With Christopher Nolan’s final Batman film coming out soon, it’s safe to say we’ll all miss the dark and brooding caped crusader after he hangs up his cowl and cape for good. There have been many times in the comics that Batman has retired or even died, but despite this, Bruce Wayne was always back on his feet fighting crime in no time at all. So what made him decide enough was enough? We’ve compiled a list of Batman’s top 8 retirements and why we’re going to miss him when he finally hangs up his cowl for good in The Dark Knight Rises. Why We’ll Miss the Dark Knight: Gotham Knights and the 8 Times Batman Called It Quits
Table of Contents
Batman Calls it Quits – # 1 – GOTHAM KNIGHTS AND THE SIX TIMES BATMAN RETIRED
The first time we see Batman call it quits is in GOTHAM KNIGHTS #1. Bruce Wayne has been retired for eight years, living in a monastery in the Himalayas. The monastery is attacked by an army of ninjas and Bruce returns to become Batman once more. He retires again when he discovers that his arch-nemesis Ra’s Al Ghul is still alive. In fact, he goes on to retire five more times during the course of this series!
In BATMAN (VOL 1) #624, Batman retires because his girlfriend, Talia al Ghul (the daughter of Ra’s Al Ghul), becomes pregnant with Damian Wayne and wants him to give up his life as Batman so they can raise their child together without interruption from their enemies.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 2 – BLACK AND WHITE TPB COLLECTION
Batman has never been one to go down without a fight, but there have been plenty of times when he’s chosen to hang up his cape. This hardcover collects BATMAN #448-450, DETECTIVE COMICS #670-671, ROBIN #126-127, BATGIRL #50-52, OUTSIDERS #13-14 and CATWOMAN #31. There are some who would say that this is where it all went wrong for Bruce Wayne. His vengeful father killed by Joe Chill, his parents gunned down in front of him at an early age; Bruce was always fighting against crime from day one. But as Dick Grayson begins to make waves as Robin and Batgirl Barbara Gordon is getting closer than ever to learning the secrets behind her family’s murder, things started spiraling out of control for our hero.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 3 – 10/100 CLUB GN-TPB SET
This collection of comics from around 1986 through 1988 is a great representation of Bruce Wayne’s struggle to balance his life as a crime fighter with his life as a billionaire. In this story, Bruce decides to take up an offer to join a private club for millionaires. As part of the initiation process, he must commit himself to never fighting crime again.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 4 – OZ HC VOL 01
Batman has a lot of rules. He doesn’t kill, he doesn’t use guns, he doesn’t use his fists, and he won’t let himself be captured. But sometimes these rules get in the way of him doing what needs to be done. When this happens, Batman calls it quits. In one instance, when his identity was public knowledge after a grueling battle with Bane, he called it quits because saving Gotham’s reputation didn’t outweigh the cost of lives that would’ve been lost had he put on his suit again. With Bane dead and Bruce Wayne disgraced as a result of his return to action as The Bat, Bruce Wayne decides to end his reign as Gotham’s protector once and for all…
Batman Calls it Quits – # 5 – MORTAL KOMBAT VS DC UNIVERSE
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe is a video game released in 2008 by Midway Games. The Mortal Kombat series of fighting games has always been one of the most popular with gamers, so when Midway announced that they would be partnering with DC Comics to create a Mortal Kombat game set in their universe, it was an instant success.
The game itself is pretty basic. The player chooses from one of six characters (Batman, Robin, Superman, Wonder Woman, Shazam or Joker) and then proceeds through a series of battles in order to get to Shao Kahn at the end for the final boss battle.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 6 – GORDON OF GOTHAM ONE SHOT
Gordon of Gotham is a one-shot comic book which portrays Commissioner James Gordon as a vigilante hero to battle crime in an alternate universe. Written by Derek Fridolfs, with art by Dustin Nguyen, this single issue story has been praised for its darker take on the character.
Gotham City’s police force has been crippled by a series of strange murders. Under constant criticism from Mayor Hill, Detective Jim Gordon is at his wit’s end trying to solve these crimes with so few resources. But when Lieutenant Harvey Bullock is framed for murder, he must go rogue to find justice.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 7 – BATMAN BEYOND # 15
In Batman Beyond #15, Bruce Wayne retired and gave up his position as Batman, leaving Terry McGinnis to take over. The issue was titled The End of an Era with the subheading Bruce Wayne retires from crimefighting. When Terry takes on the mantle of Batman, he is forced to learn how to operate without his mentor’s guidance. There are several instances when Terry is about to give up, but Bruce appears in a vision telling him that he has faith in him.
This situation mirrors what happens in real life; many people start something but aren’t sure if they can go through with it all on their own. But when you have someone who believes in you, then it doesn’t seem so hard or lonely anymore.
Batman Calls it Quits – # 8 – METALOCALYPSE DEATH OF THE FAMILY MASK BOX SET
I could have done it, I could have been your hero. But you chose Bane instead. I swear by the spirits of my parents, I shall never be a victim again.
I’ve spent too many nights watching helplessly while someone else saves the day. And if I can’t be a hero, then I’ll just settle for being more than just a man. More than just Bruce Wayne. All these years of training, all these years studying to do what no one else can do; to beat criminals with brains and not brawn… and now those skills are mine to use as I see fit. So this is how it feels like to fight fire with fire? As terrifying as this new power is… yes, there’s something exhilarating about using their own tactics against them. Something that makes me feel powerful in a way nothing ever has before.
I’m fighting crime on my own terms now, showing criminals what happens when they mess with me- or anyone else! Maybe that’s why people call me crazy now… because I’m not playing by the rules anymore.