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DC Collects Loeb, Lee Run
By Brian Jacks


Since the BATMAN creative team of writer Jeph Loeb and artists Jim Lee & Scott Williams "exploded" out of the gate with October's issue #608, the Dark Knight's series has been a fixture at the top of the Diamond Comic Distributors sales charts. Now the first five chapters of the team's run are to be collected in BATMAN: HUSH, a hardcover volume that includes special bonus material.

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The BATMAN: HUSH HC (FEB030141) collects the sold-out BATMAN #608-609 and the follow-up story from #610-612, which DC says "is perfect for fans who loved the stories the first time around, and for those who want to catch up on the action!"

Along with a new cover by Lee & Williams, BATMAN: HUSH features four brand-new story pages as well as two never-before-published pages previously available exclusively at www.dccomics.com. In addition, the volume includes an introduction by Loeb, plus a gallery that includes the covers to all five issues, the second printing of BATMAN #608, and the BATMAN DOUBLE FEATURE.

"From a pagination point of view, the double-page spreads wouldn't fall correctly without inserting some pages," says Lee of the added material. "Rather than running blank pages, we added a page here and a page there to ensure that the story flows seamlessly and without interruption."

"Jim and I carefully selected the moments on the new pages as enhancements," says Loeb. "Think of it as the 'director's cut' of your favorite DVD. Jim designed a startling new cover for the entire package that'll round out what's been a truly exciting experience — and it's less than half over!"

"The design of the hardcover was a tough assignment," Lee adds. "Collected editions are a different animal from periodicals. In my view, covers of collected editions are more about creating a sense of emotion than wowing the reader with action-packed, in-your-face imagery. On top of it, I had to come up with a template that would allow us to make sure the second collection will fit in with this first one from a design perspective while looking separate and distinct."

The publisher describes the book this way. The story begins with Batman hot on the trail of Killer Croc, piecing together the mystery behind a $10 million stash swiped by Catwoman. The clues lead the Dark Knight to Metropolis, where he squares off against Poison Ivy — and Superman!

BATMAN: HUSH is a 128-page hardcover solicited in the February issue of Previews, and is scheduled to arrive in comic-book stores on April 30 with a cover price of $19.95 U.S.


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