"I came to the conclusion that the optimist thought everything good except the pessimist, and the pessimist thought everything bad, except himself." -- G.K. Chesterton
I generally don't enjoy comic books where a different is drawing each page, anniversary issue or otherwise. It tends to destroy any sense of a coherent story. However, I sometimes like a story where there are two artists, with one of them handling a flashback sequence or dream sequence while the other artist is handling the main story.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963
One of my favorite anniversary issues of all time is Sgt. Fury #100.
The story takes place at a Howlers reunion in the "present day," meaning 1972. The host and emcee for the reunion? Stan Lee, of course. During the reunion, Reb Ralston gets up to make a speech, as he is now Senator Reb Ralston. And thanks to his friendship with Gabe, Reb has become one of the foremost leaders of Civil Rights legislation in congress. So when he gets up to speak, a right wing assassin shoots him. The rest of the Howlers give chase and pursue the shooters (there are two of them) through New York City in a sequence that is among the best work Dick Ayers did on the series. Some of the pages have no words at all, they're just Ayers doing some great sequential storytelling. Top notch!
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Here's another one I liked. The finale to the Six-Fingered Hand saga as Satan (later retconned to be a pretender) literally creates Hell on Earth.
This issue, like the entire arc, was not as horrific as it could have been due to Don Perlin's art, but it was fun anyway.
Best Anniversary Issue :
"The Last Batman story" - This one basically before the Brave and the Bold story where Bruce Wayne marries Selina Kyle. Or the Golden Age one does. In this one he claims he is considering running for Governor and asking the woman he loves to marry him.
The worst Anniversary issue ...
X-Men 400 : Your thinking that the X-Men hitting the big 400th issue would have been special back in the early 2000's. Instead what we got was a complete fucking debacle of an issue. Basically Joe Casey had the team encounter the bunny ranch for Mutant whores running it. Instead of an issue focusing on something cool or maybe celebrating Xavier's dream and all the past and present X-Men....we got....mutant whores. Its no wonder Joe Casey's run would only last 15-16 issues and he'd leave.
"Heads up-- If Havok's position in UA #5 really upset you, it's time to drown yourself hobo piss. Seriously, do it. It's the only solution." - Rick Remender
Sucks 200 character limit.
Some anniversary issues that weren't recognized as anniversary issues, but could be considered as such:
Mystery in Space 75--a diamond anniversary issue featuring a novel-length Adam Strange story, guest-starring the Justice League, against Kanjar Ro. Infantino and Anderson doing the League--wow!
The Brave and the Bold 50--a so-so team-up of Green Arrow and Martian Manhunter, BUT this kicked off the continuing theme of TEAM-UPs for the rest of the series--previous issues could be considered team-ups (such as the Justice League issues), but this is when the format officially changed (and it would change again in 74, when Batman took up permanent residence).
Detective Comics 326 or 327--depending how you look at it, since 326 was the 300th appearance of Batman in 'Tec and the final Old Look issue (with the last Martian Manhunter back-up in that title), but 327 featured the first New Look Batman as Julius Schwartz took over as editor (and Elongated Man got the back-up gig) and this issue was cover-dated May 1964--since Detective Comics 27 was cover dated May 1939, that makes 25 years, the Silver anniversary of Batman.
Action Comics 241--cover dated June 1958, marks the 20th anniversary of Superman appearing in Action Comics 1, cover dated June 1938, and features the Super Key to Fort Superman which introduced Superman's arctic Fortress of Solitude, and is considered to be the first Silver Age Superman comic.
All Star Comics 50--cover dated December 1949/January 1950, "Prophecy of Peril" sees The Flash aka Jay Garrick bringing the JSA to his alma mater, Mid-Western University, for a tenth anniversary reunion--keeping things in real time, as Jay Garrick was indeed a college student when he first became The Flash in Flash Comics 1, cover dated January 1940 (by 1950 the Flash Comics title had been retired).
Batman 300 is why I never took Frank Miller's Dark Knight too seriously--because it was yet another story about what might happen if Batman ever got old. Since there's a rule against Batman ever getting old for keeps, one story about a possible Batman in the future is just as credible as another--which is not much.
G.I.Joe was at it's peak in popularity in 1986 and this was my first comic which was a huge departure from the cartoon, the lead 22 page story was the culmination of the Springfield subplot and then there was the 18 page sneak peak at G.I.Joe Special Missions.
Detective Comics #526 - a giant size 56 page awesome issue all around, this issue ends Gerry Conway's various story threads and showcases all of Batman's rogues gallery at that time.
This was a pretty neat issue that also featured the Elongated Man and Slam Bradley, as well as a cameo by the world's greatest detective...
Best has to be Iron Man 200, great climax to the Stane Saga
What comes in 201-203 after it is epilogue
Since we don't need to stick to classics, Batman 700 is the worst anniversary issue I read, it's horrible with its pointless mystery
Avatar from What If..? v2 #10: What If Punisher Family Hadn't Been Killed?
Pencils: Rik Levins
Ink: Bob McLeod
Some of my Favorites:
Fantastic Four #200
Fantastic Four #236
Captain America #255
Some Least Favorites:
Amazing Spider-Man #400
Fantastic Four #400