Detective Comics Issue #1000

It has been a long time in coming, about 80 years to give you an idea. That is no coincidence either. This year marks the 80th birthday of arguably the second most famous super hero in the world; Batman. While Action Comics got its start in 1938 and featured everybody’s favorite Kryptonian, it actually arrived more than a year after the debut issue of Detective Comics. However, that’s not to say Batman is older than Superman as far as publications go.  On the contrary, the Caped Crusader arrived in 1939, courtesy of writer Bill Finger and artist Bob Kane.  Fast-forward eight decades and it’s time to honor one of the greatest comic book characters around.

Throughout the course of Detective Comics, it featured an array of stories and characters, not necessarily focusing on Batman himself.  Though that is where Bruce Wayne was born, the series was not based around him or his crime-fighting alter ego.  When DC Comics launched its New 52 line in 2011 is when the series became better known as Batman Detective Comics.

The series retained the numbering sequence for its issues, so when you have a series that started in 1937 that’s still around today, reaching issue #1000 was a not just a likely scenario, it was a reality.  Whereas Action Comics hit the milestone in 2018, it is now time for Detective Comics to bask in the glory of four figures.  What does a publisher do for such an event?  They make it a celebration that only a Dark Knight is worthy of.

For starters, the hefty issue carries a price of $9.99, but for good reason.  This isn’t your standard single issue comic book.  Issue #1000 is practically the size of a graphic novel.  Next on the list of noteworthy items are the multitude of covers available for the book.  There is a cover relevant for the art style of every decade from the 1930’s to today, courtesy of artists like Bruce Timm, Jim Steranko, Frank Miller and Greg Capullo, just to name a few.  Then there are covers exclusive to various comic book shops around the U.S. as well as other commissioned covers that are already fetching more than $100 on eBay.

The meat of the issue, of course, lies within its pages.  Featuring ten stories and a closing few pages that are almost poetic, this book is a complete celebration of Batman from start to finish.  My favorite story of the bunch was easily ‘Manufactured for Use’ written by Kevin Smith (yup, the Silent Bob Kevin Smith) with art by Jim Lee.  Another standout in the issue is ‘I Know’, with Alex Maleev responsible for the artwork while Brian Michael Bendis penned the story.  To round out a top 3, ‘The Legend of Knute Brody’ closed with a humorous nod with Paul Dini writing, Dustin Nguyen on pencils and John Kalisz on colors.

The issue closes with one very intriguing surprise, immediately causing me to reserve issue #1001 just to see where things lead us next.  While some of the stories are better than others in #1000, DC did an absolutely exceptional job assembling an array of writers and artists whose styles can differ so much, but blend so eloquently in this book.  If there is anything a consumer should be on the fence about with this issue, it should be which cover to get.  The issue itself is one to relish and revisit.  Well done, DC.  Well done.

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