"This should be agony. I should be a mass of aching muscle, broken, spent unable to move. And, were I an older man, I surely would. But I'm a man of thirty - of twenty again. The rain on my chest is a baptism. I'm born again."
Let's be real: The 1960's nearly ruined Batman. They took the personification of vigilantism, and watered him down to death. Luckily in 1986, one man would make it right again. He's known as Frank Miller. The writer of arguably the greatest graphic novel of all time. It's called The Dark Knight Returns, and you bet your life on it that we're going to review this masterpiece.
Batman has disappeared. Gotham City has gone to Hell. Crime has escalated exponentially, and Bruce Wayne has had enough! In The Dark Knight Returns, we find Bruce Wayne at the age of fifty-five but fights like a man in his twenties. He dons once again the cape and cowl of the Batman to face certain evil. He goes toe-to-toe with a restored Harvey Dent (Two-Face). Gotham is also under the siege of a ruthless gang of nefarious mutants, while Batman overruns them for his purposes. Meanwhile, the Joker goes on a killing spree which leads up to one final confrontation with The Dark Knight. Fearing what Batman can do, the United States Government sends Superman to put him in his place. Not wanting to be tamed by the Government, Batman has a legendary show down against Superman.
To me and other Batman fanatics is that The Dark Knight Returns is what made Batman return to his dark and gritty roots. All through the 1960's Batman was known as lighthearted and campy. This was most likely because of the 1960's tv show starring Adam West. To be honest, that really ruins Batman to me. Batman is not a lighthearted character. I don't really think someone would have a campy and easygoing life when their parents are shot to death in front of them as a child. I'm so thankful that Frank Miller took it upon himself to make Batman dark again.
Another reason this graphic novel is special is because it visually inspired Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice. It mainly inspires the movie because we see an aged Bruce Wayne return as Batman. He's rough, burly, and takes no prisoners. That's a prefect representation of this iconic character. If it weren't for Frank Miller, Batman would still be a corny, goofy, and bland superhero. Without him, we wouldn't have Batman V. Superman or The Dark Knight Trilogy. This is why The Dark Knight Returns is so special and beloved by all comic book fans.
All in all, The Dark Knight Returns is a must have for all comic fans and Batman enthusiasts! It's dark, gritty, and emotionally gripping. It puts Batman where he's supposed be as a superhero. To be honest, this is my absolute favorite graphic novel of all time. And says a lot considering, I'm a Marvel fanboy!! Do yourself a favor, and pick up this majestic work of art. I give The Dark Knight Returns an A+.