Year Three

(2010)

 

–the second feature to Harley Quinn Vol. 3 #18 (“HARLEY LOVES JOKER”)
January 1. While others celebrate the New Year’s Eve Ball dropping, Joker and Harley Quinn rob a department store jewelry vault of its contents. Joker pauses to give Harley a new stolen fur coat as a gift. Later, Batman visits the crime scene and finds Harley’s old coat, which he shows to live TV news reporter Summer Gleason. At night, Joker and Harley watch the news and see the glaring evidence of their crime on display to the world. Batman smashes through the window to arrest the duo.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Vol. 2 #35. This item occurs “four years” before Batman Vol. 2 #35 and “not long after Year Zero.” I guess three years after Year Zero is “not long?” Bruce joins the Royal Theater Board and oversees a “cultural reconstruction initiative” to build lots of new theaters in downtown Gotham. Bruce meets with longtime friend and lead architect Brian Wade, who is in charge of creating the Gotham Royal Theater. Despite being way over budget, Bruce okays the continuation of the building.

–REFERENCE: In Batman/Superman #30. Batman begins learning to speak Kryptonian. He will continue to learn the alien language, studying it for months to come (albeit invisibly on our timeline). Batman will eventually master the language, although he will not become completely fluent.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics #952. Batman defeats Lady Shiva in combat, although, unknown to Batman, the deadly femme fatale takes a dive (for reasons of her own). This item is interesting because Lady Shiva was one of the few villains that Batman was never able to defeat in the Modern Age. (Cassie Cain and Tim Drake bested Shiva in one-on-one fights in the Modern Age, but Batman surprisingly never did.)

–FLASHBACK: From Harley Quinn Vol. 3 #12. Joker and Harley Quinn capture Batman, chain him up, and hang him above a vat filled with piranhas. Obviously, Batman escapes.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics Vol. 2 #46. Batman mentions how much he respects Commissioner Gordon to his Justice League teammates. Batman won’t talk about personal stuff to the JL very often, but the few times he does (invisibly on our timeline, moving forward) he will always speak highly of Gordon.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson Annual #3. Harley Quinn is on hand, likely while on some sort of criminal activity, at a party event where she watches in awe as Bruce Wayne “works the room” with sexy style and playboy panache.

–REFERENCE: In Red Hood/Arsenal #4. Batman and Robin take on an escaped Joker. This Jason’s first encounter with Joker as Robin.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Vol. 3 #6—originally told in Batman #352 and Detective Comics #519. Using a giant zeppelin, the debuting Colonel Blimp steals a US Navy submarine, along with its entire crew, and ransoms it for millions of dollars. Batman takes down Colonel Blimp and his cronies, rescuing the seamen.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman and… #23.4 aka Killer Croc #1. Batman and Robin apprehend Killer Croc, who attempts to rob a jewelry store. This flashback contains an editorial note that says “three years ago.” Since Jason Todd is definitely the Robin shown here, “three years ago” must equal Year Three. Therefore, this event isn’t actually three years prior to 2014, when the issue occurs. The editorial time note simply correlates to the idea of “five years ago” being Year One. It would also conceivably mean “three years prior to its publication date of 2013.” Note that while Batman has encountered Killer Croc before, this is Jason’s first time and he is surprised, intrigued, and excited by Killer Croc’s monstrous appearance and brutish demeanor.

–REFERENCE: In Titans Hunt #6-7, DC Universe: Rebirth #1, and Titans Vol. 3 #2-3. The Teen Titans—Nightwing, Wonder Girl, Aqualad, Speedy, Omen, Cave Boy (Gnarrk), Hawk (Hank Hall), Dove (Don Hall), Herald (Mal Duncan), and Kid Flash—fight their rival Mr. Twister. Tragically, Mr. Twister murders Dove. In order to defeat Mr. Twister and save the day, the Titans are forced to allow the world to undergo a “psychic blanking,” otherwise known as a global mind-wipe. This complete memory erasure, done by Omen, causes not only the defeat of Mr. Twister, but also causes the Teen Titans to become erased from the collective memories of the entire world. The world won’t recover these lost memories until late in Year Eight. Note that only Hawk will have some fleeting memory of Mr. Twister, but it will be fuzzy.[1] Also note that Kid Flash not only gets erased from everyone’s memory but he also goes missing, trapped within the Speed Force, exiled there by his rival Abra Kadabra, who takes advantage of the chaotic situation.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #14. A single-panel shows Batman punching-out and apprehending the Roman Sionis, who now debuts as the super-villain Black Mask. Sionis’ former Black Mask Gang (from Year Zero) has merged with a group of disturbed mask-wearing cultists known as The False Face Society. The Dark Knight also makes specific mention of this case—a reference in Batman Vol. 2 #1. Likewise, the False Facers are referenced in Detective Comics Vol. 2 #9. More details of Sionis’ debut are referenced in Detective Comics Vol. 2 Annual #1 where we learn that Sionis’ signature skull mask was carved from a board taken from his father’s coffin and then imbued with dark magickal powers thanks to an occult ritual. Furthermore, the animal masks of each False Facer are made in a similar way, eventually causing the wearer to go insane, but also to become completely subservient to Black Mask. Detective Annual #1 also implies that Mad Hatter was once secretly a member of the False Face Society, operating as the clown-masked “Dwarf.” Mad Hatter, unlike the others, is not subservient to Black Mask, but merely only pretends to be in order to gain access to his brand of mind-control.[2]

–FLASHBACK: From Detective Comics Vol. 2 #23. Batman apprehends known felon Clyde Anderson. Anderson will later become the one-shot villain known as Scorn.

–REFERENCE: In Arkham Manor #2. Batman beats the tar out of Amygdala (Aaron Helzinger).

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #5. The insane megalomaniac and powerful crime lord Maxie Zeus debuts now. Batman puts him behind bars.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #1. Batman forms the superhero team known as The Outsiders—comprised of Black Lightning (Jefferson Pierce), Element Man, Katana (Tatsu Yamashiro), Freight Train (Cecil), Looker (Lia Briggs), and Halo (Gabrielle Doe). Of course, in the Modern Age, Batman angrily quit the Justice League to form his splinter team with Black Lightning, Katana, Geo-Force, the alternately named Metamorpho, and others. However, in the New 52, the only Outsider lineup we have seen or that has been made mention of is the one I’ve listed above. Furthermore, we don’t know why Batman formed the Outsiders in the New 52—he definitely was still on good terms with the JL. In any event, the Outsiders will go on several missions that we can place randomly on our chronology over the course of the next year-and-a-half to two years, including battles against the People’s Heroes, the Nuclear Family, Maxie Zeus, and Simon Stagg (all referenced in Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #1). Whether or not Batman is directly involved (or involved at all) with these cases is unknown. At some point during this year (or possibly next year) Black Lightning and Katana will both quit the Outsiders (or be fired). The details are unknown, but we know these departures occur because both Black Lightning and Katana are not Outsiders (nor are they ever made Batman Incorporated agents) by the time of the Leviathan story-arc in Batman Incorporated Vol. 2. Oh, and Batman’s Outsiders team should not be confused with the other Outsiders group that predates this one and operates from the mysterious island that Green Arrow was once trapped on for years.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #50—originally told in Detective Comics #553. Black Mask and his False Face Society begin targeting and assassinating people who have wronged Black Mask in the past, filling up masks with sulfuric acid and adhering them to their victim’s faces. After killing several SWAT team members using acid skull masks, Black Mask straps an acid mask onto Batman’s face. Batman is able to get it off before damage is done and bust Black Mask. (Note that this splash page flashback is an homage to the cover of ‘tec #553, which depicts a representative scene that never originally occurred in actuality. Therefore, the scene here is influenced by the old tale, but is totally brand new canonical material for the New 52.)

