The New 52

WELCOME to the timeline for “The New 52.” Following the Modern Age, a new era for superhero comics was ushered-in by both Marvel and DC right around 2011. Industry folks have called this nascent era of comicdom by many different monikers. For example, Douglas Wolk called it the “New Golden Age”; Paul Levitz called it the “Second Golden Age”; Andrew Kunka, Grant Morrison, and the Mindless Ones blog called it the “Prismatic Age”; Ken Quattro called it the “Botique Age”; and Charles Hatfield aptly called it the “Mega-Corporate Age.” Whichever of these fabulous poisons you choose is really up to you. Hell, you could even go invent your own! For brevity’s sake, I’m going with the title DC specifically coined for their line-wide 2011 reboot: the New 52. This reboot featured 52 new ongoing titles taking place in a completely revamped primary DC Multiverse fit with a finite 52 alternate universes. Therefore, The New 52 Batman chronology highlights the history of Batman of the New 52 EARTH-0 (aka Batman of the post-Flashpoint Earth-0 or Batman of the pre-Rebirth Earth-0). The full New 52 history comprises Batman and Batman-related DC publications ranging primarily from 2011 through 2017.

2011 brought about a major shift in the DC Universe/Multiverse. With the salient crossover event Flashpoint, the world of Batman was restructured yet again. This relaunch/reboot gave unto us a brand new history for Batman. The palimpsest that is the life and times of Batman’s curriculum vitae is etched by the comic book Ages of yesteryear. And as the pages underneath begin to fade and thin away, the skeletal framework that forms the current era becomes less and less defined. Continuity is always tricky, but I’m always up to the task. A quick note about the construction of the New 52 timeline: Many stories from the Modern Age will be referenced in the New 52. However, the stories of the Modern Age were meant to take place solely in the Modern Age. The only things that I will place in the New 52 era will be both stories from the New 52 era and any references to past tales from previous epochs–but bear in mind, even those references will be notated simply as references, and not the actual complete issues from before.

The New 52 timeline utilizes a six-year-by-2012 model. Damian is actually younger than everyone says he is—he simply appears as a ten-year-old going on eleven in 2012 due to his rapid aging at the outset of his life after being born via artificial gestation bubble womb. Also, if the timeline were longer, Bruce would have had sex with Talia when she was like sixteen or seventeen, so there’s another reason for a six-year-by-2012 model.  A shorter timeline allows for Batman to have had a shorter “urban myth period” as well, which makes more sense. There is also a Year Zero which precedes the main New 52 timeline, which details some of Bruce’s pre-Batman preparations and his first five months in costume. I’ve also included a Salad Days section that highlights everything Bruce does from high school graduation up until Year Zero.


| >>> Salad Days >>>

11 Responses to The New 52

  1. Friend says:

    I really like your ideas here, in the new age the superheroes have been around for 5 years, however it was said that Batman has been around longuer for probably some 9 or 10 years, don’t mind if some stories contradict a bit of what’s said in the new ones, because of this reboot most stories happened but in different ways.

    From what i gather most of year one set stories are canon, killing joke is too.

    How are you going to organize the new timeline?
    Are you going to make Batman’s first year Year One or are you going to put something like -4 with year one being when Superman appears, and the justice league is formed.

    Your task will be very difficult, but good luck, you’ve been helping me organize my collection and some of the new post-reboot stories are quite good, Batman, Batgirl and Nightwing are some great titles. The timeline is also a bit strange, in one of the titles Batman said that the Joker was reformed but he’s a kind of a threat in Detective Comics, so it’s kind of difficult to know what comes after and before.

    I’m sorry to be only giving questions instead of answers but are you going to cover the entire Bat Family’s timeline or only Batman’s career?

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Hello, Friend!

      Thanks for your support and interest in the “New Age” chronology. I recently changed the title from “DCnU” (which is awful) to “The New 52” (also awful) to “The New DC” (still kinda awful). I settled with “The New Age” since it mirrors the previous epochs with their “Age” affiliations. I’m not sure if anyone out there has called it the “New Age,” but I think it’s better than anything else I’ve heard so far, plus it seems to make sense.

      To answer your questions: I’m going to organize the New Age Batman timeline the same way I’ve organized the other timelines. Batman’s first year will be Year One. The new Johns/Lee JLA book will be Year Four or Five or whenever it takes place. As far as covering other members of the Bat-family, I’m going to give as much information about them as possible, but only within the context of Batman’s own chronology. This site has always been primarily about the man beneath the cape and cowl. Granted, when starting a new chronology, the slate is blank, so the first ten or so years tend to include a lot of extra info about Batman’s peers and rivals.

      I haven’t really read any of the New 52/DCnU, besides a few issues of “Batman and Robin,” “Stormwatch,” and “JLA” (too busy reading Batman from the 194os and “Uncanny X-Force”). I’m waiting until the first six or seven issues of each Bat related book come out before I start trying to organize them and create a history for this new universe. The task won’t be easy, you are correct, but I look forward to it.

