Make no mistake, readers are going to thoroughly enjoy the diverse stories and artistry within the pages of Detective Comics #1000. “The Legend of Knute Brody,” written by DC animation legend Paul Dini, is one of the more lighter-in-tone offerings in the overstuffed issue.
In Knute Brody, the villains of Gotham speak, documentary-style, about that one henchman they each hired who was the absolute WORST at his job, constantly screwing up their plans.
Dini crafts a chuckle-filled take on the generic henchman who somehow manages to always bungle many a villain’s schemes. He presents this in a news segment, complete with reporter narration and asides from Gotham’s most notorious rogues. The high-brow humor is apparent throughout. Harley Quinn, Riddler and Mad Hatter describe their encounter with Knute Brody through reality TV style confessionals. Dini’s punchline is clever. Also, it will give readers a smirk the next time a stooge is seen in a Batman comic.
Dini’s dialogue in The Legend of Knute Brody reads like a Saturday morning cartoon, hearkening back to his days on Batman: The Animated Series. One can almost hear the canned, nasal voice of the reporter paired with the comical asides of the nefarious interviewees.
Dustin Nguyen’s pencils and Derek Fridolfs’s inks are a welcome choice for this story. Nguyen’s peculiar style makes for a distinct work among the other talented artistry in this milestone issue. Much like Dini’s writing, the illustrations are reminiscent of The Animated Series, but with a more distorted quality.
John Kalisz’s colors round out the cartoonish atmosphere in The Legend of Knute Brody. His colored lighting effect is a standout, helping the reader transition from an interview to a flashback sequence.
Overall, Dini and Ngueyen crafted a humorous, even silly vignette, worthy of its place among the weighty stories of Detective Comics #1000.