Batman stories have been continuously written for over 80 years at this point and in that time, there have been some amazing comics that come from that, here are a few of them that aren’t usually mentioned.
Venom is a very interesting story concerning itself with themes like addiction and not being good enough. In a pre-Bane era Batman finds a little girl, trapped and drowning only Bruce isn’t physically strong enough to save her. Traumatised from this he finds a way to triple his strength, Venom, something that would later be used by his enemy Bane. We see batman go through addiction and overcome it ending with Bruce being locked in the Bat-Cave for a month to shake the addiction. This story shows that Bruce is only human and can fall like the rest of us, but also rise again.
Batman: The Court of Owls
One of the first stories released during DC’s new 52 2011 reboot the Court of Owls opens up with Gotham having a new villain but one that’s always been there. This shadowy organisation has always been in control behind the scenes pulling strings throughout all of society and Batman is finally on their trail.
This proved to be one of the best comics coming out of the new 52 and was only the start of an epic run by Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo.
This is Batman’s version of the “Death of Superman” story. A story in which Bane breaks out all the criminals of Arkham Asylum to exhaust Batman mentally & physically so that when Bane would enter the mix Batman wouldn’t stand a change. Enter one of the most famous comic book panels ever, Bane breaking the Batman’s back.
Bruce then willingly gives the mantle of Batman to another, Jean-Paul Valley, Azreal.
This was one of the first instances in showing the audience what would happen if you had a Batman with no rules and little morality and helps to prove why Gotham needs Bruce.
JLA: The Tower Of Babel
This story right here is part of the reason why you get the argument that Batman can beat anyone with prep time. In this story we see that Batman has contingencies for if any of the Justice League decide to go rogue, this includes individuals like Superman & Wonder woman. When these plans are stolen from Batman we get to see just how effective Batman can be whether the person is friend or foe.
Whatever Happened To The Caped Crusader?
This is a very interesting story not only for the fact that it was released post-final crisis where it was believed Batman was killed by Darkseid but it isn’t in continuity. The story follows Batman’s death where many of his allies and enemies come together to attend his funeral. It’s very much a companion piece to 1986’s Superman: Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow.
Batman himself watches his own funeral consisting of numerous different eulogies given by different characters both friend and foe which detail a different way in which the Bat met his end.
Batman: A Lonely Place of Dying
A Lonely Place of Dying takes place after a Death in the Family, where Batman is still recovering from the death of the second Robin, Jason Todd. Through his grief he has become more brutal of a crime-fighter and began to strain his relationship with the first Robin, his first son, Dick Grayson. This story sees Tim Drake uncover that Batman is indeed Bruce Wayne and proves to him how Batman needs to Robin to help keep him from going to far and in doing so Tim Drake himself becomes the third Robin this story is the start of what would eventually become the Bat-Family, the first time Batman learns the lesson that he does indeed need others.