When I was a little kid, I didn’t have any understanding of “camp.” They used to run the old BATMAN TV series every weekday evening, and I never missed an episode. When Batman and Robin would get into the fisticuffs with the bad guys of the week, I’d jump around and shadowbox and help them fight. As I got older, I began to have a negative view of the series, though. Batman is the darkest of all the superheroes. Why would anybody, then, think it was a good idea to make a joke out of him? Batman should be treated with the gravitas he deserved, dangit!

As the years have passed, I’ve come to appreciate the television show anew. I take it as it was meant to be, as parody. And as an example of such, it was brilliant. And Adam West played the part to cheesy, sincere perfection.

They lit up the Los Angeles City Hall with the Batsignal to honor Mr. West after his death this past week. I know that, somewhere, West’s Batman, to the accompaniment of that classic, cornball theme song of his, answered the call.

Some Middle Eastern countries hostile to Israel are refusing to let WONDER WOMAN be shown there, because star Gal Gadot is of Israeli descent. This will deprive Warner Brothers of about three dollars and thirty-five cents of revenue, which it will more than make up for in providing free publicity for the film, and also by driving the black market price for copies of the movie over there, when it comes out, into the stratosphere. It isn’t just foreign governments who are a-hatin’ on the movie, though. There’s at least one PC dillweed squawking that the movie is racist, that it is, and I quote, “Dangerous for [her] black feminism and liberation.” (Yeah, I laughed when I read that, too.) And her complaint is for the same reason: the lead actress is Israeli. (I actually suspect, based upon her own words–and she almost says as much–that this person’s real complaint is that the actress is Caucasian, period, and that the only thing that would really satisfy her would be for the studio to have cast a black woman in the role. And I ask you, how racist is THAT?)

Then there was that theater somewhere–I think it might have been Texas (I could google it but I really don’t care)–where they held a women’s-only showing, and a few insecure males got their tighty-whitey knickers all twisted about it–thus providing even more in the way of free publicity. Then there were some thirteen-year-olds who were complaining on the Internet (’cause nobody would listen to them in real life) that the actress’s boobs weren’t big enough. It’s embarrassing from a sociological/anthropological standpoint that this griping by said teenyboppers (no grown man would be so childish, surely; this bitching must have been the work of little boys in their early teens) got mentioned at all. But the fact that it DID get mentioned only served to–you guessed it–provide more in the way of free publicity for the film.

Let’s review, then. We’ve got nitwits clucking that the movie is sexist, racist, political, and that the actresses’ boobs are too small. Just laugh, my friends. Just laugh to keep from crying. The stupid, it overwhelms us!

The fact that everybody is talking about the film, however, even if they’re bitching about something, constitutes SATURATION. This is what it means to be OVER. (Wrestling term, in case you didn’t know. It means to be accepted by “marks,” or fans, to get the desired reaction from them. The term suggests that the fans are buying into what is being sold.)

It’s nice to see a movie good enough in terms of its quality to deserve this level of OVER. You go, Gal!

Faulkner once said that the only thing worth writing about was ‘the human heart in conflict with itself.” Or in other words, the human-ness of a story is what makes it or breaks it. Not the “plot” but the “what,” to again quote Faulkner. I loved both BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN and SUICIDE SQUAD, but I will concede that both of them tended to skew more towards the onscreen action, leaving less time for the characterization, the “what” Faulkner spoke about. They had to, to fit in all the plot and action sequences they needed, but if those films had weaknesses, this was the source. A truly perfect film manages to get the balance just right, leaning more in one direction or the other depending on the type of film in question. Action and genre movies must by necessity lean more towards the flash over the fleshing-out. Again, though, a perfect film manages to include just the right amounts of both. WONDER WOMAN manages to achieve that perfect balance.

To put it another way, WONDER WOMAN has enough heart to go with its heroics to satisfy Faulkner’s requirement. It’s old-fashioned and beautiful. It’s as dark as any of the other DC films, but achieves enough lighthearted moments, or at the least stresses the need for the seeking of that light, to keep it from becoming depressing. WONDER WOMAN, the character, is a beacon of hope personified. And so is this movie. By all means, if you haven’t already, go see it!

The 90s were a cesspool for the comics world. If you were around back then, and by “around” I mean reading and purchasing comics, you already remember it as such—if you have any sort of discerning taste at all, that is. If your taste is lousy you probably recall the decade as a golden era. It was, however, a golden era that almost destroyed the entire industry. The birth of Image led to a deluge of books offering style with no substance, the viewing of comics artists as rock stars, their names on covers guaranteed to sell millions of copies sans writers or even coherent storylines; this in turn led to the speculator phenomenon which, when it imploded, threatened to take the medium with it. In the 90s it was all about money, with no thought given to history, to quality, or to the fans. Image pandered, while Marvel started publishing an excessive number of titles in an attempt to glut the market and put all the small presses out of business. It worked and they did—but it also bankrupted the company! (Also, there was that Spider-Man clone thing.)

DC wasn’t immune, either. Remember when DC essentially purchased its own exclusive distributor, also in an attempt to kill off the little guys? Remember the stunts? Replacing Batman—twice—and killing off Superman. The latter, though, despite being a stunt, ended up being a decent story. (The one that followed it, however, the Red Superman/Blue Superman fiasco, made up for this oversight by sucking as badly as anything any of the other companies had done.) I don’t cringe when I recall the “Death of Superman/ Reign of the Supermen” storyline. I wouldn’t mind seeing it revisited, as DC plans to do—IF they handle it properly. And if they never mention Red Superman/Blue Superman again, ever. Like, EVER.