Detective Comics 499 (February 1981)

Well, Batman fights the crooked miners union again this issue… but this time… he wins!

Actually, it’s a really nice story about Batman and Blockbuster saving a bunch of miners in a collapsed shaft. Conway takes his time, reintroducing everything from last issue (I love the recaps comics used to integrate into the stories), then basically doing an all-action story. Only, it’s not rushed and the Newton artwork is just beautiful.

And the whole story with Blockbuster, the character arc it puts him on, it’s a nice end to the character. I don’t think this version stayed in continuity–Conway treats him kind of like the Frankenstein Monster, the misunderstood beast–but it’s a good finish. There’s a touching scene with Blockbuster saving a little kid.

The Batgirl story is probably the best written of this “Barbara Gordon–Murderer!” arc, but the artwork’s loose. Giella’s inks are way off.


Allies in the Shadows; writer, Gerry Conway; penciller, Don Newton; inker, Dan Adkins. Chains of Guilt!; writer, Cary Burkett; penciller, Jose Delbo; inker, Joe Giella; colorist, Gene D’Angelo; letterer, John Costanza. Editor, Paul Levitz; publisher, DC Comics.

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