Follow TV Tropes


Milestone Celebration / Comic Books

Go To

  • In Spawn #100, Malebogia, the Big Bad of the first 99 issues, is killed off. Spawn's nemesis/occasional ally, Angela, is also killed.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Sonic the Comic celebrated its 100th issue (and, by extension, 200th week in existence) by ending the Robotnik Rules arc, which had been going on since issue 9.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • Issue #25: Sonic CD adaptation
      • Issue #50: Conclusion of the "End Game" story arc, where Dr. Robotnik is Killed Off for Real.
      • Issue #75: Following the development from #50, an alternate-universe Robotnik resembling the games' "Eggman" version is instated as the new Big Bad.
      • Issue #100: Freedom Fighter reunion
      • Issue #125: Sonic is apparently killed
      • Issue #150: Evil Sonic mucking things around
      • Issue #175: Eggman destroys Knothole and completely defeats Sonic.
      • Issue #200: Sonic foils another one of Eggman's schemes which causes him to go through a massive Villainous Breakdown that he completely loses what left of his sanity and put out of commission. Leaving the way for Snively to take over and kickstart the Iron Dominion arc.
      • Issue #225: Sally is apparently killed and kicks off the Sonic: Genesis storyline
      • Issue #250: The beginning of the third and final act of the Crisis Crossover Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Collide, setting up the massive Cosmic Retcon that would befall the "Prime" Zone after the crossover ended. Ironically, the narrative of the issue as a standalone would be more befitting a Mega Man milestone than a Sonic one, as the bulk of it is a Big Badass Battle Sequence against nearly every Robot Master to have ever existed.. Originally, it was supposed to have been the conclusion of the Mecha Sally storyline.
      • Issue #275 is the second to last issue of the Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Unite storyline.
      • Issues #288 - 291: "Genesis of a Hero" retells the events of the Genesis games and Sonic CD to match up with the new canon.
      • Sonic Mega Drive is a one-shot created for the 25th anniversary and tells a storyline that takes place after Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Also despite its nature as a one shot, Word of God confirms that it's canon to the comic's story. Its success led to two sequels called The Next Level and Overdrive.
    • Advertisement:
    • Sonic Universe:
      • It was supposed to celebrate its 50th issue with a tale set outside of the Archie continuity: an epilogue story for Sonic Underground. The story was supposedly supposed to occure later, but has certainly been scrapped since Archie abandoned the license.
      • Sonic Universe #25 kicked off Silver's storyline.
      • #75 is another Metal Sonic-based story.
    • Knuckles The Echidna #25 had Knuckles be fully reunited with his father Locke.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW)
      • Issue #25: The Deadly Six take control of the Zombots, and Eggman is forced to team up with the survivors to devise a plan to save the world and destroy his own virus.
  • Both of Mega Man's milestone issues involved the Worlds Collide and Worlds Unite storylines.
  • Cerebus the Aardvark ended with issue #300. This event had been planned for 27 years. The previous centennial issues each featured major turning points in his life: issue 100 introduced Cirin, the Big Bad of the series, and revealed that she was an Aardvark like Cerebus. Issue 200 has Cerebus meet his creator in space, and upon his return he gives up on adventuring and settles into the life of a barfly.
  • Advertisement:
  • Legion of Super-Heroes had a #300 in 1983 which was the 25th anniversary, which put to rest the AdultLegion story and brought back artists (and even logos) from various eras of the Legion. Natural for a comic published every month for 25 years — except it wasn't. The Legion had moved between comics and ended up getting the numbering of the Superboy comic, which wasn't monthly throughout its run; the fact that issue #300 was the 25th anniversary was pure coincidence. Also, the 10th anniversary (Superboy #147, 1968) finally revealed the origin of the Legion. The 30th anniversary (volume 3, #45, 1988) brought back the older artists again. The Legion has also done standard anniversary issues according to the cover numbering, meaning that V3 #50 was an anniversary issue with a letter column commenting on another anniversary issue.