–REFERENCE: In Forever Evil #4. Batman retires his costume for a new version that has a utility belt sans “capsules” (whatever that means). The old costume goes on display in the Batcave. This note really isn’t a big deal since the new costume looks exactly like the old one anyway.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics Vol. 2 #29. In 2013’s Detective Comics #29, Batman terrorizes twelve unnamed random crooks that he’s busted in the past. These small-time dudes, we learn, hadn’t served very long jail sentences and soon returned to crime in the free world thereafter. I’m not going to individually place these twelve nobodies on the chronology simply because I don’t want to muddy the timeline with twelve notes about nobodies. Thus, we must imagine these twelve busts as occurring throughout the rest of the year and possibly into next year as well.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #13. Batman beats up some of Penguin’s henchmen, including Ignatius Ogilvy, who will go on to become one of Penguin’s top men.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #10. Batman fights a crook that wields a flamethrower. The Dark Knight kicks him in the face with a flaming boot, leaving a permanent boot print melted into the poor guy’s face. He soon becomes the super-villain appropriately named Bootface.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #13. Batman fights Ignatius Ogilvy again and tosses him through a plate glass window.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #10. Batman takes down a heavily-pierced punker girl named Scallop that threatens innocents with a handgun. The Dark Knight sticks the young lady with several razor-sharp Batarangs in her ear and down her shoulder and back. Scallop will keep the Batarangs in her flesh as new permanent “piercings.”

–FLASHBACK: From Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3. This single-panel flashback shows Batman swinging into the Gotham night with Robin while on patrol.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #13. Batman fights some of Penguin’s thugs and winds up leaving Ignatius Ogilvy with a nasty permanent scar on his arm.

–REFERENCE: In Green Team: Teen Trillionaires #2. Batman drives one of his Batmobiles into the Gotham River while on a case.

–REFERENCE: In the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #20. Batman sends the demonic-looking metahuman gangster known as The Boss to Blackgate Prison.

–REFERENCE: In Justice League International Vol. 2 #12. Batman meets superhero from the future Booster Gold (Michael Carter)—and his sentient computer program pal Skeetz—but doesn’t think much of him. Booster, however, earns Batman’s respect after they share an adventure together.[3]

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Eternal #17—this is an alternate version of the Modern Age’s Batman: The Cult. An evil Christian preacher named Deacon Joseph Blackfire obtains converts to his fanatical patristic sect by spiking homeless shelters and pantries’ food offerings with mind-altering drugs. These poor folks quickly become Blackfire’s insane cult of followers, helping him capture Batman. For seven straight days, Batman is chained-up beneath Blackfire’s church where he is tortured and drugged. On the seventh night of his captivity, Batman musters up enough strength to break free. Blackfire’s crazed followers turn on him and wind up killing him.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Vol. 2 Annual #3. Joker breaks out of Arkham and goes after Tommy Blackcrow, who wrote a negative article about him last year. Joker kills Tommy’s friend and puts Tommy through psychological hell. Batman recaptures Joker and then, along with Commissioner Gordon, consoles Tommy, who quits the Gotham Gazette to become a recluse.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #12 and Red Hood/Arsenal #4—and referenced in Red Hood/Arsenal #5. (Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #12 contains one panel that shows Batman fighting Joker, Penguin, Clayface, and Mr. Freeze. This was never meant to be a scene from the Red Hood/Arsenal #4 flashback, but it might as well be, so I’ve merged them together.) Joker steals the “psychic siphon,” an experimental device that lobotomizes Arkham patients and stores their evilness in a built-in containment unit, and breaks out of the asylum once again. He then meets with Catwoman, Clayface, Mr. Freeze, Penguin, and Two-Face to show them the device, which he plan to use for the benefit of all Gotham’s villains. When a janitor mistakenly wanders into the meeting, Joker brutally murders him. Batman and Robin swing into action and kick everyone’s asses. The psychic siphon is accidentally opened during the melee. After all parties have left the scene, the collected evil psychic energy seeps out of the breached containment unit and is given life as an amorphous blob monster upon touching the blood of the murdered janitor. Calling himself Underbelly, the new super-villain becomes the living embodiment of evil, a psychic hive-mind manifestation that will go on to exist in dozens of cities across America.

–REFERENCE: In Teen Titans Vol. 4 #15. An escaped Joker rigs some subway metro-card machines to electrocute people. Batman investigates.

–REFERENCE: In Justice League Vol. 2 #19. Batman secretly begins assembling items that can be used to neutralize each of his fellow Justice Leaguers (due to his natural distrust of just about everyone and also in the case they ever get mind-controlled or go over to the dark side). The first of Batman’s anti-JL items, a Kryptonite ring—which is actually given to Batman by Superman with the expressed idea that he use it against an out-of-control Man of Steel—is placed into an “emergency briefcase” in a vault in the Batcave (as referenced in Justice League Vol. 2 #20). Batman has an emergency briefcase for each Justice Leaguer. Cyborg’s case gets both a nifty Mother Box, the one kept after Darkseid’s assault on Earth (as referenced in Forever Evil #4) and an “electronic nerve tree” device capable of shutting him down with an ion pulse (as referenced in Batman Vol. 2 #35 and Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #35). The other emergency contingency weapons will be added later (when Batman gets them).

–REFERENCE: In the second feature to Superman Unchained #2. Bruce, since he is currently in the process of assembling weapons that can be used against his friends in case of an emergency, adds a high-tech Bat-suit that is completely invisible to the Man of Steel to his anti-Superman arsenal. Of course, the suit won’t be functional for years.

–REFERENCE: In Justice League of America Vol. 4 #2. Batman, in conjunction with his current desire to collect anti-JL weapons, begins collecting information on anyone that could possibly defeat each member of the Justice League. Batman and Alfred begin compiling what they call “The Kryptonian Protocols,” essentially a list of ways Superman can be defeated by various foes. Presumably, “protocol” files are compiled for the other JLers as well.

–REFERENCE: In Red Hood & The Outlaws Vol. 2 #7. Batman adds yet another anti-Superman weapon into his collection of anti-JL weaponry. This weapon is by far the grimmest and darkest of them all, one which Batman guards with complete secrecy even from his Bat-Family. Batman crafts a Kryptonite bullet and puts it into a vault in the Batcave. Only Robin, thanks to some snooping, is aware of its existence.

–REFERENCE: In Red Hood & The Outlaws Vol. 2 #4. With all the recent Arkham Asylum breakouts weighing heavily upon his mind, an angry Jason tells Bruce, “Enough of the revolving door. Enough of the moral high road.” Robin is sick of it all and is now ready and willing to kill to stop crime. (There is a picture in Red Hood & The Outlaws Vol. 2 #4 attached to this reference dialogue of Jason face-to-face with Batman. However, it isn’t from an actual scene or flashback. It’s more of a “versus screen” or a “tale of the tape” image.)

–FLASHBACK: From Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #10. Batman fights two small-timers and puts a razor sharp Batarang into one of their skulls. The Batarang goes into one side of the thug’s head and becomes lodged in his brain, causing significant brain damage, but allowing him to function normally so long as the Batarang is left stuck in his dome. Thus, the poor guy has a permanent Batarang souvenir sticking out of his head courtesy of the Dark Knight. He becomes the super-villain called Bat Head. (Bat Head is first named in Batman and… #23.1 aka Two-Face #1.)

