Things are getting a little weird in Bat-Mite #1 by Dan Jurgens, Corwin Howell on pencils, Howell and Andres Ponce on inks, Mike Atiyeh on color and Tom Napolitano on letters.
Bat-mite (yes Bat-mite) is exiled from his home planet. We next see him driving the Batmobile off a cliff. They’re actually working together. And he’s not alone. Bruce (yes Bruce) is there too. Bat-mite helps Bruce find a girl stuck in the bad guy’s truck and initiates a group selfie. Bruce manages to get away and a woman dressed as a nurse pops into the scene and knocks Bat-Mite out. He is taken to Doctor Trauma, a gaunt labcoat wearing villainess. Turns out she’s a plastic surgeon, who specializes in whole body transfers. Agnes (the nurse) throws Bat-Mite into a cell where Hawkman (really?!) is tied up already. And Ms Doctor Trauma wants to use Hakwman as her new body (since Bat-Mite interrupted the delivery of her new one).
This is retro shlock all over. Pulling from 90’s cartoons, Animaniacs in particular, this feels very early to mid 90’s WB production-wise. That’s actually a good thing because hey, DC is pretty grim and their new initiative certainly seems to want to liven things up. Why Bat-Mite out of all people is chosen as a bastion of the new initiative (a Gotham Girls book of Bluebird, Spoiler, Cassandra Cain and occasional Tim Drake would have sufficed thanks). Last seen as a pseudo hallucination and or parasite attached to Bruce’s back in RIP, Bat-Mite is now back seemingly legitimately as a character which brings up all sorts of questions. Ultimately, however, it’s fun.
The writing isn’t what I’d call amazing, some of the jokes are dated but fun enough and it really brings to mind Animaniacs, but hey this is fun an obviously a strange risk for a mini-series but definitely fits with DC’s (backpedaling) attempts to actually appeal to kids and tweens (which they should, kids have parent’s money. Little girls are an economic force to be reckoned with). Thus negatives aren’t really negatives here, rather the art is not quite as snappy and fun as it could be (again coloring, my usual gripe) but it’s close.
Pick it up and share it with younger siblings or if you are like me with a limited maturity level, enjoy it all by yourself. This is a cute read that I’m glad to see DC trying. Is this the best move they could do? Probably not (rather they need to look at Lumberjanes) but it shows a concentrated effort and effort rather than apathy is better than nothing.