Secret histories are dime a dozen in superhero comics; the shadowy cabals, grand manipulations and dark origins that led our shining heroes to the iconographies we’ve always known. Yet Gotham City: Year One avoids the superheroic pitfalls of such histories, instead telling a story of the very human tragedies of a Gotham City and Wayne Dynasty from long before the Caped Crusader was born. Tom King picks the perfect eyes to see such a story through in gumshoe-iest of gumshoe detectives Slam Bradley, who first shared the page with Batman in the original Detective Comics #1. Alongside Phil Hester’s grounded stylization and sublime storytelling, the hard-boiled cops, wily dames, and city where the rain only stops long enough for the blood to dry are brought to life with a modern-eyed approach to classic tropes. DC continues to package stories with care, and the behind-the-scenes sketchbook and cover gallery complete a lovely looking hardcover collection of one of our favourite crime stories of 2023.