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The Dark Knight Reads: Fifteen Essential Batman Graphic Novels

The Bat-books that formed a hero
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Batman Earth One
™ & © DC Comics

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14. ‘Batman: Earth One’

This standalone graphic novel from Geoff Johns – DC's biggest writer and its Chief Creative Officer – restarts the Bat-mythology from scratch in yet another origin story. His Batman 2.0 is angry and accident-prone, Jim Gordon's a corrupt wimp and Alfred is a shotgun-toting Iraq War vet. Yeah, your mileage may vary. But artist Gary Frank captures the character's fury like few artists before him and, for better or worse, this is the one Batman comic that best reflects the super-serious "battle for the soul of Gotham City" tone of the Nolan films.

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