As a whole throughout the history of comics if you told me I could only have one comic book to read I would tell you Detective.
There are lots of other great comics: Star Wars Legacy, Ultimate Spiderman, Nightwing, The Outsiders, G.I. Joe and The Crow.
But for 70 years Detective has been putting out a great story, I have a collection of Detective issues dating back into the 50s & 60s, though my favorite fall in the late 70s & early 80s. Greg Rucka had an amazing run at the millennium that I would put up against any other run, in fact most of my favorite Comic talents have all had amazing runs in Detective and Batman.
Loeb, Rucka, Dixon, Moenech, Morrison, Sale, Lee and of course the immortal Frank Miller who penned the greatest era.
In short, while at times others may peak higher, no title character has had the consistency that Batman has held across its property… and it even carries its greatness into Chris Nolan’s theatrical masterpieces.
But this isn’t about the past, or the legacy of greatness, this is about what they put out for their flagship issue of the Knight.
Continuing with greatness it was awesome.
The Joker came out dark, evil and homicidal the only way he should be portrayed. The story has Batman fairly young because the PD still hates him and it seems that the Bat and Clown has a fairly budding relationship.
The plus of Detective is it has always focused more on the darker story then Batman Comics and by the closing panel Tony Daniel is cooking up noir with a side of ingenuity. The Joker plans an apprehension by Batman to be placed in Arkham for a special treat. And we will soon welcome the Doll Maker.
DC really knocked it out of the park with Daniels as writer and artist, but can he handle a schedule of duel duties and hit deadlines? If so that name can easily be part of the list I mentioned earlier if this book continues to deliver at such a high level of beauty.
If I could make one gripe it was that DC did not return the book to its root of having a sub-story. The past inclusion of a short that slowly progressed over a few issues was always a treat, shame they decided to leave it in the can for now. Consider this my plea… pretty please with sugar on top DC.
The old say, “we will always have Paris” has absolutely no business in the same discussion as Batman’s reboot. If I was asked what book I would suggest to the new or average buyer I would point them toward Detective. While I think Nightwing had the strongest and most exciting debut, that is not the book of a casual reader; it should be but truth is it is not. If you can’t afford to drop the $2.99 then you should not be on the internet reading this.
Enjoy and happy reading.
NEXT (tonight): Batman Comics