No One Remembers These Batman Comics

Batman has a long and storied history in the world of comics, with countless intriguing and unique stories that have captivated readers over the years. However, despite their quality and execution, many of these tales haven’t received the recognition or acclaim they deserve.

One of the main factors contributing to this lack of recognition is the sheer volume of Batman stories that have been published. With so many comics featuring the Dark Knight, it’s only natural that some would fall through the cracks and be overshadowed by the more popular or mainstream stories.

Additionally, Batman has been a part of numerous events and key series throughout his long history, which has made it even easier for certain stories to be overlooked. In a time flooded with events and a plethora of Batman comics, it’s not surprising that some otherwise great stories have gone unnoticed.

One such overlooked gem is Shazam #12, a guest-written issue by Jeff Loveness in Geoff Johns’ 2019 Shazam series. This World’s Finest story sees Shazam team up with Batman to take on Scarecrow’s fear toxin. Despite the standout quality of this issue, it went largely unnoticed by readers, overshadowed by the overall series and the attachment to Geoff Johns.

Another overlooked story is Detective Comics #235, a Golden Age tale by Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff. This story not only reveals the original inspiration for Bruce Wayne’s Batman persona but also features Thomas Wayne as Batman before Flashpoint. The story, known as “The First Batman,” offers a unique and engaging look into Bruce’s choice of costume and his own origins, yet it has become inconsequential to the main Prime Earth Bruce.

In more recent years, The Batman’s Grave, a detective-based story by Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch, also suffered from obscurity. The series faced delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic and also faced challenges due to Warren Ellis falling into disrepute. Despite its strong storytelling, the series has become forgettable in a saturated market.

Even crossovers and grudge matches, such as Batman Vs The Incredible Hulk, have been forgotten over time. Len Wein, Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, and Dick Giordano brought these two iconic characters together, but due to rare reprints, the story remains hard to find on the back issue market.

Several stories written by acclaimed filmmaker Kevin Smith, including Cacophony and The Widening Gyre, have fallen into obscurity as well. While these stories were not considered bad reads, they haven’t been able to maintain relevance and stay in the minds of Batman fans.

Stan Lee, the legendary creator of Marvel Comics, also tried his hand at writing a Batman comic called Just Imagine Batman. However, this reimagining of Batman as a Black man named Wayne Washington has been largely forgotten and DC hasn’t done anything further with the character or Lee’s original stories.

The 2010 mini-series The Dark Knight, by David Finch, Jason Fabok, and Scott Williams, suffered from being released during a transitional period for DC. It had the unfortunate timing of being released between the demise of the post-Crisis era and the birth of the New 52. Despite its impressive lineup of creators, the mini-series became relatively obscure due to changes in continuity.

First Wave’s Batman/Doc Savage crossover, written by Brian Azzarello, Phil Noto, and Rags Morales, also failed to resonate with readers. While it was an interesting concept bringing together pulp heroes, something about the execution just didn’t work for Batman fans. Both Doc Savage and Will Eisner’s Spirit had better stories in their solo books, making the shared adventure fall flat.

Scratch, a mini-series by Sam Keith featuring Batman fighting a werewolf, is another forgotten tale. Perhaps due to Keith’s acquired taste of art style, the lack of involvement from classic Batman villains, or its removal from main universe events, Scratch hasn’t received the recognition it deserves.

Lastly, Matt Wagner’s Batman mini-series, The Mad Monk and The Monster Men, have been largely overlooked. Despite Matt Wagner’s brilliant storytelling and art, these series never gained the broad appeal of other Batman stories. Even when they were originally published, they had lackluster sales numbers and have become increasingly obscure in recent years.

Overall, Batman has a rich history of interesting and unique stories that often don’t get the recognition they deserve. Whether it’s due to the sheer volume of comics featuring the Caped Crusader, the oversaturation of events and key series, or various other circumstances, many brilliant Batman stories have fallen through the cracks. These forgotten tales prove that Batman’s back issues can always use a fresh look, and there are hidden gems waiting to be rediscovered by readers and critics alike.