So you’ve just walked out of Matt Reeves’ The Batman, and you say to yourself, “Man, I’d really like to read some of the comics now.” Well, in this article, we’re going to give you a few recommendations of books that you may find interesting if you enjoyed this movie.
Batman Year One (1987)
The Batman shows a strong working relationship between an early Batman and Lt James Gordan. But how did this working relationship begin? Batman: Year One by Frank Miller is an intriguing 4 issue story that shows the evolution of Batman in his first year and Gordan’s coming to grips with the growing corruption in Gotham PD. This story also gives you a glimpse at the early life of Selina before she became Catwoman.
Catwoman: Her Sisters’ Keeper (1989)
Curious about Catwoman’s back story and the relationship with Annika? You may want to check out Catwoman: Her Sister’s Keeper, written by Mindy Newell. In this 4 issue mini-series, Mindy explores the hard life that Selina comes from and the lengths she took to protect a young girl named Holly, who Annika is based on. This story does take place simultaneously with the events of Batman: Year One.
The Long Halloween (1996-1997)
The Batman is a solid detective noir story where you see Batman having to think through clues and crime scenes to stop the Riddler. If you enjoyed this aspect of the movie and found the story about the gangster Falcone interesting, then you may want to check out Jeph Loeb’s Classic story, “Batman: The Long Halloween.” This 13-issue story spans an entire year where Batman has to discover the identity of a serial killer known only as “Holiday” due to their propensity to strike on major holidays. The story is set with in the first couple of years of Bruce being Batman. He has to team up with, then captain, James Gordan and pre- Two-Face Harvey Dent to track down the murder. As each month passes, tensions rise in Gotham, especially among the two powerful crime families, the Maronis and the Falcones.
Catwoman: When In Rome (2005)
The discovery of Selina’s Relationship to the Falcone family was pivotal in the movie. But how did it play out in comics? Following the events of “The Long Halloween,” conversations of Selina’s (Catwoman’s) relationship to the Falcone Family began to grow. In a sequel series, Batman: Dark Victory, questions come to a head as Catwoman disappears to visit Italy. Catwoman: When in Rome by Jeph Loeb is the 6 part series that walks you through Selina’s discovery of the truth of her parents.
Did you find Bruce’s struggle to come to grips with the identity of Batman and Bruce? Then, you may want to check out Batman: Ego’s one-shot issue by the legendary writer and illustrator Darwyn Cooke. In this fascinating psychological conversation of a story, Batman finds himself shaken after seeing the consequences of his actions. “Alone” in the Batcave, he must decide who the Batman truly is and if he should continue to wear the cowl.
No Man’s Land (1998)
At the end of the film, Gotham is in ruins. Batman monologues about the power grab that would occur as criminals attempt to take control of the city that is simply trying to survive a massive disaster. This leaves the door for the viewer to ponder, “what would it look like if the criminal element had taken over the city amid this disaster?” In 1999 DC decided to ask the very same questions and answered it with an event called “Batman: No Man’s Land.” Following the events of “Batman: Contagion” and “Batman: Legacy,” where a legal disease ravages a city, Gotham comes face to face a massive earthquake that cuts the city off from the world. The criminal underworld is now above ground carving the city into sections. Batman must work diligently with hit network of other heroes to keep the peace and mend the city.
To be perfectly honest, there’s a lot out there that you can pick up and read and it can be overwhelming. But these are just a few of our suggestions for you. If you have some free time and you’d like to dive into the Batman mythos, these are all great points of the greater world for you to jump in and enjoy. You can find most of these in a collected formats called Graphic Novels found in your local comic book shop, Amazon, and many book stores. Read and enjoy.