To put this in perspective, the first issue of DETECTIVE I owned was #279, May 1960. When I started working at DC Comics, the first issue I saw in the production department was probably #472, Sept. 1977. The first one that had a story I lettered was #483, April-May 1979, “The Curse of Crime Alley” by Denny O’Neil, Don Newton and Dan Adkins.
This 96-pager has a wide variety of material and creators, eleven stories and several pinups. I was happy to be asked to letter the story by Kevin Smith, Jim Lee and Scott Williams. It was also great to see one written by Denny O’Neil with art by Steve Epting.
There’s no attempt to tie things together, it’s an anthology, though the final story by Peter Tomasi and Doug Mahnke will continue in the next issue, so I guess that one is in continuity. Looks cool, a new Gotham Knight that seems to be an actual knight.
The opening story by Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo and Jonathan Glapion is a fun idea: Batman is led on a very long clue chase that ends at a sort of secret society for detectives. The Kevin Smith story focuses on the creation and special nature of Batman’s chest symbol. Paul Dini and Dustin Nguyen’s funny entry is about the worst henchman in Gotham. Warren Ellis and Becky Cloonan tell a tale of a violent criminal. Denny O’Neil brings us back to Crime Alley one more time. Christopher Priest and Neal Adams’ story involves Ras’ Al Ghul. Bryan Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev relate a meeting between a very old Penguin and Bruce Wayne. Geoff Johns and Kelley Jones show us a deadly birthday party. James Tynion IV, Alvaro Martinez-Bueno and Raul Fernandez have Bruce and Alfred discussing whether to take Dick Grayson into the crime-fighting life (excellent art on this), and Tom King, Tony S. Daniel and Joëlle Jones present a meeting of the entire Bat family.
Fun stuff, and I enjoyed reading it. Recommended.