–FLASHBACK: From Red Hood & The Outlaws #0, Red Hood & The Outlaws #26, Red Hood & The Outlaws: Rebirth #1, and Red Hood & The Outlaws Vol. 2 #7. Robin helps Batman bust an escaped Two-Face. While Batman takes down Two-Face’s hired thugs and rescues some kidnapped children, Robin takes down Two-Face himself and proceeds to violently beat the shit out of him. (Robin acting solo here is highly frowned-upon by Batman. As is Robin’s extreme violence.)

–REFERENCE: In Batman & Robin Eternal #9. Batman and Robin travel to Santa Prisca for an unspecified mission. During this noodle incident, Robin screws up so badly that Batman doesn’t speak to him for a week after they return home.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 # 15. Robin has gotten exponentially more reckless and violent in a very short amount of time. Batman doesn’t handle this situation very well. While the Dark Knight still offers words of encouragement, they are clearly phoned-in at this point (and will continue to be, moving forward). Robin, taking notice, becomes even more detached from his mentor.

–FLASHBACK: From Red Hood & The Outlaws #0 and Secret Origins Vol. 3 #5. Robin has gotten completely out of hand and increasingly overly violent when dealing with criminals. Batman is quickly losing control of his second Boy Wonder, who nearly pummels some random thugs to death with excessive force. Note, interestingly, that this year has seen Batman violently disfigure several criminals with needless brutality. The hypocrisy of Batman being upset with Robin’s violence is that the boy undoubtedly was influenced by his mentor’s own nasty behavior.

–FLASHBACK: From Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3 and Red Hood & The Outlaws Vol. 2 #3. Again, Robin uses excessive force when beating-up a criminal and there is nothing Batman can do to control his rage. The Dark Knight calmly warns Robin that if he kills, there’s no turning back.

–FLASHBACK: From Secret Origins Vol. 3 #5. Standing in the pouring rain in Wayne Manor Cemetery, Bruce tries to get inside the troubled and overly violent Jason’s head. But Bruce’s heart-to-heart fails miserably. Jason angrily storms-off after accusing Bruce of never actually trying to help him and instead trying to “fix” himself vicariously through the Boy Wonder.

–REFERENCE: In Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3. Bruce attends a yacht party to play up his playboy persona. He later swings through the night as Batman. (These two items are seen on Tim’s computer as YouTube videos.)

–FLASHBACK: From Red Hood & The Outlaws #0, Batman and… #20, Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3, Secret Origins Vol. 3 #5, and Red Hood & The Outlaws: Rebirth #1—originally told in the famous (and awesome) “A Death in the Family” arc by Starlin and Aparo. March. (Nearly a week-and-a-half has passed since Bruce’s failed heart-to-heart talk with Jason from Secret Origins Vol. 3 #5.) Due to his increasingly violent actions, unwillingness to follow orders, and overall cockiness, Batman suspends Robin’s nightly patrols and relegates him to monitor duty in the Batcave. While scanning the computers, Jason learns that his mother, Catherine, who he previously thought was dead, is still alive and currently in the Middle Eastern country of Qurac. Three days later, Jason reunites with his mom, but their reunion is short lived. Joker viciously beats Jason to death with a crowbar and detonates a bomb in the building holding both the Boy Wonder and his mom. Batman arrives seconds too late to save them. A funeral is held a few days later with Bruce, Dick, Alfred, and Babs. I should also mention that Jason will return from the grave and re-debut in 2012. Following Jason’s death, as can be seen in many, many comics, Batman puts his Robin costume on display in the Batcave. The “Death in the Family” storyline is also referenced in Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #11.

–REFERENCE: In Batgirl Vol. 4 #0-1, Batman Vol. 2 #14, and Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #15—originally told in Batman: The Killing Joke. March. Barbara Gordon is shot in the spine and left paralyzed by Joker.[4] Joker, in committing this heinous act, paralyzes the retired Batgirl. Joker also takes pornographic pictures of the injured Babs and kidnaps and tortures Commissioner Gordon before Batman brings the madman to justice.

–FLASHBACK: From Batgirl Vol. 4 #6. March. Batman visits Babs in the hospital and comforts her in solemn silence while gently holding her hand. The New 52 version of events that follow Babs’ paralysis at the hands of the Joker are infinitely warmer than the Modern Age rendition, with its series of awkward hospital visits by Bruce, which grow worse and worse each time until eventually Bruce is such an asshole to Babs they don’t speak for a long time. It’s nice to see Gail Simone “right those wrongs.” Note that Babs, once she gets out of the hospital, despite being wheelchair-bound, will soon become the secret computer information broker known as Oracle—according to Batgirl & The Birds of Prey: Rebirth #1. However, unlike in the Modern Age, she will not work with Batman at all, instead choosing only to work with her female superhero friends, also known as the Birds of Prey. Batman won’t even know that Babs is Oracle.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in New Titans #55. Dick visits Batman in the Batcave to check up on him following all of the recent tragedies. Batman angrily storms-off mid-conversation, saying dejectedly, “I don’t need a partner. I never should have had one. And I I never will again.” This attitude will last for a mere few days.

–REFERENCE: In The Flash: Rebirth #1, Part 2. The details are vague, but, suffice to say, Superman tells the Flash to make sure he never laughs in the Batcave, as it is a solemn and serious place. Not sure if this is advice based upon having generally interacted with Batman in the Batcave or if this is advice stemming a from a particular specific episode. If the latter case is canon, we must imagine the episode as happening now. In fact, the episode in question could very easily be Jason’s very recent death. After all, his costume is on display in memoriam.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in the “Batman: Year Three” arc from Batman #437. While Batman fights some drug-runners in a mansion just outside of Gotham, the bad guys blow up the place, causing the entire building to collapse on top of the Dark Knight. Nightwing shows up and pulls Batman out of the rubble. Note that the Modern Age “Batman: Year Three” arc is all about Tony Zucco, but in the New 52, he wouldn’t be involved at all.

–REFERENCE: In Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3. April. An eleven-year-old[5] computer genius and gifted gymnast/athlete named Tim[6] has been trying (and getting pretty close) to discovering the secret identity of Batman. When Alfred becomes aware of Tim’s “after-school project,” he alerts Bruce. Intrigued by Tim’s tenacity in hunting down his secret ID, Batman sets up a series of false clues for him to follow. Soon after, Batman takes down Mad Hatter in Gotham while simultaneously appearing with a blonde bombshell on his arm in Cannes—a ruse with the goal of distancing Tim from thinking that Bruce Wayne might be the Dark Knight.

–Teen Titans Vol. 4 #0
April. (All of Teen Titans Vol. 4 #0 is also shown, with additional detail and slight alteration, via flashback from Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3.) A disguised Bruce and Alfred survey Tim during a gymnastics competition and take notice of his abilities. Afterward, Alfred urges Batman to train Tim as the new Robin, but Batman, still shaken from the very recent death of Jason Todd, says that there can never be another Boy Wonder. Later, Tim, having successfully followed the trail of Batman’s false leads, travels to Gotham Aviary. There, Batman meets Tim, but tells the latter to take a hike for his own safety. Tim doubles his efforts and begins hacking into Batman’s computer systems. Using the username “Real Bat_01,” Batman instant messages a prying Tim and shuts him down. After a week of inaction Tim makes his biggest play, siphoning $100 million out of Pengiun’s bank account. Penguin sends a small army of gun-toting assassins to shoot up Tim’s house, which naturally draws the response of Batman, who saves Tim and his family. Batman then works out a deal with the Department of Justice and Tim’s family: Mom and dad (Janet and Jack) go into the witness protection program (moving to parts unknown) while Tim becomes Bruce Wayne’s legal ward and stays under the protection of Batman. Tim is made legally dead via car accident and gets the new witness protection program-appointed legal last name of “Drake” (which was previously his middle name). Bruce picks-up Tim from the Department of Justice building and takes him home to Wayne Manor for the first time. In the Batcave, Batman tells Tim about Jason Todd’s death and offers him the title of brand new Robin, which he accepts with pride. However, Tim has one condition. He decides the best way to honor the legacy of the Boy Wonder, and especially show respect to the death of Jason, is to not use the name “Robin” exactly—he unveils his own Robin costume and calls himself Red Robin. Thus, Tim becomes the newest official Robin and Batman’s new sidekick, but technically is called Red Robin. Unlike the previous two Robins, Tim is already exceptionally well-trained and will begin patrolling in-costume with Batman right away. However, we can still assume that Tim also begins a simultaneous six month Batcave training period as well (training in the afternoons and patrolling at night).

