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  1. #1
    Astonishing Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Default Batman - best stories by decade

    Just thinking about something good to read, and I thought I'd solicit opinions. It seemed unfair to compare vastly different decades to each other, so I thought I'd ask fans what they thought were some of the best stories for each decade 1-3 stories for each decade. Not entire runs, just stories. Ones that were in-continuity when written. My biggest interest is in pre-COIE stories, I admit, but al decades are open for discussion.

    Decades broken down on the year ending in zero, so 1951-1960, 1961-1970, etc.

    Edit:

    For 1939-1940, I'm going to nominate Batman #1 for The Joker - really great intro and I liked the villain he was then.

    For 1941-1950, I really like "Damsel in Distress" (Batman #23) - it's fun story, and Dick got to be awesome. Even if the ending is a cliche.
    Last edited by Tzigone; 03-24-2020 at 06:05 PM.

  2. #2
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    My knowledge of some decades is better than others...but anyway, here goes:


    1939: Batman vs the Monk

    1940's: The Origin of Batman

    1950's: The Man Behind the Red Hood!

    1960's: The Remarkable Ruse of the Riddler

    1970's: There's No Hope in Crime Alley

    1980's: Batman Year One

    1990's: The Long Halloween

    2000's: Grant Morrison's Batman run

    2010's: Court of Owls

  3. #3
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    1960s - There was a stretch of time I've read the first four volumes of SHOWCASE PRESENTS BATMAN, front to back, and it was pure laborious! Soooo much formulaic corn! However, there was still a few "New Look" era tales, that still captured suspense, drama, mystery, and even some death, and intelligence.

    One of them's "The Birdmaster Of Bedlam", Detective Comics #348, February 1966. It began with a woman, Mona, recently winning the title of "Miss USA", just had a date with Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson, boarding a plane, filled with dreams of stardom, until panels later, crashed into flames! Then panels later, revealed by an aerial bird attack, specially trained birds to wreck airplanes off the sky! Was later Penguin's motif, on "The Penguin Affair", 1990-91-ish, but began there! The rest of the tale, Batman & Robin battling it out with vultures, all the way to the mastermind, the Birdmaster's aviary base, in the name of avenging her death.

  4. #4
    Extraordinary Member Jackalope89's Avatar
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    2000-2010-
    Under the Red Hood.

  5. #5
    Mighty Member jb681131's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    Just thinking about something good to read, and I thought I'd solicit opinions. It seemed unfair to compare vastly different decades to each other, so I thought I'd ask fans what they thought were some of the best stories for each decade 1-3 stories for each decade. Not entire runs, just stories. Ones that were in-continuity when written. My biggest interest is in pre-COIE stories, I admit, but al decades are open for discussion.

    Decades broken down on the year ending in zero, so 1951-1960, 1961-1970, etc.

    Edit:

    For 1939-1940, I'm going to nominate Batman #1 for The Joker - really great intro and I liked the villain he was then.

    For 1941-1950, I really like "Damsel in Distress" (Batman #23) - it's fun story, and Dick got to be awesome. Even if the ending is a cliche.
    Here I go:

    1939 - The Case of the Chemical Syndicate - Detective Comics #27
    1939 - Batman and the Mad Monk - Detective Comics #31-32
    1940 - The Legend of the Batman - Who He Is and How He Came to Be! - Batman #1
    1940 - Batman vs. the Joker - Batman #1
    1944 - Accidentally on Purpose! - Detective Comics #83
    1948 - The Scoop of the Century! - Batman #49
    1951 - The Man Behind the Red Hood! - Detective Comics #168
    1954 - The Jungle Cat-Queen! - Detective Comics #211
    1955 - The Batman of Tomorrow! - Detective Comics #216
    1958 - The Origin of the Superman-Batman Team - World's Finest #94
    1964 - The Mystery of the Menacing Mask! - Detective Comics #327
    1966 - Beware of -- Poison Ivy! - Batman #181
    1967 - The Million Dollar Debut of Batgirl! - Detective Comics #359
    1970 - The Secret of the Waiting Graves - Detective Comics #395
    1971-80 - Tales of the Demon - Detective Comics #411, 485, 489-490 + Batman #232, 235, 240-244 + DC Special Series #15
    1973 - The Jokers Five-Way Revenge! - Batman #251
    1974 - Death Flies the Haunted Sky - Detective Comics #442
    1977-78 - Strange Apparitions - Detective Comics #469-479
    1980 - Wanted: Santa Claus -- Dead or Alive! - DC Special Series #21
    1984 - The Player on the Other Side! - Batman Special #1
    1984 - Man-Bat vs. Batman - Man-Bat vs. Batman #1
    1987 - ...My Beginning...and My Probable End - Detective Comics #574

