's fortune to help him become the scourge of criminals everywhere as The Batman.
What's not to love - here was a young boy filled with tragedy... who became a hero in a costume... not simply born on a planet under a Red sun, that when he comes to Earth and its yellow sun gives him super-human powers... not finding a magic lantern, not being doused with chemicals and a lightning bolt, not being injected with a super soldier formula, not being irradiated by gamma rays or cosmic rays, not finding a magic hammer, not being born a mutant, and not simply being a man in an iron suit.
No... is just a man with no special powers except those fighting and deducting skills he learn from others... just a man... something you and I could inspire to should we have had the inclination, billions of dollars for some cool gadgets, and a bat cave hidden under the family mansion.... at least we could be something special...
That's what I loved about The Batman. Yes... I add a capitalized The in front of his name.
My brother, Ben, went to the 2014 San Diego Comic Con (again) where he was once more part of a writer's panel, bringing back and giving me the convention's souvenir book.
In it was the image above, admirably rendered by Brian Miller of Surprise, Arizona, USA.
It reads "Batman Go Go Go" in Japanese Katakana and English... though I am hard-pressed to accurately determine what is written within the small yellow bat symbol in the bottom left hand corner, except for Batman written in blue.
The drawing features The Batman jumping out in front of the classic 1966 Batmobile from the old television show... and a childlike Robin in the inset.
I was scanning the image from the book and explaining to my wife that I was going to write about The Batman and also the funny way that Go Go Go is also the Japanese word for 5-5-5... which was a chain of Love Hotels... where a single man could take his woman for a bit of hanky-panky... in other words, a chance to go-go-go...
Then I focused on that image of Robin again... peering out from the Batmobile's trunk... and it hit me!
This wasn't JUST an homage to Japan and The Batman... no... this was something more....
It was an homage to Japanese manga and anime legend Speed Racer and his Mach 5 automobile (see images below!) Mach Go Go Go!
Yup... that image of Robin was an homage to Speed's little brother in the animated show peeking out from the car after hiding in it - a familiar theme from the show's animated credits!
Congratulations to DC Comics on the 75th anniversary of The Batman - long may he continue to fight crime - Go Go Go!