Here comes another number-crunching gang. They're a tough group who all speak a lot of slang! Thank God Batman's on their case. With some praise from the Lord they grace. Including that nice chap from down the road called 'Wang'. Wait a minute! Was it 'Wang', or was it John Layman, Jason Fabok, Andy Clarke, James Tyson IV, Mikel Janin, Jason Masters, Henrik Johnsson, and the Publisher: DC Comics, in March, 2013.

Using GENERAL terms, answer the following 5 questions about this STORY entitled 'The 900'.
  • WHAT'S THE MAIN THRUST OF THIS TALE: Even though none of the Bat-Family will show him the time of day, on his Jack-Jones, our ever loving caped crusader, Batman, has to track down, contain, and figure out how to stop an air-born 'Man-Ban' virus that's currently sweeping across the '900' district of Gotham City.
  • ARE THE MAIN OBJECTIVES ACHIEVED: Yeah. With some help from Batwoman plus Doctors Kirk and Francine Langstom, the Dark Knight does put most things back to normal again.
  • ANYTHING ELSE HAPPEN:  We get a quick glimpse of 'Bat-Zsasz'.
  • HOW DOES THIS STORY END: With a Bat and a Penguin rising from the streets of old Gotham Town.
  • WHAT'S THE BACK-UP FEATURE ABOUT: Well, there are four back-up tales in this anniversary issue. The first one is about Francine's emotional relationship with her husband, Kirk. The second one is about Bane's past encounter with the Court of Owls. The third one is about how the two Penguins have used the Man-Bat situation to further their own status. Plus the fourth one is about some of the relationships Batman has had with certain members of the G.C.P.D.

All in all, what is the most memorable SENTENCE OR CONVERSATION spoken in this issue?
Generally speaking, the majority of the dialogue on display throughout this issue was very nice and simple to read. But my pick out of the bunch, folks, would have to be Batman's soliloquy to Langstrom once he finally decided his own fate...

'Everything I learnt about Kirk Langstrom after the fact told me he was a good man. A man that wanted to make a difference. A man who wanted to do his part to save the world. I think I would have liked him'.

Now after reading this piece of prose, there was a part of me that wanted to say to Bruce 'But you did like him. Honestly you did. If DC will stop f*cking about with your continuity I can prove it to you to'. Ha!

What are the BEST bits about this issue?
(+) I did find it somewhat ironic how each member of the Bat-family told Batman to bugger off, only for Batwoman and the Langstoms to step in a take their place. Know what I mean?
(+) Although the back-up adventures were a mixed bag to say the least, in the same breath, they did make this anniversary issue a lot more special by default. Also, some of the pin-up included were a right sight for saw eyes as well. Especially the posters drawn by Brett Booth, Andy Clarke, Francesco Francavilla, and Alex Maleev, to name but a few.
(+) Seeing Mikel Janin's name on a Bat-title really perked up my spirits no end. He's a really-really great artist, and I just love his stuff on Justice League Dark.
(+) The creative teams that worked on this book did so well together; I just like to congratulate them across the board on a job well done. Smashing.

What are the WORST bits about this issue?
(-) Now I'm sure many of you will agree with me when I say that $8.99 is a hefty price tag to place on any comic book. OK, I know that there was a lot more on show this time round; as this was an anniversary issue. Still, it would have been nice if DC gave their readership the option for a more condensed comic book without the 'additions' and at a lower price.
(-) The only gripe I have with the main tale was that it acted as a re-introduction for the Kirk Langstom 'Man-Bat' character. I mean, why? Huh? We all know that Kirk has had a forty year history at DC. So what was the point of resetting his origin? It doesn't make any sense to me whatsoever.
(-) 'Bat-Zsasz'? Nah. No thank you. Not my cup of tea. Spit!

Choose TWO CHARACTERS out of this comic book, and then compare them to two WELL KNOWN MOVIE STARS.
GARY SINISE AS KIRK LANGSTROM: Whilst watching 'CSI: NY', I've always presumed Gary has the ability to turn himself into some sort of urbane creature by whim of fate. Yeah! I think that it must be something to do with his eyes.

MELINA KANAKAREDES AS FRANCINE LANGSTROM: Did you know that Melina's surname in Greek actually mean 'spouse of a flying surgical rodent'? Well, it's either that or some sort of yogurt based dip.

What QUOTE would be appropriate to sum-up this story?
'Twinkle, twinkle little bat, how I wonder what you're at! Up above the world you fly, like a tea-tray in the sky' -- Lewis Carroll

What SONG, THEME-TUNE, or MELODY, would complement this tale, as well as add and extra dimension to it by default?
'HERE I GO AGAIN' BY WHITESNAKE: Honest to God. There was a scene in this comic book that made me think of this song nigh on straight away. Now at a guess, can you tell which one it was? Ha!

As this is a special occasion, I thought it would be a pretty good idea for you folks to get to know me a little bit better. For a start, like many of you, I'm sure; I am an avid comic book collector, who has over fifteen thousand comics to my name. These range from your run of the mill DC stuff, like Batman, Flash, or Green Lantern, to Marvel's Daredevil and Savage Wolverine, to imprints and Vertigo titles such as Preacher, Transmetropolitan, etc, etc. Yet the book that started me off on my excursion into the four-colour funnies; was none other than 'Detective Comics' itself.

Yeah. That's right. It was this series that gave me my first superhero fix. If I remember rightly, it was an issue written by Peter Milligan and drawn by Jim Aparo, about a suave assassin that used a 'stiletto' switch-blade to kill his victims. My God, this story gave me such a buzz, over the next year or so I went literally comic book crazy. Darting about from the Keith Giffen's Justice League of America, to the Alan Grant's Batman at every flick of the page.

Admittedly, my passions for comics are still fairly intact. However, just like the nature of existence, it does dip and parry all over the place, because my knowledge in this area is far more expansive than it once was, and much more selective to boot.

Anyway, I think that's enough for now. I'll play 'a walk down memory lane' soon. I promise. I just want to end this review by saying to Detective...

GIVE IT, IT'S DUES: If This Comic Book Was a Form of Confinement, It Would Be Somewhere Where Each And Every Inmate Would Have Something to Keep Them Busy.

DETECTIVE COMICS #19 DETECTIVE COMICS #19 Reviewed by David Andrews on April 25, 2013 Rating: 5
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