Review: DC Comics Year by Year

DCDK Publishing, out now

A detailed guide to DC’s decades of publishing…

This massive tome is subtitled A Visual Chronicle, but chances are that those interested in the history of comics are going to be buying this for its text. Unlike the Marvel volume, which concentrated on the artwork, with some brief – but useful – descriptions appended, this is a very detailed look at DC’s rise and fall and rise and fall and rise…

I don’t know the DC Universe in anywhere near as close detail as I do Marvel, apart from the really key landmarks, so I learned a great deal from this book. Its mini-essays on the key issues from each year (and in many cases, pretty much each month of each year) chart the arrival of writers and artists, the notable moments in each of the lead characters’ lives, and the frequent shifting of the ground rules. It’s not a puff-piece of self-flattery: where missteps happened, they are acknowledged, rather than being overlooked.

It’s the sort of project about which many publishers nowadays would say “But you can get all of that from the internet – why would anyone buy it?” It needs the sort of treatment DK have given it: plenty of room for text and decent-sized visual material, and an attention to detail that provides not just a history of DC, but a history of the DC universe in context with the real world.

Verdict: An essential reference book for those interested in DC. 10/10

Paul Simpson

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: