Wednesday, October 2, 2013

"Batman: Brave and Bold" script #1: Batman and Wonder Girl

In 2009, I finally got the chance to write for DC Comics; editor Mike Siglain commissioned four scripts for the comic based on the whimsical animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold

I had a blast, using mostly heroes who had not appeared with Batman either on the show or in the comic the show was based on. I loved the way the series mixed and matched, often pitting Batman and a co-star against a villain who was not associated with either of them.

I got paid. I got excited.

Then the title got canceled. 

Since it is now unlikely that these stories will be published, I will share them here. All characters, of course, are copyright DC Comics. First up: Batman and Wonder Girl.

“The Brave and the Cold!”


Page 1, panel 1

On a runway on Paradise Island, Batman leaps from the parked Batplane to the one parked next to it, the Invisible Jet.


Page 1, panel 2

Wonder Girl sits inside the Invisible Jet—in the driver’s seat. Batman takes the seat next to her.

Wonder Girl
I’ve fought gods. I think I’m ready to learn to fly a plane.

Not until you fasten your seatbelt.

Page 1, panel 3

Wonder Girl has a huffy expression.

Wonder Girl
Did you hear the part about me fighting gods? Superman doesn’t need a seatbelt.

Superman doesn’t need an airplane.

Page 1, panel 4

Wonder Girl even huffier, but fastening.

Wonder Girl
Neither do I.

You do when you need to transport others.

Wonder Girl
Yes, dad. I wish Wonder Woman was teaching me.

Page 1, panel 5

Wonder Girl has that expression of someone repeating someone else’s (annoying) words.

You know she’s taking care of a threat off-world. And I know she explained to you why I’m doing this.

Wonder Girl
“Batman has extensive experience both flying planes and handling teenagers. He’s the best man for the job.”

Page 1, panel 6

Both Batman and Wonder Girl look peeved.

Wonder Girl
I still wish Wonder Woman was teaching me.

Me too.


Page 2, panel 1


So those are the basics. Now try to take off.

Page 2, panel 2

Wonder Girl opening the door and stepping out.

I meant in the plane.

Wonder Girl
I know what you meant. I’m just getting even more bored than I already am, if that’s possible.

Page 2, panel 3

Robin says taking off is the most fun part.

Wonder Girl
Wait, Robin can already fly?

Page 2, panel 4

He’s been flying for more than a year. Batplane and Batcopter.

Wonder Girl
But he’s like two months younger than me!

Page 2, panel 5

Wonder Girl, shown in close up, now looks determined.

Wonder Girl
Let’s rock this jet.

Page 2, panel 6

The Invisible Jet speeds off down the runway.


Page 3, panel 1

The Invisible Jet veers into a ditch.


Wonder Girl

Page 3, panel 2

The Invisible Jet has veered into a dense pocket of trees.


You see this invisible plane but not that visible forest?

Page 3, panel 3

The Invisible Jet is wedged up to the wings between two large Greek pillars.


Wonder Girl

Page 3, panel 4

The Invisible Jet’s nose is tipped into the ocean.


Wonder Girl

Page 3, panel 5

The Invisible Jet is upside down.


Now this is a first.

Page 3, panel 6

The Invisible Jet takes off successfully (shown from its exterior and only 10-20 feet in the air).

Wonder Girl


Page 4, panel 1

A large blast of ice shoots up and freezes the Invisible Jet in mid-air (but not much higher than shown in previous panel).


Page 4, panel 2

Batman and Wonder Girl look down to see that Killer Frost has anchored the jet to the ground with a huge ice column.

Wonder Girl
Killer Frost!

Page 4, panel 3

Wonder Girl is flying out of the plane toward Killer Frost.

Wonder Girl
(to Batman)
Too bad men can’t step foot on Paradise Island—not that I need your help.

Page 4, panel 4

Wonder Girl lands on the runway near Killer Frost.

Wonder Girl
People come to the tropics to avoid the cold, KF—so you’ll be leaving.

Page 4, panel 5

Killer Frost
Learning to fly the Invisible Jet and making bad quips—I must be interrupting Superhero 101. Well, “WG,” class is canceled because of icy conditions!

Page 4, panel 6

Killer Frost blasts ice at Wonder Girl, who is throwing up her bracelets in defense.


Wonder Girl
And that’s a good quip?


Page 5, panel 1

Killer Frost’s ice has frozen Wonder Girl’s bracelets together.

Killer Frost (balloon 1)
A shame that one of the few abilities the all-powerful Wonder Girl lacks is heat vision.

Killer Frost (balloon 2)
By the way, what good is an Invisible Jet when the people inside aren’t?

Page 5, panel 2

Killer Frost raises her hands to deliver another ice blast to Wonder Girl.

Batman (off-panel, from above)
The people inside aren’t the type to hide from criminals like you, Frost.

Page 5, panel 3

Killer Frost’s hands are knocked sideways by a Batarang thrown by Batman standing atop the Invisible Jet, sending her blast away from Wonder Girl.


Killer Frost
Hey! That was cold!

Page 5, panel 4

Killer Frost rides one of her signature ice arcs up to the Invisible Jet as Batman slips inside it.


Killer Frost
And I’m only trying to play ice.

Page 5, panel 5

Batman and Killer Frost stand at opposite ends inside the Invisible Jet.

What do you want, Frost?

Killer Frost
For starters, I’m happy with this—the bat trapped like a rat.


Page 6, panel 1

Targeting Batman, Killer Frost begins to fill the Invisible Jet solid with ice.


