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Batman: Year One (1986)

by Frank Miller (Writer), David Mazzucchelli (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,540742,810 (4.15)56
The story of how Batman's career started, told in graphic novel form.
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» See also 56 mentions

English (72)  French (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (74)
Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
I'll never understand why I put off reading Batman Year One for so long. Maybe I wasn't ready for Frank Miller's version of the story. Which bothers me, because I accepted The Dark Knight Returns with open arms.

Many things come to mind while reading Year One, though. First of all, its importance to the Batman mythos, a signature in the canon, and so forth. I've said this before with another book, haven't I? It's still very true, however.

Told from the point of view of both Batman/Bruce Wayne and Lieutenant Gordon, the story follows both narrators through their first year in Gotham City. Influenced much by the film noir concept of storytelling - isn't Frank Miller responsible for the film noir graphic novel, Sin City? - the book engulfs the reader, leading them down the path of chaos, destruction and finally redemption.

David Mazzucchelli's artwork combines the gritty comic look that pays homage to Miller's film noir style of writing. There isn't another team who could have pulled the story off any other way - of course, unless you consider the original origin story.

I wonder why Year One wasn't considered as a Batman film adaptation, though you can see its influence on such films as Batman Begins. There's a Joker in the story, but there are a lot of mob bosses, crooked cops, petty criminals and corrupted city officials - did I fail to mention Catwoman? ( )
  ennuiprayer | Jan 14, 2022 |
A more mature, slightly modernized take on Batman

I like that this Batman is fallible, vulnerable, and a little bit lost. Him Gordon has his own flaws, and is surprisingly as featured in this comic as the titular character. There are a handful of supporting characters that are interesting, but none get enough focus to be really satisfying except Catwoman, who is presented in a dignity more negative light than is typical. There are a couple other women characters that seem like they might be worth learning about, but they are treated like peripherals and only come into focus briefly when they are near one of the two important men. ( )
  wishanem | May 27, 2021 |
I guess I marked this as read but it was when I was scared to write reviews on here. (I've just accepted that I'm a cruddy reviewer and moved on.)

Going back to this after first reading it ages and ages ago (my local library had a paperback version which appeared in the YA section and then vanished shortly after I returned it), I had forgotten how Gordon-centric the story was. It's good, though - I think Miller does a good job on selling you on Gordon and Batman coming to work together (although I think he does less of a good job with the female characters - I had remembered this as being pre-nuttiness but now I think it was just warming up here).

I remembered not really liking the art when I first read it, but now I like it a lot more - it has this interesting rough quality to it that I can't really describe. Overall, the book has its rough patches, but you can see why it's such a big thing even today. ( )
  skolastic | Feb 2, 2021 |
This has never been my favorite Batman. It's not nearly as interesting that it focuses on Gordon, the art is so-so, and there are no supervillain appearances other than minimal Catwoman. But it's still an interesting take and a decent enough read. ( )
  jasonrkron | Jan 15, 2021 |
It is what it says on the tin, and it's quite good. I'm not sure what else to say, other than that Jim Gordon (before he was Commissioner) and Selina Kyle (when she became catwoman) factor into it pretty prominently. ( )
  apotheon | Dec 14, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (14 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Miller, FrankWriterprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mazzucchelli, DavidIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Kidd, ChipPublication Designsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Klein, ToddLetterersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lewis, RichmondColoristsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Neil, DennisIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Gotham City. Maybe it's all I deserve, now.
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The story of how Batman's career started, told in graphic novel form.

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