Top 10 Batman Mini Series Of All Time!

To be clear, these aren't necessarily the best Batman "story-lines" of all time. Rather, this list is our attempt to give you a crash course in what Batman stories to dive into if you're new to the "Caped Crusader". You can take this list into any Barnes & Noble (Or your local Atlanta Classic Comics location) and grab all 10 of these mini series / story arcs in the TPB (Trade Paper Back) or Graphic Novel format. AND! In one magical night, you'll instantly be able to "speak Bat." 

Almost any "true (bat) believer" (yes I know that's kind of a Marvel reference) will have stories about at least 5 of the following story arcs and how they impacted them when they first encountered them. Several of these stories have contributed as the source material of the films, animated features, and tv shows that we've all enjoyed, and I'm sure several more will be adapted in the future.

So get ready to dive in to your "Class 101" on the Bat, and go buy some comics!

10.) Batman: Death Of The Family

Creative Team: Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo

Year(s) Released: 2012

Story In A Nutshell: The Joker Tries To Destroy The "Batman Family"

Originally Released As: Story Spills Over Into Several Series, but the main vein is from Batman (New 52) #'s 13-17 

9.) Batman: Dark Victory

Creative Team: Jeph Loeb & Tim Sale 

Year(s) Released: 1999-2000

Originally Released As: Dark Victory #'s 0 - 13

Fun Fact: This is one of the two series that Christian Bale drew his inspiration for his take on Batman in the Nolan Trilogy from. Apparently it's also one of his favorite Batman Series. This is Loeb & Sale's follow up to "The Long Halloween". 

8.) Batman: The Long Halloween

Creative Team: Jeph Loeb & Tim Sale

Year Released: 1996 - 1997

Originally Released As: Batman: Long Halloween #'s 1-13

Fun Fact: This is the other series that Mr. Bale used as inspiration for his "Dark Knight". Is it also the predecessor to "Dark Victory".

7.) Batman: Year Two

Creative Team: Mike Barr, Paul Neary, Alfredo Alcala, Mark Farmer, Alan Davis & Todd McFarlane

Year Released: 1987

Originally Released As: Detective Comics #'s : 575 - 578

Fun Fact: This series was supposed to be called "Batman: 1980", but because of the success of "Batman: Year One", it was renamed "Batman: Year Two." Year Two is also famed comic book creator Todd McFarlane's only significant take on the Bat. 

6.) Batman: Knightfall

Creative Team: Chuck Dixon Allen Grant, Denny O'Neill, & Jim Aparo (Plus a load of others)

Year Released: 1993 - 1994

Originally Released As: Detective Comics #'s : 659 - 666, Batman #'s : 492 - 500, Showcase 93 #'s : 7-8 (Several more tie-in issues as apart of Knightquest and Knightsend)

Fun Fact: Batman # 497 is the issue where Bane breaks Batman's back and "The Dark Knight Rises" takes a lot of inspiration from this issue. 

5.) Batman: The Court Of Owls

Creative Team: Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo

Year Released: 2012

Originally Released As: Batman (New 52) #'s 1 - 12

Story In A Nutshell: Batman's Families' unknown and sordid past comes back to haunt the "Dark Knight" in this recent but fantastic addition to the cannon of the Bat.

4.) Batman: A Death In The Family

Creative Team: Jim Starlin & Jim Aparo

Year Released: 1988 - 1989

Originally Released As: Batman #'s : 426 - 429

Fun Fact: Through the use of a "900" number, readers were asked to call in to vote as to whether or not to let the Joker kill Jason Todd (Robin) in issue # 429 after he had captured Jason Todd in issue # 428. 

3.) Batman: Year One

Creative Team: Frank Miller & David Mazzucchelli

Year Released: 1987

Originally Released As: Batman #'s : 404 - 407

Story In A Nutshell: Frank Miller's "origin story" take on Batman. 

2.) Batman: HUSH

Creative Team: Jeph Loeb & Jim Lee

Year Released: 2002 - 2003

Originally Released As: Batman #'s : 608 - 619

Fun Fact: Batman & Catwoman finally get out of the "friend zone". 

1.) Batman: The Dark Knight Returns

Creative Team: Frank Miller, Klaus Janson, & Lynn Varley

Year Released: 1986

Originally Released As: Dark Knight #'s : 1 - 4

Story In A Nutshell: Batman has been retired for several years. When a new threat comes to Gotham, the Dark Knight returns with a vengeance. 

I doubt you'll find much debate among Batman fans, The Dark Knight stands above all the rest when it comes to bite sized pieces of "Batman cannon." Frank Miller is one of the great all time creators in comics, and this is his comics Mona Lisa. Not only is the story phenomenal, but it's the inspiration for the upcoming take on the Bat by Ben Affleck in Batman Vs. Superman. Not the whole story, but the fighting style, and overall demeanor clearly pull their inspiration from Miller's masterpiece. This is also the series that gives us the first real knock down drag out Batman Vs. Superman fight, and consequently is also viewed as the inspiration for what is sure to be an epic big screen fight between the "Dark Knight" and the "Son of Krypton."

Few storylines are held in as high regard as this one, and it is very clearly the # 1 starting point for any newcomer to the hobby. Oh! And did I mention Carrie Kelley? Just go read it if you haven't, honestly, even if you've read it, go read it again. I'm sure when you're sitting in the theater next month, watching BVS, there will be at least a few moments where you tip your cap to Frank Miller, and thank him for this work of comics greatness. 

Until next time, keep collecting!