Despite my boyfriend being obsessed with Batman, I’ve never read one of the many Batman comics he has (I’m more likely to be found with my nose buried in a Deadpool one), and so the first time I was aware that my beloved Neil Gaiman had written a Batman comic was when reading about it in The View From The Cheap Seats. It was immediately bought for my boyfriend’s birthday (translation: for me), and has been sat on the living room table giving me ‘read me’ eyes ever since. This weekend, I gave in.
I realise that my first Batman comic being about the death of Batman is basically approaching everything ass-backwards, but it was such a delicious treat to read that it didn’t matter. Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader opens with all of Batman’s former foes and allies gathering at his funeral. Each one has a different tale to tell about their history with him as well as his death – no two deaths are the same – which allows Gaiman look at Batman from a range of imaginative angles (my favourite being that of Alfred, which took an incredibly familiar story and made it entirely brand new. I now want Alfred’s version to be adapted for film).
The artwork is great (and apparently pays homage to the different styles of Batman and his foes that have existed over the years), and two additional stories are also included that both include the typical Gaiman side-ways look at characters and scenarios that we know so well.
A must for any Batman fan that can just as easily be enjoyed by those, like me, that have only really encountered him via film and TV, I couldn’t recommend this highly enough.