At that time, there were some great runs on everyone’s favourite superhero and his monthly comic book titles such as Batman, Detective Comics, and the newly released, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight.
In fact, two specific runs stand out: one by an acclaimed writer (who happened to be aided by an acclaimed artist) and one by an adored artist who brought a sense of visual storytelling to monthly Batman stories that hadn’t been seen before.
If you didn’t get a chance to experience Batman at that time (or if you’d like to re-experience those stories in a new format), follow ne after the jump for the lowdown on some high-flying, but dark, heroics!
Batman: Gothic Deluxe Edition
Written by: Grant Morrison
Illustrated by: Klaus Janson
Published by: DC Comics
The monthly series, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight, premiered out of the success of the first Tim Burton Batman film as well as the mid 80’s Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and his four-issue Batman: Year One series (within the pages of the monthly Batman comic book).
Everybody wanted more Batman – and they all wanted it dark, hard-hitting and literary. That meant a new series, in an upscale format, containing tales by the industry’s crème de la crème, which could be easily compiled as a sort of graphic novel at a later date.
The five issue Gothic series, originally published in Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight issues 6-10, fit the bill. This was hot writer Grant Morrison’s second take on the character, after his celebrated Batman: Arkham Asylum graphic novel. Here, along with famed artist Klaus Janson (inker on Batman: The Dark Knight Returns), Morrison penned a tale from Batman’s early days – that delved even further into Bruce Wayne’s childhood. A villain known as Mr. Whisper is killing off mob bosses, you see, and he has a dastardly link to child murders when Wayne was young.
It’s a heavy, dark, detective story – a perfect Batman story – and today it finally gets the deluxe hardcover collection treatment it deserves!
Written by: Alan Grant, John Wagner, Various
Illustrated by: Norm Breyfogle
Published by: DC Comics
Not to be confused with the title of the monthly series listed above, Legends of the Dark Knight: Norm Breyfogle is a hardcover compilation tribute to an exceptional artist who penciled the pages of the monthly Detective Comics for a number of years in the 1980’s.
Breyfogle’s angular, kinetic, and sometimes abstract artwork, was a revelation for monthly comics. Where most superhero books were drawn in a much more realistic manner, Breyfogle’s style ensured that their was constant action on the pages of the Dark Knight Detective’s longest-running title. There was heightened emotion here – and plenty of dark dread, as befits a Batman comic book.
No one – and I mean no one – drew a cooler looking Batmobile than Norm Breyfogle’s sleek and thunderous Batmobile!
Together with a host of great writers like Alan Grant and John Wagner, Breyfogle’s run on Detective Comics is a much-admired tenure. Here are dark detective stories starring some of the wildest villains in any rogues gallery including: Clayface, the Ventriloquist and Scarface! It’s absolutely crazy fun and the stories are finally packaged together, as a tribute to Breyfogle, in a hardcover book.
Make the run to your local comic book shop today and pick up the Batman: Gothic Deluxe Edition and the Legends of the Dark Knight: Norm Breyfogle hardcover.
It’s some of the best Batman you’ll ever read!