In the satirical vein of A Die Hard Christmas…
Is Batman Returns a Christmas movie, or not? According to Insight Editions, it most definitely is: The publisher in 2022 is planning Batman Returns: One Dark Christmas Eve: The Illustrated Holiday Classic, by writer Ivan Cohen and illustrator J.J. Harrison.
The book is a satire of both the flick and kids’ Christmas books, and follows on the success of 2017’s A Die Hard Christmas, which turned the bombastic actioner — subject of its own endless debate about whether it’s a Christmas movie — into a hilariously bloody picture book.
The cover of the 32-page Batman Returns hardcover hasn’t been released yet, but here’s the official description from an Amazon listing:
Batman Returns: One Dark Christmas Eve: The Illustrated Holiday Classic
Batman returns to save both his hometown and the holiday season in this adult storybook adaptation of Tim Burton’s Super Hero classic.
Just as three wise men once conspired to honor a baby, three deranged villains in Gotham City have hatched a clever plan of their own. But rather than traveling to Bethlehem and offering gifts, these narcissistic ne’er-do-wells are going to seize control of Gotham City’s government and power supply instead. Once again, the Dark Knight Detective is the city’s only hope for salvation—but defeating the combined forces of the Penguin, Catwoman, and unfettered capitalism is going to take a Christmas miracle! (And possibly a Bat-Plane.)
Celebrate the 30th anniversary of Batman Returns with this tongue-in-cheek retelling of Tim Burton’s delightfully disturbing film. Reimagined into catchy verse and beautiful illustrations, this cautionary tale of identity, ambition, and the importance of work/life balance is guaranteed to get you into the Christmas spirit!
STUNNING ILLUSTRATIONS: This one-of-a-kind tale features more than 30 colorful pieces of original artwork by renowned illustrator JJ Harrison.
FAN FAVORITE CHARACTERS: The Dark Knight goes up against iconic villains like The Penguin and Catwoman in this action-packed Gotham City adventure.
PERFECT GIFT FOR BATMAN FANS: This tongue-in-cheek homage to Tim Burton’s classic is the perfect gift for the Batman fans in your life.
A NEW HOLIDAY TRADITION: Written in verse and meant to be read aloud, Batman Returns: One Dark Christmas Eve is a wonderful way to create a fun new Christmas tradition.
A few thoughts:
— A Die Hard Christmas was so successful, it spawned a Christmas ornament and a special gift set including a Bruce Willis/John McClane plushie.
— The 32-page Batman Returns book lists for $18.99 and is due in September 2022. It’s already available for pre-order.
— Ivan Cohen is known to DC readers for all-ages series like The Batman & Scooby-Doo Mysteries, which is one of my fave mags. J.J. Harrison — who illustrated A Die Hard Christmas — is popular for his wonderfully subversive cartooning. Just check out a couple of pages from A Die Hard Christmas — as well as a print on his website titled Batman: The Brave and the Bloody (unrelated to the Batman Returns book):
Shall we already declare this the best Batman book of 2022?
— 13 THINGS I Still Love About BATMAN ’89 (Mostly). Click here.
— The TOP 13 Wonderful BATMAN ’89 Toys — RANKED. Click here.