Thursday, December 04, 2008

Single Issue Hall of Fame: Detective Comics #500

This may seem like an obvious choice, but I'll bet that many of you don't have this book in your collection. If that's the case - you're crazy! Detective Comics #500 is a giant sized piece of comic book perfection. I was an absolute Batman nut as a kid (still am) and this book just had so much to give. To start off, the wraparound cover is just soooo great. There is a wonderful history of cool covers for various Batman anniversaries, and this is no exception. It's great seeing all of the creators signatures right there on the cover. The main story here is 'To Kill a Legend' by Alan Brennert and Dick Giordano. It's amazing how few stories Brennert wrote, and how many have become classics. Giordano's artwork reminds you just how talented an artist he can be. This one has been reprinted a million times, but it's nice to see it in its original home.

Most of all, this book is a real treat for anyone feeling nostalgic. You've got a pulpy text story from Walter Gibson ("The Shadow"), a Wein/Aparo Slam Bradley story incorporating many nearly forgotten detectives, Joe Kubert back on Hawkman, Infantino drawing a decent Batman/Deadman team-up by Cary Bates and the always great Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez drawing a very fun detective tale by Mike Barr starring Elongated Man. This must have taken a lot of planning and it certainly shows. The real highlight for me, however, is the very simple yet very dramatic two-pager by Len Wein and Walter Simonson. 'Once Upon a Time' sums up everything that I love about Batman in a mere 12 panels - it's a sight to behold. All in all, this is just a phenomenal comic.

5 comments:

Pj Perez said...

Yeah, I totally need this issue.

Scott M said...

You won't be disappointed. It's still easy to find and pretty cheap.

Happy Hunting!

Thelonious_Nick said...

I think Mike Sterling has also saluted this issue. I'm definitely adding it to my Want List!

Frank said...

Also loved this one. The variety of stories was fantastic, as was the quality of the art. The Slam Bradley story was the first appearance for many of those charcaters in 20-plus years. Signifies many of the things fans love about Batman and of DC Comics in general.

Scott M said...

That Slam story does come across as a love letter to the DCU.