–REFERENCE: In Teen Titans Vol. 4 #0-1 and Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3. April. Tim Drake goes on his first official patrol on the streets of Gotham. The Gotham Free Weekly News snaps a picture of Batman and his new (Red) Robin swinging into action. Tim will function as Batman’s sidekick for just under a year. (This seems like incredibly short amount of time, no? Well, with all the compression of the abbreviated New 52 timeline, there’s just no other way. But take solace in the fact that Tim starts in-costume and immediately patrols with Batman right away, meaning, similarly to how things were in the Modern Age, Tim also wears the Robin costume longer than his predecessors.)

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in “A Lonely Place of Dying.” A couple Easter Eggs referring to “A Lonely Place of Dying,” slipped into continuity by writers Tim Seeley and Tom King in Grayson #12, can’t make a lick of sense as they were written back in 1989. But for the purposes of the New 52, here’s what goes down. A yet-again-escaped Two-Face runs Batman ragged over the course of several days. Despite this, Batman refuses to accept help from his newest (Red) Robin, thinking that he isn’t ready to handle such a formidable challenge yet. Red Robin directly appeals to Nightwing, who initially agrees with Batman until Red Robin changes his mind by showing him the original Robin costume in the Batcave. Eventually, Batman, Red Robin, and Nightwing join together to fight Two-Face in a junkyard. Batman, energized by seeing his latest partner and original partner team-up, punches out the double-themed super-villain and brings him to justice. Afterward, Red Robin reminds his boss that “Batman needs a Robin. No matter what he thinks he wants.”

–REFERENCE: In Red Hood/Arsenal #7. Like he did previously with Jason, Batman begins to clearly compare his new (Red) Robin to Dick—a very tough standard to live up to. While not fully open about it, Batman certainly won’t hide this obvious truth as the new Dynamic Duo goes on patrol.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #15. Batman schools Tim, summing up being a Robin with one word: “Investigation.”

–REFERENCE: In Batman & Robin Eternal #7 and Batman Beyond Vol. 7 #7. Batman teaches Red Robin to consider every possibility when doing detective work, using the metaphor of the “essential if/then computer problem.” Batman also teaches Red Robin several secret cipher codes to encrypt textual information.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Vol. 2 #1 and the second feature to All-Star Batman #2. Batman apprehends the debuting Victor Zsasz (who makes his first New 52 appearance as a prisoner of Arkham Asylum in Batman Vol. 2 #1). Zsasz stalks his victims, kidnaps them, and brutally stabs them to death in front of each other, then putting a scar on his own body as a tally mark for each kill. He reserves his most brutal slayings for those “fortunate” to temporarily escape from him.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in Batman: Shadow of the Bat #1-4. Victor Zsasz breaks out of Arkham Asylum to commit crimes but then somehow returns to his cell. Batman allows himself to be committed into Arkham Asylum in order to find out how Zsasz has been pulling it off. Nightwing learns of Batman’s plan when he (Nightwing) infiltrates Arkham to make sure his former mentor is okay. They briefly team-up and put a stop to Zsasz’s secret entrance/exit high-jinks.

–REFERENCE: In The New 52: Futures End #10. Batman teaches Red Robin a non-lethal version of the Tonga Death Grip, which is a nerve strike that causes instant unconsciousness and temporary paralysis.

–FLASHBACK: From Red Hood/Arsenal #7. Batman and Red Robin swing into the pouring Gotham rain while on patrol.

–FLASHBACK: From the second feature to Detective Comics Vol. 2 #50—originally told in Detective Comics #602. A Tibetan mystic creates a “Tulpa” (magickal doppelgänger) in the form of the evil demon Mahakala to defend himself against mobsters. Naturally, the Tulpa goes on a rampage, forcing Batman to take it down.

–REFERENCE: In All-Star Batman #3. Batman defeats Penguin and meets his sympathetic henchman, a genius inventor named Harold Allnut. Batman takes in the mute hunchbacked little person, who moves into the Batcave and becomes Batman’s chief weapons-designer, Bat-suit-maker, and vehicle constructor. Harold lives under Wayne Manor for a short time before Bruce buys him some land around 200 miles north of Gotham. Harold turns the land into All Nut Walnut Farm, but secretly continues building stuff for Batman in his own underground version of the Bat Cave. Via an abandoned underground aqueduct pipeline that runs all the way from the farm to Gotham, Harold is able to send Bat-vehicles, Bat-weapons, and other cool Bat-stuff directly to the Dark Knight. Harold’s presence will rarely register on our timeline, but be aware that Batman will remain in constant communication with and receive items from him, from this point forward.

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #4. The super-villain known as The Electrocutioner debuts now and is subsequently apprehended by Batman.

–NOTE: In references in Action Comics Vol. 2 #16, Superman/Wonder Woman #2, Batman and… #19, Superman Vol. 3 #32, “Superman: Doomed,” and a few other issues—originally told in “The Death and Return of Superman.” Superman fights Doomsday. Batman isn’t present for this event, but presumably he would have been notified about the epic battle held in Metropolis’ Centennial Park—a battle that levels half of Metropolis. Unlike in the Modern Age where Superman and Doomsday killed each other at the same time, in the New 52 Superman doesn’t kill Doomsday but instead imprisons him in the Phantom Zone, an extradimensional tesseract space home to a litany of Krypton’s worst criminals, who were ironically spared their lives when Krypton exploded. But just like in the Modern Age, Superman succumbs to injuries suffered at the hands of the behemoth Doomsday and dies! Lois and Jimmy describe the event in Action Comics, saying “Superman died … and then Superman saved everybody … He beat the bad guy. He came back from the dead. He even rebuilt the city.” Among the many New 52 references to “The Death and Return of Superman,” this one is by far the clearest and most detailed. Unlike in the Modern Age, where it took Superman a while to return, in the New 52, Superman comes back to life rather quickly, so much so that the death doesn’t bear nearly as much weight. Also, in the Modern Age, a Kryptonian Regeneration Matrix was used to resurrect Superman. Superman: Rebirth #1 makes it clear that this device doesn’t exist in the New 52, so we don’t know how Superman returned from the dead this time. Suffice to say, after the Man of Steel comes back, he does indeed rebuild the damaged parts of Metropolis.

–REFERENCE: In Forever Evil #6. Despite the fact that Doomsday is safely trapped in the Phantom Zone following his encounter with Superman, Batman and his pals construct a cell inside the JL satellite capable of holding the monster. You never can be too safe.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #2. Bruce, Dick, Babs, and Alfred (who is trying out a bad toupee) go on a picnic. A photo of this lovely outing is snapped, developed, framed, and placed in Wayne Manor.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Vol. 3 #18. Batman punches out Joker, who exclaims, “The Joke’s on me!”

