Deciphering a Batman Centric Read Order

Posted by esreborn (15 posts) - - Show Bio

Last Updated: November 3rd, 2012
Please note, there are missing story arcs, I am updating this list as I personally acquire the books

A Quick Tidbit

I still consider myself a newbie in the Comic Book world, buying my first comic the last week of August 2011 (Justice League #1), and yet I have amassed a collection of nearly 1100 comics since; about 700 I have yet to read.

With Batman being the primary focus of my comic collection (yes, Batman, I know...) I have found it quite daunting to figure out what stories need to be read in order to truly understand everything that is going on. Storyarcs, tie-ins, one-shots, annuals, infinite crisis, 52, etc... It can be a real turn-off for newcomers trying to filter through everything. Even researching seemed to make things more complicated as everyone has their own rendition of what a proper read order is and what story arcs are necessary to understand the world of Batman.

My Problem

The problem with these proposed read orders were that they did not take into account the fact that you may be reading other major storyarcs and want to maintain some sort of continuity.

My Solution

In short, I've spent the past 7 months collecting, researching, and creating a read order since I have yet to find one, big, coherent read order that centered around Batman. I would like to share this read order with everyone and to potentially receive some input on it.

A few notes:

  • I spent quite a bit of time styling this list and apparently this site doesn't like my html/css styling. >_>
  • I have included some Flash and Green Lantern in this read order.
  • I will try to keep this post updated.
  • I am still looking for more stories to add to this collection.
  • Not everything on this list is a necessity, I'm just a big fan of Batman.
  • Please don't spoil anything for me as I am still reading through these books.
  • Feel free to add your thoughts/opinions about my list. I welcome constructive criticism.

A Batman Centric Read Order

The Black Casebook

  • Batman 65, 68, 112, 113, 134, 156, 162
  • Detective 215, 235, 247, 267
  • World's Finest 89
Crisis on Infinite Earths (1985)
  • 1-12

Batman: The Dark Knight (Mar'86 - Jun'86)

  • 1-4

Batman: Son of the Demon (1987)

Batman: The Killing Joke (1988)

Batman: The Cult (1988)

  • 1, 2, 3, 4

Batman: Arkham Aslym (1989)

Batman: Dark City, Dark Knight (1990)

  • Batman 452-454

Batman Gothic (Jan'92)

  • Batman Legends of the Dark KNight 6-10

Devil's Riddle (1993)

  • Batman/Grendel 1

Dance with the Devil (1993)

  • Batman/Grendel 2

Knifghtfall (Oct'93)

  • Batman 491
  • Batman 492
  • Detective 659
  • Batman 493
  • Detective 660
  • Batman 494
  • Detective 661
  • Batman 495
  • Detective 662
  • Batman 496
  • Detective 663
  • Batman 497
  • Detective 664
  • Showcase'93 7
  • Showcase'93 8
  • Batman 498
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 16
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 17
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 18
  • Detective 665
  • Batman 499
  • Detective 666
  • Batman 500

Bane breaks Batman.

Knightquest: The Crusade (Oct'93 - Jun'94)

  • Detective 667
  • Detective 668
  • Robin 1 (not necessary)
  • Detective 669
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 19
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 20
  • Batman 501
  • Batman 502
  • Catwoman 6
  • Batman 503
  • Batman 504
  • Catwoman 7
  • Detective 670
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 24
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 25
  • Detective 671
  • Detective 672
  • Detective 673
  • Batman 505
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 26
  • Batman 506
  • Batman 507
  • Detective 674
  • Batman 508
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 27
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 28
  • Detective 675
  • Robin 7

Knightquest: The Search (Oct'93 - Jun'94)

  • Justice League Task Force 5
  • Justice League Task Force 6
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 21
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 22
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat 23
  • Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight 59
  • Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight 60
  • Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight 61

Knightsend Aftermath (Aug'94)