    1987 - Batman: Year One - Batman #404-407
    1988 - The Killing Joke - One shot
    1986 - Arkham Asylum: A Serious House On Serious Earth - One shot
    1988-89 - A Death in The Familly - Batman #426-429
    1989 - A lonely place of dying - Batman #440-442 + The New Titans #60-61
    1990 - Gothic - Legends of the Dark Knight #6-10
    1990 - Dark Knight, Dark City - Batman #452-454
    1990-91 - Batman: Prey - Legends of the Batman #11-15
    1992 - A bullet for Bullock - Detective Comics #651
    1992-93 - Sword of Azrael - Sword of Azrael #1-4 + Batman #488
    1992 - Vengeance of Bane - One shot
    1994 - The Batman Adventures: Mad Love - One Shot
    1993-94 - Knightfall / Knightquest / KnightsEnd - to many issues
    1994-95 - Prodigual - Batman #512-514 + Detective Comics #679-681 + Shadow of the Bat #32-34 + Robin vol.4 #11-13 + Robin vol.4 #0
    1995 - Troika - Batman #515 + Shadow Of The Bat #35 + Detective Comics #682 + Robin vol.4 #14
    1996 - Contagion - Batman #529 + Detective Comics #695-696 + Catwoman vol.2 #31-32 + Azrael #15-16 + Shadow of the Bat #48-49 + The Batman Chronicles #4 + Robin vol.4 #27-28
    1996 - Legacy - Batman #533-534 + Shadow of the Bat #53-54 + Catwoman vol.2 #33-36 + Robin vol.4 #31-33 + Detective Comics #699-702 + Batman: Bane
    1996-97 - The Long Halloween - The Long Halloween #1-12
    1999-00 - Dark Victory - Dark Victory #0-13
    1999-00 - No Man's Land - too many issues
    2000-01 - New Gotham - Detective Comics #742-765 + Superman vol.2 #168
    2001 - Turning Points - Turning Points #1-5
    2002 - Bruce Wayne: Murderer? - Batman: The 10-Cent Adventure #1 + Detective Comics #766-67 + Batgirl #24 + Nightwing vol.2 #65-66 + Batman: Gotham Knights #25-26 + Birds of Prey #39-40 + Robin vol.2 #98-99 + Batman #599-600
    2002-03 - Bruce Wayne: Fugitive - Batman: Gotham Knights #27-28, 31 + Birds of Prey #41, 43 + Batman #601, 603, 605 + Batgirl #27, 29 + Nightwing vol.2 #68-69 + Detective Comics #768-772
    2002-03 - Hush - Batman #608-619
    2003-04 - Broken City - Batman #620-625
    2004-05 - War Drums / War Games / War Crimes - too many issues
    2005 - The Man Who Laughs - One Shot
    2005 - Dark Detective - Batman: Dark Detective #1-6
    2005-06 - Under the Red Hood - Batman #635-641, 645-65, annual #25
    2006 - Batman and the Monster Men - Batman and the Monster Men #1-6
    2006-07 - Batman and the Mad Monk - Batman and the Mad Monk #1-6
    2006-07 - Batman & Son - Batman #663-666
    2007-08 - The Black Glove - Batman #672-675
    2007-08 - The Return of Ra's Al Ghul - Batman #670-671 + Batman annual #26 + Robin vol.4 #168-169, annual #7 + Nightwing vol.2 #138-139 + Detective comics #838-840
    2008 - R.I.P. - Batman #676-681
    2008-09 - Heart of Hush - Detective Comics #846-850
    2009 - Streets of Gotham: Hush money - Streets of Gotham #1-4 + Detective comics #852 + Batman #685
    2009 - Whatever happened to the cape crusader - Batman #686 + Detective comics #853 + Secret origins #36 + Secret origins special #1 + Batman Black & White #2
    2009 - Battle for the Cowl - Batman: Battle for the cowl #1-3 + Gotham gazette: Batman dead? + Gotham gazette: Batman alive?
    2009-10 - Batman & Robin - Batman and Robin #1-16
    2010 - Time and the Batman - Batman #700
    2010-11 - Streets of Gotham: House of Hush - Streets of Gotham #14-21
    2011 - The Black Mirror - Detective comics #871-881
    2011-12 - Batman, Incorporated - Batman, Incorporated #1-8 + Batman Incorporated: Leviathan Strikes + Batman Incorporated New52 #0-6
    2011-12 - Saga of Owls - Batman #1-11, Annual #1 + Detective Comics #9 + Batman: The Dark Knight #9 + Batwing #9 + Batman and Robin #9 + Red Hood and the Outlaws #9 + Birds of Prey #9 + Batgirl #9 + Nightwing #8-9 + All-Star Western #9
    2012 - Death of the Family - Batman New52 #13-17 + Catwoman New52 #13-14 + Batgirl New52 #14-16 + Batman & Robin New52 #15-17 + Nightwing New52 #15-16 + Detective Comics New52 #16-17 + Red Hood and the Outlaws #15-16 + Teen Titans New52 #15
    2011-14 - Batman & Robin New52 - Batman and Robin #0-18
    2013-14 - Zero Year - Batman #21-33
    2014 - Icarus / Anarky - Detective Comics #29-44
    2016-17 - I am Trilogy - Batman Rebirth #1-20
    2016-17 - Rise of the Batmen - Detective Comics #934-956
    2017 - The War of Jokes and Riddles - Batman Rebirth #25-32
    2017-18 - Fall of the Batmen - Detective Comics #957-981
    2016-19 - Batman / Catwoman - Batman Rebirth #33-53
    2019-20 - The Bane Saga - Batman Rebirth #54-ongoing
    2019 - Dark Nights: Metal - Dark Nights: Metal #1-6 + Dark Knights Rising: The Wild Hunt #1 + Batman Lost #1
    Last edited by jb681131; 03-26-2020 at 08:36 AM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb681131 View Post
    Here I go:
    The original poster is preferably asking for personal, sentimental favorites, not a "Top 100" of obvious suspects.

