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15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Old 07-31-12, 02:55 PM
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15 best batman stories youve never read‏

just wanted to share this article in case you havent seen it. some of them sound great to me.

http://io9.com/5928142/rare-batman-c...e-should-read/

ive read a lot of batman but only in collections so i dont know any of these.

do you think they are available on any digital comics services yet? or will be, if youve heard anything about what catalogue stuff is on the way?
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Old 07-31-12, 03:46 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

I have read all but three of those. They aren't really obscure. I was expecting stuff from the 50s or 60s, not 80s and 90s.

Anyway, of those I am 99% sure that The Many Deaths of Batman was collected in a trade long ago. It is probably out of print though. I also think Dark Knight Dark City was recently collected in a trade since Morrison's run references it with the Barbatos demon. All of that stuff is dollar bin material that you can find easily on ebay for pennies.
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Old 07-31-12, 03:51 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
I have read all but three of those. They aren't really obscure. I was expecting stuff from the 50s or 60s, not 80s and 90s.

Anyway, of those I am 99% sure that The Many Deaths of Batman was collected in a trade long ago. It is probably out of print though. I also think Dark Knight Dark City was recently collected in a trade since Morrison's run references it with the Barbatos demon. All of that stuff is dollar bin material that you can find easily on ebay for pennies.
cool, i was expecting them to be expensive or at least tough to track down. for the ones youve read, do you agree with the author that they are underrated?
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Old 07-31-12, 04:07 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by dishpan View Post
cool, i was expecting them to be expensive or at least tough to track down. for the ones youve read, do you agree with the author that they are underrated?
I think the term underrated isn't really accurate since most of that stuff was loved when it came out. Forgotten would be a better word since they have been forgotten over time rather than remembered like O'Neil's and Englehart's stuff.

One that I really disagree on though is Batman #402-403 with Max Allan Collins. I hated his run. He wrote 401-403, then 408-415. (Frank Miller's Year One was 404-407.) 402-403 was probably his best story, but that isn't saying much as it still wasn't very good.

The Owlsey two issues are good. Aparo's The Many Deaths of Batman was also very good. You can't go wrong with 70s/80s Aparo. Dark Knight Dark City is my favorite Riddler story, although many other people hate it. Its a story you will either love or hate with no middle ground. A Bullet for Bullock is good. Dixon wrote it, and he was always consistently good. Gotham Nights I haven't read since I was a little kid, and I think I was too young to appreciate it because I don't have any fond memories of it. The LotDK issues I don't remember too well since I haven't re-read that series in ages, but I remember liking most of that series. The rest of the stuff is random one-shots that I remember even less. Most of those weren't anything special but rather quick money grabs in the 90s speculator market.

Last edited by kgrogers1979; 07-31-12 at 04:13 PM.
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Old 07-31-12, 04:44 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
I think the term underrated isn't really accurate since most of that stuff was loved when it came out. Forgotten would be a better word since they have been forgotten over time rather than remembered like O'Neil's and Englehart's stuff.

One that I really disagree on though is Batman #402-403 with Max Allan Collins. I hated his run. He wrote 401-403, then 408-415. (Frank Miller's Year One was 404-407.) 402-403 was probably his best story, but that isn't saying much as it still wasn't very good.

The Owlsey two issues are good. Aparo's The Many Deaths of Batman was also very good. You can't go wrong with 70s/80s Aparo. Dark Knight Dark City is my favorite Riddler story, although many other people hate it. Its a story you will either love or hate with no middle ground. A Bullet for Bullock is good. Dixon wrote it, and he was always consistently good. Gotham Nights I haven't read since I was a little kid, and I think I was too young to appreciate it because I don't have any fond memories of it. The LotDK issues I don't remember too well since I haven't re-read that series in ages, but I remember liking most of that series. The rest of the stuff is random one-shots that I remember even less. Most of those weren't anything special but rather quick money grabs in the 90s speculator market.
forgotten, good call. some of these seem like good candidates for the 100 page specials dcp puts out from time to time. itd be nice if digital was available even if its a little more expensive, since it would be easier for me.

i too like the riddler but the description of that plot (with the demon under gotham) seems both out of place for that character and also like something i would hate haha.
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Old 07-31-12, 05:28 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

