Thursday, 8 September 2011

Sheffield's Most Wanted. Part 1: Detective Comics #443.

Detective Comics #443, Batman meets Manhunter, Jim Aparo cover, 100 pages
For the most part I was extremely lucky as a child. My nightmare of being forced to appear on Mike Reid's Runaround never became reality and I also managed to get my hands on most of the comics that I ever wanted.

However, just as no game show is ever free of fear, no life is perfect and there were a number of comics I always coveted but never got my grubby little hands on. In an exciting new feature that'll no doubt prove to be as popular as my legendary Supergirl Sunday slot, I'll from time to time be giving those comics a quick mention.

First on the list has to be Detective Comics #443. Not only was it a 100 pager, not only did it have a cover by Jim Aparo, not only did it feature the Spectre but it gave us the meeting of Detective Comics' then two biggest stars, Batman and Walt Simonson's Manhunter. Was there really anyone alive who could take one look at the pair of them stood back-to-back on that cover and not want that comic? Just the positioning of their feet alone was enough to sell the thing to you.

I actually got my hands on a copy a couple of years back, as part of a job-lot, and it was OK but if only I'd read it as a kid, then I'd really have been able appreciate it.

Actually it's probably best that I didn't. For if I had, my head would surely have burst from all the excitement and left nasty bits of my skull embedded in the walls where they would've become the subject matter of the worst song about wallpaper that Pulp ever wrote.

Sometimes in life it's best that we don't get what we hope for, but such a charming anecdote does give me chance to ask which comics did you always want but never got?

11 comments:

Kid said...

Wahey, another comic I've got. I'm still looking for World's Finest #180, Captain America Annual #2 and Superboy #147, plus a few others. But I don't think of them as comics 'I never got' - I think of them as comics I haven't got YET.

Dougie said...

Superboy 147 was one I wanted for many years and finally got in the Nineties. As a kid, I was struck by the beautiful cover art combo of Swan and Adams. Ultra Boy's tiny banner proclaiming "Extra! The Adult Legion vs. the Legion of Super-Villains" sounded like the most amzing battle comics had ever seen! And that was an extra?!
Then I got a taped-up copy at a comic mart in Glasgow. What a disappointment to my jaded adult sensibilities. And to rub salt in the wound, a glossy facsimile came out in 2003 at a cheaper price and sans brown sticky tape...

Dougie said...

I forgot to add: my current quest is for a copy of Adventure Double Double Comics issue 3. The contents are "Escape of the Fatal Five" with the revised Origins and Powers section; Aquaman vs. the Liquidator; The Superman-Batman Revenge Squads; the origin of the Martian Manhunter; and "Danger: Wonder Woman" with Giganta and Paula Von Gunther. I've missed out on a copy twice on ebay these last few weeks.

Kid said...

Dougie, I got that facsimile when it came out - it was a 'Giant' Issue. I should've typed #148, which was the conclusion to the tale begun in #146.

Super-Duper ToyBox said...

no bombshell here: i'm only a year back reading comics, so i want the Brightest Day TPBs 1 & 2 at a decent price, and want to read the Morrison Batman books. been doing a lot of catching up, including the Masterworks Avengers Vol. 1 & 2 right now, just finished Infinity Gauntlet, some Hous of M, Spider-Man 2099, & Justice League: Generation Lost. One comic I DID get as a kid thaat I still love is my old copy of Death in the Family, and I believe Aparo did that. A nice, fluid stype with good spatial dimension

Southfolkman said...

Ahh.. my one and only copy of Detective growing up. Read and re-read until it fell apart, despite my clumsy attempts at 'professional' repair courtesy of a reel of Scotch tape. The Simonson Manhunter/Batman was phenomenal, very impressed with the rather graphic indication that Manhunter really was dead at the end. The first Creeper story, the simplistic Robin, Spectre and GL, one of the best 100 pagers surely? Years later I unwisely bought a replacement, only to find that in my adult eyes it was nowhere near as much fun. Funny that. Except for the Manhunter of course.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Just found your site while looking up Double Doubles.
I'd be careful with the Adventure Double Double - those don't always have the same stories in (can't lay my hands on my copy right now, but I'm certain it isn't all LSH stories). These T+P amalgamations of 4 returned comics could have almost anything in them (including Marvel Comics).

For example I have 2 copies of Action #3 and one has the first Catwoman appearance from Batman and a Flash, while the other has Blackhawk, Spectre #4, Doom Patrol #120 and Amazing Spider-Man #49.

Hmm .. looks like I'll have to put my Detective #443 on e-bay!

Steve W. said...

Thanks for the tip-off, Anon. :)

Anonymous said...

nice idea, thanks for sharing...

Anonymous said...

The entire Manhunter series from Detective #437-443 was collected in a Manhunter 72-page reprint edition in 1984.

Steve W. said...

Thanks for the info, Anonymous.

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