–FLASHBACK: From Batwoman #0, Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3, and Batwoman: Rebirth #1. Twenty-four-year-old Kate Rebecca Kane (Bruce’s cousin) fights off a mugger and meets Batman. The encounter with the Caped Crusader inspires Kate to become a masked vigilante for the next few months. After that, Kate will go on a nearly-three-year training adventure all over the globe, after which she will become the new Batwoman. I should mention that Batman is drawn with his yellow-oval costume in Batwoman #0, which is incorrect since Batman never wore a yellow-oval in the New 52.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Vol. 3 #18. July. The menacing Bane debuts in Gotham, making both his presence and his story publicly known to Commissioner Gordon and the GCPD, while simultaneously challenging Batman to a fight. Gordon lights up the Batsignal and tells the unimpressed Batman about Bane’s arrival and threat.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman/Superman Annual #2. Also referenced in Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #4, Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #6, and Batman Vol. 3 #17-18—originally told in the classic “Knightfall,” “KnightQuest,” and “Knight’s End” story-arcs. July through late August. Batman’s toughest and smartest rival to date, Bane, begins his challenge to the Dark Knight. After Bane’s top henchmen—Trogg, Zombie, and Bird—soften-up Batman, Bane, enhanced with the super-muscle-building steroid known as Venom, does the unthinkable and breaks the Dark Knight’s back. We have to assume that due to the severity of such a terrible spinal injury, Batman is out of action for an extended period of time. But as he did in the Modern Age, the Caped Crusader must make an unbelievably fast recovery—the whole Bane saga lasts about four months. Originally, it was Shondra Kinsolving’s metahuman healing powers that helped Bruce dramatically speed up his rehabilitation time. Shondra is not a canonical character in the New 52, but it is obvious that some magickal or science fiction-type event occurs that helps Bruce heal up faster than the norm. Bruce will spend nearly four months recovering and re-training his body.

–REFERENCE: In Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1. Late August. As he did last year around this time, Bruce (still injured thanks to Bane) tries to distract himself from the upcoming anniversary of his parents’ deaths by starting an unspecified pet project in the Batcave. This time, the Dark Knight attempts to build a flamethrower, which fails and scorches part of the Batcave, earning the wrath of a scornful Alfred.

–REFERENCE: In Batman & Robin Vol. 2 #1. Early September. Bruce, despite being severely injured thanks to Bane, continues his tradition of visiting Crime Alley to honor his fallen parents.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in “Knight’s End.” Early September to Mid September. Bruce continues rehabbing, following his defeat at the hands of Bane.

–REFERENCE: In the second feature to All-Star Batman #6. Mid September. Just like the past two years, Riddler celebrates the anniversary of his Zero Year attack by initiating a new pre-planned puzzle-related strike on Gotham. Since the reference to the anniversary attacks in the second feature to All-Star Batman #6 is vague and does not give specifics, we don’t know what this attack entails. We are not told whether Riddler’s attack succeeds or fails, but because Batman is currently rehabbing from a broken back, we can likely assume that he either fails this one or sits this one out, leaving the Bat Family to handle it.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in “Knight’s End.” Mid September to late October. Bruce continues rehabbing his injured back. By October, Bruce finally heals up and prepares for his return with some extra-intensive training. Bruce meets with Nightwing and Red Robin and asks for their support moving forward. Nightwing and Red Robin put full faith in their father figure.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in “Knight’s End.” Late October. Red Robin and Nightwing await the rejuvenated Bruce in the Batcave. Red Robin talks about how he hates having to lie to people to maintain his secret identity. Batman then arrives and suits-up in costume for the first time since having his back broken by Bane. He says to Red Robin and Nightwing, “I won’t really be back until I’ve taken Gotham. And that battle starts now.” Batman prepares to go to war against Bane.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Vol. 2 #23.4 aka Bane #1. Late October. Batman, miraculously recovered after having had his back broken, returns to take revenge on Bane. The Dark Knight defeats Bane and ejects him from Gotham.

–REFERENCE: In Detective Comics Vol. 2 #9. Late October. Immediately following Batman’s return and defeat of Bane, the super-villain known as Steeljacket debuts. Originally, Steeljacket debuted against a Dick Grayson Batman in the “Prodigal” storyline. However, it is highly unlikely that “Prodigal” ever happened in the New 52. In any event, Steeljacket debuts now.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman and… #23.3 aka Ra’s Al Ghul & The League of Assassins #1. This event was originally told in the Modern Age “Contagion” and “Legacy” arcs. However, the New 52 Ebola Gulf-A War is shown as a mash-up, altered version of these tales. A horrific fatal and highly contagious virus (known as “Ebola Gulf-A” and alternatively as “The Clench”) infects Gotham. Batman is able to restrict the spread of the disease within Gotham’s city limits, but when Ra’s Al Ghul (revealed as the creator of Ebola Gulf-A) attempts to spread it across the entire Earth, the Bat Family goes global to war against the villain. While Nightwing and Red Robin fight various League of Assassins threats, Batman tackles Ra’s Al Ghul, Talia, and Ra’s son Dusan Al Ghul head-on. The Dark Knight then kicks some League of Assassins’ asses, stopping and destroying the virus and its formula for good. Azrael and the Order of St. Dumas were originally a big part of “Contagion” and “Legacy” in the Modern Age, but in the New 52 they are not. The Ebola Gulf-A plague is also canonically referenced in Forever Evil: Arkham War #2 and Grayson #12.

–FLASHBACK: From Green Lantern Vol. 5 #20. Following the destruction of his hometown of Coast City, Hal Jordan goes insane and becomes merged with the evil yellow-spectrum energy symbiote known as Parallax, in the process becoming the super-villain aptly named Parallax. Based upon the scene depicted in this single-panel flashback, it would appear that the New 52 has compressed several mega story arcs into one item, including “Emerald Twilight” (where Hal turns evil and becomes Parallax), “The Final Night” (where Hal realizes the error of his ways and sacrifices his own life to defeat a monster known as the Sun-Eater), “Day of Judgement” (where Hal’s spirit becomes the host for The Spectre),[7] and “Green Lantern: Rebirth” (where Spectre Hal and many of Earth’s heroes defeat Parallax, after which the Spectre evicts Hal’s spirit, which is subsequently rejoined with his body and resurrected thanks to the energy within the Green Power Battery). These stories were all originally released from 1994 through 2005, so we are talking about a TON of tales condensed into one tiny little tidbit. It’s possible that some of this stuff is spread out over the course of about one or two years leading up to this point, but definitely not more than that. Want more details than that? Then start your own “Real Green Lantern Chronology Project.” The scene that is shown specifically in Green Lantern #20 depicts a shot from Green Lantern: Rebirth. Batman, Green Lantern John Stewart, and Ganthet (leader of the Guardians of the Universe) watch as Spectre Hal sheds the evilness of Parallax, whose influence had remained within him even though he was acting as the Spectre. During this process, Hal makes a plea to his symbiotic other half (the Spectre) for help—an act that causes the rejection of both Parallax and the Spectre and resurrects Hal back to life.

–REFERENCE: In Batman/Superman #29-28. Batman constructs his own space-suit.

–REFERENCE: In Batman/Superman #29-30. Batman secretly takes and studies Hal Jordan’s ring. He creates a universal alien language translator device by reverse engineering communication components within the ring.

