Darwyn Cooke was born in Toronto. He published his first comics in New Talent Showcase in 1985, but he eventually became a magazine art director, graphic and product designer for 15 years. He went into animation in the 1990s, working on the 'Animated Series' of Superman and Batman, as well as 'Batman Beyond' and Sony's 'Men in Black: The Series'. He finally returned to comics in 2000, when he did the graphic novel 'Batman: Ego' for DC Comics. He subsequently freelanced on titles such as 'X-Force', 'Wolverine/Doop' and 'Spider-Man's Tangled Web' for DC.
In 2001, he revamped 'Catwoman' with writer Ed Brubaker. In 2004, he wrote and drew the Eisner-Award winning 'DC: The New Frontier', a miniseries covering the gap between the golden and silver age of comic books in the DC Universe. He additionally contributed to the 'Solo' anthology and in 2006, he teamed up with writer Jeph Loeb to work on a 'Batman/Spirit' crossover. Cooke also took on script and artwork on the new monthly 'Spirit' title. As a scriptwriter, he wrote the first six issues 'Superman Confidential' (art by Tim Sale) in 2006.
Since 2009, he has been making comic book adaptations of Donald Westlake's 'Parker' novels, including 'The Hunter', 'The Outfit', 'The Score' and 'Slayground'. He was back at DC in 2012 as a writer and artist for 'Before Watchmen: Minutemen' issues 1 to 6.