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Batman: The Man Who Laughs Paperback – February 3, 2009

120 customer reviews

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Batman: The Man Who Laughs + Batman: Year One + Batman: The Killing Joke, Deluxe Edition
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ed Brubaker is an award-winning writer whose work includes Batman, Captain America, Criminal, Daredevil, The Dead Boy Detectives, Deadenders, Gotham Central, The Immortal Iron Fist, Lowlife, Scene of the Crime, Sleeper and Uncanny X-Men. Doug Mahnke has pencilled Aliens, Batman, Seven Soldiers: Frankenstein and Superman: The Man of Steel. He is now the artist on Stormwatch: Post-Human Division. Patrick Zircher's work includes Iron Man, New Warriors and Thunderbolts. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (February 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401216269
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401216269
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.2 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (120 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,404 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Alexander Matthews on February 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Was one of the last stories that Brubaker wrote for DC before he moved over to Marvel, and became the superstar writer on Captain America and Daredevil.

Great Joker/Batman origin story that is fun and has spot on portrayal of the menacing Joker. Not only is this a great read, but it has some very spectacular artwork. The atwork alone is reason enough to purchase this book.

Important to keep in mind that this is a very quick read, as the orginal story came in one Prestige Format Comic (48 pages). However this comic is hard to find and worth sowhere in the $50 range. This is great opportunity to pick up a hard to find story right before the New Batman Movie.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By A. Gustafsson on February 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is one of the better Joker stories in years. It's a sort of sequel to "Year one" and tells the tale of how The Dark Knight first met the notorious evildoer that in future years would become his arch-nemesis.

Joker is killing several rich persons, which to begin with appears to be for no reason other than getting a sick laugh out of it. But as the story progresses Batman starts to find out the motive behind these bizarre killings as well as figuring out who The Joker was and what made what he is.
The writing is perfect. Ed Brubaker does a terrific job on it. He has also added some nice references to Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke" All the classic elements from a Joker story are here. Making threats on live television, killing people at midnight and using henchmen dressed as clowns. If you enjoyed Batman stories such as "Year one", The Killing Joke" or "The laughing fish" then this one should be right up your alley.
An interesting fact: The title is a reference to a movie with the same name and it is from this film that Bob Kane got the inspiration for The Joker.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Parker on August 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Buy this book to read Ed Brubaker and Doug mahnke excellent redux of the Joker's first encounter with batman. In a shocking turn, DC hires a great artist to do a high profile Batman tale. I only fault this story on being too short.
The Man Who Laughs was orignally published as a 48 page soft cover graphic novel, but deserves the hardcover format. Sadly, the cover graphics are not very well done. The white spine with the ugly blue at the bottom doesn't look good on the book shelf, particularly next to it's natural companion, the recently released Killing Joke hardcover.
As a filler, a Batman/Golden Age Green Lantern story is also randomely reprinted here. This story originally appeared in Detective Comics which Mr. Brubaker wrote for a little over a year. I remember his run as well written (as most of his work is), but laden with poor fill-in art unworthy of his scripts. The artwork by Mike Lilly is just OK, but I fail to see why it was included in this hardcover.
It would have been much better to reprint the Joker's first two appearances from Batman #1, as well as Dennis O'Neal's Legends of the Dark Knight #50, from 1993, which retold the same story of Batman's first encounter with the Joker. Dennis O'Neal wrote a spot on story with some great moments, but the particularly bad art from Brett Blevins is not something which should be seen again. At least the theme of the book would have been consistant.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Kyle C. Johnson on February 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This hardcover edition of "The Man Who Laughs" is a great addition to a comic libray - but the 20 dollar tag makes it hard to justify for the 40-somthing page story... Also thrown in is "Made of Wood," a random Brubaker story featuring Green Lantern Alan Scott (another short story :/ ). 'Wood' is passable, but 'Man who Laughs' is a must have...

"The Man who Laughs" storyline retells the first couple appearances of The Joker in Gotham city. Though the story is almost a direct retelling of Batman issue #1 (and other Kane stories) Brubaker finds ways to reinvent the story to make it much more frightening.

A great addition to your comic library, but if you can help taking the time to find the original prestige edition - you'll save yourself about 15 bucks.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Goncalves on May 14, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Buyer Beware,
Even though you are purchasing the amazing story of "The Man Who Laughs" a wonderful rendition of Batman's first encounter with his arch-nemisis, you will also buy an additional 65 pages worth of filler material in a story titled "Made of Wood", a story with absolutely no relation to the Joker and centers around Alan Scott, the original Green Lantern.

My main gripe with this publication is that this extra feature is not indicated anywhere on the product itself.

Perhaps a purchase you may want to hold off on.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Sami T. on August 16, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I got this, I've read lots of reviews and articles talking about how the story Batman: The Man Who Laughs is one of the greatest Batman (and Joker) stories ever told. I was also aware that this book also collected the other story Made of Wood featuring a Batman/Green Lantern (Alan Scott) team-up, but assumed that it would just be an OK story. However, after finishing the entire book today, I found that Made of Wood in fact overshadows The Man Who Laughs as a better story! The book was probably not marketed as such due to the fear of people not wanting to read about the 1940s Green Lantern (and who am I kidding? The Joker sells!), but trust Ed Brubaker as he creates a central heart to the story showing a unique dynamic between Batman and Alan Scott Green Lantern that is not found between Batman and another character. I agree with other reviewers that Made of Wood is just another detective murder story, but the characters featured in it, including Jim Gordon are what make this story stand-out!

As for the main feature of the book The Man Who Laughs, well I can see that it does deserve to be called one of the best Batman/Joker stories. It tackles The Joker's first attack on Gotham, and what an attack it was! The story also highlights Batman, 'Captain' Jim Gordon, and their relationship with each other (as Made of Wood also does). It also adds on the bases formed by Alan Moore's origin story for The Joker that was introduced in The Killing Joke.

In conclusion, I highly recommend buying this book for BOTH stories featured in it.
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