Book Ends: Comic Books

  • The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck begins and ends in the same setting where Scrooge is introduced- in the timeframe where "Christmas On Bear Mountain" takes place.
  • Part of the opening scene of Bone has Smiley Bone unexpectedly charging Phoney Bone a dollar for a random tattered map he found on the ground. Phoney's angry reluctance to pay this impromptu fee causes Fone Bone to chide him that they're lost in the middle of the desert, so he should cough up the dollar. The very last scene repeats this occurrence, with the map replaced by one of their food rations.
  • In the first set of ElfQuest, there's a book end that occurs within the main storyline while Cutter and Leetah have been struck by "Recognition", a biological imperative that's trying to force them to mate and have kids. In one scene Cutter knocks on the window of Leetah's hut to demand why she's continuing to resist, and she angrily rebuffs him. It's probably not a spoiler-worthy surprise that she eventually gives in, and the scene is bookended by Cutter knocking at her window again, only this time it's to invite her to make love under the stars. Aaaah.
    • The first time we see Leetah in the Siege at Blue Mountain arc, just before the plot hits the fan, she's enjoying an uninhibited nude dance with her friend Nightfall. At the end of the story she's naked again, only now looking very vulnerable as she contemplates the future.
  • Watchmen begins and ends with a red-stained smiley. (And every chapter ends with a panel visually reminiscent of the first panel of the chapter.)
    • Also by Alan Moore, Batman's The Killing Joke, which begins and ends with a shot of rain hitting the ground, and the joke which is starting in the beginning is completed at the conclusion.
    • The first and last chapter of Watchmen also feature the death of a main character.
  • The Sandman, more subtly than most examples, begins and ends on the words "wake up".
  • Cable & Deadpool begins with Deadpool sitting alone in his shitty apartment, watching TV and lusting after Bea Arthur. The scene is revisited in panel-for-panel recreations a couple of times throughout the series, and then the final issue ends with Deadpool sitting alone in his shitty apartment, watching TV... and then being joined by his friends.
  • A one-issue set of bookends happened in the first part of The Phantom Affair, in the X-Wing Series comics. "When you are a child, the world is full of wonders. When you grow up, though, wonders tend to have more mundane explanations." "The world is full of wonders when you're a child. But sometimes, just sometimes, even a grown-up can meet with one."
  • Titans (as in grown-up Teen Titans) #15 has this example of Aquaman at the start of the book, an outcast of his people, leading Atlantis, and Tempest, Aquaman's former sidekick Aqualad, as an outcast of his people, leading Atlantis.
  • The Astro City story "In Dreams" starts and ends with Samaritan dreaming about flying.
  • Rising Stars begins with a burst of energy hitting a small town, giving unborn children super powers. By the end of the series, the last surviving member of The Specials (who now has all the energy of all the deceased specials combined) has built a spacecraft, and uses it to find another inhabited world and crashes down like a fireball, starting the whole process over again.
  • The most recent Punisher: War Journal's first issue involved Frank killing Stilt-Man. The last issue was about Frank deciding not to kill the Stilt-Man gang.
  • Transmetropolitan: The first issue is Spider driving down from the mountain, the last issue is Royce driving up the mountain. Some of the panels are staged almost identically, with Royce in Spider's place. Additionally, it incorporates an off panel Brick Joke involving a beating Spider promised to a tollbooth attendant in issue 1.
  • Marvel Zombies begins with the Zombie Sentry going into Earth-2149 from his dimension. Marvel Zombies Return ends with him leaving his dimension to Earth-2149.
  • Y: The Last Man begins with Yorick in a straitjacket (practicing to be an escape artist) while on the phone to his girlfriend, asking her if she knew that Elvis had a stillborn twin brother. In the last issue, he poses the same question to one of his clones, who doesn't even know who Elvis is. He's in a straitjacket again, this time because he's been placed on suicide watch.
  • Starling Gates started and ended (for now — hopefully) his run on Supergirl by using a Cat Grant news piece.
  • In-story example in Edward Gorey's illustrated short The Unstrung Harp; or, Mr Earbrass Writes a Novel. The titular author, C(lavius) F(rederick) Earbrass, begins the first draft of the manuscript for The Unstrung Harp with "It had begun to snow" and finishes with "It was still snowing."
  • 52 begins and ends with similar covers (emphasizing Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman's absence during the Time Skip that took place after Infinite Crisis).
    • Issue one ends with The Question removing the bat decal from the Bat-signal, and replacing it with a question mark. He then shines it on Renee Montoya's apartment (who has elected as his successor), and asks "Are you ready?". Issue 52 ends with Renee Montoya, now The Question, removing the question mark and putting the bat decal back on the signal. She then shines it on the apartment of Kate Kane's, who is both her girlfriend and Batwoman. "Are you ready?".
  • Tintin and the Picaros uses two very similar panels to show that despite Alcazar's regime replacing Tapioca's, nothing has changed for the ordinary people.
  • Blackest Night begins and ends with Hal Jordan and Barry Allen talking in front of Batman's grave. Likewise, the cover for Blackest Night #1 is the Batman clone's skull spewing Black Lantern Rings, while one of the covers for Brightest Day #24 is a similar image of Swamp Thing spewing White Lantern Rings.
  • The first and last issues of Strangers in Paradise have nearly the same covers; the first showing Francine and Katchoo in an art gallery as young girls, and the last issue showing them in the same pose as mature women.
  • The Green Lantern story "Tygers" has a prologue and epilogue depicting Abin Sur's plummet into Earth. Both begin with the words, "Years later, he died," and both end with the words, "He fell...and all the way down, in his mind, he could hear them laughing."
  • In the short story in My Little Pony Micro Series Issue #3 Hayseed's face at being heartbroken after initially meeting Rarity is matched at the end when Spike claims Rarity's taken.
  • The second run of She-Hulk (basically John Byrne's run) has the first cover telling readers that if they don't buy her comic, she's coming over to their house and ripping up their X-Men comics. The final issue's cover has her telling them to hand them over.
  • In Kick-Ass, Volume 3 ends the same way Volume 1 began; with some loon trying to fly from the roof of an NYC skyscraper, drawn almost identically to the panels in the original. This time, instead of his plummeting to his death in a dark illustration of just how ridiculous the idea of super-heroes really is, he actually pulls it off and soars into the air.
  • The Superior Foes of Spider-Man begins and climaxes with Boomerang throwing a baseball game and being forced to become a criminal. Notably, the two events are similar but end up having completely different meanings; the first time was his Start of Darkness, but the second time serves as his ultimate failure to escape the supervillain lifestyle.