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Old August 30 2008, 12:18 AM   #10
Lapis Exilis
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Re: Essential Batman

Haytil wrote: View Post

Long Halloween and Dark Victory are two of the few stories to include the mob as serious antagonists in Batman's fight on crime. If these stories don't cover Batman as a figure in noir storytelling, I don't know which do.
Quality is the first rule of the site, noir is the second. Yes, those two books include the mob, but they're just not great stories. JKTim's reasons are the same as my main complaints about both books.

I note you've included "Year One"...perhaps you should include the four Batman "Year One" annuals released in 1995 (for Batman, Detective Comics, Shadow of the Bat, and Legends of the Dark Knight). Each annual depicted Batman's first encounter with one of his rogues gallery members (Scarecrow, Riddler, Poison Ivy, and Man-Bat, respectively), with artwork and writing very reminiscent of Miller's "Year One" (these were intended as continuations of Miller's storyline). Also, there's more stress on Batman as a Detective in these.

They are also collected together in the TPB "Four of a Kind."
Thanks for that heads up, I haven't run across those before. Are they well written?

For similar reasons, "The Man Who Laughs" would be an excellent addition as well - you'll note that "Year One" ends with hints of the Joker. "The Man Who Laughs" tells that story of the first battle between Batman and the Joker, continuing directly from "Year One." It's a prestige one-shot, recently re-released in hardcover.
I've been looking at The Man Who Laughs, but I haven't read it yet. There's kind of mixed opinions about it out on the web. I'm not trying to give anyone a comprehensive continuity on Batman - there are other sites that do that. I'm just trying to list the material that has really strong storytelling and character-based writing.
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