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Check out letters from those who agreed with us, and those who didn’t on Michael Keaton, Kiss and Close-Up Section

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Batmail
Thank you for your informative article on Michael Keaton (#123, June 19). It’s still hard to believe that casting him as the dark hero in the original Batman was so controversial. Those critics who had dismissed him as simply a good ”comic actor” obviously had quickly forgotten his chilling portrayal of a recovering addict in Clean and Sober only a year before. By demonstrating such versatility as well as a willingness to attempt a variety of roles, Keaton is well on his way to greater artistic achievement and (hopefully) recognition, whether he’s in or out of his batsuit.
Mark B. Bendiksen
College Station, Tex.

Maybe it’s just me, but I applaud Michael Keaton’s refusal to give negative interviews about Batman Returns. It may make disappointing copy for you, but it makes him a class act. And one other thing — when I plunk down my $7.50 to see Batman Returns, as much as I delight in the casting of Michelle Pfeiffer and Danny DeVito as high-profile villains, I’m going to see Keaton. Playing under a character is really hard to do, and if he did nothing more than deliver that killer line, ”I’m Batman,” in the entire picture, it’d be worth the price of admission to me.
Theresa G. Corigliano
Los Angeles

Kiss and Tell
Hurray! An article on the band that gets no respect from anyone — Kiss. It is to your credit that you give them exposure not as they fall, but as they seem to be ready to gain a new audience. Sure, their music is brainless, but I challenge any other band to equal Kiss’ track record. You mentioned that the Hot in the Shade album failed to go platinum, but the album did produce Kiss’ second-highest-charting single, ”Forever,” and one of the more successful concert tours of 1990. Kiss deserves to continue in spite of all who complain. Isn’t that what rock & roll is all about?
Sean Caszatt
Sharpsville, Pa.

As a teen in the late ’70s, I was a big fan of Kiss. Then I grew up. Paul Stanley, the best rock doesn’t come from the crotch; it comes from the gut, full of passion, like the blues. Guts and passion require honesty, a risky display of what really matters to you. The facade you present is posed, calculated, and hollow. Gene Simmons, you may be filthy rich, but you can’t take it with you, and there is meaning to life. Ask Kerry Livgren of Kansas, Bono of U2, Van Morrison, or Sam Phillips — passionate rockers who won’t just give you a clue, they can even give you a Name.
Rev. C. Powell Sykes
Beulaville, N.C.

‘Close’ly Watched
Kudos to EW for your excellent choices on whom to feature in your Close-Up section. Always intriguing, often hilarious, and sometimes breathtaking photos accompany a short article on a rising star, each of whom I have found to be vastly talented. Your column gives exposure to these deserving artists. I was delighted to see Marisa Tomei, Jackie Swanson, and Kathy Najimy featured in three recent issues. All are going to be hot for years to come. Thanks for recognizing true talent and sharing it with us!
Robert A. Hofmann
East Brunswick, N.J.