  • Catwoman 13
  • Robin 9
  • Showcase'94 10

Prodigal

  • Batman 512 (Nov'94)
  • Shadow of the Bat 32
  • Detective 679
  • Robin 11
  • Batman 513
  • Shadow of the Bat 33
  • Detective 680
  • Robin 12
  • Batman 514
  • Shadow of the Bat 34
  • Detective 681
  • Robin 13 (Conclusion)
Batman: Contagion
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat #48
  • Detective Comics #695
  • Robin (vol. 4) #27
  • Catwoman (vol. 2) #31 (Cover incorrectly states that this is part 5)
  • Azrael #15 (Cover incorrectly states that this is part 4)
  • Batman #529
  • Batman: Shadow of the Bat #49
  • Detective Comics #696
  • The Batman Chronicles #4
  • Catwoman (vol. 2) #32
  • Azrael #16
  • Robin (vol. 2) #28
Batman: Legacy
  • Prequel: Bane of the Demon #1–4
  • Prelude: Shadow of the Bat #53
  • Prelude: Batman #533
  • Part 1: Detective Comics #700
  • Part 2: Catwoman #36
  • Part 3: Robin #32
  • Part 4: Shadow of the Bat #54
  • Part 5: Batman #534
  • Part 6: Detective Comics #701
  • Part 7: Robin #33
  • Epilogue: Detective Comics #702
  • Epilogue: Batman: Bane (one-shot)
Batman: Catacylsm
  • Prelude: Detective Comics #719
  • Part 1: Batman: Shadow of the Bat #73
  • Part 2: Nightwing (vol. 2) #19
  • Part 3: Batman #553
  • Part 4: Azrael #40
  • Part 5: Detective Comics #720
  • Part 6: Catwoman (vol. 2) #56
  • Part 7: Robin (vol. 4) #52
  • Part 8: Batman: Blackgate - Isle of Men #1
  • Part 9: Batman: Shadow of the Bat #74
  • Part 10: The Batman Chronicles #12
  • Part 11: Nightwing (vol. 2) #20
  • Part 12: Batman #554
  • Part 13: Batman: Huntress/Spoiler - Blunt Trauma #1
  • Part 14: Detective Comics #721
  • Part 15: Catwoman (vol. 2) #57
  • Part 16: Batman: Arkham Asylum - Tales of Madness #1
  • Conclusion: Robin (vol. 2) #53
No Man's Land
  • ...in progress... (Nov. 3rd, 2012)
Batman: Officer Down
  • Batman #587 (Part 1)
  • Robin #86 (Part 2)
  • Birds of Prey #27 (Part 3)
  • Catwoman #90 (Part 4)
  • Nightwing #53 (Part 5)
  • Detective Comics #754 (Part 6)
  • Gotham Knights #13 (Part 7)

52

Batman Black and White (Jun'96 - Sep'96)

  • 1-4

Batman: The Long Halloween (Dec'96 - Dec'97)

  • 1-13

Batman: Dark Victory (Sep'99 - Dec'00)

  • 1-13

Catwoman: When in Rome (Nov'04 - May'05)

  • 1-6

Batman: Bane of the Demon (Mar'98 - Jun'98)

  • 1-4

Dark Knight Strikes Again (Dec'01 - Jul'02)

  • 1-3

Batman: Arkham Aslyum Living Hell (Jul'03 - Dec'03)