Page 6, panel 2

The ice is closing in on Batman, who is heating a Bat-grapple with a Bat-mini-blowtorch.

Page 6, panel 3

He fires the heated grapple into the approaching ice.


Page 6, panel 4

The grapple breaks through the other end and clamps onto Killer Frost.

Killer Frost

Page 6, panel 5

Batman tugs the grapple rope.

Page 6, panel 6

Killer Frost is yanked butt first into the hole carved out by the grapple, getting wedged in.

Killer Frost


Page 7, panel 1

Batman scrambles onto a wing of the Invisible Jet. The angle is bird’s-eye so that we can see Wonder Girl below, banging her ice “handcuffs” on a rock or other hard surface.

Wonder Girl
(quietly because she’s at a distance)
This stuff is freakishly strong

Page 7, panel 2

Killer Frost emerges on the wing as well, arms raised to blast.

Killer Frost
Ice try, Batman, but I’m on a deadline and can’t risk any delays. So let’s freeze that clever brain of yours.

Page 7, panel 3

As Killer Frost fires, Batman does a cartwheel, with knees bent so that his feet are now at the level his head was when standing. His feet are apart. The ice is NOT hitting him yet.


Page 7, panel 4

Building on his momentum, Batman fires his grapple again (hooking around the wing of the Invisible Jet) so he can swing down to Wonder Girl. His feet should NOT be visible.

Page 7, panel 5

Batman lands in front of Wonder Girl, who looks aghast (and is still ice-cuffed). His feet should still NOT be visible.


Wonder Girl
Batman—no! You know men aren’t allowed to touch the ground on Paradise Island!

Page 7, panel 6

It is now revealed that Batman’s feet are frozen into jagged ice boots with thick, perhaps spiky soles.

I do. And I’m not.


Page 8, panel 1

Batman is using the same blowtorch to melt the ice cuffs. Wonder Girl looks put in her place.

Not that you need my help…

Page 8, panel 2

Wonder Girl is freed and her face reads “payback.” Perhaps her fists do, too.

Wonder Girl
Where is she?

Page 8, panel 3

Batman gesturing to a trail of ice puddles.

Page 8, panel 4

As Batman (still in ice boots) and Wonder Girl follow the trail, the ground shakes.

Wonder Girl

Page 8, panel 5

Batman and Wonder Girl reach the end of the puddle trail, which is a gaping hole in the ground—gaping and smoking.


Wonder Girl
I never knew Paradise Island sat on a volcano! Or did Killer Frost create it?

Page 8, panel 6

Batman and Wonder Girl lowering into the crevice, he on his grapple, she on her lasso.

Given the nature of her power, I doubt it. But it’s clearly the reason she’s here.


Page 9, panel 1

Landing on the rocky side of a lava lake, Batman and Wonder Girl see Killer Frost on a large chunk of hardened lava jutting from the lake. Batman’s boots are melting.

(gesturing to his melting boots, to Wonder Girl)
I assume it’s okay for a man to touch the ground under Paradise Island?

Page 9, panel 2

Wonder Girl flies toward Killer Frost.

Wonder Girl
I’ll check on that later. Now it’s time to cream some ice!

Page 9, panel 3

Wonder Girl punches Killer Frost.

Wonder Girl
What’s this about, KF?

Page 9, panel 4

As it appears Killer Frost is about to issue a tremendous ice blast, Wonder Girl snares her tightly with her lasso. Killer Frost looks alarmed.

Killer Frost
If you want to live long enough to hear the answer, release m—

Page 9, panel 5

The volcano rumbles. Startled, Wonder Girl loosens her grip of the lasso and Killer Frost slips out.


Killer Frost
No! It’s too soon! I’m not read—

Page 9, panel 6

Frost—shield now!


Page 10, panel 1

The volcano erupts and Killer Frost simultaneously creates a huge ice dome underneath the three, protecting them and containing the blast.


Page 10, panel 2

The three are atop the thick ice dome (which is high enough that it projects above ground). The dome is steaming from the heat below. Killer Frost has collapsed from exertion. Wonder Girl is looking around in relieved amazement.

Killer Frost
(to Wonder Girl)
Impulsive fool…you almost got me killed. And yourselves as well, not that that matters.

Page 10, panel 3

Wonder Girl is kneeling in a traditional honor pose before Killer Frost.

Wonder Girl
You saved Paradise Island, Frost. On behalf of all of my Amazon sisters…I thank you.

Page 10, panel 4

Wonder Girl is standing.

That was the most heroic thing you’ve done today, Wonder Girl. Being a hero is not always about throwing the strongest punch.

Wonder Girl
Well, I’m not about to make a habit of thanking supervillains. Most of my heroics will still be of the butt-kicking variety.

Killer Frost
And I’m not about to melt from your thanks. You ruined my plan to turn your precious island into my own personal tropical ice fortressand wipe out all you bothersome Amazons at the same time.

Page 10, panel 5

The three are descending the ice shield, Batman with Killer Frost in Bat-cuffs.

Killer Frost (balloon 1)
I just wish I could’ve done it without needing a volcano to supply a massive amount of raw material for me to freeze. I’ve been waiting for it to erupt for weeks.

Killer Frost (balloon 2)
And speaking of which, Wonder Girl, you could stand to learn some patience yourself.

Page 10, panel 6

Wonder Girl fumes.

I’m not about to make a habit of agreeing with supervillains, but Killer Frost does have a point…


J. L. Bell said...

Which Wonder Girl were you imagining?

Marc Tyler Nobleman said...

Cassie Sandsmark.

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