To commemorate the 80th anniversary of Batman (#Batman80, #LongLiveTheBat), AFJ has decided to join in the fun with columns, lists, and reviews from now until Batman Day (Sept. 15th, 2019). The incredible thing about 80 years of Batman, in pop culture, is that we can literally feature anything from comics to movies to cereal. Yes, cereal (Google it Millenials). Today, we turn our attention to a Batman comic from 2003. Enjoy Junkies! #AFJ4LIFE
By Rick Alaia
This week we're focusing on a book. That book is Batman: Child Of Dreams. In the summer of 2003, I happened to be walking by a comic shop in lower Manhattan. Of course, I had to go in. After looking through the action figures I started to peruse the trade paperbacks. Since I had taken a couple of years off from actively buying comic books, I loved looking through the trades and finding really great reads. This day was no different. I pulled out the Batman book Child Of Dreams. The first thing that caught my eye, was the striking resemblance of Michael Keaton Batman on the cover. I opened it and saw it was a manga book.
I hesitated to snag it, mainly because manga interpretations of US properties were usually a big miss. That Keaton cover sold me though. Surely that homage to my favorite on-screen Batman was a good omen... right? Turns out it was. This book did not disappoint. Batman has to solve the mystery of an unknown drug emerging in Gotham City and its connection to the rise of doppelgangers from Batman's Rogues Gallery. He tracks this drug from Gotham City to Japan. The mystery takes Batman on a wild ride that lands him face to face with the so-called “New Batman”.
If you haven't already, get the book. It's a great read and one I still have in my library 16 years later. It was popular enough to spawn two lines of “figures” from DC Collectibles. I used quotes as these were statues but very sought after and limited. Each figure from the first run only had 10,000 made. Making them very hard to find and rather pricey on the 2nd hand market.