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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Classic Batman Story from the 1970s that is Often overlooked



Batman Murder Mystery Is an Often Overlooked Classic.


This is the first of a series of posts about classic DC Stories that deserve more exposure.

It was the 1970s.  Dectective Comics had just come off the end of the wildly popular "Manhunter" backup series (by Archie Goodwin and Walt Siminson)/

They must have thought they had to have the next good story arc. So they turned to Writer Len Wein and Artist Jim Aparo (who was later replaced by Artist Ernie Chan and Inker Frank McLaughlin).

The unofficial title was "Batman, Batmurder"  It ran from Detective Comics issues 444 to 448 in 1975.

Synposis:  Batman is framed for the murder of Talia and Ra's Al Ghul and must prove his innocence.

The villians: Talia and Ra's Al Ghul. The League of Assasins,  and Sterling Silversmith.

Guest Star:  The Creeper

Why it is a good story: 
1.  It is a murder mystery that has twist and turns that make you want to pick up the next issue of the comic.
2. It is Batman as a detective.
3. Batman having to clear his name at the same time he has to solve the crime.
4. The Creeper.
5.  Ra's Al Ghul and his Daughter.
6. Len Wein and Jim Aparo.

Why it has probably been over looked:

1. Detective Comics was Bi-Monthly during the whole story.  You practcally had to re-read the previous issue to catch up with the pieces of the puzzle.
2.  The artists change part way through the story.  Don't get me wrong, I love Ernie Chan's art, but changing artists gives the story a different feel.
3. Jim Aparo leaving the story made it less special.  Jim Aparo didn't draw a lot of stories. Jim mostly drew Brave and the Bold and Adventure Comics. It was rare to see his work outside of those titles. That was why it made this arc that much more special.

To Sum it up, It was a good story but it had it's faults.

If you are interested in these issues check out this links 
http://dc.wikia.com/wiki/Detective_Comics_Vol_1_445

"Bat-Murderer!"

"Break-In At The Big House"

"Slaughter In Silver"

"Enter: The Creeper"

"Bedlam Beneath the Big Top”

A Digest collecting the whole story was The Best of DC comics #9, 1981
information about it is on the following link

I tried to find it there was a digital copy of the story, but haven't found one so far.

So enjoy what I have here, and I will let you know soon how to obtain this story in a future blog.

Go forth and Do well

Shane