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Batman: The Long Halloween Paperback – October 11, 2011
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“Featuring Sale’s breathtaking art, which perfectly echoes the moodiness of the subject matter, The Long Halloween was an instant classic..." —Metro Toronto
"The Long Halloween stretches beyond the normal boundaries of comics to create a legendary story of onem man's crusade against an insane world." —IGN
"The Long Halloween is more than a comic book. It's an epic tragedy." —Christopher Nolan (Director The Dark Knight Rises)
About the Author
Tim Sale is not only the artist for the numerous collaborations with Jeph Loeb listed above, but has also worked on Deathblow, Batman: Legends of The Dark Knight, Grendel, Wolverine/Gambit: Victims, Billi 99, Amazon, and various other projects. He had the distinct honor of being the first creator chosen for the artist spotlight series Solo.
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My favorite part of this book has to be the heavy reliance on the crime families of Gotham, specifically the Falcone. There is always mention of how screwed up Gotham is and why there is a need for Batman and using the mafia as a foundation is perfect. Are they the source of all of Gotham's problems? No, but the sheer level of organized crime speaks to why Batman even exists. It is pervasive and the attacks of Holiday begin to shake things up. The use of these more mundane villains, even with the inclusion of a bunch of Batman's iconic foes, helps to set this book apart.
The mystery behind the killer is played out pretty well too. There are so many people that would have the motive and opportunity to attack the members of the Falcone family that it becomes difficult to pin down who is Holiday. Extra points for the use of Calendar Man because he is a strange villain that fits in so well.
Despite being an older comic, I enjoyed the art. There were some images that are certainly indicative of trends in comic art at the time, but for the most part it stands apart. The coloring and use of shadow are both great. There's a reason this is considered a classic Batman title. Definitely worth a read.
I love the mystery to this story. Action-packed Batman is always fun, but Batman made his mark because he's the world's greatest detective. Trying to solve the mystery along side Batman and experiencing all the twists and turns is so rewarding. The dialogue is also very well written, and Loeb gives each character their own great bits of solid dialogue. I always enjoy reading his stories.
As much as I love a jam-packed Batman story like Batman: Hush, I feel like some villains should have been cut out. They're fun to have since you don't expect it, but I was overwhelmed. This is a smaller story that doesn't need the complexity of a Justice League story.
To be completely honest, I love Batman: Hush, but only by a small percent more than The Long Halloween. The fact that this can contend with Hush shows just how great this comic truly is. Batman: The Long Halloween is (to no one's surprise) another great Batman story.
Top international reviews
Let's cover the story, briefly. Somebody in Gotham is picking off members of the Falcone and Maroni crime families, the caveat. Each murder occurs on the same day as a holiday, beginning on Halloween 🎃 and lasting a full calendar year.
Batman, Jim Gordon and Gotham's highly driven DA Harvey Dent make a pact to end the reign of the so called "Holiday" killer.
What makes this such an enthralling read is the pace of the story and the depth the characters is perfectly balanced.
Firstly, Bruce Wayne/Batman and his (their) relationship with Semina Kyle/Catwoman. The dynamic between the four personas is what we've come to expect. The difference is the juxtaposition between Wayne/Kyle, who at times display unexpected vulnerabilities compared to Batman/Catwoman who are always in control. It's a quite striking thread that runs throughout the story.
Harvey Dent's transformation from white knight DA to the conflicted Two-Face is excellently brought to life.
Jim Gordon is a continuation of who we meet in Year One.
The cameo appearances from Batman's rouge gallery is brilliant as each of their personalities are expressed perfectly.
I would have given 5 stars were it not for two aspects.
1. The portrayal of the Sullivan gang (who are of Irish extraction) is such an American stereotype of what an Irish person acts and sounds like. As an Irish person I was a little put off by it.
2. The ending was a little loose. Not sure what the reason was for it. If it had ended a few pages sooner it would have been perfect.
I wasn't disappointed, in fact this story is amazing. It's a true detective story. A killer is on the loose murdering on holidays (Halloween, Valentine's, New Year etc). Batman has to use all of his detective skills to find out who is responsible. Brilliant story with a twist and a great ending that will keep you entertained.
I love that the story involves the original crime bosses of Gotham including the Falcone family. The artwork is much more simple than the New 52 but not as basic as The Frank Miller books and I found it to be visually stunning and perfect for the story.
Definitely one of my Top 10 Batman reads now and I will definitely revisit it the same as I would a great Batman movie. Just grab a copy of this one and you won't be disappointed.
The story looks at Commissioner Gordon's first proper case with Batman that isn't solved in a night. The Joker is behind bars and criminals like Scarecrow and the Mad Hatter are dealt with too. This is about the mob. It dwells on Gordon as much as a Batman and even more on Harvey Dent. Three men all trying to fix Gotham and taking very different approaches. It is entirely around this conflict that everything can be seen. Each character is well fleshed out, their lives are shown at home, on the streets, at work, with their love interests. You don't want for any details except those surrounding the new and interesting killer that strikes every holiday. These of course come as the story unfolds and well I didn't see it coming (which is more than I can say for the new Sherlock series which I figure out twenty minutes into each episode so this has a good plot).
I would very much get this, it is exceptional and my family wishes I would stop banging on about it
This is, essentially, a dark and gritty ‘who dunnit’ and as far as Batman stories go, you’ll struggle to find many better. The characters are incredibly well-fleshed out (to the best of my recollection there aren’t really any that felt as though they were just thrown in). The story itself moves at a fast pace and constantly keeps the reader guessing. It really plays quite heavily on the detective story aspect of things which is a nice change of pace from just a straight out beat ‘em up.
Another bonus to this graphic novel is that it features a good portion of Gotham City’s most infamous super-villains. I’ll not say who but a good few get an outing across the thirteen issues that make up The Long Halloween.
On top of this being a who dunnit, this is also one of the better origin stories you’ll read as far as villain origins go. The Long Halloween was written as Harvey Dent’s transformation from District Attorney into the Psychotic criminal mastermind Two-Face.
The artwork really adds to the gritty, dark nature of the piece and is a real pleasure to look at from cover to cover. After re-discovering how great this graphic novel is, I’m probably going to have to go and find more of Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s collaborations.
This is a must have for all Batman and Comic fans.
So far, not only the best Batman story I've read, but the best comic full stop.
If you don't have this in your collection, you need it. It should be part of everyone's!
The art is wonderful. The heavy use of shadow and the limited colour pallet emphasise how dark and foreboding Gotham is. The bat himself is bulky and imposing, the design of his cape almost coming off as unnatural. I liked this; it gave him a very moody and grim quality-you can definitely see why criminals find him so frightening. Other characters were drawn with a certain noir style that makes them very memorable, particularly the Joker.
Overall it was a very impressive and well-drawn read. Worth every penny.
If you like it as much as I did, the two sequels are 'Dark Victory' and 'When in Rome' in that order.