    Which story(ies) do you genuinely ENJOY, find a pleasure to read, not feeling compelled you HAVE TO enjoy, just because others claim it as "important"?
    Last edited by ngroove; 03-26-2020 at 09:37 AM.

  7. #7
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    1970s: Strange Apparitions
    1980s: Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth
    1990s: Mad Love
    2000s: Morrison's Batman run

  8. #8
    Mighty Member jb681131's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ngroove View Post
    The original poster is preferably asking for personal, sentimental favorites, not a "Top 100" of obvious suspects.

    Which story(ies) do you genuinely ENJOY, find a pleasure to read, not feeling compelled you HAVE TO enjoy, just because others claim it as "important"?
    I know what the original poster asked. He's looking for good readings.
    I think that all I suggested are enjoyable. And I believe that you cannot reduce one decade to 1 story.

    But for you I'll pop up a shorter list:

    1939 - Batman and the Mad Monk - Detective Comics #31-32
    1951 - The Man Behind the Red Hood! - Detective Comics #168
    1977-78 - Strange Apparitions - Detective Comics #469-479
    1984 - Man-Bat vs. Batman - Man-Bat vs. Batman #1

    1986 - Arkham Asylum: A Serious House On Serious Earth - One shot
    1990 - Gothic - Legends of the Dark Knight #6-10
    1990 - Dark Knight, Dark City - Batman #452-454
    1990-91 - Batman: Prey - Legends of the Batman #11-15
    1992-93 - Sword of Azrael - Sword of Azrael #1-4 + Batman #488
    1992 - Vengeance of Bane - One shot
    1994 - The Batman Adventures: Mad Love - One Shot
    1993-94 - Knightfall / Knightquest / KnightsEnd - to many issues
    1994-95 - Prodigual - Batman #512-514 + Detective Comics #679-681 + Shadow of the Bat #32-34 + Robin vol.4 #11-13 + Robin vol.4 #0
    1995 - Troika - Batman #515 + Shadow Of The Bat #35 + Detective Comics #682 + Robin vol.4 #14

