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Episode 9: Batman #309 and Brave and the Bold #148

Welcome to the ninth episode of The Overlooked Dark Knight.  The is a non-index index show where the hosts, Andrew Leyland and Michael Bailey, look at Batman comics that rarely, if ever, get talked about.  They mostly stick to the later part of the Bronze Age but just about any era of Batman is fair game for their discussions.

This time out it’s Christmas in September as the guys tackle two holiday themed issues.  In Batman #309 we get the answer to the age old question; what would it have been like if the Adam West Batman had met the Lou Ferrigno Hulk.  Actually this is a rather sensitive story that deals with depression, mental illness and suicide against the backdrop of Christmas.  Blockbuster is the antagonist but Andy and Mike wouldn’t necessarily call him the villain.  Then in Brave and the Bold #148 the Dark Knight teams up with Plastic Man in a story that makes very little sense but is so much fun that you really don’t notice.  It’s Batman and Plastic man dealing with the mob on Christmas Eve and spans the entire East Coast before it’s over with.

Also the word “butt-legger” comes up a lot.

Be sure to head on over to the main Overlooked Dark Knight site for a gallery of images from the issues discussed during this episode!

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It All Comes Back To Superman Episode 2 – Superman Movie Mix Tape

Come with me, my listeners, as we break the bonds of our podcasting confinement and get our mix tape on.  I’ve got my CD’s picked out, a fresh new 220 minute blank cassette and I am seriously ready to hit pause instead of stop so there’s no clicking as you listen.

That’s right, folks.  It’s time to listen to some Superman movie music.

And not just any Superman movie music.  As John Cusak said in the movie High Fidelity, “Now the making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art.”  The easy thing to do would be to just play all of the opening and closing themes to the various Superman movies and be done with it.  But that would be boring and repetitive.  I’m sure I could have gotten some mileage out of comparing the various themes and pointing out how different composers subtly changed the order of the music or what they left out but again that could get really boring, really fast.  More to the point there is more to Superman movie music than the Williams theme and by that I mean there are more themes both for the character and in the various movies as well.

Plus, the selection needed to be personal.  This is my mix tape so it needs to reflect my sensibilities.

With that in mind I put together a track list comprising of music from most (but not all) of the theatrical adventures of the Man of Steel.  We start back in the forties with the Fleischer theme, get into the theme to the two Superman serials, add in some Superman vs The Mole Men and then things start getting interesting as I go through the scores of Superman The MovieSuperman IISuperman IIISupergirlSuperman IV: The Quest For PeaceSuperman Returns and Man of Steel and pick out the tracks and pieces of music that speak to me the most.  These are the tracks that I go to time and again when I want to hear some Superman music.

After that I look some of the solicitations of upcoming Superman trade paperback and hardcover collections because I thought it would be fun.  This is followed by YOUR feedback, so there are Facebook comments, comments left here at the site and even an iTunes review!

Next Time: Just in time for the new season of Supergirl on the CW I’ll be doing a commentary track for the first two episodes of season 2 because they featured some guy named Superman.


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It All Comes Back to Superman Episode 1 – Future Shock

Welcome to the first episode of It All Comes Back To Superman!  I am your host, Michael Bailey and this show will be my monthly reaffirmation of faith when it comes to being a fan of the Man of Steel.  Sometimes I will be alone.  Sometimes, like this time, I will have a guest.  Joining me for this inaugural episode is the one, the only Siskoid!  Siskoid is not only a part of The Fire and Water Podcasting Network where he co-hosts such shows as First Strike: The Invasion Podcast, Gimme That Star Trek, oHOTmu Or Not, FW Team-Up, The Lonely Hearts Romance Comics Podcast and The Hero Points Podcast but  is also part of The Legion of Super-Bloggers.

The Legion of Super-Bloggers is the reason that I asked Siskoid to be part of this particular episode as I am discussing a Superman story that involves the Legion of Super-Heroes.  Legion of Super-Heroes #37, Superman #8, Action Comics #591 and Legion of Super-Heroes #38 served to explain how a team of heroes inspired by Superboy could exist in a universe where Superman never was Superboy.  Siskoid and I talk about the writing and the art with some personal anecdotes thrown in for good measure but the main thrust of the conversation is how these issues tried to fix a problem created by the Crisis on Infinite Earths.  Superman #8 and Action #591 were also the first two Superman books I picked up back in 1987 and were the reason I started buying the Superman titles on a regular basis.

So this is not only the 30th anniversary of this story but it’s also the 30th anniversary of me being a Superman reader and collector.

Continue reading

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Last year DC Comics solicited a hardcover collection titled Superman: The Man of Tomorrow Volume 1.  It was going to reprint Superman (Vol. 2) issues 23-27 and Adventures of Superman issues 445-450.  To say I was excited about this is an understatement. That collection would have not only collected some of my favorite Superman comics but it would have also picked up where the Superman: The Man of Steel line of trades had left off.

Then the hardcover was cancelled.

To be fair it was “resolicted” with a later release date, but that is what DC does to collected editions that, for a variety of reasons, won’t be coming out.  Maybe there was a last minute glitch.  Maybe the pre-order sales weren’t what DC wanted.  No matter the reason, the book was not to be and I was actually depressed over it.

Not “oh woe is me, my life is awful” depressed but bummed out in a major way.

Because of that, the Amazon listing for a Superman: Exile Omnibus has me excited but in a very cautious way.

I mean I have to keep my emotions in check.  They let me down before.

Maybe putting the Man of Tomorrow in hardcover was a bad idea.

