Why oh why is Batman: Gotham Noir not in print? Selling this would be pretty much effortless to today’s audiences as it’s written by Ed Brubaker who just so happens to be one of the hottest writers in comics right now and it sports some of the finest art ever witnessed by the amazing Sean Phillips.
This was the last of DC’s beloved Elseworld’s line, and is about as pure of a noir story as Batman has ever had. Taking place just a few years after WW2, starring a truly down and out Jim Gordon, no longer with the force and now juggling his life as a part-time private detective and a full-time drunk. When a case goes from bad to worse and his scene-stealing client is murdered, Gordon’s quest to clear his name and get to the bottom of the conspiracy behind her death runs him headlong into the shadowy figure that is the Batman.
Phillips’ take on Batman in this book is one of my favorites, he’s only ever seen as a black shadow in the night with haunting spots of pure whiteness for eyes. And while the ending is a bit clunky, Brubaker fills the book with plenty of great moments and his whole backstory for The Joker is so delightfully sadistic it’s worth the price of admission alone. While I realize this book is a mere 63 pages long, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to come up with the idea to bundle it up with Brubaker’s also out of print (and absolute best works) Scene Of The Crime mini-series. The combination of these two lost tales would really fly off the shelves.
With even used copies of Batman: Gotham Noir running for upwards of $170 and Scene Of The Crime nearly $40, this is pretty much a no-brainer to me. Who among us wouldn’t want a collection of more of Brubaker’s best lost DC treasures? Hey DC, let’s you and me give the people what they want!
Put this in print. I will sell it.