I was not expecting much when I picked up Batman: Gotham Adventures; just a momentary diversion with perhaps a snatch or two of Gotham's Greatest Superhero at his best. How wrong I was. The book is excellent all-around. The graphic novel contains the first six issues of the comic book by the same title, originally published in 1998.
Ty Templeton does an incredibly sensitive job writing fresh, exciting stories that genuinely pull on your heartstrings as well as deliver plenty of action. Penciller/Inker/Colorist team of Rich Burchett, Terry Beatty, and Lee Loughridge evoke the old animated series very well. Gotham is big and mysterious, and the characterizations of Batman, Robin, Batgirl, Nightwing, and the gallery of rouges are skillfully executed.
"With a Price on His Head!" - Joker (no Harley in this issue, sorry Quinn fans) kills a media magnate's son over a trifle. The father issues a reward for anyone who will kill the Joker. Now all of Gotham is armed to the teeth and hunting the clown prince of crime. Batman is placed in the position of having to protect his worst enemy.
"Lucky Day" - Two Face is seeking revenge against his father, who has just won it big on a game show.
"Just Another Day" - A boy with almost pathological delusions of being Batman's friend and helper is put in the position to help his idol. Bonus for Gray Ghost fans.
"Claws" - This story really tugs at your heartstrings. Selina Kyle explains why her heart broke twice in one night.
"Polar Opposites" - Great Mr. Freeze title. Grant Walker, whom Freeze froze in an iceberg, comes back to seek revenge.
"Last Chance" - Mystical twist. A trapeze artist working with Dick is shot mid-air. But why? Only the dead man's spirit can lead the Bat Team to the truth.