  • 1-6

JLA: Tower of Babel
  • 43-46
Batman: Hush (2000)
  • Batman 608-619
Batman: Broken City
  • Batman 620-625
Batman: As the Crow Flies
  • Batman 626-630
War Games: Prelude
  • Batman: The 12 Cent Adventure #1: War Games: Prelude, No Help
War Games: Act One - Breakout
  • Detective Comics 797
  • Legends of the Dark Knight 182
  • Nightwing 96
  • Gotham Knights 56
  • Robin 129
  • Batgirl 55
  • Catwoman (2002) 34
  • Batman 631
War Games: Act Two - Tides
  • Detective Comics 798
  • Legends of the Dark Knight 183
  • Nightwing 97
  • Gotham Knights 57
  • Robin 130
  • Batgirl 56
  • Catwoman 35
  • Batman 632
War Games: Act Three - Endgame
  • Detective Comics 798
  • Legends of the Dark Knight 184
  • Nightwing 98
  • Robin 131
  • Gotham Knights 58
  • Batgirl 57
  • Catwoman 36
  • Batman 633
War Games: Epilogue
  • Detective Comics 800
  • Batman 634
Identity Crisis (2004)
  • Identity Crisis 1-7
JLA: Crisis of Conscience
  • JLA 115-119
The OMAC Project
  • The OMAC Project 1-3
  • Superman 219 (Sacrifice Part 1)
  • Action Comics 829 (Sacrifice Part 2)
  • Adventures of Superman 642 (Sacrifice Part 3)
  • Wonder Woman 219 (Sacrifice Concludes)
  • The OMAC Project 4-6
  • Adventures of Superman 643 (Sacrifice Aftermath)
Day of Vengeance
  • 1-6
Rann-Thanagar
  • 1-6
DC Special: Return of Donna Troy (Aug'05 - Oct'05)
  • 1-4
Day of Vengeance
  • 1-6
Villains United
  • 1-6
Countdown To Infinite Crisis One-Shot
Infinite Crisis
  • Infinite Crisis 1-5
  • Rann-Thanagar War Special 1
  • Day of Vengeance Special 1
  • Infinite Crisis 6
  • Villains United Special 1
  • The OMAC Project Special 1
  • Infinite Crisis 7
Batman: Under the Hood Volume 1
  • Batman 635-641
Batman: Under the Hood Volume 2
  • Batman 645-650
  • Batman Annual 25
Batman: Face the Face
  • Batman 651-654
  • Detective Comics 817-820

Batman and Son: Part 1

  • Batman 655-658

Grotesk (2007)

  • Batman 659-662

Other

  • Batman 663-664

Batman and Son: Part 2

  • Batman 665-666

The Black Glove

  • Batman 667-669

The Flash

The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive (Aug'06 - Aug'07)

  • 1-13

All Flash (Sep'07)

Read it, explains things later on for Flashpoint.

Batman Annual (Oct 2007)

  • 26

Resurrection of Ra's Al Ghul

  • Batman 670
  • Robin 168
  • Nightwing 137
  • Detective 838
  • Batman 671
  • Robin 169
  • Nightwing 139
  • Detective 839
  • Batman 672
  • Detective 840

Detective Comics

  • 841-845

Batman

  • 673-675

Batman: RIP

  • Detective 846-850 (Heart of Hush)
  • Nightwing 147-150 (The Great Leap)
  • Batman 676-681 (RIP)
  • Robin 175-176 (Search for a Hero)
  • Batman and the Outsiders 11-13

Final Crisis

  • DC Universe 0
  • Final Crisis 1-3
  • Superman Beyond 1-2
  • Final Crisis 4
  • Batman 682-683 (RIP)
  • Final Crisis 5-7
  • Robin 177-182 (Search for a Hero)

Part of the Batman RIP

Batman: Last Rites / Steets of Gotham: Hush Money

  • Detective 851
  • Batman 684
  • Nightwing 151
  • Streets of Gotham 1-4 (hush only)
  • Detective 852 (rites/hush)
  • Batman 685 (rites/hush)
  • Nightwing 152-153
  • Robin 183

Batman: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?

