The world loves Batman! To celebrate this fact — and the talents of comics maker around the world — DC has just announced Batman: The World, a 184-page anthology by creators from 14 different countries, with each story taking place in the creators’ home country.
Batman: The World goes on sale worldwide on Tuesday, September 14, 2021—just in time for Batman Day 2021 (Saturday, September 18, 2021). Localized editions will be available in North America, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, the Czech Republic, Russia, Poland, Turkey, Mexico, Brazil, China, Korea, and Japan.
“Batman has grown into a true pop culture icon, known the world over,” said DC publisher and chief creative officer Jim Lee in a statement. “Batman: The World is DC’s way of showing fans everywhere that Batman is more than a character; Batman is a phenomenon that transcends languages and borders.”
Writer Brian Azzarello and artist Lee Bermejo (Batman: Damned, Joker, Lex Luthor: Man of Steel, Batman/Deathblow) reunite for the lead framing story, “Global City,” in which
Batman reflects on his time in Gotham, protecting his city and its inhabitants from all manner of threats. But when he looks beyond the bridges, alleys, and skyscrapers, the Dark Knight realizes that the call for justice knows no borders, as there are wrongs to be righted everywhere. This framing device leads to stories by a distinguished international roster of talents:
- Mathieu Gabella (writer)/Thierry Martin (artist) – France
- Paco Roca (writer/artist) – Spain
- Alessandro Bilotta (writer)/Nicola Mari (artist) – Italy
- Benjamin von Eckartsberg (writer)/Thomas von Kummant (artist) – Germany
- Stepan Kopriva (writer)/Michal Suchánek (artist) – Czech Republic
- Tomasz Kolodziejczak (writer)/Piotr Kowalski, Brad Simpson (artists) – Poland
- Ertan Ergil (writer)/Ethem Onur Bilgiç (artist) – Turkey
- Alberto Chimal (writer)/Rulo Valdés (artist) – Mexico
- Carlos Estefan (writer)/Pedro Mauro (Artist) – Brazil
- Inpyo Jeon (writer)/Jae-kwang Park, Kim Jung Gi (artists) – Korea)
- Xu Xiaodong, Lu Xiaotong (writers)/Qiu Kun, Yi Nan (artists) – China
- Kirill Kutuzov, Egor Prutov (writers)/Natalia Zaidova (artist) – Russia
- Okadaya Yuichi (writer/artist) – Japan
While we don’t have time to track down this entire roster, it is indeed a strong one. For instance, Paco Roca is one of Spain’s best known cartoonists — his work has been published here by Fantagraphics, including Wrinkles and House. Okadaya Yuichi is an award winning mangaka in Japan; Alessandro Bilotta also has a loaded awards shelf; and so on.
Local publishers are partnering with DC for the international editions, and they will each have a unique cover by the local creative team. International publishing and distribution partners include Urban Comics (France), ECC Ediciones (Spain), Panini (Italy, Brazil, Germany), CREW (Czech Republic), Azbooka-Atticus (Russia), Egmont Polska (Poland), JBC (Turkey), Editorial Televisa (Mexico, Central America), Sigongsa (Korea), Starfish Media (China), and Shopro (Japan).
And here are 13 covers and some interior art — if you’ve ever wanted to see Batman brooding at various world culture sites, this is your time. Some real beauties here!