Detective Comics #1000 hits your local comic book store on Wednesday, and Geoff Johns has a short tale titled “The Last Crime In Gotham,” with art by Kelly Jones, Michelle Madsen’s color work, and letters by Rob Leigh. This story is interesting because it feels like it has a greater mystery and/or twist at the end. Since the story is only eight pages long, there will be spoilers ahead as we discuss the plot and what happened.
Johns gives the reader a future tale of Batman’s last case featuring Catwoman, Damian, Echo, and Ace the family dog. The story is straightforward and Batman solves the matter quickly. The Son of Joker seemingly took out the 11 remaining crooks in Gotham and committed suicide, but it is the last page the story that makes you question the story. Batman is alone in the Batcave blowing out birthday candles, and Alfred tells him, “I hope you made a wish.” Batman says nothing and the story ends on a wide shot of Batman sitting alone in the cave with the Joker card above him.
SIDEBAR – Midway through the story, Jones has a closeup of the Son of the Joker that will haunt your dreams. The texture of the image will slither under your skin.
What starts as a family tale, ends rather bleak, which begs two questions. With only 12 crooks left, did Batman kill them off? Was the family we saw just in the imagination of Batman as he solved his last case alone? The only evidence to back up either claim is the way Jones draws Bruce Wayne in the final page after Bruce blew out the candles. There is darkness and mystery to this image, and it makes you question the story like Batman has taught us for the past 974 issues of Detective Comics.
Maybe I shouldn’t have binged watched season two of The OA (believe nothing, question everything – wait, was that X-Files?) before I read Detective Comics #1000, but Johns and I will have a conversation one day about the meaning of this short story and I will make sure to share it with you.
What did you think of Detective Comics #1000, what was your favorite story? Comment below with your thoughts.