  • Batman 686
  • Detective 853

Battle for the Cowl

  • Gotham Gazette: Batman Dead? #1: Batman Dead?
  • Commissioner Gordan
  • Battle for the Cowl 1
  • Azrael 1
  • Oracle 1
  • Battle for the Cowl 2
  • Azrael 2
  • Oracle 2
  • The Underground 1
  • The Network 1
  • Battle for the Cowl 3
  • Azrael 3
  • Oracle 3
  • Gotham Gazette: Batman Alive? #1

Batman: Reborn

  • Batman and Robin 1
  • Batman 687
  • Red Robin 1
  • Gotham City Sirens 1
  • Detective 854
  • Outsiders 19
  • Batman and Robin 2
  • Red Robin 2
  • Batman 688
  • Gotham City Sirens 2
  • Detective 855
  • Outsiders 20
  • Batman and Robin 3
  • Red Robin 3
  • Batman 689
  • Batgirl 1
  • Gotham City Sirens 3
  • Detective 856
  • Red Robin 4
  • Batman 690
  • Batgirl 2
  • Gotham City Sirens 4
  • Detective 857
  • Batgirl 3
  • Batman 691

Batman Annual (Oct'09)

  • 27

Green Lantern: Blackest Night

  • Blackest Night 0
  • Tales of the Corps 1
  • Green Lantern 43
  • Tales of the Corps 2
  • Green Lantern 44
  • Blackest Night 1
  • Tales of the Corps 3
  • Green Lantern 45
  • Green Lantern Corps 39
  • Blackest Night 2
  • Blackest Night: Batman 1
  • Blackest Night: Superman 1
  • Green Lantern 46
  • Green Lantern Corps 40
  • Blackest Night 3
  • Blackest Night: Batman 2
  • Blackest Night: Superman 2
  • Green Lantern 47
  • Green Lantern Corps 41
  • Blackest Night 4
  • Blackest Night: Batman 3
  • Blackest Night: Superman 3
  • Green Lantern 48
  • Green Lantern Corps 42
  • Blackest Night 5
  • Blackest Night: Superman/Batman 66
  • Green Lantern 49
  • Green Lantern Corps 43
  • Blackest Night 6
  • Blackest Night: Superman/Batman 67
  • Blackest Night: Wonder Woman 1
  • The Flash: Rebirth
    • Rebirth 1-5
    • Blackest Night: The Flash 1
    • Rebirth 6
  • Green Lantern 50
  • Green Lantern Corps 44
  • Blackest Night: Catwoman 83
  • Blackest Night: Wonder Woman 2
  • Blackest Night: The Flash 2
  • Green Lantern 51
  • Green Lantern Corps 45
  • Blackest Night 7
  • Blackest Night: Wonder Woman 3
  • Blackest Night: The Flash 3
  • Green Lantern 52
  • Green Lantern Corps 46
  • Blackest Night 8
  • Blackest NIght: Untold Tales (Dec'10)

Batman is gone, The Flash returns.

Green Lantern: Brightest Day

  • Green Lantern 53
  • Green Lantern Corps 47
  • The Flash 1
  • Green Lantern 54
  • Green Lantern Corps 48
  • Brightest Day 1
  • The Flash 2
  • Brightest Day 2
  • Green Lantern 55
  • Green Lantern Corps 49
  • Brightest Day 3
  • The Flash 3
  • Brightest Day 4
  • Green Lantern Corps 50
  • Brightest Day 5
  • The Flash 4
  • Green Lantern 56
  • Brightest Day 6
  • Green Lantern Corps 51
  • Brightest Day 7
  • Green Lantern 57
  • Brightest Day 8
  • Green Lantern Corps 52
  • Brightest Day 9
  • The Flash 5
  • Green Lantern 58
  • Brightest Day 10
  • Brightest Day 11
  • The Flash 6
  • Green Lantern 59
  • Green Lantern Corps 53
  • Brightest Day 12
  • Brightest Day 13
  • The Flash 7
  • Green Lantern 60
  • Green Lantern Corps 54
  • Brightest Day 14
  • Brightest Day 15
  • Green Lantern 61
  • Green Lantern Corps 55
  • Brightest Day 16
  • Green Lantern 62
  • Brightest Day 17
  • Green Lantern Corps 56
  • Brightest Day 18
  • Green Lantern Corps 57
  • Brightest Day 19
  • Brightest Day 20
  • Brightest Day 21
  • Brightest Day 22
  • Brightest Day 23
  • Brightest Day 24

Why the Hell not?

