A Guide To Help New Readers Get Into the Dark Knight
This ongoing series of articles is designed to help new readers get into comic books for the very first time.
If you walk into any given comic book shop, the sheer number of books on the shelf can seem like an overload to the senses. So many different titles, artwork and publishers that a first time reader can feel lost very easily.
That is what I hope to alleviate with this series. I want to introduce this art form that I know and love so much to new fans.
The community can only grow if we make the fandom accessible to new and old readers alike. So I’ve made it my mission to expand this community with helpful tips and a little bit of positive energy sprinkled on top.
A Beginner’s Guide To Batman
Batman is another one of those characters that can seem overwhelming to try and get into for the first time. With over 80 years of Batman stories, even the seasoned comic book reader can get lost from time to time.
From the humble beginnings of the 1930s to campy censored style of the 60s and all the way until modern day, there is a lot of Batman content.
These recommendations are for the true first time comic book readers. Even if you have never seen any Batman media in your entire life, this article should be able to give you a good place to start. I’m going to start you off with my top 3 Batman series that I think are a great starting point.
Batman: Year One
- Written By: Frank Miller
- Artwork By: Dave Mazzucchelli
- Release Date: 1987
Batman: Year One is touted by many fans as a ‘must read’ Batman story.
The story follows Batman, aka Bruce Wayne, during his very first year of crime fighting. This is before most of the high tech gadgets, the fancy vehicles, and sidekicks.
Batman: Year One shows a side of the Caped Crusader that we rarely see in most media. The vulnerable, stubborn, reckless young man that preceded the calm, cool, collected leader of the Justice League.
Batman: The Court of Owls
- Written By: Scott Snyder
- Artwork By: Greg Capullo
- Release Date: 2011
Batman: The Court of Owls is a collection of the first 7 issues of the ‘New 52’ Batman run. In this reboot series, a new secret society was introduced known as The Court of Owls.
The Court is a group of the super elite in Gotham City, who secretly pull the strings of the city. Which keeps Gotham crime ridden and corrupt despite the best efforts of the authorities or Batman.
The Batman series within the New 52 continuity is thought of by many DC fans as one of the better series of books to come out that era. With outstanding storytelling and a gritty modern art style, Batman: The Court of Owls is a great jumping off point for anyone looking to read modern Batman for the first time.
Batman: Earth One
- Written By: Geoff Johns
- Artwork By: Gary Frank
- Release Date: 2012
Batman: Earth One is more than a retelling of Batman’s origin story. It also gave us revamped versions of classic characters, such as Bruce Wayne’s butler Alfred Pennyworth.
Alfred is no longer a simple butler who helped to raise Bruce after the death of his parents, yet he is a former MI-6 agent tasked with raising and protecting the young Wayne, and is more than capable of holding his own.
The first 3 issues of this series are available in a collected trade paperback format. If you’re looking for a Batman origin story that is a bit more up to date, then this series is perfect.
The Future Of This Article Series
In the next article we are going to veer away from specific characters for a moment. We are going to dive head first into some amazing independent titles that have nothing to do with super heroes. Yes, you read that correctly.
Not all comic books are about super powered beings fighting in spandex costumes. There are amazing stories out there from all kinds of writers and artists that have just as much substance and character depth as your favorite novels. Everything from horror filled fright fests, to romance stories that will bring a tear to your eye.
So in the next article you will get a selection of 5 amazing independent comic book series that would be great for newcomers to the comic book scene. Especially if 80 years of super hero history is just too daunting to tackle right away.
Make sure you head over to your local comic book shop, and maybe one day I’ll see you there.