    1999-00 - No Man's Land - too many issues
    2000-01 - New Gotham - Detective Comics #742-765 + Superman vol.2 #168
    2001 - Turning Points - Turning Points #1-5
    2002 - Bruce Wayne: Murderer? - Batman: The 10-Cent Adventure #1 + Detective Comics #766-67 + Batgirl #24 + Nightwing vol.2 #65-66 + Batman: Gotham Knights #25-26 + Birds of Prey #39-40 + Robin vol.2 #98-99 + Batman #599-600
    2002-03 - Bruce Wayne: Fugitive - Batman: Gotham Knights #27-28, 31 + Birds of Prey #41, 43 + Batman #601, 603, 605 + Batgirl #27, 29 + Nightwing vol.2 #68-69 + Detective Comics #768-772

    2005 - The Man Who Laughs - One Shot
    2005 - Dark Detective - Batman: Dark Detective #1-6
    2005-06 - Under the Red Hood - Batman #635-641, 645-65, annual #25
    2006 - Batman and the Monster Men - Batman and the Monster Men #1-6
    2006-07 - Batman and the Mad Monk - Batman and the Mad Monk #1-6

    2008-09 - Heart of Hush - Detective Comics #846-850
    2009 - Streets of Gotham: Hush money - Streets of Gotham #1-4 + Detective comics #852 + Batman #685
    2010-11 - Streets of Gotham: House of Hush - Streets of Gotham #14-21
    2009 - Whatever happened to the cape crusader - Batman #686 + Detective comics #853 + Secret origins #36 + Secret origins special #1 + Batman Black & White #2

    2006-07 - Batman & Son - Batman #663-666
    2007-08 - The Black Glove - Batman #672-675
    2009-10 - Batman & Robin - Batman and Robin #1-16
    2011-12 - Batman, Incorporated - Batman, Incorporated #1-8 + Batman Incorporated: Leviathan Strikes + Batman Incorporated New52 #0-6
    2011-14 - Batman & Robin New52 - Batman and Robin #0-18

    2012 - Batman, the Dark Knight by Gregg Hurwitz - Batman, the Dark Knight #10-24
    2011-12 - Saga of Owls - Batman #1-11, Annual #1 + Detective Comics #9 + Batman: The Dark Knight #9 + Batwing #9 + Batman and Robin #9 + Red Hood and the Outlaws #9 + Birds of Prey #9 + Batgirl #9 + Nightwing #8-9 + All-Star Western #9
    2014 - Icarus / Anarky - Detective Comics #29-44

  9. #9
    Astonishing Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    I think that all I suggested are enjoyable. And I believe that you cannot reduce one decade to 1 story.
    I said 1 to 3 stories, because I wanted a rather limited list of enjoyable stories, that's all. I don't care if they are important at all. I specifically did not want to end up with lots of and lots of stories from the post-COIE era and nothing from earlier. The decade-by-decade breakdown was to discourage lists being dominated by later stories, since the nature of comic book writing has changed so much.

  10. #10
    Mighty Member jb681131's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tzigone View Post
    I said 1 to 3 stories, because I wanted a rather limited list of enjoyable stories, that's all. I don't care if they are important at all. I specifically did not want to end up with lots of and lots of stories from the post-COIE era and nothing from earlier. The decade-by-decade breakdown was to discourage lists being dominated by later stories, since the nature of comic book writing has changed so much.
    Indeed you want "enjoyable stories" - Well that's what I gave you.
    You don't care if "they are important" - but having read important stories, often, makes you appreciate other stories more, that's why they are called important, so not caring about them is somewhat stupid.
    You didn't want "lots of stories frome the post-COIE era and nothing from earlier" - well it all depends what is "lots" for you - and as you can see, there is not "nothing" from earlier.
    And yes "nature of comic book writing has changed so much" - like all things, it has evolved, and like all things, the first version are less good than the latter versions. And to note, at some period in time, more stories were written, that's also why some eras got more suggestions than others.
    Pick-up any I suggested and I dare you to tell me you didn't enjoy them.

