December 23rd, 2010

Two-Face... FOREVER!!!

"The Adventures of Copernicus Dent and His Best Girl and Plucky Assistant R'Nee!" by... Harvey Dent?

There are no Christmas-themed Two-Face stories.

The closest we have is pre-scarred Harvey getting beaten up by the Joker in the Christmas issue of The Long Halloween. Harvey never has a happy holiday. There's not even a one-panel cameo of him wearing a Santa hat, one probably put there by the Joker, just to piss him off.

So instead, I'm going to take this opportunity to post one of the few light, fluffy, fun, and outright cracky Two-Face related stories of all time. In fact, it has to be the single oddest Harvey story I've ever read.

Why is it so odd, you might ask?

In Detective Comics #753, Harvey wrote and drew his own comic book. For *therapy.*

Smack-dab in the middle of Greg Rucka's run on 'Tec, right before the big Officer Down storyline, this issue was a tie-in to the theme running through all the Bat-Books: "This Issue... Batman Dies!" in which... Batman died every issue. Well, of course, not really. It basically had the villains fantasizing each issue about how they'd kill Batman. Whatever potential the theme had went mostly unfulfilled.

But it's safe to say that no one took the concept places the way Rucka did.

I met Mr. Rucka around mid 2000 at Wizard World Chicago, mainly to geek out about Two-Face with the guy, who was vocal in his love for the character (I remember when he suggested casting Chow Yun Fat for Harvey in his dream Batman movie... certainly a bold choice with potential, I'll say that!), and he told the little seventeen-year-old me that he was writing an issue for the "Batman Dies!" event which would take place from Harvey's POV... both of them. Half the page would be how Harvey sees the world, while the other half would be Two-Face's perspective.

A thrilling idea for a Two-Face fan. I'm still waiting to see that story.

The issue we actually got... well, look at that image above. Not at all what anyone was expecting, was it?

And if you think that's odd, you should read the issue itself...

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Honestly, I'm not sure why the hell he still couldn't make comics. They're so cheap to produce, especially if you're not mass-producing them, that they couldn't be putting any strain on Arkham's budget! They're just being dicks! Then again, I don't know if it's a good idea to leave pencils or pens in Harvey's hands.

Still, if it was so effective, it makes you wonder what might have happened if he was able to do a second issue. Or better yet, what if some janitor at Arkham found the issue and decided to self-publish it, or sell it on eBay? Hell, what would the real Renee have made of it? Eh, she probably would have scowled and sighed. That's pretty much what she did where Harvey was concerned.

And once again, I'm saddened by Half a Life, and very much hope that Rucka (or somebody else with as much talent and respect for the characters) can continue their story someday. And who knows, maybe we'll even see the second issue of The Adventures of Copernicus Dent and His Best Girl and Plucky Assistant R'Nee! I kinda doubt it, though.

Merry Christmas to those of you who celebrate it! No matter what you end up doing, I hope you have a better holiday season that Harvey ever will!