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Soul of the Dark Knight: Batman as Mythic Figure in Comics and Film

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This is a book about the comics genre and language, how these were used to create Batman, and how that character's longevity is largely due to the medium's unique formal qualities. It argues that Batman's core appeal is his mythic nature which allows him to transcend changes in reader tastes, the vicissitudes of the comics industry, and the changing media landscape. While This is a book about the comics genre and language, how these were used to create Batman, and how that character's longevity is largely due to the medium's unique formal qualities. It argues that Batman's core appeal is his mythic nature which allows him to transcend changes in reader tastes, the vicissitudes of the comics industry, and the changing media landscape. While including some historical elements, it is mostly a study of how the formal aspects of comics are able to evoke uniquely mythic qualities that have made Batman such a long-lived cultural phenomenon and how efforts to adapt these qualities into other media, particularly live-action feature films, have succeeded or failed based on the strategies employed. The book sheds light both on comics as a medium and art form with its own language, syntax and codes and on the process of adaptation--a growing area of study, given Hollywood's continuing interest in working with comic book superheroes.


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This is a book about the comics genre and language, how these were used to create Batman, and how that character's longevity is largely due to the medium's unique formal qualities. It argues that Batman's core appeal is his mythic nature which allows him to transcend changes in reader tastes, the vicissitudes of the comics industry, and the changing media landscape. While This is a book about the comics genre and language, how these were used to create Batman, and how that character's longevity is largely due to the medium's unique formal qualities. It argues that Batman's core appeal is his mythic nature which allows him to transcend changes in reader tastes, the vicissitudes of the comics industry, and the changing media landscape. While including some historical elements, it is mostly a study of how the formal aspects of comics are able to evoke uniquely mythic qualities that have made Batman such a long-lived cultural phenomenon and how efforts to adapt these qualities into other media, particularly live-action feature films, have succeeded or failed based on the strategies employed. The book sheds light both on comics as a medium and art form with its own language, syntax and codes and on the process of adaptation--a growing area of study, given Hollywood's continuing interest in working with comic book superheroes.

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