  • Spider-Man has a tradition of making anniversary issues count:
    • Amazing Spider-Man #50 was the famous "Spider-Man No More!" story where Peter quits being Spider-Man (duh), but finds himself unable to quit after coming across a random bystander who resembles his Uncle Ben, and by saving him realizes why he became Spider-Man.
    • Issue 100: Peter tries to remove his powers, and has an acid-trip dream where he fights the Vulture, the Lizard, the Kingpin, Doctor Octopus, and the Green Goblin before seeing an image of the deceased George Stacy. When he wakes up, Spidey discovers he has six arms, kicking off the Six-Arm Saga that introduced Morbius.
    • Issue 200: Spider-Man faced Uncle Ben's killer, the Burglar (who was now working with Mysterio) once more.
    • Issue 300: First full appearance of Venom.
    • Issue 400: Ended with the death of Aunt May and the revelation that she'd known Peter was Spider-Man for years. Most of the fandom agreed it was a fitting sendoff for the character. Naturally, this was retconned a little over a year later...
    • Issue 500: Spidey helps Doctor Strange and several other heroes deal with a demon invasion in New York, magically revisits several moments in his past, and gets to meet Uncle Ben's ghost for five minutes thanks to Strange.
    • Issue 600: An upgraded Doctor Octopus attempts to make up for his past misdeeds by taking electronic control of New York City, the idea being that he can make everything far more efficient. Unfortunately, his subconscious mind attacks Spider-Man, endangering everyone around him, and tries to ruin the arrangements for Aunt May's wedding to J. Jonah Jameson Senior. Spidey beats Doc Ock at the site of their very first battle, and May and JJJ Sr are married by Jonah himself. Oh, and Mary-Jane shows up to catch the bouquet.
    • Issue 700: Amazing Spider-Man's final issue leading into its Marvel NOW replacement Superior Spider-Man; the conclusion of a long-running subplot where Doctor Octopus was dying from injuries accumulated from his many fights with Spider-Man - but not before pulling a "Freaky Friday" Flip on Peter and wearing mind-swap-protection armor to secure his position; unable to regain his true body, Peter implants his memories into Doc Ock and convinces him to not ruin the reputation of Spider-Man as Doc Ock's former body passes away, taking Peter's mind down with it. This turns the villain into the Superior Spider-Man.
    • Issue 800: Shows Spider-Man fighting and defeating the Red Goblin (a Fusion Dance of the Green Goblin and Carnage) in Go Down Swinging. It ends with the death of Flash Thompson, a supporting character who dates to Amazing Fantasy #15.
    • Anniversary Year Stories:
      • 25th Anniversary: Peter Parker gets married to long term Love Interest Mary Jane Watson in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21.
      • 30th Anniversary: Issue 365: Celebrated the 30th anniversary of the web-spinner with a story that had Spider-Man fighting the Lizard again, the re-introduction of Peter's parents (who would later be proven to be androids), a sick poster of Spidey, Venom, and Carnage, and a preview of Spider-Man 2099.
      • 40th Anniversary: 2002 was the year in which the first Spider-Man movie released.
      • 50th Anniversary: The first-ever crossover between the Marvel Universe and the Ultimate Marvel universe; as Peter Parker faces a world where he was killed in action and Miles Morales (the new Ultimate Spidey) sees what his predecessor might have grown up to be.
  • Venom #150 features the return of Eddie Brock as Venom. It also explains how Flash Thompson separates from the symbiote.
  • Don Rosa has done quite a few of these for various characters in the Disney Ducks Comic Universe:
    • For the 60th anniversary of Donald Duck's creation, he wrote "The Duck That Never Was", an It's a Wonderful Plot story set on Donald's birthday.
    • He also did "W.H.A.D.A.L.O.T.T.A.J.A.R.G.O.N", a story for the 60th anniversary of Huey, Dewey, and Louie's first appearance that was a Whole Episode Flashback to the day the nephews joined the Junior Woodchucks.
