DC Trade Solicitations for February 2020 - Event Leviathan, Batman: Universe by Bendis, Alfred Pennyworth TP, Batman: Creature of the Night by Busiek, Year of the Villain Harley Quinn, Wonder Woman: Cheetah, Batman by Marv Wolfman


Again we've got a pretty small month with the DC Comics February 2020 trade paperback and hardcover solicitations, a few books smaller even than last month's "small month." Brian Michael Bendis' Event Leviathan is my big one this time, but then aside from the "Year of the Villain"-tied Harley Quinn Vol. 4, there's nearly nothing in terms of "regular series" collections. Bendis' Batman: Universe is also of interest, but in the main, not a whole lot here.

I thought previous rumors about DC winnowing down their collections output might have been overblown, but indeed things have more sparse than usual at the start of 2020.

Let's take a look ...

Absolute Gotham by Gaslight HC

This volume collects Brian Augustyn's Gotham by Gaslight, considered the first Elseworld (and now an animated movie), along with the sequel, Master of the Future. Also included is the Countdown Special: The Search for Ray Palmer: Gotham by Gaslight Special, from the much maligned "Countdown to Final Crisis" era (though written by Augustyn), and Convergence: Shazam! #1-2 (pretty good, written by Jeff Parker and drawn by Doc Shaner, but with the "Gaslight" characters as the antagonists).

Batman: Alfred Pennyworth TP

Well, that's a spoiler in the solicitation, eh? Anywho, this collects Batman #16 (first appearance of "Alfred Beagle") and #31, Detective Comics #83 (more traditional look), #356 (Alfred as "The Outsider"), #501-502 ("The Man Who Killed Mlle. Marie!"), and #806-807 ("Regnum Defende," an Alfred story by Scott Beatty and Jeff Parker), Untold Legend of the Batman #2 (Alfred origin), Batman Annual #13 (post-Crisis, 1989), Batman: Shadow of the Bat #31 (Zero Hour tie-in, with the Alfreds of many eras), Batman: Gotham Adventures #16, Batman Eternal #31 (Alfred teams with Bane), and the Batman Annual (2016) #1 and #3.

Batman: Arkham Asylum New Edition HC

Hardcover by Grant Morrison and Dave McKean, with remastered artwork (as previously seen in the Absolute edition).

Batman: City of Crime Deluxe Edition HC

Collects David Lapham's story from Detective Comics #800-808 and #811-814, which commenter Bob Hodges called "one of the bleakest and weirdest Batman stories I've ever read."

Batman: Creature of the Night HC

Hardcover of the four-issue miniseries by Kurt Busiek and John Paul Leon, a "spiritual companion" to Busiek's Superman: Secret Identity.

Batman: Tales of the Demon HC

Hardcover of the classic Tales of the Demon book, collecting Detective Comics #411, #485, and #489-490, Batman #232, #235, #240, and #242-244 and DC Special Series #15.

Batman: Universe HC

I'm curious to read Brian Michael Bendis' first "now at DC" take on Batman, and of course we know this collection of the Walmart-first stories also introduces Young Justice's Jinny Hex. Due out in hardcover in March; there's something to be said for stories first appearing shelved in the "and all the rest" aisle in Walmart now being collected in hardcover.

DMZ Compendium Vol. 1 TP

Collects issues #1-36 of the Brian Wood series.

Doom Patrol: The Silver Age Vol. 2 TP

Collects Arnold Drake's 1960s Doom Patrol #96-107, including crossovers in Challengers of the Unknown #48 and Brave and the Bold #65 (Flash).

Event Leviathan HC

Collects Event Leviathan #1-6 and also the Superman: Leviathan Rising special — some but not all of the later was collected in Superman: Action Comics Vol. 2: Leviathan Rising, so it's good that we get the whole thing here. The only bummer is having to wait until March for this one. (Hopefully then Year of the Villain one-shot short story is in here, too.)

Harley Quinn Vol. 4: The Final Trial TP

By Sam Humphries and Mark Russell, collecting Harley Quinn #64-69 and the Harley Quinn: Villain of the Year special, tying in to the "Year of the Villain" event.