      Take care and again, thanks for your support!

  2. Steve says:

    I think the hardest part about this time line will be dealing with Babs being Batgirl again. Supposedly the current Batgirl title takes place 4 years after she’s shot… does this mean all of her appearances as Oracle are retconned? orrrrr does it mean something else entirely?

    I love this site by the way… I’m reading the chronology in order & I’m currently at Year 12… Having a blast so far… I will say though, it’s kind of strange reading partial crossover stories (Legends, Millennium, etc.) so I’ve been reading those in full so it’s not so awkward. Keep up the good work!

  3. Nabil khan says:

    Not to be the guy who poops on the parade, especially considering I swear by ur modern age stuff and use it to do my back issue collecting, but you may want to reconsider the way u chronologically place the new 52 stories. Not sure if your aware but any of the new 52 stuff that doesn’t state specifically when it takes place like batman and detective comics, etc are set in the same year. I say this for several reasons but the big one is this years major dc crossover event, starting in the issue 9’s of every remotely related bat family book is called “the night of owls”, and over the course of a single night in each of his and his allies books they deal with an onslaught from the court of owls. That said it stands to reason that when you build more detailed bat years involving the books currently being published that they should be listed on or around the same bat year. If you’d be up for a bit of a discussion on the matter I’d definitely wouldn’t mind sharing my current new 52 chronology with you that covers 40 out of the 52 main books.

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Dear Nabil,

      There’s nothing wrong with a little poo now and again. I’m reading the New 52 (for the first time) and as I do I am charting this chimera of a list. Unlike when constructing previous timelines, I don’t have the hindsight of creating this chronology after-the-fact, so it is difficult and will require multiple edits and reedits. I am aware of the “Night of Owls” crossover, which will help tie the majority of Bat-tales together in early 2012. I hope you’ve realized that I have indeed been grouping all of the current New 52 stuff together already (in late 2011 and into early 2012).

      As for your own personal chronology, I’d love to take a gander at it. The more information I can compile, the more accurate this list will eventually become. If you are willing to share, shoot me an e-mail! Discussion is what this site is all about. Plus, I need help on this one! 🙂

      Thanks for you support and readership, friend.


  4. Ahmad says:

    Hey sorry for all the questions that I have I just am really getting into organizing everything chronologically. So I was wondering if you would place Batman: Noel in any chronology and where would you place it

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Batman: Noel is non-canon and takes place in a completely different universe from the main DCU. However, it does function as the follow-up to Brian Azzarello/Lee Bermejo’s Batman/Deathblow, Azzarello/Bermejo’s Lex Luthor: Man of Steel, and Azzarello/Bermejo’s Joker. So, in that regard, I guess you could make Noel the official fourth story in the Azzarello/Bermejo-verse.

  5. Les says:

    I see that you decided to convert your new age chronology back to 12 years a few weeks ago. My only comment is that comments that people had posted before this point are attached to the old years. For example, most of the comments on year eight are meant for when year eight was 2011, not 2008. I’m not sure if you could do anything about that, but I just wanted to let you know.

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Yes I am aware of the situation. I’ll see what I can do about it… But in the take solace in the fact that any pertinent information from any comment has been added within the correct year it references in the form of a footnote.

  6. Jamison says:

    Hello again, Collin.

    I wanted to get your thoughts on the new 52 so far. I want to like it, but I’m sort of appalled that they squandered the opprotunity to have a sensible continuity. There’s two things that bother me about this relaunch. Damian’s age and James Gordon Junior’s age. You already know these problems. Batman vol.2 Annual 1 suggests Bruce has returned from his training 6 years before the present, and the issue loosely crosses over with Night of the Owls, so we know it’s present day. Damien can’t be 10 years old. Also if year one is canon, then James Gordon Junior goes from infant to 11 year old in 4 years (as seen in Batgirl 0). Even if you or I can somehow rationalize these glaring errors, it’s still unacceptable. It’s one thing for Jeph Loeb or Grant Morison to create continuity errors with material that’s 10 or 20 years old, but these new stories are all less than a year old. Does DC think we are idiots? Once again, I’m insulted.

    Even if I can ignore all the continuity errors, the stories themselves aren’t really that good. I think Scott Snyder’s stories are a bit over rated and ape Grant Morison a bit too much. So far I don’t find anything unique to the new 52 all that appealing. Within a year or two of the post-crisis relaunch we got the Dark Knight Returns, Year One, and the Killing joke. These new stories, especially Tony Daniel’s work, don’t even come close. We need at least one great story and at least an explanation of Damian (opprotunity squandered in Batman and Robin #0) before I will consider forgiving them for raping Darkseid’s character to death before my eyes.


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