    • For Scrooge McDuck's 50th anniversary, Rosa wrote a story "A Little Something Special", where Scrooge's biggest enemies plot to rob him during a celebration of the anniversary of the day Scrooge arrived in Duckburg. It took ten years for the story to be published in Brazil and it served not only to celebrate Scrooge's 60th anniversary but also to celebrate issue 500 of his Brazilian comic book line.
    • "The Beagle Boys vs. the Money Bin", written in honor of the 50th anniversaries of both the Beagle Boys and Scrooge McDuck's famous Money Bin, had the Beagles plotting a break-in to the Bin using a copy of the Bin's blueprints.
    • Even Gyro Gearloose got a 50th anniversary special, "Gyro's First Invention", which featured a Whole Episode Flashback that explained where his little robot Helper came from, and explained how he helped Scrooge get the money in his money bin out of the sinkhole it fell into after the events of Carl Barks' "A Christmas for Shacktown".
    • Furthermore, there is Gladstone Gander's 50th anniversary special, "The Sign of the Triple Distelfink", wherein he tries to avoid his own birthday party, in order to hide the fact that his birthday is the one day of the year when his legendary luck leaves him. A flashback in this story reveals he was literally Born Lucky, having inherited his good luck from his mother.
  • Most Archie Comics digests will have special stories for their Milestones, where the characters discuss exactly how they should celebrate said milestone. Archie Double Digest #200 celebrated 200 issues with the start of a 4 part "New Look" story entitled Archie Goodbye Forever, and even bigger than that, Archie #600 celebrated 600 issues with the start of a 6 part story entitled Archie Marries Veronica (of which the final three parts switched to Archie Marries Betty).
  • In 1985, DC Comics celebrated their 50th anniversary with Crisis on Infinite Earths, which brought a Cosmic Continuity Reboot upon the DC Universe. Later on, 2005-2006's Infinite Crisis took place twenty years after the original Crisis, and 2015's Convergence took place thirty years afterwards.
  • In the DC Universe, several Post-Crisis titles hit #100 at about the same time in The '90s. All of them were given special prismatic covers. In addition:
  • Marvel Comics:
    • In July 1986, they celebrated their 25th anniversary (the 25th anniversary of the Fantastic Four, their flagship Silver Age title) with a cover theme - every comic published in that month had a portrait of a character on it surrounded by a border containing various characters. Even the licensed comics got in on the act.
    • In 2009 when Marvel celebrated their 70th Anniversary note , many comics were published with Variant Covers with a style very similar to the 25th Anniversary listed above.
    • In 2014, they celebrated their 75th releasing five comics set in the year 2061, which is when they will celebrate 100 years of Marvel.
  • The Dandy and The Beano celebrated their 60th birthdays and 1997 and 1998 respectively. Both put out double-length issues in which The Dandy resurrected numerous older strips, while The Beano printed a series of stories based around the number 60. Both also hit issue 3000 around the year 2000. The Beano's honouring of this was nothing special, but The Dandy featured a series of stories based around trouble caused by the '3000 bug', a spoof of the then-recent millennium bug scare.
  • 2000 AD has done a few:
    • For the 10th anniversary, a badge reading '10 years of Thrills' was inserted somewhere in each strip.
    • For the 30th anniversary, which was also the 30th anniversary of the first Judge Dredd strip, they began the "Origins" story, which explains how the world of Judge Dredd came to be. John Wagner had been planning on writing that story for a while, but figured that the 30th anniversary was the right time to publish it.
    • The 10th anniversary of 2000 AD's sister title, Judge Dredd Megazine, ran Judge Death's Origin Story.
    • In 2010, the Meg's 300th issue and 20th anniversary occurred within two issues of each other, and so issues 300, 301, and 302 were all double-length (and the price was raised by a pound; issue 303 was still 50p more than 299, grumble grumble). Across all three were run two special features:a three-part in-depth interview with Carlos Ezquerra, and past writers and artists reminiscing about their favourite parts of the Meg. Issue 302's Judge Dredd strip was full of all sorts of continuity nods and the final panel, while making perfect sense in the context of the story, was clearly a happy birthday message to the Meg.
