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James Gordon was appointed as the new Police Commissioner, but the public eye was concerned about his decision to work alongside Batman. In the midst of this controversy, a former vigilante figure of Gotham City known as The Reaper reap

Batman: Year Two is a storyline written by Mike W. Barr and illustrated by Alan Davis and Todd McFarlane. It was published in 1987 through the issues #575–578 of the title Detective Comics as a follow-up to the new Batman origin created by Frank Miller and Dave Mazzucchelli in Batman: Year One, although it is no longer considered part of the canon continuity of Batman.


James Gordon was appointed as the new Police Commissioner, but the public eye was concerned about his decision to work alongside Batman. In the midst of this controversy, a former vigilante figure of Gotham City known as The Reaper reappeared and resumed his unholy crusade. Batman was promptly summoned to stop The Reaper, but he failed miserably, forcing Batman to consider fighting fire with fire.[1] With this new approach, Batman instantly became an enemy of the Police Department and more so when he decided to join forces with the Gotham Organized Crime in order to stop The Reaper. However, his efforts brought him to work with Joe Chill, the man responsible for murdering his parents.[2]

While Batman continued working alongside Joe Chill, he became romantically involved as Bruce Wayne with Rachel Caspian, the daughter of Judson Caspian, who was also The Reaper.[3] Batman's alliance with Chill ended when the GCPD captured a large part of Chill's gang and The Reaper murdered most of the remaining thugs. Chill tried to leave Gotham, but Batman took him to Crime Alley, where he revealed his identity and tried to murder the killer. Instead, Chill was killed by The Reaper, who had learned Batman's secret identity and challenged the Dark Knight to one final fight, in which The Reaper killed himself, allowing Batman to become "his successor". When the entire city learned The Reaper's real identity as Judson Caspian, Rachel was devastated and decided to become a nun in order to atone for the sins of her father, which meant that her engagement to Bruce was officially cancelled.

After these events, Bruce Wayne provided Leslie Thompkins with her own clinic, so she could continue her work, while he continued his crusade as Batman.[4]


The story in Detective Comics #574 acts as an unofficial prelude to this storyline.


  • This storyline was compiled into a trade paperback released in 1990.
  • Later this storyline was compiled into a paperback in 2002, along with the follow-up one-shot to the story, Batman: Full Circle, under the title Batman: Year Two - Fear the Reaper.
  • Both stories were re-released together in 2017 in Batman: Year Two - 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (Collected).
  • Shortly after Zero Hour it was revealed that Batman still knew that Joe Chill had murdered his parents but that Joe Chill had supposedly been killed resisting arrest.[5] rendering this story no longer in continuity. Infinite Crisis changed this slightly to where Joe Chill had been arrested the very same night but taken alive.[6] This is expanded upon in a later story which showed Batman slowly driving Chill insane with mental torture before causing him to snap and commit suicide with the bullet meant for Bruce as a child.[7]


  • A few elements from this storyline were later borrowed for the 1993 animated feature film, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, such as Bruce's engagement with a woman, who is directly connected to the main villain. The Phantasm design is also very similar to that of The Reaper.

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
Batman Blind Justice TP.jpg
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.

Year Two
Part 1: Detective Comics #575 Part 2: Detective Comics #576 Part 3: Detective Comics #577 Part 4: Detective Comics #578