  11. #11
    Astonishing Member Tzigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb681131 View Post
    Indeed you want "enjoyable stories" - Well that's what I gave you.
    You don't care if "they are important" - but having read important stories, often, makes you appreciate other stories more, that's why they are called important, so not caring about them is somewhat stupid.
    You didn't want "lots of stories frome the post-COIE era and nothing from earlier" - well it all depends what is "lots" for you - and as you can see, there is not "nothing" from earlier.
    And yes "nature of comic book writing has changed so much" - like all things, it has evolved, and like all things, the first version are less good than the latter versions. And to note, at some period in time, more stories were written, that's also why some eras got more suggestions than others.
    Pick-up any I suggested and I dare you to tell me you didn't enjoy them.
    I don't like several the ones you recommended, actually - I've certainly not read them all, but I have read some of those. People have different tastes.

    There's no reason to call me stupid because I want stories people enjoy even if they're non-important little episodic ones.

    Your list is greatly weighted to later stories, and I specifically did not want that. The whole point in grouping by decade was to compare like-to-like and get a small sampling of enjoyed stories from different eras instead of exactly what you did - putting way more stories per decade for later stuff. Not contributing to every decade is fine. Specifically ignoring the request and saying it's a bad request is kinda jerkish. You're basically answering the question you wanted me to ask instead of the one I actually asked.

    Also I enjoy a lot of the 70s-mid 90s Batman more than later ones.

  12. #12
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    1980s - "Last Laugh", Batman #353, November 1982.

    My all-time favorite Batman vs Joker story, illustrated by one of the definitive Joker / DC artists, Jose Luis Lopez, written by Gerry Conway.

    Plot: Simple. He wants to, with strategic computer - explosives coordination, carve his image on the face of a cliff, so that all of Gotham, when they wake up every morning, sees his face. Along the way, he dispatches a henchman, Craps, for ignoring him, quite originally; by joker-venom filled snake coming out of his sleeve! And, of course, the capturing and strapping of Batman on cliff, in the hopes of both exploding him, and carving face, as like the cover, Joker's maniacal glee with dynamite fuse box, Wile E. Coyote style.
    Last edited by ngroove; 03-26-2020 at 09:34 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb681131 View Post
    Indeed you want "enjoyable stories" - Well that's what I gave you.
    You don't care if "they are important" - but having read important stories, often, makes you appreciate other stories more, that's why they are called important, so not caring about them is somewhat stupid.
    You didn't want "lots of stories frome the post-COIE era and nothing from earlier" - well it all depends what is "lots" for you - and as you can see, there is not "nothing" from earlier.
    And yes "nature of comic book writing has changed so much" - like all things, it has evolved, and like all things, the first version are less good than the latter versions. And to note, at some period in time, more stories were written, that's also why some eras got more suggestions than others.
    Pick-up any I suggested and I dare you to tell me you didn't enjoy them.

    All your posts are, is a TOP 100 GRAPHIC NOVELS LIST, not an overall, sentimental, personal list, like a true Batman / comic book connoisseur.

    Just pick some stories, that YOU love, personally. Any single - two parter tops, Detective Comics cases from the seventies to early eighties that you loved?

    Example by what I mean; another one of my 1980s personal favorites, is the Manikin two-parter in Detective Comics #506 - 507, September - October 1981. I loved how the Manikin, a one-time used villainess for just that story, was cold with an eerie, unsettling blank mannequin costume, as she, a former fashion model, meted out her murderous personal vengeance, against the conspirators who first attempted to kill her.
    Last edited by ngroove; 03-26-2020 at 10:25 PM.

  14. #14
    Astonishing Member K7P5V's Avatar
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    Of the ones I remember reading, these would be my top 3:

    1970's - "The Demon Lives Again!"


    1980's - "Son of the Demon"


    1990's - "Last Tango in Paris"
    Last edited by K7P5V; 03-27-2020 at 12:43 AM. Reason: Corrected grammatical errors.

  15. #15
    Darkseid Is. Freakjokerx's Avatar
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    1980’s: Year One
    1990’s: The Long Halloween
    2000’s: R.I.P.
    2010’s: The Court of Owls

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