"Private Viewing": Before Batman can be thoroughly beaten by the man known as Tonka, two boxing students from the Southside Boy's Club steps in to break up the fight. With their timely intervention, Batman is able to finally defeat Tonka and plant a tracer/bug on the
- Violence is far from my idea of a good time. But sometimes, there's no other way to prevent even worse violence! Better that you get half-a-dozen to treat than one corpse to bury!
- — Batman
Appearing in "Private Viewing"
- Milton Sladek (Final appearance)
- Oscar Lampet (Final appearance)
- Tonka (Final appearance)
- Young Winthorp
- Mike Neuman
- Marty Scorpio
Synopsis for "Private Viewing"
Before Batman can be thoroughly beaten by the man known as Tonka, two boxing students from the Southside Boy's Club steps in to break up the fight. With their timely intervention, Batman is able to finally defeat Tonka and plant a tracer/bug on the man filming the brawl, Oscar Lampet. A short time later, the Dark Knight is patched up at the Gotham General Hospital and after his injuries are mended, he continues his quest.
Following the signal from his tracer back to Lampet's home, Batman overhears a conversation the "film maker" has with a Mr. S., the buyer of the recently shot video. When dawn breaks, the Dark Knight follows Lampet to the opulent home of Milton Sladek. Lampet gives his film to Sladek while Batman waits and then "convinces" the cameraman to turn himself and the buyer in. Back at the GCPD, Lampet confesses to Batman and Commissioner Gordon and tells them of a private showing later that night.
At the viewing, Batman recognizes many of Gotham's elite who have turned out to watch the video and after watching the reprise of his painful encounter with Tonka, he busts Sladek and takes all of the "showgoers" into custody. Batman then takes them all to the the hospital room of Arch Gaines, the young man who had been severely beaten the night before during a videotaping, and forces them to see the real life results of the videos they enjoy watching. Though Sladek tries one last gambit to flee his captors, the intervention of Gaines prevents the man's escape.
The whole affair leaves Batman a bittersweet feeling, as he knows violence is an endless circle and he is just one "injured soldier", fighting a neverending battle.
- This issue's "Detective Comments" letter page contains another "From the Den" soapbox by editor Dennis O'Neil, explainng how the media has blown out of proportions the aftermath of the recently released controversial storyline Batman: A Death in the Family, in which Robin was killed.
- This issue is reprinted in Batman: The Dark Knight Detective Vol. 3.
- This issue marks the end of Alan Grant and John Wagner's run as the writers of Detective Comics. Starting with issue #601 (after Sam Hamm's guest stint), Alan Grant will be the sole writer.
- No trivia.