–REFERENCE: In Batman/Superman #29. Batman researches alien civilizations, including Czarnians.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #11. Batman and Nightwing team-up to bust Penguin’s top enforcer/henchman Stallion.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #7—originally referenced in Batman: No Man’s Land Secret Files #1. Batman sets up “substation” back-up Batcave headquarters all over Gotham. Batcave East, located beneath an abandoned WayneCorp oil refinery, is the only back-up Batcave mentioned in Batman Inc #7, but we can assume the others exist as well. Central Batcave lies beneath Robinson Park; Batcave South is inside a shipping yard boiler room near Paris Island; Batman South-Central is inside a prototype subway station sealed since the late nineteenth century; and the Bat Bunker is in the sub-basement of the Wayne Foundation Building (aka Wayne Tower). Batcave West already exists, built in San Francisco as the HQ for the Outsiders (as referenced in Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #1).[8] Note that the “Great Gotham Earthquake,” coming up very soon on our timeline, is much weaker in the New 52 than in the Modern Age—weak enough that the Northwest Batcave, located in a sub-basement beneath Arkham Asylum, does not get built.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Eternal #39. In addition to building Bat Bunkers and alternate Batcaves, Bruce annexes several properties to possibly later use in his war on crime. Off-the-books, Bruce secretly purchases an Uptown roller rink, a casino in the Pineskills (the DCU’s equivalent to the Catskills), and an auto shop by the docks.

–REFERENCE: In Forever Evil: Arkham War #2. A large earthquake strikes Gotham.[9] As mentioned in a footnote above, the earthquake in the New 52 is much less devastating than in the Modern Age (where it originally occurred in “Cataclysm”). In fact, while the Bat-Family probably has its hands full with the rescue effort and looters, the truly trying and devastating “No Man’s Land” (the Modern Age yearlong follow-up to “Cataclysm”) does not occur.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #10—loosely based on Batman Annual #23. Batman and Nightwing defeat Gorilla Grimm, who runs a Gotham smuggling operation selling high-tech Gorilla City weapons on behalf of his boss Gorilla Grodd.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Vol. 2 #16. Joker kidnaps a whole bunch of babies and Batman rescues them. This event was originally a part of “No Man’s Land” and coincided with the death of Sarah Essen Gordon. However, “No Man’s Land” does not happen in the New 52 and Sarah Essen, if she even exists, never marries Jim Gordon. So the only thing that happens here is the abduction of the babies.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #12. Grace Balin, the anthropomorphic female killer whale with human limbs—better known as Orca—debuts. She is defeated and run out of town by Batman and Nightwing.

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #9—originally told in Arkham Asylum: Living Hell. Warren White is tortured by his fellow inmates during an Arkham Asylum riot and becomes one of Batman’s wiliest rogues, The Great White Shark. During the riot, which Batman quells, Arkham’s chief of security, Aaron Cash, loses a hand courtesy of Killer Croc, but still assists Batman during the chaos. The Great White Shark’s first New 52 appearance is in Detective Comics Vol. 2 #9.

–REFERENCE: In Grayson #12—originally told in the Modern Age “Officer Down” arc. When Commissioner Gordon is shot and hospitalized, Catwoman is mistakenly accused of the crime. The Bat Family assembles and Batman allows Babs to run the show on this case since it’s hitting so close to home. Babs distributes a list of Catwoman’s most recent known associates. Nightwing and Red Robin then take to the streets and bust some skulls to prove Catwoman’s innocence, but Batman disappears, not even answering the Bat Signal, which shines for hours. Where is the Dark Knight? He’s been by Gordon’s side in the hospital the whole time. After examining the gun that was used to shoot her dad, Babs is able to out the real assassin, a random revenge-seeking man that her dad once busted a long time ago. The would-be murderer is arrested and charged. Catwoman is exonerated.

–REFERENCE: In Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #3. Batman is present when Ra’s Al Ghul is killed by his daughter Nyssa Raatko, who temporarily allies herself with sis Talia as co-leader of the League of Assassins. This occurrence is canon in the New 52 because the Resurrection of Ra’s Al Ghul arc is referenced in the “Leviathan web display” in Batman Incorporated Vol. 2 #3. Logic follows that if Ra’s Al Ghul is resurrected, he had to have died first.

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #1. Batman and Red Robin deal with master assassin and hit-man extraordinaire Philo Zeiss. Zeiss is made canon in the New 52 via his first appearance in Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #1.

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #1. Batman and Red Robin apprehend the crazed corpse re-animator known as The Mortician (Porter Vito). The Mortician is made canon in the New 52 via his first appearance in Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #1.

–REFERENCE: In Teen Titans Vol. 4 #15. Batman meets African-American superhero Orpheus (Gavin King), a rookie costumed crime-fighter in Gotham. Originally debuting in the Modern Age’s Batman: Orpheus Rising #1-5, Orpheus impressed Batman and became a member of the Bat-Family. However, there is no indication that Orpheus had the same impact or became a member of the Bat-Family in the New 52.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #11. Batman and Nightwing go undercover as biker gang members to bust street racing super-villain Thrill Devil.

–REFERENCE: In Forever Evil #7. Batman has a short-lived but highly emotional secret sexual affair with Wonder Woman—at least that is the insinuation made in Forever Evil #7. We aren’t told any details.

–FLASHBACK: From Batman Eternal #26—and also referenced in Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #5 and Grayson #12. Batman begins seeing Catwoman romantically, although they never sexually consummate, and the attempt at a relationship doesn’t last beyond this item on our timeline. Nightwing questions Batman about his choice in women, to which Batman says that it’s none of his damn business. Meanwhile, one of Bruce’s closest childhood friends, Dr. Tommy Elliot, returns to Gotham and becomes the super-villain known as Hush. Armed with knowledge of Bruce’s identity as Batman, a disfigured Elliot wraps bandages around his face and, as Hush, strikes the surprised Caped Crusader. Batman successfully defeats Hush, but learns a sobering truth about his old friend. Years ago, a young Tommy—having always been dangerously obsessed with Bruce and wanting to be like him in every way—cut the brake cables on his parents car, resulting in their untimely deaths. NOTE: Batman Eternal #26 makes mention that Batman, between now and 2013, will face-off with Hush and defeat him multiple times. Hush will appear two more times before his appearance in Batman Eternal in 2013. It is possible he makes other appearances as well, but they are not specified and, therefore, have not been included on this timeline.

–REFERENCE: In Batman: The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #1 and Detective Comics Vol. 2 #9—the latter being a nod to the “As the Crow Flies” arc from Batman #627-630. Batman and Red Robin deal with evil super-scientist Fright (Linda Friitawa). She debuts as an evil scientist working in conjunction with Penguin and Scarecrow.

–REFERENCE: In Teen Titans Vol. 4 #15. Orpheus is killed by an escaped Joker. Orpheus was originally murdered by Black Mask during the events of the Modern Age “War Games” arc. However, since “War Games” doesn’t happen in the New 52, Orpheus’ death has been altered significantly, and this change includes the person who kills him.

