1:10pm PT by Graeme McMillan
DC Declares July 23 'Batman Day'
If you’re wondering when you should give Batman his 75th birthday present — Detective Comics volume 1, number 27, featuring the first appearance of the character, was released in 1939 — then DC Entertainment has named the date, with July 23 being officially announced as “Batman Day.”
In observation of the unofficial holiday, DC will release a special edition of Detective Comics volume 2, number 27 to comic speciality retailers as a free giveaway to customers, as well as four masks illustrated by Ryan Sook that celebrate four iconic looks for the Caped Crusader. (The masks are based on Batman’s original look, as drawn by co-creator Bob Kane; the 1966 TV incarnation of the character as played by Adam West; Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns look and the current version of the hero by artist Greg Capullo.)
The special edition of Detective Comics, which features a retelling of Batman’s first comic book story by novelist Brad Meltzer and artist Bryan Hitch, will also be released for free digitally that same day. Additionally, DC announced that it will team with publisher Random House to “bring Batman Day to over 1,000 libraries across the U.S.” on Saturday, July 26.
Given that July 23 is also the same date as Preview Night for this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, it should be assumed that fans attending the annual comic book event can expect some kind of Bat-centric celebration during the show itself.
To date, Warners has released two animated shorts celebrating the 75th anniversary of the character, while DC Entertainment this month launched Batman Eternal, a new weekly series which, it’s promised, will “redefine” Gotham City and the crimefighter’s status quo in general.