Legends of the Batman, hosts Michael Kaiser and Michael Bradley review and discuss one comic book story from the Golden Age era of Batman. This approach allows the hosts to go into depth in their coverage of the story, as well as keeping the episodes to about an hour each.
The most recent episode, episode #28, breaks from this format. For the second time, the Michaels did a year-in-review special, discussing all of the Caped Crusader’s comic book appearances during 1940. In episode #10, they did the same thing for 1939, the year of Batman’s debut. This is a nice change-of-pace episode, allowing the hosts to step back and take a bigger picture view of the character. A nice touch is that they also include world events in this year-in-review episode.
As the hosts point out, 1940 was an important year for Batman, who appeared in 26 stories in 17 separate comics book issues. This year featured the introduction of Batman’s solo comic, the first appearance of Robin, and stories that featured both Catwoman and Joker. By this point in the character’s history, the design for the Batmobile had not been standardized, but a proto-Batplane had appeared. Even Commissioner Gordon showed up a few times.
The hosts talked about the favorite and least favorites of the year, in categories such as cover art, story, and villain. Sometimes they agreed, and often their did not.
There are lot of comic book podcasts, and many of them are very good. But there are not enough that cover the Golden Age era, and among those, Legends of the Batman is one of the best.