–Batman/Superman #28-30 (“UNIVERSE’S FINEST”)
When a dead giant alien astronaut crashes into a lunar space station and lands on the moon, Superman investigates to find the corpse next to an etching of a Batman/Superman symbol in the dust. He immediately flies to Gotham where Batman and Commissioner Gordon are struggling to apprehend an escaped Clayface. Superman easily freezes Clayface with ice-breath. After getting stitched up by Alfred, Batman puts on his spacesuit and heads to the moon with Superman. Batman deduces that the alien has been murdered and also spots a video drone watching them, despite the drone’s miniature size. Superman tries to snatch the drone but it self-destructs. Turning their attention back to the giant corpse, our heroes discover a holographic projector on her person that displays a Kryptonian message about the existence of another Kryptonian survivor living in a supposedly empty region in deep space called Scorch Space. When the murder victim’s father comes to collect her body, Superman and Batman follow him to his spaceship. After putting in a call to make sure Gotham is protected in his absence, Batman speaks with the murder victim’s father while Superman travels to Scorch Space to find the “lost Kyrptonian”—actually a Daxamite named Si Bar—attached to a machine that illegally harvests energy from a yellow sun. While Superman rescues Si Bar from the harvester’s alien controllers, Batman exposes the giant alien dad as the murderer of his own daughter and leader of the sun-harvesters. Batman is then confronted by the alien dad’s partner, Lobo, whom he has hired to kill Batman. (Note that this is the original Lobo, who the New 52 led us to believe was actually a fake Lobo, but who I’m pretty sure is actually the real Lobo.) The Dark Knight detonates explosives aboard the ship, fights off Lobo, and steals Lobo’s ship to escape. Meanwhile, Si Bar reveals himself as an accomplice of his own captors, stabbing Superman with a Kryptonite knife and capturing him with the idea that the Man of Steel will replace him in the solar harvester. Superman x-ray scans Si Bar and tells him that he is dying, which prompts Si Bar to have a change of heart and release Superman. Superman then meets with Batman and dons his costume in order to face-off against an unsuspecting Lobo. After taking a dive against Lobo, “Batman” is brought before giant alien dad, who reveals the details behind the murder of his daughter as Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps secretly listen in. Superman then strips off his Batman garb and tosses Lobo into deep space. The GLC arrests giant alien dad. Back on Earth, Superman and Batman hang out with Si Bar in his final moments before dying.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #11-12. Batman and Nightwing bust super-villain couple Giz and Mouse as they attempt to break Catman out of Arkham Asylum. Giz is an expert computer hacker who owns a pet squirrel named Goober. Mouse is an acrobatic genius thief who has trained under Catwoman.

–REFERENCE: In Nightwing Vol. 4 #10. Batman and Nightwing defeat Gorilla Grimm again. Afterward, Grimm disappears. Batman and Nightwing assume he has returned to Gorilla Grodd in Gorilla City.

–REFERENCE: In Teen Titans Vol. 4 #15—originally told in the fabulous Modern Age “Soft Targets” story arc from Gotham Central #12-15. An escaped Joker assassinates Mayor Daniel Dickerson. Note that while Dickerson is called “Mayor” by name, he is never mentioned as Gotham’s mayor. This is because, unlike in the Modern Age, Dickerson isn’t Gotham’s mayor. Sebastian Hady is Gotham’s mayor.

 

<<< Year Two <<< | >>> Year Four >>>

  1. [1]COLLIN COLSHER: Rob Liefeld, in Hawk & Dove Vol. 3 #1, makes reference to the original Crisis on Infinite Earths. Hawk reflects on the “worst crisis the world’s ever seen” where his brother, the original Dove, died. While the first Dove did suffer a tragic fate during the original Modern Age Crisis, in the New 52, the original Crisis does not occur. Instead, Dove was killed by Mr. Twister before the global mind-wipe occurs. Part of the mind-wipe makes Hawk think that his brother died during some sort of “Crisis” event that never actually took place.
  2. [2]COLLIN COLSHER: Note that the second feature to Catwoman Vol. 4 #50 shows a non-canonical origin tale for the False Face Society and the magickal skull mask worn by Black Mask. This story is non-canon because it occurs specifically sometime around the year 2000 in a Gotham where Batman has already debuted and been around for a while.
  3. [3]COLLIN COLSHER: In the Modern Age, Skeetz was a little yellow robotic droid that flew around with Booster, cracking wise. Now, he is now a completely internalized computer program built into Booster’s suit. Don’t worry though, Skeetz will eventually show up in his little yellow body with his usual sense of humor in the New 52.
  4. [4]COLLIN COLSHER: Babs’ paralysis takes place right after Jason Todd’s death, since we see a healthy Babs attend Jason’s funeral.
  5. [5]COLLIN COLSHER: Secret Origins Vol. 3 #3 tells us specifically that Tim is thirteen-years-old. However, due to a retcon in Batman and Robin Eternal #1, which tells us that Tim is sixteen-years-old in 2015, Tim should be eleven-years-old at the time of his debut.

    PARAMVIR SINGH RANDHAWA: An ex-machina for Tim Drake’s age retcon/error. Since Tim was sent into witness protection, they may have changed his age to make him younger. This would have been done to make Bruce’s wardship seem more viable and also to disconnect Tim from his old life. Thus, there is still a probability that Tim could be thirteen-years-old at this point.

  6. [6]COLLIN COLSHER: I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: Regarding the onomastics of Tim, his real last name is never revealed. Tim’s middle name “Drake” becomes his new last name when he enters the witness protection program and becomes Bruce’s legal ward towards the end of Teen Titans Vol. 4 #0.
  7. [7]COLLIN COLSHER: The Spectre is the anthropomorphized wrath (pretentiously named “Wrath”) of the sole Christian god (pretentiously named “God”). God’s Wrath needs a host body or host spirit to function on Earth.
  8. [8]COLLIN COLSHER: Bruce will build “a myriad” of extra secret Bat Bunkers all over Gotham shortly after the “Night of the Owls,” which will occur three years from now (as we will learn in Batman Vol. 2 #1).
  9. [9]COLLIN COLSHER: In the Modern Age, the Great Gotham Earthquake (from the “Cataclysm” arc) destroyed all of Gotham and ushered in the yearlong “No Man’s Land” arc, radically shifting the status quo of all the Bat books. However, since the new New 52 Gotham skyline is pretty bare bones and has many buildings that date back to the late 1800s, we have a good reason to disavow the “No Man’s Land” storyline in the New 52. Most of this skyline was destroyed in the Modern Age big quake during “Cataclysm.” Sadly, “NML” (one of my favorite Batman stories) is null and void. DC editor Mike Marts, in an interview with Batman on Film’s Chris Clow, drops the term “No Man’s Land” and references an earthquake as having happened in Gotham’s New 52 past. However, I’m still certain “No Man’s Land” didn’t happen. If anything, Marts is referencing a mini-“Cataclysm.” Also worth addressing, advertisements for Batman: Rebirth (in May 2016) contained copy that said that Gotham had been once turned into “an earthquake-ravaged No Man’s Land.” Even if I were to place value in text taken straight from ads—which I don’t—the nature of “ravaged” and extent of what “No Man’s Land” would entail for the New 52 are still vague. Again, this means “No Man’s Land” didn’t really happen—at least not in the way it did in the Modern Age.

28 Responses to Year Three

  1. dcjokerz17 says:

    Hush and Knightfall in the same year? Where’s no mans land gone?

    • Collin Colsher says:

      It’s jam packed right now, innit? I may add at least another year to accommodate “Hush,” “Knightfall,” and Bruce’s more recent missing year. But until I hear conclusively that “No Man’s Land” is canon, I’m leaving it off the list. Afterall, the new New 52 Gotham skyline is pretty bare bones and has many buildings that date back to the late 1800s. Most of this skyline was destroyed in the Modern Age big quake during “Cataclysm.” Sadly, I fear that NML (one of my favorite Batman stories) might be null and void.

  2. diego says:

    hey man first I just wanna say, you are amazing for doing this. seriously, I’ve been following your website for a year now and its made my collection something to be proud of ( at least for me).

    I’m having trouble with this year though, I was wondering which parts from knightfall to knightsend and hush you thought would best fit into this new continuity I know it’s all kind of a mess but I think your chronology has been spot on so far. let me know what you think!

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Dear Diego,

      Thanks so much for your kind words and support. I get a lot of flak mixed with a lot of niceness in regard to the site/project, so it’s always amazing to get some positive feedback.

