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Batman: Holy Terror Paperback – 1991

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: DC; First Edition edition (1991)
  • ASIN: B002IXE29W
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 6.4 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #702,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

He is not a detective or a creature of the night.
Sir John Jameson
The story has great opening and great ending (although not so satisfactory for me anyway).
The story is well told, and remarkably sophisticated.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Koppel on June 21, 2005
Format: Comic
This is an Elseworlds tale in the tradition of Gotham By Gaslight but released before the Elseworlds name came to be.

The time is the present but one different from the one we know. Oliver Cromwell did not die when he did in our world, instead he rose from his sickbed and persisted for another decade. Because of this, the mother church is in full control of Britain and the New World colonies (and much of the world that they have conquered). Here a young Bruce Wayne has finally found peace after the death of his parents. He is about to take his vows with the church when Inquisitor Gordon reveals that Wayne's parents were rebels and were executed my the Church in a way made to look like a random crime. Now Bruce does not know what to do.

His confidence in the church has been shaken and Bruce sets out to revenge himself on those that decided to kill his parents. But his quest leads him higher and deeper as he discovers that there are people with amazing abilities that have been either enslaved by the church or imprisoned. Bruce sees that his problem is not with the Church itself but with the way some men are wielding its power. With his faith strong Wayne continues to don an old demon costume of his father's and goes out to fight the injustice of the system.

This was one of the best of the Elseworlds tales. The alternate history worked well and the parallel heroes that Bruce discovers were very well done. While Gotham By Gaslight had a couple of sequels, this one has remained alone although it is rich enough to spawn many new tales. Check it out.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Antonio on November 9, 2004
Format: Comic
This is, as far as I know, the first official Elseworlds book. The "What If" is Oliver Cromwell's survival for a decade, which ensures that the Puritan Commonwealth remains in place indefinitely in Britain and its colonies, including North America. Bruce Wayne's parents, dissidents in this harsh, totalitarian theocracy, are murdered by order of the Court of Star Chamber, a shadowy religious authority. This sets in motion the cogs and wheels that will lead to Batman's advent. Seeking answers, Batman penetrates the bowels of Gotham Cathedral and runs into a government project, run by the demented scientist Erdel, to control superhumans and turn them into government stooges. Flash, Green Lantern, Vicky Vale, Aquaman, Lori Lemaris, Clayface, Zatanna, Metamorpho and, most memorably, Superman, turn up and are either crushed by the government and turned into slaves. The story is well told, and remarkably sophisticated. The artwork is acceptable, though not brilliant.

The book is, nonetheless, full of mistakes. The Commonwealth police were never called "Inquisitors", and in fact the term would have been repugnant to them, since it would have smelled of Catholic popery. The same goes for the flagrant use of religious imagery in Bruce Wayne's gymnasium and in a Church where he is ordained. The Puritans were iconoclasts and did not accept the use of human representation in a religious context. In fact, they destroyed most of Britain's medieval imagery, which was a significant part of its culture. The religious structure, with Bishops and ordained priests, looks rather Episcopal, and would have been inconsistent with the Puritans, many of whom were Presbiterians who did not accept tbe bishopry.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By para on January 18, 2013
Format: Paperback
In a world where church and state are one, the "random" murder of two prominent citizens with ties to those in power has some lose ends swept aside. But they won't stay lost forever, and the surviving child named Bruce Wayne will have some dark choices to make when he's told the truth behind his parents deaths...

Batman: Holy Terror was the beginning of DC's Elseworlds stories. The "strange versions of familiar characters" theme had been done before, but the approach of these stand-alone stories had a fresh feel when they came out.

Of course the concept has been beaten to death since, and as a result many of the Elseworlds stories lose a fair bit reading them nowadays. Holy Terror isn't quite as good as I remember from years ago, but is still one of my favorites. It's a slowish, atmospheric tale about the world Bruce is trapped in and the creation of the Batman. There is a small cast of characters who are given at least a little development in this short tale, and a lot of great little touches, many involving the fates of our heroes in this twisted world. The art is of a very different style than most of today's comics, but I love it. The cover remains one of the most striking I've ever seen.

I like the way the unfolded, and the historical and religious inaccuracies present in the set up didn't bother me (I honestly probably missed most of them), but new readers might have a different reaction. This is not a wall to wall action epic. This is about ideals, truths, and fighting one's way towards an answer through a layered maze.

Holy Terror won't impress everyone, but it is a solid reimagining and for me remains one of the best of the Elseworlds comics.
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Format: Comic Verified Purchase
A good Elseworlds book to read about the Batman. Alan Brennert crafts a very good story, that grabs your attention.
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More About the Author

Alan Brennert is the author of the best-selling historical novels MOLOKA'I and HONOLULU, both favorites of reading groups across the country. MOLOKA'I was a 2012 "One Book, One San Diego" selection and HONOLULU was named one of the best books of 2009 by The Washington Post. He has also written contemporary novels (TIME AND CHANCE), short stories, teleplays, screenplays, and the libretto of a stage musical, WEIRD ROMANCE, with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by David Spencer. His work on the television series L.A. LAW earned him an Emmy Award in 1991, and his short story "Ma Qui" was honored with a Nebula Award in 1992.
PEOPLE Magazine says of his latest novel, PALISADES PARK: "Brennert writes his valentine to the New Jersey plaground of his youth in RAGTIME style, mixing fact and fiction. It's a memorable trip." Alan grew up in the towns of Cliffside Park, Palisades Park, and Edgewater, always living within a mile of the legendary Palisades Amusement Park, the setting for his novel. He calls it "a love letter to a cherished part of my childhood." A graduate of California State University at Long Beach and an alumnus of UCLA Film School, he currently lives in Los Angeles, California.

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