Batman: A Death in the Family

Issue #426

Cover Date: December 1988
Subtitle: A Death in the Family book one
Writer(s): Jim Starlin
Artists(s): Jim Aparo, Mike DeCarlo
Storyline: Batman and Robin busted up a kiddie-porn ring. Batman chastised Robin for jumping the gun and being reckless. After talking to Alfred, Bruce put Jason on inactive duty. Jason was furious and ran out. Gordon contacted Batman about the Joker's escape from Arkham. The mad-man showed his "very own cruise missile" to his gang. He pondered stopping his life of crime to get into international politics. Wandering around where he used to live, Jason came upon some evidence that the mother he knew might not be his biological mother. He left Bruce and Alfred a note and went to find out the truth. Batman discovered that Joker had a nuclear weapon and planned to sell it to Middle-Eastern terrorists. Bruce and Jason bumped into each other in Beirut. They tracked down the Joker and foiled his bomb sale. It exploded, but the warhead was not damaged. Joker escaped and Jason ruled out the first candidate on his list of three.


Issue #427

Cover Date: undated
Subtitle: A Death in the Family book two
Writer(s): Jim Starlin
Artists(s): Jim Aparo, Mike DeCarlo
Storyline: Lady Shiva Woosan was ruled out as number 2 on the list, leaving Dr. Sheila Haywood. They found her and Bruce left them to get to know each other. Jason soon learned that his mother was being used by the Joker. Disobeying direct orders from Batman, Jason suited up and went to save his mother. She betrayed him to the Joker and he was savagely beaten and left unconscious. Joker tied up Haywood and planted a bomb. Batman returned in time to see the building explode.


Issue #428

Cover Date: undated
Subtitle: A Death in the Family book three
Writer(s): Jim Starlin
Artists(s): Jim Aparo, Mike DeCarlo
Storyline: In the wreckage, he found his worst fear - Jason was dead. Bruce returned to Gotham and had a funeral for the two victims. Superman came to him with the news that Joker was the new United Nations ambassador from Iran. With the post came immunity from prosecution on any crime he committed beforehand. Superman was asked by the state department to stop Batman from interfering in the proceedings.


Batman #429

Cover Date: January 1989
Subtitle: A Death in the Family book four
Writer(s): Jim Starlin
Artists(s): Jim Aparo, Mike DeCarlo
Storyline: When Joker unleashed some of his toxic gas in the assembly, Superman inhaled it and flew off. Foiled again, Joker set off an explosion and tried to escape. Batman chased him to the roof where he stowed away on the get-away helicopter. After a gunfight, the pilot was killed and the aircraft crashed. Batman was saved by Superman, but the Joker's body was not recovered.


trade paperback edition


notes

  • "The Batman became involved in the case and and apparently took pity on the twelve-year-old Grayson [...]" (noted from introduction)
  • "The Batman and Robin duo flourished for approximately six years before the pair - "the dynamic duo," as the press of the time hailed them - had a falling out [...] (noted from introduction)
  • "[...] for approximately 18 months, the Batman operated alone." (noted from introduction)
  • "[...] the Batman met Jason (Todd) when the boy was 12 years old in an area of Gotham City known as "Crime Alley." (noted from introduction)
  • "Good. Everyone's going to want a piece of the Joker after what he did to Barbara." (Batman to Gordon, issue 426 - referencing The Killing Joke)
  • "Your still not back to total efficiency after that encounter you had with Deacon Blackfire." (Bruce internal, issue 429 - referencing the events of The Cult).

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