It may come as no surprise I am a HUGE Batman fan. I know I say that with a lot of the things here on GeekCast Radio but I really mean I love the Batman character. He really is the Ultimate Hero role. That being said, I am stating my personal opinions here so please take this for what it is which are my words.
My first introduction to Batman was not the famed Batman: The Animated Series, nor was it the ’66 Batman, it was the comics. I remember at the age of 5 my Dad wanting to get me into reading and took me to the Book store (Which at that time they sold individual comics) where he helped me pick my comic lines.
He bought me some Batman, Legends of the Dark Knight, Batman The Animated Series and Detective Comics. For YEARS I read these and collected. I had to sell off my entire collection for debt in the early 2000’s and gave up comics. Enter 2011 and the great reboot of DC Comics with the NEW 52. I have dove back into the comics, collecting the NEW 52 and much of the old comics, still trying to obtain my old ones again a little at a time.
That all being said, I give to you over the last 2 decades my Top 5 Favorite Batman Story Arcs!
#5 – Batman Incorporated
This was roughly around the time I jumped back into the comic world to find Bruce Wayne had died and returned. So suffice it to say I was utterly lost. I started t0 d0wnload comics here and read up to this point.
This particular concept I rather liked. It featured Bruce Wayne still running the show but not always as Batman. He had more contacts around the world he recruits to make BATMAN an international “Police” organization of sorts. Plus Wayne came right out and admitted to funding Batman for years and his continued backing of this entire program.
All in all I would recommend this not only to get information on all of his worldly allies but because it was just an interesting take. Also you have Dick Grayson still playing Batman and Bruce being the PRIME Batman with the special crest.
#4 – Batman – No Man’s Land
The first time I read this was after hearing the influences used of this for The Dark Knight Rises. I have not read it in the entirety so bare with me here. The gist I get is that Gotham like in TDKR is locked off from the world and different Organizations are popping up all over taking territories. Bruce is in Washington D.C. to get aide leaving his comrades to clean up the mess. He later returns to a city in shambles to correct everything.
This Arc was interesting by concept and execution. I would say this is a very well written large saga showing Batman’s World ripped apart.
#3 – Detective Comics – Knightfall
THIS is one I used to own and remember well. I LOVED this plot line. Not only does it feature a grand plan by Bane to remove Batman forever but it shows Batman getting worn down, ragged and finally broken. He then has Azrael take his mantle who grossly loses the ideals of Batman. In this you see Batman much like TDKR have to heal, and grow stronger to regain his role and take back his city. Jean Paul Valley (AKA Azrael) takes and breaks Bane in a later comic in this arc. He however has taken Batman’s suit and makes it into this deadly armor. Bruce eventually overpowers him, shows him the error of his ways and regains the TRUE mantle of Batman.
This saga is a MUST read for any Batman fans. I cannot stress this one enough. So many great villians and plots going on here that it is epic in proportion.
#2 – Batman – The Court of Owls
The only of my NEW 52 plots to make it here at this time. I really love this “reboot” of Batman. Plus it gives a history previously unknown into this secret organization that first held Gotham much the way Batman owns the whole thing now. It is a great addition to any Bat collection. DC Comics graciously provided this one to me and I loved every second of it. Scott Snyder’s Batman plots are flawless in my eyes. We see Batman in disbelief but always knowing they were there watching, and eventually they try to break him, failing miserably. He eventually takes down the court and shows the Bat reign supreme.
Another excellent and entertaining piece.
#1 – Batman – The Dark Knight Returns
Let me get this right from the get go. I HATE the rough drawing style here. I love the story though. It makes me feel like Batman Beyond prior to Terry and TDKR in some regards. I just bought this about a month ago and read it cover to cover. I like the return to the fight, Gordon KNOWING Bruce is the Bat, new Commissioner, the Joker’s end, Superman and Green Arrow battle, and the whole thing overall.
“The Dark Knight Returns tells the story of a 55-year-old Bruce Wayne who comes out of retirement to fight crime, only to face opposition from the Gotham City police force and the United States government.”
Just an overall interesting, entertaining and action filled comic Arc. This is the reason for the Batman getting most of his Dark roots in modern Media and deserves it’s place at #1.
So in conclusion I hope you liked my list and please feel free to comment!