Batman: Joker War Reading Order Checklist

Batman: Joker War Reading Order Checklist

The Joker is one of Batman’s greatest enemies, featuring in numerous stories. It has been said that while The Clown Prince of Crime will test Batman to his limits but he doesn’t want the Dark Knight to die. In a warped way, Batman gives him purpose.

That seems to have changed in the biggest Batman story of 2020, Joker War. The Joker has now decided that The Dark Knight needs to die and he is going to wage war to do it.

Large-scale Batman stories often bring in other Bat-titles into the mix and can get confusing. Luckily, the Batman: Joker War Reading Order Checklist is here to save the day. It includes the recommended reading order, tie-ins, release dates, and heaps more.

Enjoy!

Do I Need To Read The Tie-Ins To Understand The Joker War?

Nope. The main story will be running throughout Batman but will be expanded upon with tie-ins in other Batman-related comics. These comics focus on what’s going on with other characters, such as Nightwing and Batgirl, in the background. If you want to know what’s going on then check them out. If you’re not that interested then it is okay to skip them.

Batman #86 cover by Tony S. Daniel.
Batman #86 cover by Tony S. Daniel.

Background Reading

Batman: Their Dark Designs
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Tony S. Daniel, Guillem March, and Jorge Jimenez.

This is the first arc of James Tynion IV’s Batman run and is littered with build up to Joker War. It also includes early appearances of the Joker’s new sidekick, Punchline.

Their Dark Designs runs though Batman #86-94.

Journey To Joker War

Nightwing #70
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Ryan Benjamin.
Available March 18th.

Detective Comics #1022
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Brad Walker and Andrew Hennessy.
Available June 2nd/3rd.

Nightwing #71
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Ronan Cliquet.
Available June 9th/10th.

Detective Comics #1023
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Brad Walker and Andrew Hennessy.
Available July 7th/8th.

Nightwing #72
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Ronan Cliquet.
Available July 14th/15th.

Batman #95 cover by Jorge Jimenez.
Batman #95 cover by Jorge Jimenez.

Joker War Reading Order

A quick note on the release dates listed below. DC Comics now has three different distributors for getting their comics to comic book stores. Depending on which distributor a store uses will impact the release date for an issue. I have listed both dates for each issue below but you should check-in with your local comic book store to find out which date they will be selling DC Comics.

Batman #95 (Part 1)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez.
Available July 21st/22nd.

Batgirl #47 (Tie-in)
Written by Cecil Castellucci. Art by Robbi Rodriguez.
Available July 21st/22nd.

Detective Comics #1024 (Tie-in)
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Brad Walker and Andrew Hennessy.
Available July 21st/22nd.

Batman #96 (Part 2)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez.
Available August 4th/5th.

Harley Quinn #75 (Tie-in)
Written by Sam Humpheries. Art by Sam Basri, Riley Rossmo, Emanula Lupacchino, Ramon Villalobos, Joe Quinones, Nicola Scott, and Ngozi Ukazu..
Available August 4th/5th.

Detective Comics #1025 (Tie-in)
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Kenneth Rocafort.
Available August 11th/12th.

Batman #97 (Part 3)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez.
Available August 18th/19th.

Nightwing #73 (Tie-in)
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Ronan Cliquet.
Available August 18th/19th.

Batgirl #48 (Tie-in)
Written by Cecil Castellucci. Art by Robbi Rodriguez.
Available August 25th/26th.

Detective Comics #1026 (Tie-in)
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Kenneth Rocafort.
Available August 25th/26th.

Red Hood: Outlaw #48 (Tie-in)
Written by Scott Lobdell. Art by Brett Booth and Danny Miki.
Available August 25th/26th.

Batman #98 (Part 4)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez.
Available September 1st.

Nightwing #74 (Tie-in)
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Ryan Benjamin and Richard Friend.
Available September 8th.

Batman #99 (Part 5)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez.
Available September 15th.

Catwoman #25 (Tie-in)
Written by Ram V. Art by Fernando Blanco, John Paul Leon, and Juan Ferreyra.
Available September 15th.

Batgirl #49 (Tie-in)
Written by Cecil Castellucci. Art by Robbi Rodriguez.
Available September 22nd.

Batman: The Joker War Zone (Tie-in)
Written by James Tynion IV, John Ridley, and Joshua Williamson. Art by Guillem March, David Lafuente, James Stokoe, and Others.
Available September 29th.

Batman #100 (Part 6)
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Jorge Jimenez, Guillem March, Carl Pagulayan, and Dani Miki.
Available October 6th.

Nightwing #75 (Aftermath)
Written by Dan Jurgens. Art by Travis Moore and Ronan Cliquet.
Available October 20th.

Note: This aftermath issues hints that we see a conclusion to the ongoing memory loss plot.

Catwoman #26 (Aftermath)
Written by Ram V. Art by Fernando Blanco.
Available October 20th.

Batgirl #50 (Aftermath)
Written by Cecil Castellucci. Art by Emanuela Lupacchino, Marguerite Sauvage, and Aneke.
Available October 27th.

Note: This is also the final issue (at least for now) of Batgirl.

After Joker War

If you want to know what happens after The Joker War, check out out the following issues:

Batman #101
Written by James Tynion IV. Art by Guillem March.
Available October 20th.

Detective Comics #1028
Written by Peter J. Tomasi. Art by Nicola Scott.
Available October 13th.

Note: Detective Comics #1028 spins out of the events of The Joker War and bumper Detective Comics #1027.

Punchline #1 (one-shot)
Written by James Tynion IV and Sam Johns. Art by Mirka Andolfo.
Avabile November 10th.

Note: The Punchline one-shot will follow up on what happens to the character after Joker War.

Collected Editions

For all the trade waiters out there, this is the collection that you will want to track down.

The Joker War Saga
Collects: Batman #95-100, Batgirl #47, Detective Comics #1025, Red Hood: Outlaw #48, Nightwing #74, The Joker War Zone #1, plus stories from Harley Quinn #75 and Catwoman #25.

Batman: The Joker War
Collects:
Batman #95-100

Batgirl Volume 8: The Joker War
Collects:
Batgirl #45-50

Batman: Detective Comics Volume 5: The Joker War
Collects:
1020-1026, a story from Detective Comics #1027, Batman: Pennyworth R.I.P., and Detective Comics Annual #3

Nightwing: The Joker War
Collects:
Nightwing #70-77 and Nightwing Annual #3

Have Your Say!

Are you reading Joker War? Share your thoughts on it in the comments below or via Facebook or Twitter.

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Comments (3)

  • This was a great checklist for tie-in issues to make sure you have everything. But this in no way is a “timeline” order to read the issues for continuity of events within the storyline.

  • I am super curious as to what Joker War is going to entail. I am a huge Batman fan but have yet to find a way into the comics because I wouldn’t know where to begin. But lately I’ve been thinking this arc would be as good a moment as any. I am super interested in Punchline, so that’s cool. Only thing is, Joker War is at its end already right? But I saw this YouTube review of a story of Punchline being brought to court, a story that focusses on Dr Thompkins and Harper and Cullen Row as well. Is this still part of Joker War? Or is that a new arc I need to read?

    • Hi Sam, this would be a good arc to jump on with. Some of the tie-ins such as Nightwing play on longer-term stories that have been happening in those comics but you’ll get a complete story if you stick to the Batman issues. The Punchline comic is a new story set after Joker War so it is best off reader afterwards.