I too was expecting stuff of the beaten path. I own all of those stories as most are from Batman and none are older than 1987 or so. Kinda surprised "10 Nights of the Beast" isn't on the list. I remember really liking that story, although it's been more than 20 years since I read it.
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Old 07-31-12, 08:03 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by madcougar View Post
I too was expecting stuff of the beaten path. I own all of those stories as most are from Batman and none are older than 1987 or so. Kinda surprised "10 Nights of the Beast" isn't on the list. I remember really liking that story, although it's been more than 20 years since I read it.
Yeah, Ten Nights of the Beast is good, although really dated. I started a few months ago re-reading my Batman collection starting from COIE. Max Collins' run is a piece of crap and a chore to get through like I said in a previous post. It really picks up once Collins leaves and Jim Starlin comes on as the new writer. That said though, Ten Nights is really dated since it deals with the Cold War era Soviet Union (and the villain himself is KGBeast... a relic of the Cold War). There are some cheesy moments like Alfred disguising himself as Ronald Reagan. It isn't a bad story though despite the dated feel and few cheesy moments. The best story however that Starlin wrote was the dumpster slasher killer storyarc. That was simply awesome. The storyarc with the rapist diplomatic right before Death in the Family is also great. Speaking of Death in the Family, I feel that is Starlin's worst work. A lot of stuff made no sense at all. Its kind of weird that the storyarc he is most well known for is his worst.
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Old 08-01-12, 02:58 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Looks like whoever came up with that list is a big fan of the late-80s to early 90s era.

Sort of surprised that Morrison's "Gothic" from Legends of the Dark Knight didn't make the list.
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Old 08-01-12, 06:59 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man View Post
Sort of surprised that Morrison's "Gothic" from Legends of the Dark Knight didn't make the list.
Or anything from the first 20 issues of LotDK at all. The list has a lot of later LotDK issues, but the first 20 or widely considered the best.

Also I am sad to see nothing at all from Alan Grant/Norm Breyfogle. When I think late 80s/early 90s Batman, that is the creative team I remember most fondly. Heck, they are my favorite creative team of all time. They created a lot of modern day Batman characters like Zsasz, Jeremiah Arkham, Ventriloquist and Scarface, Cornelius Stirk, and Anarky.
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Old 08-01-12, 08:56 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
Or anything from the first 20 issues of LotDK at all. The list has a lot of later LotDK issues, but the first 20 or widely considered the best.

Also I am sad to see nothing at all from Alan Grant/Norm Breyfogle. When I think late 80s/early 90s Batman, that is the creative team I remember most fondly. Heck, they are my favorite creative team of all time. They created a lot of modern day Batman characters like Zsasz, Jeremiah Arkham, Ventriloquist and Scarface, Cornelius Stirk, and Anarky.
is it because those have been collected? if not, can you recommend some for me to check out if i want to try lotdk and grant\breyfogle? thanks!
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Old 08-01-12, 10:21 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by dishpan View Post
is it because those have been collected? if not, can you recommend some for me to check out if i want to try lotdk and grant\breyfogle? thanks!
The first 20 issues of LotDK have been collected, but the vast majority of the Grant/Breyfogle issues have not been.

The first 20 issues of LotDK were each 5-issue storyarcs collected across four trades. The first is called Shaman and is a bit of a companion piece to Year One. The second is Gothic, and this is one of Grant Morrison's earliest works. The third is Prey, and this is the post-COIE origin of Hugo Strange. The fourth is Venom, and this is the first appearance of the drug that Bane would use a few years later. While these stories were pretty good, I do feel that they are somewhat overrated. Most people praise these stories as being the best of late 80s Batman, but personally I greatly preferred Starlin/Aparo on Batman and Grant/Breyfogle on Detective.

As for Grant/Breyfogle, they started on Detective in the late 80s, then moved to Batman in the early 90s, and then finally got their own ongoing title called Shadow of the Bat. I don't recall specific issue numbers but it was something like Detective #580-620, then Batman #455-480, and finally Shadow of the Bat. Breyfogle was only on board SotB for the first 4-issue storyarc, and then he left. Grant however stayed on for about 80 issues or so until the start of No Man's Land, and then he left and SotB was canceled at the end of No Man's Land.

Pretty much anything by Grant/Breyfogle was gold. I can't recall offhand any bad stories they did. The ones to my knowledge that have been collected are the first appearance of Anarky, two Tim Drake stories (one in which his parents are abducted by the Obeah Man and another in which he saves Batman from Scarecrow and officially becomes the new Robin), and the first storyarc from Shadow of the Bat which is called The Last Arkham and is the first appearance of both Zsasz and Jeremiah Arkham. Those are all really good storyarcs. One story I wish was collected is the Mudpack story in which the first four Clayfaces team up. (Well, the second Clayface died in COIE so he was only an honorary member.) To me that is the definitive Clayface story. It was the first comic I ever read with Preston Payne (the third Clayface) and he is just an awesome character that I wish hadn't fallen into obscurity because he is a much better character than the traditional shapeshifting Clayface that everyone knows.
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Old 08-01-12, 04:47 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
Yeah, Ten Nights of the Beast is good, although really dated. I started a few months ago re-reading my Batman collection starting from COIE. Max Collins' run is a piece of crap and a chore to get through like I said in a previous post. It really picks up once Collins leaves and Jim Starlin comes on as the new writer. That said though, Ten Nights is really dated since it deals with the Cold War era Soviet Union (and the villain himself is KGBeast... a relic of the Cold War). There are some cheesy moments like Alfred disguising himself as Ronald Reagan. It isn't a bad story though despite the dated feel and few cheesy moments. The best story however that Starlin wrote was the dumpster slasher killer storyarc. That was simply awesome. The storyarc with the rapist diplomatic right before Death in the Family is also great. Speaking of Death in the Family, I feel that is Starlin's worst work. A lot of stuff made no sense at all. Its kind of weird that the storyarc he is most well known for is his worst.
I haven't read 10 Nights of the Beast in a long time, but I remember Batman kinda coming unhinged as a result of Jason Todd's death. I don't remember why, but that kinda resonated with me. Most of the time Batman to that point had been written like a machine, an unstopable machine. For the first time ever I got a sense that he was really just a man.
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Old 08-01-12, 05:02 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Ten Nights of the Beast is before Jason's death. It is Batman #417-420. Death in the Family is #426-429.
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Old 08-01-12, 05:30 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
Ten Nights of the Beast is before Jason's death. It is Batman #417-420. Death in the Family is #426-429.
Hahaha! Well that shows what I remember. I'm going to have to go and reread those books to see why the hell I liked it so much.
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Old 08-02-12, 07:59 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

