DC Database

During the events of Batman: The Long Halloween (to which Dark Victory is a follow-up), Batman captured and imprisoned Alberto Falcone, the serial killer known as Holiday. Months later, a mass breakout at Arkham Asylum occurred, orchestrated by Pino a

Batman: Dark Victory was a 14-part comic book limited series written by Jeph Loeb and drawn by Tim Sale. The series is a sequel to Batman: The Long Halloween and was published originally from 1999 - 2000 by DC Comics. The plot centers on a series of murders involving Gotham City police officers by a mysterious serial killer only known as The Hangman. Central to the storyline is a territory war between Two-Face and the remnants of the Falcone mob led by Sofia Falcone.

The story is also a re-telling of the origins of Batman's sidekick Robin and his adoption by Bruce Wayne. The story brings closure to many characters introduced in Frank Miller's Batman: Year One. In 2004, Loeb and Sale produced a follow-up titled Catwoman: When in Rome, focusing on Catwoman's movements in Italy. The story takes place during the events of Dark Victory, between Valentine's Day (when Catwoman leaves Gotham) and Thanksgiving.


During the events of Batman: The Long Halloween (to which Dark Victory is a follow-up), Batman captured and imprisoned Alberto Falcone, the serial killer known as Holiday. Months later, a mass breakout at Arkham Asylum occurred, orchestrated by Pino and Umberto Maroni, the sons of Sal "The Boss" Maroni. The breakout is staged so in the confusion, the two can find Harvey "Two-Face" Dent and kill him as a peace-offering to Sofia Gigante Falcone. In the aftermath, Alberto is granted conditional parole based on his actions during the riot. Soon after, police officers began to die, one on each major holiday, with crude hangman games pinned to their hung corpses and evidence suggesting that Harvey Dent is the killer.

The new district attorney, Janice Porter, began working on the case while Alberto was put up by his enigmatic brother Mario, who had just returned from exile in Italy. Alberto also took in his sister, Sofia, who barely survived an encounter with Catwoman in The Long Halloween and was confined to a wheelchair due to her injuries. Sofia nevertheless continued to manage the flagging Falcone empire.

The "freaks" all working together

As the Hangman's spree of terror escalated, so too did Two-Face's war with Sofia and her family. The collateral damage of the war included the parents of Dick Grayson, who was taken in by Bruce Wayne. Two-Face enlists the aid of his fellow 'freaks' to destroy the remainders of Gotham's mafia; his lieutenants included Joker, Scarecrow, The Penguin, The Riddler, Poison Ivy, Mr. Freeze, The Mad Hatter and Solomon Grundy. Mario, who had an alliance with Janice Porter, was soon faced with isolation as Porter began a secret affair with Two-Face and was eventually slain by him. At the same time, however, Two-Face saved Gordon's life when the Hangman tried to hang him on the Batsignal, stating that he wasn't the killer.

The endgame of the battle came on the following Halloween; Sofia revealed that she was never disabled, and that she committed the Hangman murders, targeting all the cops, whether honest or crooked, who had helped Harvey Dent's career. She then suffocated Alberto. She opened the gas lines and set Gotham City ablaze to smoke out Two-Face, who was hiding in the sewers. Saved by Batman, Two-Face turned on Sofia and shot her to death. Escaping to a cordoned-off subterranean area, Two-Face, Freeze, Ivy, and the Joker found themselves in the Batcave.

Robin joins Batman's war against crime

Batman's secrets would have been laid bare to the team of criminals except for the timely intervention of Dick, who had been training in secret. Wearing his old circus uniform, he made his debut as Robin and helped Batman defeat most of the villains. When at last Batman faced Two-Face, Two-Face stated that Gotham belonged to him. The Joker appeared at the last moment, shooting Two-Face, who falls off a cliff. Robin then helps incapacitate Joker. Elsewhere, Mario Falcone, a lonely broken man, burns down his mansion having lost everything. Catwoman then visits the grave of Carmine Falcone and reveals that Falcone may in fact be her father. It is shown that not only has Two-Face survived, but he has Carmine's body, frozen. In the final pages Batman offers Dick a chance to escape the never ending crusade against crime. Dick refuses and Batman declares that the two are now Batman and Robin. Batman states that he still is following the oath he made to his parents but now he is not alone.


Prior to the book's publication Tim Sale stated that he was very hesitant to join the project with Jeph Loeb. Sale did not enjoy Robin due to him being such a massive contrast to Batman according to Sale. Sale also said Batman is far more of a loner and should not have a partner. But all the accusations that Sale made were insisted by Loeb to help make sense for Batman teaming up with Robin in the story. A prominent theme in the story is how the three protagonists of The Long Halloween now feel all alone. Throughout the book Batman struggles with his fear of being wrong (a side-effect to the Scarecrow's gas) as well as being alone and refusing to be helped by Commissioner Gordon. Catwoman even slaps Batman when he shows no care for what might happen to Two-Face. It is mentioned in the book that Dick is one of the only sources left of Bruce's humanity as he is slowly slipping from grace even with Selina Kyle's attempts.



  • In the credits for every issue, it is pointed out that the late Archie Goodwin was the inspiration for the storyline.


Recommended Reading

Links and References

The Batman Family's Early History
Main Storylines Batman: The Man Who Falls | Batman: Year One | Batman: The Long Halloween | Batman: Dark Victory | Batman: The Man Who Laughs | Batman and the Monster Men | Batman and the Mad Monk | Untold Legend of the Batman
Supporting Cast Batman Annual #14 | Robin: Year One | Batgirl: Year One | Nightwing: Year One | Batman: The Killing Joke | Huntress: Year One | Batman: Gordon of Gotham | Two-Face: Year One
Titles Legends of the Dark Knight | Batman Confidential
Others Batman: Year Two | Batman: Year Three | Year One: Batman/Ra's al Ghul | Year One: Batman/Scarecrow | Batman Family Year One Annuals | Batman: Journey Into Knight | Batman: Blind Justice
Other Media Batman Begins | The Dark Knight | Batman: Year One (Movie)
Characters Thomas and Martha Wayne | Joe Chill | Carmine Falcone | Sal Maroni | Tony Zucco | Lew Moxon | Commissioner Loeb | Detective Flass | Kirigi | Henri Ducard | Gilda Dent | Christopher Dent | Vernon Fields | Red Hood
See Also Batman (Golden Age) | Batman (Silver Age) | Batman (Modern Age) | Year One
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Batman Family Storyline
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This event or storyline is specifically related to Batman, or to members of the Batman Family. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the Batman Storylines category.