Batman: Year One

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"Batman: Year One" is the title of an American comic book story arc written by Frank Miller, illustrated by David Mazzucchelli, colored by Richmond Lewis, and lettered by Todd Klein. It originally appeared in issues #404 to #407 of DC Comics' Batman comic title in 1987.

There have been several reprints of the story: a hardcover, multiple trade paperback editions (one in standard comics paper with simpler coloring and one deluxe version with rich detailing in the colors — both colored by Richmond Lewis) and it has been included in The Complete Frank Miller Batman hardcover.

Contents

Synopsis

The story recounts the beginning of Bruce Wayne's career as Batman and Jim Gordon's with the Gotham City Police Department. Bruce Wayne returns home from training abroad in martial arts, manhunting, and science for the past 12 years, and James Gordon moves to Gotham with his wife, Barbara, after a transfer from Chicago. Both are swiftly acquainted with the corruption and violence of Gotham City, with Gordon witnessing his partner Detective Flass assaulting a teen for fun.

On a surveillance mission to the seedy East End, a disguised Bruce is propositioned by teenaged prostitute Holly Robinson. He is reluctantly drawn into a brawl with her violent pimp and is attacked by several prostitutes, including dominatrix Selina Kyle. Two police officers shoot and take him in their squad car, but a dazed and bleeding Bruce breaks his handcuffs and causes a crash, dragging the police to a safe distance before fleeing. He reaches the Manor barely alive and sits before his father’s bust, requesting guidance in his war on crime. A bat crashes through a window and settles on the bust, giving him the inspiration to become a bat.

Gordon soon works to rid corruption from the force, but, on orders from Commissioner Loeb, several officers attack him, including Flass, who personally threatens Gordon’s pregnant wife. In revenge, the recovering Gordon tracks Flass down, beats and humiliates him, leaving him naked and handcuffed in the snow.

As Gordon becomes a minor celebrity for several brave acts, Batman strikes for the first time, attacking a group of thieves. Batman soon works up the ladder, even attacking Flass while he was accepting a drug dealer’s bribe. After Batman interrupts a dinner party attended by many of Gotham’s corrupt politicians and crime bosses, including Carmine Falcone, Loeb orders Gordon to bring him in by any means necessary.

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