Detective Comics (1990’s)

During the 1980’s serialization was used in the main Batman story, with stories from Detective Comics and Batman directly flowing from one book to another, with cliffhangers at the end of each book’s monthly story that would be resolved in the other title of that month. A single writer handled both books during that time beginning with Gerry Conway and followed up by Doug Moench. The supervillain Killer Croc made a shadowy cameo in issue #523 (February 1983). Noted author Harlan Ellison wrote the Batman story in issue #567.

Writer Mike W. Barr and artists Alan Davis and Todd McFarlane crafted the “Batman: Year Two” storyline in Detective Comics #575-578 which followed up on Frank Miller’sBatman: Year One“.

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Batman V3: Rebirth (2016)

In June 2016, the DC Rebirth event relaunched DC Comics’ entire line of comic book titles. Batman was rebooted as starting with a one-shot issue entitled Batman: Rebirth #1 (August 2016). The series then began shipping twice-monthly as a third volume, starting with Batman vol. 3, #1 (August 2016). The third volume of Batman was written by Tom King, and artwork was provided by David Finch and Mikel Janín. The Batman series introduced two vigilantes, Gotham and Gotham Girl.

DC Comics ended the Rebirth branding in December 2017, opting to include everything under a larger “DC Universe” banner and naming. The continuity established by Rebirth continues across DC’s comic book titles, including volume one of Detective Comics and the third volume of Batman.

Sword of Azrael (1992)

Azrael first appeared in the 1992 series Batman: Sword of Azrael as Jean-Paul Valley.

He then became a supporting character in the monthly Batman titles, eventually taking over the role of Batman through the “Knightfall,” “Knightquest,” and “KnightsEnd” story arcs. One of the creators, Denny O’Neil, admitted to having difficulties with Azrael’s transition from villain to hero: “If I’d known he was to become a monthly character, I might have set him up differently … The problem is that I had to turn a bad guy into a real hero, not just an anti-hero or lead. It’s possible to do that, but it’s difficult to retain the original characterization. You almost have to change his personality.”

Superman / Batman (2000’s)

Superman/Batman was a monthly series published by DC Comics that features the publisher’s two most popular characters: Superman and Batman. Superman/Batman premiered in August 2003 and was an update of the previous series, World’s Finest Comics, in which Superman and Batman regularly joined forces.

Superman/Batman explored the camaraderie, antagonism, and friendship between its titular characters. Jeph Loeb, the series’ first writer, introduced a dual-narrator technique to present the characters’ often opposing viewpoints and estimations of each other, which subsequent series writers have maintained. Before the 1985 limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths, the two iconic characters were depicted as the best of friends. Frank Miller‘s landmark series The Dark Knight Returns was the first DC story that depicts the heroes at odds with each other, as opposed to pre-Crisis incarnations. This dynamic became DC Universe canon with John Byrne‘s The Man of Steel, a Superman reboot published in 1986.

Nightwing – New 52 (2011)

After the events of Flashpoint as part of The New 52, Nightwing was relaunched with issue #1. Grayson resumes the role of Nightwing following the return of Bruce Wayne. The new series, written by Kyle Higgins, opens with Grayson having returned to Gotham, when Haly’s Circus comes to town. Through a series of events, Grayson inherits the circus and is working through internal struggles with his past as he investigates the secrets the circus has brought about.

During the events of Death of the Family (a bat-family crossover) Haly’s circus is targeted by the Joker. As a result, the circus is burnt down and the circus members leave. Dick is left feeling depressed and lost as a result of this and the death of Damian Wayne (Robin) and is at a loss for what to do with his life. However, when Sonia Branch reveals to him that she believes her father, Tony Zucco, is alive and living in Chicago, Dick makes the decision take him down. Therefore, in 2013 Nightwing relocated to Chicago to hunt down Tony Zucco and also take down The Prankster, a new supervillain hacker in Chicago.

Lobo: The Last Czarnian (1990)

Lobo was introduced as a regular character in Keith Giffen and Roger Slifer’s Green Lantern and Teen Titans spin-off Omega Men. At that time, he was a Velorpian whose entire race had been exterminated by Psions and was partnered with Bedlam, whom he later killed; his origin was later retconned.

After a well-received appearance in Justice League International, Lobo became a regular character in L.E.G.I.O.N. and its successor series R.E.B.E.L.S..

In 1990, he appeared in his four-issue own miniseries, Lobo: The Last Czarnian, plotted by Giffen, written by Alan Grant and with art by Simon Bisley, which changed his origin story: he became the last Czarnian after violently killing every other member of the species. That miniseries led to many subsequent miniseries and specials.

Blackest Night – Batman (2009)

Who Burns Who is a Blackest Night tie-in featuring the Batman Family, written by Peter Tomasi and illustrated by Ardian Syaf. It’s published in the three-issue Blackest Night: Batman mini-series. The story deals with resurrected agents of the Black Lantern Corps attacking Gotham through personal ties with its heroes, wielding dangerous power rings that reanimate them and feed off life energy through human hearts. There is a companion piece written as part of the Morrison’s Batman saga titled Blackest Knight, dealing with the resurrection of Bruce Wayne.

Lex Luthor: Man of Steel (2005)

Lex Luthor: Man of Steel (later collected as simply Luthor) is a five-issue monthly limited series written by Brian Azzarello and illustrated by Lee Bermejo, which features Superman‘s nemesis Lex Luthor as the protagonist.

It explores Luthor’s motivations behind being a constant foe to the Man of Steel inside a city that has largely embraced him. Luthor views Superman as a demigod who looks down on humanity and believes that in order to “save” the human race from extraterrestrial threats, Superman must be stopped.

Flash V2 (1990’s)

The third Flash was Wally West, introduced in The Flash (vol. 1) #110 (Dec. 1959) as Kid Flash. West, Allen’s nephew by marriage, gained the Flash’s powers through an accident identical to Allen’s. Adopting the identity of Kid Flash, he maintained membership in the Teen Titans for years. Following Allen’s death, West adopted the Flash identity in Crisis on Infinite Earths #12 and was given his own series, beginning with The Flash (vol. 2) #1 in 1987. Many issues began with the catchphrase: “My name is Wally West. I’m the fastest man alive.”

Wonder Woman – V5 Rebirth (2016)

In 2016, DC Comics once again relaunched all of its publications as part of the “DC Rebirth” continuity reboot, and new fifth volume of Wonder Woman was released bi-monthly with writer Greg Rucka. This fifth volume of Wonder Woman is part of the “DC Universe”, the current continuity established after Rebirth. The new series does not use a regular storyline that exists between each issue; instead two separate storylines share the book, with an installment of one story published every other issue, and those of the other storyline published in between those. This practice began with the storyline “The Lies” for the odd numbered issues, and “Year One” for the even numbered issues. The new storyline as presented in these issues effectively retcons the events from the previous New 52 series. “The Lies” storyline reveals that a number of events from the previous Wonder Woman series in which Diana was made the Queen of the Amazons and the God of War, was in fact all an illusion created by a mysterious villain, and she had never once been back to Themyscira ever since she left, nor is she capable of returning there. The “Year One” story is presented as an all-new origin story for Diana, which reveals how she received her powers from the Olympian Gods, which was intended to bring her back to her classical DC roots. Wonder Woman appears in DC Rebirth with a revised look, which includes a red cape and light armor fittings. Along with her lasso and bracelets, she now regularly utilizes her sword and shield. Wonder Woman: Rebirth artist Liam Sharp described the new armor as a utilitarian piece which allows her to move more freely.