    • In 2016, 2000 AD made it to 2000 progs, the mag's run by that point totalling about 60,000 pages of comics. Tharg discussed the magazine's history with cameo appearances from almost every major or minor character. The anniversary edition also included the return of many writers and artists such as Pat Mills, John Wagner, Brian Bolland, and Carlos Ezquerra, and featured stories from Judge Dredd and Strontium Dog, Rogue Trooper, Nemesis the Warlock, Anderson: Psi-Division, Sinister Dexter, and one new one named Counterfeit Girl.
    • For the 40th anniversary, a special edition was released containing six done-in-one stories based around the colour red, since the 40th anniversary is the ruby one. The stories were interspersed with characters reminiscing about their past adventures.
  • For its 80th anniversary, Dick Tracy ran a storyline from September 18 to October 23, 2011, which doubles as a follow up on a 1948 story arc and an update of the first storyline (as recounted by Sam Catchem to Lizz Worthington).
  • Captain America:
    • The 70th Anniversary, in addition to being right around the time the movie was released, featured Steve Rogers once again donning the identity after previously leaving his former sidekick James Buchanan Barnes to fill in the role. Marvel also released multiple variant covers to comics released in July which featured everyday Americans and real American heroes alike all bearing Cap's signature red-white-and-blue colors.
    • The 75th anniversary for Cap, in 2016, was portrayed with Avengers Standoff and not only involved all Avengers teams, but also three Captain Americas - old man Steve Rogers, former Cap Bucky Barnes and current Cap Sam Wilson. This led to Steve regaining his youth thanks to a Reality Warper and becoming Captain America again, agreeing to share the title with Sam; but it also set off the storyline where Steve is now a deep-cover agent of HYDRA thanks to that same Reality Warper. The year also saw the release of Captain America: Civil War, and Marvel's various mobile games celebrated by adding Original Generation "What If?" versions of Cap (for instance, Marvel Puzzle Quest had "What if Steve died and Peggy Carter became Captain America?" and Marvel Future Fight had "What if Steve wasn't frozen and settled down with Peggy, and their daughter succeeded him as Cap?")
  • Superman returned to his trademark look and had his classic powers restored after the controversial energy being storyline for his 60th anniversary in the one-shot "Superman Forever."
  • The final part of The Death of Superman fell on Superman #75. The issue that kicked off his return? The Adventures of Superman #500. The issue that brought him back to Metropolis? Superman: The Man of Steel #25. The tie-in issue of Superman volume 2 for Joker's Last Laugh was #175. Naturally, the issue involved a Jokerized Doomsday.
  • Many of Action Comics' centennial issues revolved around certain events:
    • #100 dealt with a detective determined to find the connection between Clark and Superman.
    • #200 had Superman taking a warrior's test
    • #300 had Superman trapped in a Bad Future (which was later adapted into the Justice League two-parter "Hereafter")
    • #400 was an Imaginary Story involving his "son".
    • #500 (the last centennial anniversary issue in the pre-Crisis continuity) had Superman on a "This is Your Life"-type show.
    • #600 (the first in the post-Crisis continuity) celebrated 50 years of the Man of Steel and also saw the first date between Superman and Wonder Woman.
    • #700 kicked off The Fall of Metropolis.
    • #800 had numerous stories about how Superman inspired other people.
    • #900 had Superman and Lex Luthor's last encounter before The New 52.
    • #1000 sees numerous stories from numerous creators, the return of Superman's "classic" costume and helps set up Brian Michael Bendis' Superman
      • In a non-centennial instance, issue #544 (celebrating the 45th anniversary of Action Comics, and still pre-Crisis) introduced Lex Luthor's warsuit and Brainiac's new robotic body.
  • Superman #400 contains a series of stories set after Superman's apparent death, starting with one set when his life was still within living memory and moving further and further into the future, as memory became myth but he continued to inspire people.