Justice League of America: A Celebration of 60 Years HC

Includes Brave and the Bold #28 (first Silver Age appearance); Justice League of America #29-30 ("Crisis on Earth-Three with the Justice Society and Crime Syndicate), #79 ("Come Slowly Death, Come Slyly!"), #140 ("No Man Escapes The Manhunter!"), #144 ("The Origin of the Justice League – Minus One!"), and #200 ("A League Divided"); Justice League of America Annual #2 (Aquaman launches Justice League Detroit), Justice League #1 (1987, by Keith Giffen and J. M. DeMatteis), JLA #1 and #43 (Grant Morrison and Mark Waid respectively); Justice League of America #1 (2006, by Brad Meltzer); Justice League #1 (2011, by Geoff Johns), and Justice League #1 (2018, by Scott Snyder).

Justice League of America: The Nail — The Complete Collection TP

Paperback collection of Alan Davis' Elseworlds miniseries JLA: The Nail and JLA: Another Nail.

Just Imagine Stan Lee Creating the DC Universe Book One TP

Previously collected in three paperbacks and an omnibus, this is a longer paperback, probably requiring just two volumes to finish. Included are Just Imagine Stan Lee with Dave Gibbons Creating Green Lantern #1, Just Imagine Stan Lee with Jerry Ordway Creating JLA #1, Just Imagine Stan Lee with Jim Lee Creating Wonder Woman #1, Just Imagine Stan Lee with Joe Kubert Creating Batman #1, Just Imagine Stan Lee with John Buscema Creating Superman #1, and Just Imagine Stan Lee with Kevin Maguire Creating Flash #1.

Robin: Year One TP

New collection of the Chuck Dixon/Scott Beatty miniseries. The solicitation says this takes place after the events of Batman: Dark Victory, as I think the collection gods would desperately like this book to be associated with that bestseller, though I am relatively sure the two stories don't match up.

Superman Vol. 2: The Unity Saga: The House of El TP

Paperback, following the previous hardcover, collecting issues #7-15.

Tales of the Batman: Marv Wolfman HC

In hardcover, collecting Batman #328-335 (assorted stories and the "Lazarus Affair" four-parter), #436-439 ("Batman: Year Three"), Detective Comics #408 ("The House That Haunted Batman," with Len Wein and Neal Adams), The Brave and the Bold #167 (team up with Blackhawk), World's Finest Comics #288 (team up with Superman), and New Teen Titans #37 and Batman and the Outsiders #5 (crossover between the two titles).

Wonder Woman: The Cheetah TP

Clearly the Batman: Arkham and Flash: Rogues books must be doing well; probably no coincidence too that Cheetah's about to be in the next Wonder Woman movie. Collects Wonder Woman #6 (1943) (first appearance, Priscilla Rich), #274, #275 (1980) (first appearance, Deborah Domaine), #9 (1987) (first major appearance, Barbara Minerva), The Flash #219 (2005), Wonder Woman #214 (2005) (crossover with Flash), Justice League #13-14 (2012) (New 52 two-parter), Wonder Woman #23.1 (2013) (New 52 Villains Month issue by John Ostrander), Wonder Woman #8 (2016) (Rebirth origin by Greg Rucka). Previously listed among the contents was Who's Who in the DC Universe #4 (1990) (Priscilla Rich by Trina Robbins), but that may no longer be included.

Comments ( 7 )

  1. Amazon have started listing a second JLI Omnibus, to be released 11th August 2020. There are currently no content details. Have you heard anything about this?

    1. The summer catalog will come out in the next couple weeks, presumably, and we'll get a big post then

  2. VERY slow month for me. I'll get the two Bendis offerings - Batman Universe and Event Leviathan - but that might be it.

    The JLA collection seems . . . I don't know . . .uninspiring? The first issue of the last four big tentpole runs (all of which were part of multi-issue arcs) is a weird choice, as is the first part of Tower of Babel. This seems more like a sampler to convince you to buy other books.

    Is there a good review of the Arkham remastering? Is it worth upgrading to the HC?

    1. Agree with your views on the JLA book, but I'm actually very stoked to see JLA #144, which was the first JLA issue I bought off the newsstand and is an excellent story besides. I was always peeved at Gerry Conway for ignoring this Untold Origin story. And anyone who loves Darwyn Cooke's The Next Frontier should read this story as it provides a lot of material for Cooke's adventure.

  3. I'll get the Marv Wolfman Batman book and the Tales of the Demon book, and maybe the DMZ Compendium, since I've been wanting to read that for years.

  4. Bendis Batman turns out to be surprisingly playful, somewhat the opposite of what you'd expect. Seems comparable to the Young Justice I've read, but since it centers on one character (with tons of guest-stars) it may play better.

  5. Just found out that the Absolute Gotham By Gaslight has been canceled. Not enough preorders.


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