COMIC BOOKS: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? – Valdosta Daily Times

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Updated: January 2, 2023 @ 1:13 am
Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?

Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?
Several years ago, concluding the decades-long run of the original “Batman” and “Detective Comics” titles, DC wanted to do something special.
The comic book company wanted to do something similar to what it did in the 1980s when it ended the original run of Superman titles and started them all over again.
Then, comic book legend Alan Moore scripted a coda story to end the original run of Superman stories. Moore’s tale was called “Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?” It served as a fine masterpiece to end one stage of Superman’s life before starting the whole thing over.
So, with several changes happening to Batman about a dozen years ago, DC hoped to give Batman a similar send-off.
“Batman: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?” nearly succeeded. DC tapped another comic book legend: Neil Gaiman, who has also had best-selling success with novels, children’s books, movies, Audible adaptations and television series.
Gaiman writes a last Batman story that has the character dying by a thousand cuts, meaning that Batman has died multiple times, living a multitude of lives as the Caped Crusader.
Gaiman plays this tale straight and with marvelous twists (such as one scenario where Alfred, who was an actor prior to being the Wayne butler, creates Batman’s supervillains with help from his theatre pals to keep Batman occupied).
Andy Kubert provides excellent art. Kubert adapts his style to reflect several Batman artists throughout the decades. Though the setting for this tale is a funeral for Batman/Bruce Wayne, Gaiman finds another constant among the Batman’s many deaths, his many battles with a variety of Jokers, Catwomen, etc., the Bruce Wayne as Batman keeps returning.
At the time of the publication, Bruce Wayne was no longer Batman but he eventually returned, too.

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