Maybe a softcover would have been a better idea.

Putting those issues and the Exile arc into hardcover is, to paraphrase the movie High Fidelity, like asking for $40, getting turned down and then asking for $100 instead.

So I am not going to get too excited.

Or get my hopes up.

At all.

Oh who am I kidding?  I am so freaking excited for this I just might bust!

There are two reasons for this, the first being personal.  Exile was a watershed moment for me as a Superman fan, reader and collector.  It was the storyline that made getting the next issue non-negotiable.  That story was when I became emotionally involved with the comics I was collecting.  Others have talked about the idea that collectors have their own Golden Age of comics and this was mine.  I am more nostalgic about that era of Superman than any other in my three decades of buying the comic book adventures of the Man of Steel.

So there’s that.

The second reason is that Exile is one of the single most important storylines of the Post Crisis era because without Exile you would never have gotten The Death and Return of Superman.

I’ve made this argument before but it bears repeating.  Before Exile the Superman titles were connected but still separate. Before it went weekly Action Comics was a team-up book that only tied into the other two Superman titles during company wide crossovers or when DC was trying to explain how the Legion could be inspired by Superboy when Superboy didn’t exist anymore.  After John Byrne left the series the titles started getting more and more intertwined and Exile was the first time that an extended storyline bounced between both books.

After Exile the books went in their own directions but that connected feeling started creeping in more and more and by the fall of 1990 the Triangle Numbering System was a thing,  You had three and then four creative teams, each with their own ideas and takes on the main and supporting characters, but there was an ongoing narrative that led to the four separate titles acting ostensibly as a weekly comic book.  This led to bigger stories like Time and Time AgainReturn of the Krypton Man and Panic in the Sky.

The reasons for Superman dying and then coming back are many and have more to do with a television series than anything else but the mechanics of that epic and the idea that you could tell an extended story over several titles for nearly a year was only plausible because Exile  proved that it could work.

That’s why it deserves an omnibus.

And that’s why I’m excited.

And that’s why this needs to happen.

So please…if you have any desire to see this book happen pre-order it.  And spread the word.  We need to show DC that this is something we want to buy.

The creative teams involved deserve it.  We deserve it.

Let’s make it happen.

If not us, who?

If not now, when?

I mean you could argue we could wait until it is solicited in Previews, but let’s get a jump on that.

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COMING JULY 28, 2017…

A new podcast from the Fortress of Baileytude Podcasting Network!  Anything and everything involving Superman is up for grabs with this show.  The first episode drops on July 28, 2017!

Click here to check out the trailer and feel free to share!

If you add the trailer in your show let me know so I can return the favor!

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So…some of you might be wondering what happened to the Fortress.  Some of you already know, but for the people that don’t here’s the deal.  Back at the beginning of 2017 I announced that I was going to be putting all of the podcasts that I produce/host/co-host that aren’t already part of a podcasting network into my own network.  I decided to call it The Fortress of Baileytude Podcasting Network because it seemed like a good name and I already had the whole Fortress of Baileytude thing going thanks to this site.  The original plan was that I would build a whole new site for the Network and run things out of there but it occurred to me that doing so would be a lot of work and the end result would be having yet another site to maintain.

It’s not that I’m lazy.  I’m just busy and real life can kick me in the teeth at the drop of a hat.

So, I decided that the best thing I could do would be to revamp this site to be the official home of The Fortress of Baileytude Podcasting Network.  This meant suspending the Superman posts but in all honesty I was never consistent in getting those out anyway.  It wasn’t an easy decision but for this Network to be given a chance I thought it was for the best.

With all of that out of the way, welcome to The Fortress of Baileytude Podcasting Network.  This site is still a work in progress as I get everything together but ultimately this will be the one stop hub for (as previously mentioned) all of the podcasts I produce/host/co-host that aren’t part of another network.  For the moment these shows include:

  • Views From The Longbox
  • From Crisis to Crisis: A Superman Podcast (which I host with Jeffrey Taylor)
  • The Overlooked Dark Knight (which I host with Andrew Leyland)

Another show will be starting up very soon and when certain ducks fall in a row concerning my wife I’ll be adding a fifth show to the Network.  Two of the shows (Views and Overlooked) have their own sites and you can access them by clicking the logos to the right.  All of the other shows will be hosted through this site though you can get to individual episodes posts through the links provided.  All of the shows have their own RSS feeds though if you want to subscribe to all of the shows you can do that through the Master Feed I created.  You’ll also notice that Bailey’s Batman Podcast has a link too.  This doesn’t mean the show is coming back but I did want it to be listed as part of the Network.

Again, this is all still a work in progress and thanks to real life getting in the way it will be a month or so before everything is finalized.  I appreciate everyone that has sent messages of support and I also appreciate their understanding in getting this off the ground.

To those that liked the Fortress when it focused only on Superman I apologize.  All of the old posts will still be available through the Categories section and I’m leaving The Death and Return of Superman page up because I’m really proud of that and want to keep it alive.

And that’s pretty much that.  I hope everyone enjoys the new network and site and I look forward to bringing you regular content in the weeks and months to come!

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Please excuse “the mess” as I get the new site up and running.  Big changes are coming to the Fortress, one of which is a sticky post at the top of this page, and by July things will be firmly in place.

Thank you for your support and patience!

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FCTC EPISODE 210 – 04/01/17

Episode 210 – 04/01/17

If you have listened to this show in the past you know what’s going on.

If you haven’t…well, just stick around for the whole episode.  All will be explained.


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