Monday, February 21, 2011

Bring on the Back-Ups: "Case of the Dead-On Target!" by Frank Robbins

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Here's a cool tale you may have forgotten featuring minor Batman Family member Jason Bard. "Case of the Dead-On Target!" from Detective Comics #435 (March 1973) is probably Ol' Groove's favorite Bard featurette 'cause it's not only written by co-creator Frank Robbins but also drawn by Robbins in that funky modernized Golden Age style that remains controversial to this day. Check it out!


  1. Oh this is the coolest thing. I fell in love with Robbins work on Invaders and Human Fly, never saw this but for the first time in a long tie I want to hunt down an old comic and hold this in my hands. Thanks so much.

  2. God, I love this site.

    You know, when I was a boy in the 70s, I was obsessed with the Shadow. New York's WRVR ran rebroadcasts of the old shows, DC put out the comic, his adventures returned in paperback.

    I remember hating the Robbins take on the Shadow at that time -- but now, as an (old!) adult, I find myself liking it a great deal. Now when going through old comics bins, I find myself looking for Robbins' work! Go figure.

  3. I'm constantly amazed to read how people hated Jack Kirby's work when they were kids, but then later saw the light. It always makes me think of Frank Robbins. Just the other day, on another blog, I read some disparaging remarks about Robbins' run (as artist!) on Batman, and it really made me sad. I know we can't all think the same way, but I wish, just once, that the haters could see in Robbins' work what I see. Something that makes you feel that good has GOT to be of some worth! Viva Frank Robbins!

  4. There are no cooler artists than Frank Robbins and his disciple, Gerry Talaoc!

    Love these guys' art! I've written at length about both of them for BACK ISSUE magazine ( --- see BACK ISSUE #20 for my extensive piece on the Human Fly series).


    I knee-deep in UNKNOWN SOLDIERS right now because Talaoc is indeed another twist on the quasi-cartoony Robbins style.

  5. Robbins RAWKS! The only thing "controversial" about Frank Robbins is how fantastically powerful and visceral his artwork is. Love his work on The Shadow, Cap, Invaders and Ghost Rider.

    His comic work was much more breakneck-powerful than his own Johnny Hazard comic strip. I guess he felt he could cut loose in comics, rather than on the more conservative newspaper pages. THANKS for posting this story :)

    If anyone can direct me to a list of the Robbins-drawn Batman comics, I would love to see that!

  6. I was buying Batman and Detective at the time, and in the space of three stories my attitude towards Robbins' art went from "Wha...??" to "Hmmmm...maybe" to absolutely loving it.

    There really should be a book collecting Robbins' Batman stories (as writer and as artist), and his Johnny Hazard strip is right up there on the list of old strips that should be reprinted.

    David Simpson

  7. I love this Frank Robbins story, particularly how his storytelling gives a sense of weightlessness to the aerial scenes! Robbins always packed his stories with details and drama: a great artist, indeed!



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Special thanks to Mike's Amazing World of Comics and Grand Comics Database for being such fantastic resources for covers, dates, creator info, etc. Thou art treasures true!

Note to "The Man": All images are presumed copyright by the respective copyright holders and are presented here as fair use under applicable laws, man! If you hold the copyright to a work I've posted and would like me to remove it, just drop me an e-mail and it's gone, baby, gone.

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