Throw a stone at a collection of Major Spoilers Podcasts and you are bound to hit one where Old Man Schleicher (or as I call him, My Beloved Boss Who Pays Me) tells us how phenomenal Legends of the Dark Knight was. So now that DC has brought it back I had to check it out.


Legends of the Dark Knight
Writer: Damon Lindelof
Art: Jeff Lemire
Colors: Jose Villarrubia
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Editor: Ben Abernathy
Publisher: DC
Cover Price: $.99

Previously in Legends of the Dark Knight: Billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne is *SPOILERS* Batman aka the Dark Knight. In an attempt to have his vengeance for the murder of his parents in front of his eyes, he has dawned a cape and cowl to rid Gotham of the scum that populate it.

IT’S ALL IN THE TITLE

When starting this book you need to know that every issue that will be coming from the revamped Legends of the Dark Knight takes place outside of all New 52 continuity. You got that? Good.

We start out with a few pages of the Batman leaping from rooftop to rooftop, as he is on patrol for any number of crimes possible in Gotham. And oh boy does he stumble upon scene that is right up his alley. Down below there is a gunpoint mugging of a father, mother, and son, if you don’t think Bruce is breaking this up you are crazy. Unfortunately, this is all a setup and Batman is beaten to a bloody pulp.

From there is where the story takes off, but getting into that would just spoil the whole read, even though the title already takes care of that. And that ends up being the most disappointing part of the whole read. I still don’t understand why they would choose that specific of a title. Still a solid read none-the-less.

LIKE TRYING A FINE WINE

Jeff Lemire, who is handling the writing for DC’s New 52 Animal Man, does that art for this Dark Knight digital series. I have never read any books with Lemire’s art in it before so it did take me a couple of pages to grow accustomed to it, and by the end of the issue I was fully enjoying it. The first aspect of Lemire’s designs I enjoyed here is the bat suit that Wayne is wearing. It isn’t the suit he is wearing in the current iterations of the character, but is more in the vein of what he wears in the Batman Animated series. Besides that, the layouts were well used to compact this much story into a reduced amount of pages.

BOTTOM LINE: MAYBE HE IS RIGHT

In the few years that I have know Stephen, I’ve started to trust about everything that comes out of his mouth, and with this issue I once again realizes he knows what he is talking about. If every issue of the original run were as well done as this was then I too echo, “They never should have canceled Legends of the Dark Knight.” In 21 pages Lindelof and Lemire crafted a completed, compelling story, which not every series can say. The DC online exclusive model they have been using for the Smallville title seem to be working well so hopefully that will translate to high sells here. For 99 cents you should download Legends of the Dark Knight: The Butler Did It and I’m giving it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Rating: ★★★★½

The Author

Zach Woolf

Zach Woolf

Zach is a recent college graduate who’s love for consuming media is surpassed only by his love for creating it. He has a firm belief that if we could all just play with LEGOs for 30 minutes a day the world would be a better place. If those two statements don’t tell you everything you need to know about Zach, follow him on Twitter at @zwoolf.

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2 Comments

  1. June 9, 2012 at 5:16 pm — Reply

    “Old Man Schleicher.” Heh…

  2. tidge
    June 10, 2012 at 5:11 pm — Reply

    At the risk of trying to explain why some folks loved LotDK, here is my take on a certain generation’s fixation on the (original) title:

    1) It launched at a time in which we readers were getting a regular dose of ‘prestige’ Batman stories, with the promise of a monthly title that would essentially tell stories of the same caliber. This was *really* exciting news for a fanbase invigorated by the first Keaton movie and the “heh heh look how tough Batman is’ Dark Knight returns.

    2) It launched at time when the monthly Detective Comics had been running consecutively since 1939, and the self-titled Batman book also had decades of consecutive numbering. LotDK was essentially promised as that generations ‘first issue’ that was going to eventually reach the consecutive numbers of books like Action and Detective.

    3) I know this gets a lot of air time, but I tend to minimize it: It was supposed to be interesting stories of an early pre-gawd Batman, who only had the determination of the gawd-level Batman…or a Batman only held to his ‘future’ continuity, and not one held to his past continuity. This was a noble idea, but realistically there could only be a limited number of years of this before things got a little dicey.

    I remember the book fondly, but I think I preferred the Detective Comics of that era a little more.

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