Thursday, August 6, 2015

Due respect

So, Wonder Wife and I needed to mail in some primary election ballots the other day. Ever since Wonder Wife wound down her in-home business, things like stamps aren't as readily accessible as they once were. After a little digging, we found a leftover sheet of Batman Forever Stamps - as in Forever Stamps honoring Batman, not stamps honoring the movie.

Of the 20 stamps on the sheet, 16 had been regular rectangle stamps with images of Batman, but the only two that were left were from the four circular Bat-signal stamps. I'm not sure I ever used a circular postage stamp before, and for a second Wonder Wife thought they were just decorative stickers, until we looked closely at them and she remembered using the other two.

After using the last stamps on the sheet, I took a look at the back:

So, is Jim Lee's version to go-to marketing image for Batman now? I remember when just about everything from stickers to pajamas had a Dick Giordano drawing. I guess Lee does do a good job of presenting a Batman recognizable to older fans but still in line with the more current, armor-y version.

Besides the image, the back has a bunch of text. In describing the images on the stamps, the text mentions how the depictions move through the Golden, Silver, Bronze, and Modern Ages, but it really only talks about Batman's origin in the thirties. There's no specific mention of the TV show or any of the various cartoons or any of the movies - it takes three paragraphs to move from Action #1 in 1938 to Detective #27 in 1939.

And the most impressive thing about this obscure little text is its matter-of-fact recognition of the contribution of Bill Finger:

Wow - has this battle actually been won? It was heartening to see Finger get the recognition that he so richly deserves, even in such an ephemeral genre as the postage stamp sheet.

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