With a bit more positive buzz than the recent Spider-Man musical launch out of New York, the Batman Live arena show kicks off later this month in Manchester, just in time for a fancy worldwide tour as the popular DC superhero gears up to hit the big screen again one year from now. The arena show features a plethora of Batman characters, from Catwoman to The Joker, The Penguin, The Riddler, Two Face, Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy and Robin -- all of whom square off in what looks to be a colorful and lively show. Check out four minutes of it below -- featuring a pretty wicked entrance by The Joker -- courtesy of Bleeding Cool.
-- Meanwhile, on the set of The Dark Knight Rises a stuntman said to be Christian Bale's stunt double almost parachuted to his death while practicing for a scene in the movie over the weekend. Dressed in all black, the stuntman (one of five) jumped from an all-black private plane and missed his target when a gust of wind blew him off course, forcing him to crash into the roof of a holiday chalet. Amazingly the man suffered no serious injuries and was helped off the roof by locals and paramedics. No word on which scene they were rehearsing, or which characters were involved. [via The Daily Mail]
-- Those Bat-freaks looking forward to the video game release of Batman: Arkham City can scope out 12 minutes of very cool gameplay below, some of which features Catwoman and Two Face.
-- In addition to that, you can read some Batman Arkham story pitches from comedian (and fellow geek) Patton Oswalt over at Geek Tyrant. He pitched these to DC, but none of them were ever published. Here's one ...
"The Joker once again breaks out of Arkham Asylum, and Batman - along with the Justice League - tears apart Gotham to find him.
And who feels the heat the worst when the League is cracking down hard? Gotham's criminals.
And because Batman works his way up from minor street thug, higher and higher on the chain, it's the "C" list criminals who suffer first.
Barely escaping a beatdown and capture, The Cluemaster (who I'm going to make a much younger, inexperienced criminal) gathers a literal "C"-list of other, frightened criminals - Crazyquilt, Crime Doctor, Calendar Man andCopperhead - to hunt the "J".
What follows is a desperate night search through Gotham's underworld, during which our protagonist - The Cluemaster - sees firsthand the effects of crime (Calendar Man's failed, broken life; The Crime Doctor's past victims and wasted potential; Crazyquilt's petty "goals" and Copperhead's pointless savagery). It all comes to a head when they confront The Joker - who personifies every awful quality of his teammates. He stops them from killing "J" - they each have their reasons for wanting The Joker dead - and then leaves the "team". The last page shows him leaving one last clue for The Batman - the location of the loot he stole earlier that night.
Like I said, maybe a little too esoteric. But I wanted to put Batman and the other big, colorful superheroes into the world of one of those low-stakes, early 70's noirs, like The Nickel Ride or Hustle."