I'm happy to see the Batman Adventures issues listed on there. I think the "Adventures" line that was ostensibly for kids, was pretty great. It really benefited from being "outside" DC Continuity and told some great stories (this goes for Superman and Justice League as well)
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Old 08-03-12, 02:57 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Strongly recommend Blind Justice, not on the list
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Old 08-04-12, 03:38 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

There's literally 100 stories collected in trades or Prestige Format that aren't well known to the general population but are still of pretty good quality. It seems like this list tried to go with more obscure issues that weren't necessarily collected in a trade, though it does have a few that were eventually collected.
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Old 08-04-12, 04:05 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

This is a really cool list. Batman is probably my most TPB'd character. I haven't been in a comic shop in a long time and I can see myself plunking down $200 to "catch up" on great TPBs of Batman I've missed.
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Old 08-05-12, 12:15 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by The Bus View Post
This is a really cool list. Batman is probably my most TPB'd character. I haven't been in a comic shop in a long time and I can see myself plunking down $200 to "catch up" on great TPBs of Batman I've missed.
Which at LCS prices will net you like... 10 TPBs. If you're lucky.
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Old 08-08-12, 10:21 AM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

here is another list of 15 batman stories, but unlike the other one ive read most of these

http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/p...ovels-20120723

honestly i would hesitate to recommend many of these to someone wanting to try batman comics after seeing the dark knight rises though
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Old 08-08-12, 08:30 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by dishpan View Post
here is another list of 15 batman stories, but unlike the other one ive read most of these

http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/p...ovels-20120723

honestly i would hesitate to recommend many of these to someone wanting to try batman comics after seeing the dark knight rises though
And my main problem with this list is that it hasn't included "Strange Apparitions", the collection of Englehart/Rogers stories from "Detective Comics", nor was there any sign of O'Neil/Adams stories, two of the more defining runs of Batman stories from the sixties and seventies.
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Old 08-09-12, 09:24 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

The best Elseworlds Batman is "Gotham By Gaslight" or the Vampire Trilogy.
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Old 08-10-12, 06:44 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by kgrogers1979 View Post
I have read all but three of those. They aren't really obscure. I was expecting stuff from the 50s or 60s, not 80s and 90s.
Yeah not obsecure. You gotta seek out books like this. There's a lot of it if your willing to look for it.

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Old 08-10-12, 10:03 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by Super X View Post
And my main problem with this list is that it hasn't included "Strange Apparitions", the collection of Englehart/Rogers stories from "Detective Comics", nor was there any sign of O'Neil/Adams stories, two of the more defining runs of Batman stories from the sixties and seventies.
I've been looking to buy Strange Apparitions but every time I look for a copy the seller wants a ridiculous price for it.

Also some of the stuff on that Rolling Stone list is good but others on there I don't know if I'd recommend unless you're a hardcore fan. Year 100 is kind of a weird story and I don't know that I'd call it essential. Also as good as the R.I.P. storyline is it'll most likely confuse the hell out of someone just coming into Batman. Plus the fact that the R.I.P. novel is only part of a larger story and you need a bunch more books to get the whole thing.
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Old 08-10-12, 10:20 PM
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Re: 15 best batman stories youve never read‏

Originally Posted by Mike86 View Post
I've been looking to buy Strange Apparitions but every time I look for a copy the seller wants a ridiculous price for it.
A lot of people don't know this, but those issues were also reprinted in the 80s as a miniseries called Shadow of the Batman. (Not to be confused with the 90s ongoing series Shadow of the Bat.)

If you don't mind buying floppies you might want to check that out. I looked on mycomicshop and they have the entire miniseries in stock for $3-$6 per issue depending on the condition of the comic. The miniseries is five issues because each issue is double-sized and reprints two of the original Detective Comics issues.

Here's the mycomicshop link:

http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=180891
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