      As far as KnightFall/KnightsEnd in the New Age goes, we haven’t been given much information yet. In fact, the ONLY thing we know is that Bane breaks Batman’s back, but he recovers. I’ve placed this occurrence in the middle of this year so that it takes place after Tim’s debut as (Red) Robin. Technically, it could go earlier in the year and take up more time, which might be a change I make in the future. However, due to the shortness of our New Age timeline (and to mirror the compression of time from the Modern Age), Batman’s injury, recovery, and return should not take more than four to six months—and maybe even less. Now as to the finer details of these events: I’m not sure, plain and simple. Since the recovery and return time must be short, it is safe to say that some supernatural or metahuman healing is involved (as was the case in the original story), but what happens is your guess or mine. Furthermore, at this point I don’t think Jean-Paul Valley was a replacement Batman and I don’t think Dick was either (see the Modern Age’s “Prodigal” storyline). So, a lot of unanswered questions, but that’s just how it is… for now.

      And HUSH. We know even less about this one. The only reason we even know Hush is canon for the New Age is because he was drawn in a mural of Batman’s Rogues Gallery in “The Dark Knight Vol. 2 #5.” I can only assume that his backstory—being Bruce’s childhood friend turned evil—is still the same. I’ve placed Hush’s debut here so that it occurs near the return of Jason Todd—the return of Jason originally dovetailed with the “Hush” arc in the Modern Age. Obviously, many of the elements of “Hush” can be thrown right out the window, such as Krypto’s involvement or Catwoman learning Batman’s secret ID. So, again, I hope this answer (or lack thereof ) isn’t unsatisfactory for you, Diego. Until we are given more info, we really just don’t know!

      • diego says:

        thanks for the reply collin!
        I understand that we don’t have enough info to really know what happens so for now your right I’ll just have to wait. my plan was to read all of the stories and weed out anything that isn’t canon to see what i get but its too weird for them to work like that the stories don’t make much sense.
        on a side note: Im sorry to hear you actually get negative feedback on this project , I would figure people would just be grateful like I am. Anyway keep up the good work sir!

  3. Michael says:

    Does Harleen Quinzel’s psychiatric counseling of the Joker also take place in this year? I can’t remember which of the new Suicide Squad issues it’s in, but it’s there. If so, when did the Joker get apprehended?

    • Collin Colsher says:

      Harleen’s counseling of Joker takes place this year and maybe a bit of the year prior to this as well. Harleen and Joker had at least ten therapy sessions together before she decided to act on her feelings. Joker is first apprehended in Batman’s first year and will be in-and-out of Arkham quite frequently after that. Suicide Squad Vol. 4 #6-7 show Harley’s new origins.

      • Michael says:

        Yeah, the duration of Joker’s stay in Arkham is what has me confused. Is it right to assume all of the Quinzel/Joker sessions happened on one of the Joker’s stays or spread over a few? The only reason I ask is because I haven’t read a ton of the Batman stories, so I wasn’t sure if there was any significant back story to the Joker’s arrest in this year (after which he received counseling from Quinzel).

        • Collin Colsher says:

          Great question, Michael. I see what you are saying, and I apologize for my somewhat flippant prior response. In the old Timm/Dini Animated Universe Harleen was definitely Joker’s doctor for a couple of years. Her origin, when adapted to the Modern mainstream DCU, was kept relatively the same. While it isn’t stated outright (or hasn’t been yet) exactly how long Harleen Quinzel was Mista Jay’s doc, we can assume, based upon prior origins, that she was his doc for a couple (take that however you want to take it) years. Thus, her sessions with the Joker probably were sporadic, meaning, every time Joker was sent back to Arkham.

          • Michael says:

            Thanks for clearing that up! I know the stories available to answer my question are limited, but I appreciate your help. By the way, great work on the website! You’ve clarified many a tricky area (e.g. anything related to Simon Hurt) for me!

  4. dcjokerz17 says:

    I’m beginning to accept the changes of the new 52 (no Year One, Long Halloween, Dark Victory or No Man’s Land) but saying Tim was Red Robin all along? Scott Lobdell, stick to Superman, don’t ruin Batman!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Darkmaster006 says:

    Y’know that when I re-read the Detective Comics arc that you’re mentioning, I thought that happened in the past, because that Batman seems inexpert and the police attacks him, I mean, what the hell?? Maybe Daniel thinks that they start again jaja.

  6. diego says:

    so now that the laughing fish and some part of no mans land are cannon where are you gonna put them?

    • Haha, gimme some time, Diego. I usually will make updates within two weeks of new stories coming out. Laughing Fish will go pretty early. Kidnapped babies in Year Five maybe. What is the other image on Synder’s macabre tapestry of human flesh? The one where Batman is tied-up. Any ideas?

  7. diego says:

    I read in an interview that its supposed to be from Morrison’s story Arkham Asylum.
    here is the link if you wanna check for yourself: http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=43221

    • I read the article as well. That image is not from Morrison’s Arkham Asylum. However, Snyder used plenty of Arkham Asylum‘s style and feel in “The Death of the Family.” And he was most influenced by that graphic novel as well. I think that is what he is talking about. So the mystery remains.

  8. diego says:

    do you think that both Steph and Cass would debut during this year? I know that they haven’t been mentioned necessarily but maybe they can get the same kind of treatment that Tim did? instead of being called batgirls they where just spoiler (and fill in batgirl for leviathan strikes) and black bat much like Tim was always red robin

    • Hi Diego,

      I’m not one to give into wild speculation and conjecture in regard to adding events, characters, etc… Somebody, sometime in the future will undoubtedly enter the names “Stephanie Brown” and “Cassandra Cain” into the lexicon of the New Age of DC Comics (unless there has been a specific editorial mandate prohibiting such a thing from occurring). However, until that happens, I can’t say how or when it will happen. Likewise, I can’t really guess if they will get some sort of retcon treatment to grandfather them into continuity. That being said, it’s hard to imagine what year they would (retroactively) debut or if they would debut as brand new characters in Year Nine, Ten, Eleven, and so on and so on… Would I like to see them appear? Of course! I love Steph and Cass, but if it does happen, let’s hope it’s done well.

  9. diego says:

    hey collin
    since the meeting with freight was in issue 626-630 in the modern and the return of jason as red hood in this year was issue 635-650 or so; don’t you think her debut would happen between death and the maidens and under the hood?

  10. diego says:

    hey so good ol’ azrael is in continuity again! at least michael lane is. what do you think of Jean-Paul Valley being here for the whole bane affair?

  11. diego says:

    hey collin
    do you think that the latest issue of red hood and the outlaws tells us that the arc from the modern age “the lost days” is mirrored in this continuity?

    • I don’t really remember Lost Days too well—is the sequence in RH&TO #20 where Jason is shooting guns with “Ben” and others a reference to that? The links to Talia being a major part of Jason’s resurrection have been hinted at throughout the ENTIRE RH&TO series ( specifically issue #2), not just in the most recent issue. Talia’s role in Jason’s Modern Age resurrection is detailed in Lost Days, so we can think of his comeback in the New 52 as a compressed version of Lost Days.

  12. Diego Barcelo says:

    hey Collin, i have a theory about Jason still being able to come back during this year or next. what if that flashback of Jason in the latest issue of red hood is actually Talia giving him some sort of power that made him the”chosen one” and its not the bath that brought him back? yeah i know its a pretty crazy theory but im willing to believe it just for the sake of saving the continuity discrepancies.

    • It’s a good theory, Diego, in the sense that it would keep the New 52 timeline mirroring the Modern Age timeline. However, there really isn’t anything in the narrative that makes me believe that Talia bathed Jason twice, let alone bathed him to given him special “chosen one” powers. Earlier narrative from Lobdell makes it seem like he gets resurrected then Lazarus bathed in close proximity with each other. Tynion seems to be setting the mark at a legit “one year prior.”

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