Gotham Academy

23 Jun

If there is a comic book that I wouldn’t think I would enjoy, it is Gotham Academy.  I am 34, a history teacher, and a father of 3.  Teenagers being overly dramatic is what my life revolves around and typically I want my entertainment to be about escaping those bounds.  I love Superman because he is the world’s greatest hero.  I love Green Lantern because he has a ring that can do anything and solve any problem.  Neither of those are options for me.  And yet, I have found, that a comic book about teachers in a school of crazy kids is one of the most original books out there and it really is as close to perfect as any other book on the market currently.

The book’s teachers are classic “B-rated” villains.  Bookworm was one of those crazy characters that could have only been in Adam West’s Bat-universe and yet he is the school librarian.  I can’t help but wonder when he will kidnap children in his quest to rule Gotham’s literary circles.  Aunt Harriet is the school ma’am responsible for the girls’ dormitory.  And yet, if you recall your Batman ’66, she is the woman who couldn’t figure out that special glowing red phone meant Bruce and Dick had a secret life (and not the type that Grant Morrison likes to allude to!).

And then there’s the kids.  One of the characters is named Maps! And she loves RPGs, one of my favorite gaming fixations.  And I am really not sure if she realizes life isn’t a big RPG, as she walks around and discusses her need for mail armor or lock picking skills.  The star reminds me of some of my favorite students: moody, bright, and obsessed with Batman. She has boyfriend drama and super-secretive teenage stalker issues.  And Killer Croc stalker issues, in one of the character’s most fun roles since Tiny Titans’ All Croc issue.

The entire book reads like a modern day Scooby adventure.  To help drive home that fact, there are fake ghosts hiding around every secret passage way you can find in the school.  The headmaster has that “is he the secret evil villain or just another red herring” personality that Scooby Do mastered in my childhood. And in closing, like my favorite Scooby episodes ever, Batman occasionally guest-stars.  I admit it: I am in love with a teenage angsty-drama!

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