  • Batman has had fewer opportunities for this, since neither of his flagship books (Batman and Detective Comics) were ever renumbered until the New 52 relaunch in 2011. But fewer doesn't mean none:
    • Detective Comics #526 celebrated Batman's 500th appearance in the title, and marked the end of the Gerry Conway run that had dominated both Batman and Detective for about three-and-a-half years. It featured the Joker gathering a truly impressive Legion of Doom to kill Batman before newcomer Killer Croc could, while doubling as Jason Todd's (first) origin.
    • Batman #400 saw the above and raised, pitting Batman and all his allies against an even bigger Legion of Doom (this time led by Ra's al-Ghul) in the very last adventure to take place before the Post-Crisis reboot. Illustrated by a dozen different artists, and featured an intro from Stephen King of all people.
    • Detective Comics #627 was technically Batman's 601st appearance in Detective, but the numbering was apparently too appealing to pass up. This one contained four different takes on "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate!", Batman's very first adventure.
    • Batman #500 was a pivotal point in the Knightfall saga, with Jean-Paul Valley finally taking down Bane and proving himself - tentatively - worthy of Batman's mantle.
    • Batman Eternal was a year-long weekly series taking place as part of Batman's 75th anniversary. Batman and Robin Eternal was a shorter, six-month-long weekly series taking place as part of Robin's 75th anniversary.
  • Warner Bros. and DC Comics had a lot on the plate across a number of their branches for the 75th anniversary of Batman in 2014:
  • Issue #50 of The Powerpuff Girls (DC run) featured a story originally intended as a season five episode of the TV show. The episode went over budget and faced a tight deadline, so the storyline was given to DC to make as a comic.
  • Astro City:
    • The series' twentieth anniversary in 2015 was marked in a low-key fashion, with Vertigo issue #26 returning to the subject of the very first issue, Samaritan's dreams of flying.
    • Vertigo issue #41, the 100th issue of Astro City, told the story of the Astro-Naut, the hero who the city was named for, and incidentally added another piece to the Vertigo run's overarching Myth Arc.
    • Vertigo issue #50 saw the return of Michael Tenicek, the main character of much-loved Astro City story "The Nearness of You".
  • Star Wars: Legacy and Knights of the Old Republic had an unfortunate "celebration" for their 50th issues: they were unexpectedly cancelled.
  • Usagi Yojimbo had two within the span of four years. The 100th issue published by Dark Horse featured an out of continuity banquet in Usagi's honor and featured guest artists and characters from Dark Horse. In #141, the series celebrated its 200th overall issue with a story about Usagi and an Author Avatar of Stan Sakai stopping bandits from terrorizing a town.
  • DC marked Jack Kirby's 100th anniversary in 2017 with the 12-issue round robin series Kamandi Challenge and a series of one-shots in August of that year featuring Kirby's DC creations. Marvel marked it with variant anniversary covers for his Marvel creations, and reprints of milestone Kirby stories in August.
  • In 2014, the Dutch Donald Duck magazine celebrated the 80th anniversary of his creation with a special comic story called 80 is prachtig, which fleshes out his twin sister Della (known to fans as the mother of Huey, Dewey, and Louie) and explains what happened to her.
  • In 2018, Boom! Studios kicks off the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (Boom! Studios) storyline Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: Shattered Grid, which is not only one part of the franchise's 25th anniversary, but also starting on the title's 25th issue.
  • For 2019, in celebration of their 80th anniversary, Marvel Comics published Marvel Comics #1000 (obviously riffing on Superman and Batman's recent 80th anniversaries being celebrated in the 1000th issues of Action Comics and Detective Comics, respectively), with a lengthy story about the Eternity Mask that is rooted in 1939's Marvel Comics #1 and spans decades of Marvel Universe continuity. This ended up being a collaboration so massive, Marvel had to publish a "#1001".
  • For the 600th issue of regular Wonder Woman issues the numbering was switched to legacy numbering (adding all the issues together to get the issue number rather than just being Wonder Woman (2006) #45) and was a compilation of unrelated stories not anchored in current continuity by different writer and artist teams celebrating the hero.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: