The Spirit is a tonal disaster but not without entertainment value. Plus some interesting intertextual stuff with Batman Elektra Acme etc.
Both Dark Knight Returns and Sin City also featured that shot of the soles of shoes running on a wire. Miller's signature?
(from Matt Brady): Octpopus vs Spirit like Spawn vs Batman: exhausted, unbeatable, violent men insulting each other.
Samuel Jackson opens a box that glows gold inside, just like in Pulp Fiction. Was that Marsellus Wallace's soul, btw?
Sin City. Miller is taking back the Sin City derived film aesthetic from Rodriguez (unsuccessfully, I think).
"Elektra Complex" reminds us of Miller's Elektra in a film about a dead guy with a tragic love revived against his will.
"Robin" is the computer password. Is this trying to get us to connect All Star Batman to the Spirit? I don't see it.
I definitely heard an echo of Elfman's score from Batman, a movie that would not exist without Dark Knight Returns.
[I should clarify that I thought the Spirit was pretty bad, though I have to agree with the AV Club who said it functioned as a pretty efficient babe delivery mechanism, and I did think some of the images were pretty arresting. I would give it a D overall. I am not sure what I think of the intertexts, but with my Bloomian training my ears perk up when I get near them. Still -- this is hardly Kill Bill. I think most of these are probably not important.]