[World of Bats} Batman Book Club--Batman: Europa #1-4 and Batman: In Darkest Knight

Howdy y’all! and welcome to another instalment of the World of Bats. This week we are wrapping up the art focused and ElseWorld edition of our book club with Batman Europa by Brian Azzarello and Matteo Casali with penciling by Giuseppe Camuncolil and Gabriele Dell’Otto with some guest art by Jim Lee.

In this 4 part mini tale Batman becomes infected with a deadly virus and reluctantly must team up the Joker who has also been infected, in order to save both their lives. They are lead on a wild goose chase around Europe by a mysterious foe to find the cure. Will these two enemies be able to work together? Who is this mystery foe? and what the heck is wrong with the people of France!? Link to comic below

Since Europa is a tad short there is a bonus option this week with Batman: In Darkest Knight. By Mike W. Barr with art by Jerry Bingham.

Have you ever wondered why Hal Jordan received the Green Lantern ring when Bruce Wayne is on the same Planet? I know I have. Bruce has way more will power than Hal in my opinion. Well wonder no more folks because in this ElseWorld story we get to see what might have been if Bruce was given the ring! What kind of Lantern would the Batman be? What would the Villains of Gotham be like in this world? Would Gordan feel the same about this new vigilante wielding such power? This is a must read for any Batman fan.

What did you like or dislike about these stories?

What did you think of the art in Europa? Is there any panels that really grabbed you?

If you liked the art, do you think the story holds up with the art or was one of the two lacking in comparison?

Would you like to see more from this world with Bruce as a GL?

And of course share any other thoughts you may have on these stories

As always thanks for stopping by and happy reading BatFans!
Have a great week y’all!
Next week Stories brought to you by DCU’s very own D.A. @BatJamags

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In Darkest Knight stretches plausibility to its greatest limits, but it certainly has fun with the premise along the way. The opening pages, which spoof Year One and The Killing Joke, are the highlight. I wonder if Barr’s take on Sinestro-Joker was in any way influenced by the conflation of Joe Chill with the Joker in Batman '89. Since few people here have read IDK, I will blur my comments on it for the moment.


@AlexanderKnox, Yeah I like how even though its else world they tie it in with Year One and Killing Joke. Good question about Chill, never thought about that.

I have read Europa in the past, but not In Darkest Knight. Looking forward to rereading and experiencing for the first time. :slight_smile:

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I like Europa to an extent. They are was beautiful and I like seeing the difference in each issue depending on who the finished was. The problem, in my opinion, is that this type of art doesn’t demonstrate action very well, while looking great, can have a negative impact on the story itself, which I think happened here. Also, the Joker in this series, try as he may, really wasn’t ever funny. I’ll blame the virus!

Cool concept, though - force Batman and the Joker into a buddy movie trek across Europe.

Regarding seeing more Bruce as GL, that’s a resounding no. This story just didn’t work for me, at all. The story was too rushed given the one shot status, and the costumes were just bad. Really found the color combinations to be very…ugh.


@ralphsix, I know what you mean with Europa. Overall I liked the concept. The art was certainly good but I did have problems making things out in some panels. Also know what you mean with the action. It also just lacked a something I can’t figure out how to describe it, but it didn’t have me on the edge of my set or anything. While reading it I was just waiting for the conclusion. IDK It was not bad and I know what you mean with the art and action relation, but this is one I would put under the art helped it. Have you been reading the current Last Knight On Earth story? They have really nailed the odd ball traveling duo with Batman and the Joker. He is hilarious in that story.
I liked in darkest knight. I understand the lack of enthusiasm for the costumes but look at it as a product of the time and also having taken place in the past. I would just like to have seen his space adventures and what the JL would be like upon his return.

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Hard to say, really, it just seemed in places that the art wasn’t quite executing what was going on. With a more traditional style, the story have have flowed a bit better. As it is, it’s really more of an art piece.

Not yet, but I’m aware of it, and I’m sure I will own the trade at some point. And by “sure,” I mean I’m 100% sure.

I don’t know, there are a lot of Elseworlds from the period that I value more. I think there was too much to fit in here, maybe it would have been better as a mini than a 1 shot. And it may boil down to the art on this one, too, as some pages just seemed too…I don’t know-pushed in, if that makes any sense? And it was just plain weird to me all the standard costumes mixed with GL uniforms, like I was saying earlier. I get why others would find it interesting, no doubt, it just wasn’t my jam (which is strawberry, btw).

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This book is great for two issues, and then ok for the final two. The story starts off interesting but I think that it kinda falls apart after issue two… I do like the Batman joker team up though


Europa is fine. It reminds me a bit of Bronze Age stories where heroes would have to team up with the Joker. I’m just not sure why it had to be a miniseries and not just a four-issue run in Detective Comics. I guess the art is what supposedly elevates it to this sort of treatment.


I agree, it wasn’t bad but nothing special. The art was great but feel it could have been used for a better story. I think the best thing that the story did was keep you guessing as to who was behind the virus.

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Yeah It seemed more focused on the art than the story. This story could have defiantly just been part of a Detective run I feel.

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Finished Europa again and overall it’s pretty good. The story has an interesting hook – it’s not every day you get to see Batman and Joker actually banter a bit, but it weirdly works here. The twist doesn’t really work that well, though.

Art wise, it was pretty interesting. Jim Lee’s feels the most out of place, oddly enough, though I feel like that was calculated to get more American audiences into a book that’s basically European artists doing shots of Batman and Joker in Europe. What’s funny in that sense is when you compare this to The Dark Prince Charming from last week, which was also adding some European influence to Batman, I think that one works far better because it feels more authentic, if that makes any sense.


The concept of the two of them having to team up is fun. I think their bickering back and forth works better in Last Knight on Earth though. Have you been reading that story? By the twist not working too well, do you mean how they need each others blood or that it was bane? I agree that Lee was brought on to help market the book. Also think TDPC was much better as well.

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Well y’all this concludes this months edition of the World of Bats Book Club. I know it splashed into December a little but there was a Crisis upon us. Special thanks to:
Thanks y’all for joining me this week and for the great discussions. Don’t forget to tune in next week for the beginning of our very own D.A. @BatJamags as he dives into the O’Neil era along with some Mega Crossovers in the World of Bats.:wave::batman_hv_1::batman_hv_4:

Also If you like the Justice League and Alex Ross Cough Cough swing on by the unofficial Loose Canon Book Club. Cough Cough excuse me I must be coming down with a severe case of JUSTICE!

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I have been reading Last Knight, and I do think it works better – I think the apocalyptic nature of it makes more sense for that sort of thing.

Yeah, I was thinking that more on Bane’s appearance. I think it would have fit better if there were more clues that pointed to him.

And thanks for the selections! I’ll probably go through In Darkest Knight when I get off work today.

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And I finished In Darkest Knight! I’m kind of with @AlexanderKnox that it starts out fun with the way it intercuts with Year One and The Killing Joke, but once we get to the Sinestro-Joe Chill hybrid, it starts going off the rails. Also, why does he act like Joker once he has Joe Chill’s mind? Why does all the other heroes have to be Green Lanterns? What even is the hybrid that Two-Face is supposed to be?

Art was pretty good, though, awkward costumes aside.

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Because the universe demands at least one Joker. Preferably three. :grin: