When “Batman Beyond” premiered in 1999, I couldn’t have been more excited. A show which featured my favorite super hero set in a futuristic Gotham City that resembled the world of “Blade Runner” was almost too much for my geek heart to process. It never disappointed me and assured fans of the Dark Knight that his legacy would never end. Twelve years after the last official episode of the series aired, the futuristic crime fighter’s adventures continue in both Batman Beyond and Justice League Beyond comic titles.
“Batman Beyond: 10,000 Clowns” is a collection of the first sixteen print issues of the series, which were originally released in digital form. The trade paperback version is comprised of three different storylines entitled “The Trigger Man,” “Legends of the Dark Knight: Jake,” and “10,000 Clowns.”
In “The Trigger Man,” Batman comes face-to-face with a killer whose love for his dog makes him more dangerous than ever. When arms dealers abduct Mad Stan’s prized pet, the criminal becomes even more dangerous in his pursuit of the kidnappers. The Dark Knight comes between Mad Stan and the arms dealers who took his little friend.
“Legends of the Dark Knight: Jake” tells the origin story of a new vigilante in Gotham City. After being a member of Derek Powers’ Quiet Squad, Jake decides to make a change with his new career. It’s time to use his talents to bring down criminals as a heavily armored hero named Vigilante. Could he become a new ally to Batman or will his methods of crime fighting pit him against the Dark Knight?
“10,000 Clowns” pits Batman against his most dangerous foe yet. A crazed maniac plans to carry on the Joker’s legacy by bringing in an international army of the Clown Prince of Crime’s followers to Gotham City. Can Batman stop his evil plan even with the help of veteran sidekicks Tim Drake and Dick Grayson?
Writer Adam Beechen pens a couple entertaining tales with ‘The Trigger Man” and “Legends of the Dark Knight: Jake.” All the key elements of a great Batman Beyond story are present. However, “10,000 Clowns” has to be one of the most engaging and epic sagas presented on paper or the screen involving the future Dark Knight.
I don’t want to spoil any of the great surprises in “10,000 Clowns.” Let’s just say there are some guest appearances by folks I’m sure many Batman fans are curious about and would like to find out what they’re doing in the future. It also gives Bruce Wayne a piece of the action instead of simply having him behind a computer. Let’s just say that for an old man, he’s still got a little fight in him.
Norm Breyfogle’s art for “Batman: 10,000 Clowns” perfectly captures the style of the television show. However, you can still see his signature style in each and every panel of the book. It’s almost as if Breyfogle was born to illustrate the world of “Batman Beyond.”
Eight pages of covers and character designs are presented for fans to gawk at. The covers are drawn by Dustin Nguyen and Ryan Benjamin. The character designs are by Norm Breyfogle and give insight into the evolution of the costumes and appearance of the Joker King.
“Batman Beyond: 10,000 Clowns” is the perfect tale of the Dark Knight. It weaves Terry McGinnis’s personal life and his work as Batman into a tangled web that would make the perfect source material for a new animated feature. If you’re a casual fan of Batman Beyond, this book will push you over the edge into a ravenous state of addiction.
“Batman Beyond: 10,000 Clowns” is available now in a paperback edition.