DC Beach Blanket Bad Guys Special #1 (DC Comics)
It's no secret that one of DC's strengths as a publisher is their diverse stable of bad guys, so the fact that they're giving them a special one-shot isn't a big surprise. What is a surprise though, is the fact that this is a special “Summer themed” one-shot. There's a lot of things you would associate the DC villains with, but Summer is definitely not one of them. But aside from that, the DC Beach Blanket Bad Guys Special is still an entertaining, if weird, reading experience.
There's a lot of creative teams involved with this book, and they all do a pretty great job of giving fun scenarios for the characters they are portraying. But the stand outs are Jeff Loveness and David Williams' “Help”, in which Lex Luthor finds himself stranded on the side of road, and Paul Dini and John Paul Leone's “Close Shave”, which has Mr. Freeze building a gigantic mech suit and toppling an ice cream man who is using his likeness to sell frozen treats. Both of these stories use the template of this special to great effect, and the Dini story is honestly worth the price of admission alone. It's both charmingly goofy and also seems like something Freeze would do.
Is it weird for this book to exist? Absolutely. But it's also a great example of what makes DC so interesting currently. Sure, they're churning out rock solid “serious” superhero tales in books like Batman, Superman, and Justice League, but they're also taking time to do fun one-off specials like this and the weird Looney Toons crossovers. Even though the serious stuff is great, it's also nice to see the publisher take the time to have a little fun every once in a while.