Super Mates Episode 8: Batman by Alan Brennert – with Rob Kelly

In this very special episode, Chris and Cindy Franklin are joined by Chris’ friend and podcasting mentor, Rob Kelly! Rob is the co-host of The Fire and Water Podcast, the writer of the award-winning Ace Kilroy web strip, the editor and compiler of Hey Kids, Comics! True-Life Tales from the Spinner Rack, and one helluva nice guy to boot!

Rob and the Super Mates discuss three Batman tales penned by award-winning television writer and successful novelist, Alan Brennert. Brennert has only written a handful of comics in his career, but all are great gems, and his Batman tales are some of the character's best in his 75 year history.

“To Kill A Legend” from Detective Comics #500: Batman is offered a chance to save his parents in a parallel reality. But should he deny that world a Batman?

“Interlude on Earth-Two” from The Brave and the Bold #182: Batman finds himself mysteriously pulled to the alternate world of Earth-Two… a world where his counterpart has long been dead! He must strike an uneasy alliance with the Robin of that world to stop a vengeful Hugo Strange from destroying Gotham!

“The Autobiography of Bruce Wayne” from The Brave and the Bold #197: Shortly before his tragic death, the Batman of Earth-Two recalls how he came to marry the love of his life…his former foe, the Catwoman!

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Big thanks to Rob for stopping by for a very lively discussion! Be sure to check out Rob’s blogs and podcasts, starting at the Aquaman Shrine, with The Fire and Water Podcast. Do yourself a favor and sample the awesome webstrip that Rob co-created and writes, Ace Kilroy! And you, as a comic fan, owe it to yourself to own and love a copy of Hey Kids, Comics! True LifeTales From the Spinner Rack!

Be sure to let us know what you think! What did you think of these tales? Would you like to hear mor guests on the show? Let your voice be heard! We’d love to read it aloud in an upcoming episode. Drop us a line in our comments section, or email us at If you're listening on iTunes, please consider leaving a review of our show! We’re also on Facebook!

Chris (aka Earth 2 Chris) co-hosts the Power Records Podcast with the aforementioned Rob Kelly over at the Fire and Water Podcast feed!

Next time, Cindy and Chris read YOUR comments on past episodes!

2 responses to “Super Mates Episode 8: Batman by Alan Brennert – with Rob Kelly

  1. Another weekend with a little extra time to catch up on the some old podcasts; I came across this one when I was poking through your episode archives a few weeks ago, but only listened to it now because I wanted to read through my Alan Brennert Batman book.
    First and foremost, I have to say I share everyone’s fondness for Brennert’s writing. Second, “The Autobiography of Bruce Wayne” is probably my favorite Batman story ever (it’s one of the reasons I think eventually Bruce and Selina always have to end up together, regardless of whether it’s Earth 1, 2 or wherever else in the multiverse).
    And I totally agree with a sentiment about Brennert’s stories that seemed to run through much of your conversation, i.e., that they’re ’emotionally mature’ and so forth. In fact, the key phrase is when Rob said there’s a way to write a story for adults that doesn’t feature anything objectionable to children. I said something similar in the comments to a review of this issue at the late and much lamented Bronze Age Babies blog, to wit: ” Brennert basically shows how to write a mature story that’s still all ages.” I really think that’s the rub: Brennert was very quietly showing both comic writers and comic fandom how it is possible to write truly mature super-hero stories – wherein maturity is defined not by explicit, often objectionable content but rather by adult concerns and emotional depth presented in a way anybody can understand and relate to.

    By the way, on the subject of scars on Batman’s back, and the way Ross much later graphically depicted this – I never gave it much thought when I saw that bit in B&B 197, because we’re told rather than shown, but once I saw the Ross illustration, it made me think that 1) Batman would probably have more scare tissue, healed wounds, etc. on his front torso and even face rather than on his back, and 2) they would not look like he’d been whipped repeatedly, as Ross drew it, rather there would be bullet wounds and the type of cuts scars made by knives and other sharp objects.
    And one last thing, before I close this already long-winded comment: Cindy can rest assured that wondering whether Brennert ended up marrying the woman he vacationed with in Hawaii, who read the same comics as he did, is not a just “chick” thing – that question immediately occurred to me when I heard that part of the story. (In fact, I also listened to Rob’s interview with Brennert today, and was a bit disappointed that he didn’t ask about that…)

    1. Thanks again for writing in on these old episodes Edo. And I appreciate you slogging through the horrid sound quality of some of these! I like to think my equipment and editing skills have gotten better! But of course the discussion with Rob on some of our mutually favorite comics is still one of my favorite “team-ups” we’ve done. I gush a bit more about “To Kill A Legend” on an upcoming episode of FW Presents, so the love is till very much there.

      And I love my “Batman by Alan Brennert” volume! I’m usually too cheap to buy collections of stories I already have, but I definitely made an exception for this one!


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