Italian artist, Denis Medri, created a series of concept sketches that present an amazing interpretation of The Dark Knight as he might exist in the ’50s. The main influence for the design of the characters comes from the ’50s rockabilly music culture. The aesthetic look of the characters is entirely grounded in this world. The consistency of his theme, across all works, just makes the entire series that much stronger as a whole.
The aspect I love most about the concept of Batman, as presented throughout publishing history by DC Comics, is his versatility when it comes to alternate reimaginings. I never get tired of picking up and reading trade collections from the Elseworld imprint, which was especially popular in the ’90s. Batman: Gotham by Gaslight was the first Elseworld story to be told in 1989. It was written by Brian Augustyn, with art by Mike Mignola and edited by Mark Waid. In that one shot, Batman was featured as a hero from the 1890s Victorian era on a case to track down Jack the Ripper, who had come to Gotham City. Alternate Batmans within the Elseworlds were a common thing.
Grant Morrison even injected some of this alternate concept fun into the ongoing continuity. In Grant’s “Return of Bruce Wayne” story arc, Bruce Wayne is depicted as a prehistoric Batman, a pirate Batman, an inquisitor Batman and a cowboy Batman–into modern continuity no less! What Medri offers here holds up as the groundwork for its own miniseries. Unfortunately for all us drooling onlookers, all this work was done simply for fun and will never see life within DC Comics proper. At least we all have our imaginations!
Image Credit: [DeviantArt]