DETECTIVE COMICS #31
CGC VG+: 4.5
Detective issues 27 and 38 may get all the attention, but true Bat-fanatics and Golden Age aficionados know that pre-Robin issues 28 through 37 contain some of the most moody and compelling Batman stories ever published, and some of the most dynamic covers of the pre-war era. This issue is probably the most famous and most difficult to obtain, and became the iconic image of the caped crusader for the Golden Age. Dark, brooding, and classic, this cinematic image more than any other captures the drama and crude power of early Batman, and easily demonstrates why so many Bat-collectors are nearly fetishistic about this brief but fertile period in the character's history. No serious DC Golden Age collection is complete without this masterpiece, which explains the feeding frenzy that ensues on the rare instances that copies make it to market. The Batman tale contained within this book's pages bears the distinction of introducing not only the Batgyro, precursor to the Batplane, but also the famous Batarang, a useful tool still brandished by the Caped Crusader to great effect in the modern day. Batman uses these gadgets in an attempt to rescue his fiancee, Julie Madison, from the Monk, a hooded and robed baddie, who employs hypnosis and gorillas in his nefarious plans!
The colors are quite strong and vibrant on this copy with all defects astray from the central image, making this example highly collectible. With few Universal copies certified on the CGC census and thousands of collectors nutty for Batman, any Detective #31 that reaches the marketplace is a bonafide winner. The bright yellows and reds read well against the dark, gloomy brown and gray imagery that hangs above the gothic setting. All early Detective Comics are highly sought-after, valuable, and important pieces of comic-book lore, but this blue-label copy is sure to turn a few heads, and will keep bidders glued to their screens no matter their skin in the game.
Overstreet Guide 2017 VG+ (4.5) value = $56,250.
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