Green Lantern: War of the Green Lanterns

  • Green Lantern 63
  • Green Lantern 64
  • Green Lantern Corps 58
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 8
  • Green Lantern 65
  • Green Lantern Corps 59
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 9
  • Green Lantern 66
  • Green Lantern Corps 60
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 10
  • Green Lantern 67
  • War of the Green Lanterns: Aftermath 1
  • War of the Green Lanterns: Aftermath 2
  • Green Lantern Corps 61
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 11
  • Green Lantern Corps 62
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 12
  • Green Lantern Corps 63
  • Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors 13

Geen Lantern Larfleeze Christmas Special

Batman: Life After Death

  • 692-699

Batman and Robin

  • 4-9

Red Robin

  • 5-14

Batman: Bruce Wayne: The Road Home

  • Batman and Robin 10-12
  • Batman 700
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 1
  • Batman and Robin 13 (Batman and Robin Must Die!)
  • Batman 701-702
  • Superman/Batman: The Brave and the Bold 76
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 2
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point 1
  • Red Robin 15
  • Batman 703
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 3
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point 2
  • Batman and Robin 14 (Batman and Robin Must Die!)
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 4
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point 3
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 5
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point 4
  • Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne 6
  • Batman and Robin 15 (Batman and Robin Must Die!)
  • Red Robin 16
  • Road Home: Batman & Robin
  • Road Home: Red Robin
  • Road Home: Outsiders
  • Road Home: Batgirl
  • Road Home: Catwoman
  • Road Home: Commissioner Gordon
  • Road Home: Oracle
  • Road Home: Ra’s al Ghul

Batman: Incorporated

  • Batman and Robin 16 (Batman and Robin Must Die!)
  • Time Masters: Vanishing Point 5-6
  • Red Robin 17
  • Batman: The Return
  • Batman 704
  • Batman: Inc. #1
  • Batman: The Dark Knight

Batman Annual (Feb'11)

  • 28

Batman and Robin: The Sum of Her Parts

  • 17-19

Batman: Eye of the Beholder

  • Batman 705-707

Batman and Robin: Dark Knight vs. White Knight

  • 20-22

Detective: The Black Mirror

  • 871-881

Red Robin

  • 18-21

Batman: Judgement on Gotham

  • Batman 708
  • Red Robin 22
  • Gotham City Sirens 22
  • Batman 709

Red Robin

  • 23-24

Batman and Robin (Jul'11 - Oct'11)

  • 23-26

Batman (Jul'11 - Oct'11)

  • 710-713

Flashpoint

The Reverse Flash Rebirth (Mar'11)

  • The Flash 8

The Road to Flashpoint (Apr'11 - Jul'11)

  • The Flash 9-12

Flashpoint

  • Flashpoint 1
  • Flashpoint 2
  • Flashpoint: Batman Knight of Vengeance 1
  • Flashpoint: Abin Sur 1
  • Flashpoint: Reverse Flash 1
  • Flashpoint: Hal Jordan 1
  • Flashpoint 3
  • Flashpoint: Batman Knight of Vengeance 2
  • Flashpoint: Abin Sur 2
  • Flashpoint: Hal Jordan 2
  • Flashpoint 4
  • Flashpoint: Batman Knight of Vengeance 3
  • Flashpoint: Abin Sur 3
  • Flashpoint: Hal Jordan 3
  • Flashpoint 5 (Oct'11)

I don't know what happens, I just know it's big.

#1 Edited by batshrine (969 posts) - - Show Bio

Check out my Blog! I did something very similar, only I focused on Trades!

http://www.comicvine.com/batman/29-1699/batman-tpb-complete-chronology/92-660225/#28

#2 Posted by FatihBATMAN (1389 posts) - - Show Bio

im currently reading through a ton literally batman comics to get myself up to speed on new 52...exciting times ahead of me :D

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