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Dark Night: A True Batman Story by Paul Dini

Dark Night: A True Batman Story (2016)

by Paul Dini, Eduardo Risso (Illustrator)

Other authors: Todd Klein (Letterer)

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Unexpected--and unexpectedly touching--Dini's autobiographical graphic novel is not your typical Batman story, but it's a touching reminder of what Batman means to so many. ( )
  BillieBook | Apr 1, 2018 |
Publishers Weekly, 6/20/2016
  K.thoma | Jun 27, 2017 |
This is not your typical Batman comic. It is written by Batman cartoon artist and writer Paul Dini who in the opening picture is in the hospital terribly beaten up. Then you go back in time to hear his life story. That of a kid who didn't belong and was picked on at school but who escaped in the comics and his imagination. While talking to his therapist you follow the trajectory of his past and his present. He went to work for Tiny Toons before getting the job working on the Batman animated series. His luck with women followed a predictable pattern of falling for women who had no interest in him but in what he could do for their careers by who he knew or what party or event he might go to like the Emmys. But he seemed hell bent on not looking for another type of girl.

Then one night he gets attacked by two guys and mugged. He's lucky to not get killed. He makes it home but doesn't go to the hospital or see a doctor. Instead, he pops some aspirin and gets drunk and takes a hot bath--the worst thing he could have done. The next day his sister comes over and seeing him, makes him go to the doctor who takes him to the hospital where he is to have facial surgery his face is that badly damaged and broken.

All the while this is going on characters from the Batman comics show up in his head to talk to him. He wants to know why Batman wasn't there to save him from the attack and Batman tells him that he could have seen the clues that there was trouble ahead and avoided it by crossing the street but that he didn't. The Joker is trying to convince him to join his side of anarchy and just let everything go, which he begins to do. He stops going into work and begins to drink heavily.

His boss won't give up on him even though the deadline for the Batman movie Mask of the Phantasm is looming he is still holding his scene for him. But Paul is not feeling very friendly toward Batman right now. Not that he's cozying up to the Joker either. He wants them all to leave him alone. This comic is brutal in its honesty at how a man loses his way and finds redemption through the very comic characters he has loved and drawn for years.

The drawing is soft and airy and fits the person the story is about which is Paul himself. The colors are bright when they need to be, a soothing green when he talks to his therapist, but a dark blue during the darkest times of his life. This comic is a true find. ( )
  nicolewbrown | Mar 3, 2017 |
Very enjoyable, about how comic book characters express and represent the various challenges Paul Dini experienced while physically and mentally overcoming a mugging. ( )
  brakketh | Aug 7, 2016 |
Paul Dini is best known for working on "Batman: The Animated Series" and "Tiny Toon Adventures" for Warner Bros. for writing comics, and most notably, co-creating Harley Quinn with Bruce Timm. In the early-'90s, he was living his dream, writing the characters he'd loved as a kid, especially Batman, and financially secure enough to buy the toys and collectibles he desired. But his life was hollow, until the night he got mugged, surviving a vicious beating. In this graphic novel, wonderfully illustrated by Eduardo Risso, Dini recounts that event and what happened after, but also puts it in context of his childhood when he felt invisible except for when he could retreat into his imagination.

Dini's way to deal with the trauma of the attack was to retreat. He knew he had to make changes in his life -- the lack of anyone waiting for him when he staggered home made that clear -- but his feelings of helplessness, anxiety, and powerlessness stand in his way. It's up to the Bat villains and Batman, himself, who are there with him, to give him the push he needs. Risso's art varies, swinging from cartoonish to realism to suit the scene as Dini explores the dark places in his soul and ultimately, hopefulness for the future. A lot is packed into the 120 plus pages; it's not often we get to see inside the mind of a creative person, let alone one who suffered what Dini has. I highly recommend this. ( )
  ShellyS | Jul 26, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Paul Diniprimary authorall editionscalculated
Risso, EduardoIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Klein, ToddLetterersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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So... I got beat up.
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In the 1990s, legendary writer Paul Dini had a flourishing career writing the hugely popular Batman: The Animated Series and Tiny Toon Adventures. Walking home one evening, he was jumped and viciously beaten within an inch of his life. His recovery process was arduous, hampered by the imagined antics of the villains he was writing for television including the Joker, Harley Quinn and the Penguin. But despite how bleak his circumstances were, or perhaps because of it, Dini also always imagined the Batman at his side, chivvying him along during his darkest moments. This is a Batman story like no other?the harrowing and eloquent autobiographical tale of writer Paul Dini?s courageous struggle to overcome a desperate situation.… (more)

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