Batman & Robin Adventures #17

Story by Paul Dini
Dialogue Ty Templeton
Penciled by Joe Staton
Inked by Rick Burchett
Colored by Linda Medley

So, what’s the story?

bra_17_coverJervis Tetch, the Mad Hatter, is dying. He does so under the eyes of two doctors, a priest, and a visiting Bruce Wayne. The doctors say he died of a broken heart after learning that Alice Pleasance would be marrying her boyfriend, Billy Reynolds. Later, Bruce and Dick are in attendance at the wedding. Just before Alice walks down the aisle, she learns of Tetch’s death. She admits to feeling guilty, and at the altar she turns and runs away. Bruce, Dick, and Alfred follow her to an abandoned amusement park. As Batman and Robin, the heroes find her in a wax museum. Batman enters by the roof, and Robin enters through a window. Batman finds himself surrounded by wax models of Gotham rogues. Suddenly, the wax statues attack! A very much alive Mad Hatter appears, and slaps his Dream Inducer onto Batman. With batman under his spell, the Mad Hatter explains how he staged his death, using his mind control devices on the doctors and priest, who are with him as slaves even now. Even Alice is under his control, via her wedding veil. He goes on to explain that all present will be witness to his wedding to Alice. Suddenly, Robin strikes! A short scuffle ensues. Robin manages to pull the Dream Inducer off Batman, and tries to place it on the Mad Hatter. But instead, the Hatter stabs Robin through the chest. Then the Hatter takes down Batman! Finally, Alice professes his love for him, and the live happily ever after. Except they don’t. In fact, Robin manages to place the Dream Inducer on Hatter. The shock to his brain placed him in a seemingly permanent fantasy state. He is returned to Arkham, his captives are freed, and Alice marries Billy.

Another fine Dini-Templeton tale! This one would have made a great episode, especially that ending. I’d love to have seen that animated. I’ve always felt that decent Mad Hatter stories, like Riddler stories, are tough to write. Kudos to the writing team.

How’s the Art?

Not bad. Staton’s pencils start to veer towards the overly cartoony, but the characters are still recognizable as Timmverse.

Any continuity issues?

Not really. There’s a reference to “Perchance to Dream,” so the story takes place after that. Clearly, the Mad Hatter is running around in the TNBA stories, so I guess he recovers from his fantasy state.

Anything of interest to customizers or cosplayers?

Hatter is seen in his BTAS garb, but it’s in TNBA colors. I know TNBA was in production when this issue came out. I wonder if the art team was aware of pending changes, or if it’s just a coincidence?

Is this issue worth my precious time?



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