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Absolute Dark Knight Hardcover – August 30, 2006

4.4 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Comic-book publishers have grown expert at collecting individual issues of a title as graphic novels and later rereleasing those collections with hitherto unpublished sequences, further artwork, and other "bonus" material to entice buffs to purchase the same book twice and thrice. DC Comics brings the game to a new level with the Absolute series of oversized, slipcased, hardcover volumes of landmark titles. Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns (1986), in which a cantankerous Batman emerged from retirement to clean up a depraved Gotham City, revolutionized superhero comics by darkening the tone of the genre and paved the way for artists and writers to treat familiar characters more idiosyncratically. It made Miller a superstar in the comic-book firmament. Its 15-years-later follow-up, The Dark Knight Strikes Again, however, turned off fans with its cartoony visuals and loopy attitude. Absolute Dark Knight gathers both stories, Miller's early sketches for them and other artwork, pages from his original proposal for the series, and other addenda. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

About the Author

Frank Miller has won numerous awards and critical acclaim for his graphic novel work, which includes Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, 300 and Ronin. His Sin City series has garnered high praise from fans and critics alike, and was made into a highly successful movie in 2005. He has written several Sin City collections, including A Dame to Kill For; Booze, Broads & Bullets; and Family Values. He is currently writing All-Star Batman and Robin and the forthcoming Batman: Holy Terror. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; Slp edition (August 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401210791
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401210793
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 1.9 x 12.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #605,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rene Ritchie on August 30, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I still remember with stunning clarity when Dark Knight burst (and it did burst, big and bloody) onto the comic book scene. I bought the original 4 issue Prestige Format mini-series, bought the soft-cover collection, bought the hard-cover (a rarity in those days), and was lucky enough to win a signed-and-number special edition of the hard-cover as well. Even had the poster.

That was the impact the series, and the vision of Frank Miller, had on me.

And I couldn't be more thrilled to finally own the Absolute Edition.

It should be noted that 2 very different stories are contained in this edition, the ground breaking Dark Knight Returns of the 1980s, and the more controversial Dark Knight Strikes again of the 2000s. My rating is actual 5 Stars for DKR (a rating I seldom, if ever, give to anything), and 3 for DKSA. This review will focus on the former rather than latter.

Story - The original series deals with Batman coming out of retirement to reclaim his place in legend and to deal with a world spiraling more and more out of control. This is one of the best stories I've read in any medium, with the plot and pacing working in perfect synchronicity with dialog that doesn't seem as much written as channeled. 20 years later, and the quotes still fill my thoughts. Miller fires on all cylinders here, in one stroke eradicating the plague-filled shadow of the Adam West Batman, and creating a vibrantly dark icon for the generation to come. Through the four chapters, we see the Dark Knight return to face an old nemesis in Two-Face, a new threat in the Mutant gang, the parallel return of the Joker, and a final showdown with Superman. It's a scary, almost fascist future, but Miller brilliantly counter-points it all with very human emotion.
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Format: Hardcover
Length: 4:18 Mins
Forget Tome Raider's review and take it from someone who has actually owned an Absolute Edition for nearly 10 years: with proper care and handling these books will last a long, long time. I honestly don't know what kind of abuse and neglect Tome Raider is planning on putting his books through to claim that the glossy slipcase will get quickly worn. I keep mine prominently displayed on the shelf in my living room and get them down one at a time to read. The result is that they have all held up nicely. The spine on one of them is a bit worn but that's because i laid the book flat on a table too many times, which is a no-no for ANY book. For more, check out the video!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm sorry that I have to be the little skunk at this garden party. I can not share the enthusiasm for this edition which many reviewers have expressed. In fact, I discourage you discriminating collectors from buying this, as it is notably flawed.

I was compelled to buy this by the publisher's product description which claimed that it "set the standard for high quality." As a book collector I love buying these ultra-deluxe editions of all types of subject matter. Recent examples in the comics genre would include: The Deluxe Edition of Frank Miller's Sin City; The Complete Far Side; The Complete Calvin and Hobbes; The Completely Mad Don Martin. Each of these sets is packaged in a very impressive manner: cloth-bound; slip-cased; tipped-in plates on the covers, super-high quality paper. I presumed this Absolute Dark Knight was going to be be in this same spirit, and given the high price (even when discounted by Amazon) I was confident the book would exceed my expectations for quality.

Alas, I was wrong. This large, heavy book is bound in a shiny-paper cover, just like the covers you had on your Dr. Suess books x-number of years ago. These covers get dinged up very easily and look cheap and cheesey from day one. The slip case? It is also covered only in thin shiny paper, and if this book gets any real usage at all it will look like garbage very promptly. And, with the heavy weight, this book is particularly susceptible to damage because when you bump it, there is more inertia behind it. And the torque pulling on the binding and spine from merely reading it is considerable. This production concept MANDATED quality construction, and the idiots who produced it are hoping the majority of consumers are not scrutinizing enough to note, or care about, the compromises.
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Format: Hardcover
Frank Miller's THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS redefined the superhero for an entire generation, and has had a deeper and more profound impact on the way comic book heroes are perceived by the general public than any other single work. This edition presents this seminal tale in a deluxe, oversized format that does the material justice. Collected also is the inferior but still compelling sequel, THE DARK KNIGHT STRIKES AGAIN. This follow-up, coming out over a decade after the original, is a work that is initially puzzling, but grows in stature with subsequent readings. Marred by some clearly rushed artwork and amateurish computer coloring, the story still draws some interesting conclusions about our current media-drenched society. Copious amounts of ancillary materials from both works are presented, giving the reader some insight into Miller's creative process. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION.
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