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Top 10 Batman Moments That Made Fans Rage Quit

VO: Adrian Sousa WRITTEN BY: Michael Wynands
If you’re going to add to the mythos of the Caped Crusader, please, do so with care. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Batman Moments that Made Fans Rage Quit. For this list, we’ll be looking at moments from Batman comics that fans found to be annoying, illogical, cringeworthy and disappointing - moments that likely made fans wish they’d never picked up that particular issue. For the record, if it appears on this list, fans were frustrated by the moment at the time of publication, not just in hindsight after it had time to age poorly. We’re not necessarily calling all of these stories bad, but if it appears on this list, it definitely rubbed a good chunk of the fanbase the wrong way.
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If you’re going to add to the mythos of the Caped Crusader, please, do so with care. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Batman Moments that Made Fans Rage Quit.

For this list, we’ll be looking at moments from Batman comics that fans found to be annoying, illogical, cringeworthy and disappointing - moments that likely made fans wish they’d never picked up that particular issue. For the record, if it appears on this list, fans were frustrated by the moment at the time of publication, not just in hindsight after it had time to age poorly. We’re not necessarily calling all of these stories bad, but if it appears on this list, it definitely rubbed a good chunk of the fanbase the wrong way.

#10: Batman: Fortunate Son


Ugh… what is that horrible sound? Nails on a chalkboard? A fight between two alleycats? A knife against a glass bottle? Nope! It’s the sound of Batman and rock music clashing in the late ‘90s in what has to be one of the single worst Batman stories ever told. Seriously, whole pages are dedicated to Batman and Robin debating their conflicting views on rock and roll, its morals implications and the idolatry of rock stars. It would be funny if it weren’t so cringe-inducingly self-important. Seriously, as you watch the dynamic duo fight to save Gotham from a crazed rock idol and that same rock star from himself, you’ll be wishing someone had saved Batman from this abysmal chapter in his life.

#9: The Death of Stephanie Brown & Everything Surrounding It


Bruce Wayne is a damaged individual, we get it. But that’s not an excuse to treat people badly, and this particularly nasty chapter in Batman history sees the Caped Crusader manipulating both Tim Drake, his third Robin, and Tim’s girlfriend Stephanie, who served as Tim’s replacement. People (Stephanie included) saw this as a move to make Tim jealous, and when Batman let her go, she got fatally injured trying to earn back his approval. This felt like yet another example of violence against women serving to further the stories of men. But the real kicker? The fact that we later learned that Dr. Thompson let Stephanie die to teach Batman a lesson about putting young sidekicks in harm’s way. What a mess.

#8: Hush Returns


The original Hush storyline ranks amongst many Batman fans’ favorite story arcs. The same, unfortunately, cannot be said about the follow-up, “Batman: Hush Returns.” Okay, to be fair, there are those who did like it, but having this newly introduced villain go around town quickly dispatching Batman’s various rogues? It felt cheap, unrealistic and disrespectful towards Batman’s classic villains like Riddler and the Joker, who both end up on the receiving end of an over-the-top beating from Batman’s bandaged baddie. Hush even runs the Joker out of Gotham! Obviously, fans of the Clown Prince of Crime weren’t too pleased about that.

#7: Batman: Odyssey


In defense of this title… there are people out there who genuinely enjoyed it. However, such fans are few and far between, and they are the sort of readers who obviously don’t mind comic book writers getting seriously experimental with iconic characters. For many people, Batman: Odyssey feels weird for weird’s sake, offering little else of merit to the reader. Writer and artist Neal Adams has made major contributions to the Batman mythos. Alongside Dennis O’Neil, he is credited with revitalizing the Dark Knight in the early 70s and elevating Joker and Riddler around the same time. He freaking co-created Ra's al Ghul! But Batman: Odyssey -with its strange dialogue, insane plotting, and bizarre characterization- proves that creativity sometimes should know bounds.

#6: Attacking Silver St. Cloud


Batman can’t be happy in love; it’s a lesson that DC seems determined to remind us of every few years, despite us already knowing it well. In fact, it’s such a frustratingly repetitive narrative that we’re actually going to be addressing the issue in two back to back entries, just to really hammer home the point. First up… Batman: The Widening Gyre”, written by Kevin Smith. The whole story disappoints, but one of the worst moments comes when, suspicious of how happy he is having reunited with Silver St. Cloud, Bruce becomes paranoid and attacks her for fear that she’s a robot. It’s just… dumb. Batman is always paranoid, and as the world’s greatest detective, he handles his suspicions way better than this.

#5: The Wedding That Never Happened


Batman gets engaged; he doesn’t get married. But honestly, this time around, DC really had us convinced that they’d finally opened up to changing Batman’s status quo. After 50 issues of build-up and a big PR campaign advertising the impending marriage of Batman and Catwoman, fans got burned. TWICE. Though to be fair, only one is DC’s fault. First, the New York Times spoiled the ending - that’s on them. But the ending in question? The marriage never happens, and honestly, that was arguably worse. In the end, Selena refuses to marry Bruce because she believes that their marriage would rob him of the fire he needs to protect Gotham. In an otherwise great run, this felt like a hugely disappointing return to the status quo.

#4: Abandoning Gotham


When a character has been around as long as Batman, there’s no such thing as “one definitive version”. The character evolves as each new writer takes the reins. Be that as it may, with a character as iconic as Batman, an overarching personality, psychology and set of values takes shape regardless. Readers can see the forest for the trees - so to speak. And when a writer has Batman do something fundamentally out of character, well… a rage quit courtesy of readers becomes a very real possibility. The fact that Batman would remain absent from Gotham, for months during the catastrophic events of No Man’s Land isn’t just a plot hole. It’s preposterous.

#3: Batman Peeing His Pants


Remember when we said that The Widening Gyre was a weak story start to finish? Yeah...it bears the unflattering distinction of giving readers not just one, but two major opportunities to simply put the comic down and say: “you know what? It’s not worth finishing this story!” This is a scene that only Kevin Smith would come up with. In it, Batman reminisces about a crucial scene from “Batman: Year One” and adds that actually peed his pants because his incendiary was hotter than expected. Yes, really. Note to any aspiring writers out there: if they give you the keys to the Batcave, don’t make Batman piss himself.

#2: Everything in The Dark Knight Strikes Again


The Dark Knight Returns? It’s one of the most widely cited, beloved, influential and critically acclaimed stories in the medium. And rightfully so! Yes, this world-weary Batman’s personality and mannerisms are a departure from those of the main continuity, but they work in the context. And that context makes for a great, insightful read. So when it was announced, over 15 years later, that we were getting a sequel, fans were understandably over the moon. That is until they actually read the thing. Rarely has something so highly anticipated disappointed so spectacularly. The art was childish, heroes behave unrecognizably, and Wonder Woman and Superman have sex that causes natural disasters. If you haven’t read it, probably best to keep it that way.

#1: Flaming Dock Intimacy


In 2002, The Dark Knight Strikes Again felt like a low point for both Batman and Frank Miller. But together, they managed to dig far deeper just a few years later in the pages of All-Star Batman and Robin. We could highlight any number of things that inspired us to stop reading, but for fear of beating a dead horse (or the charred remains of nameless henchmen), we’re going with flaming dock sex as the moment that really did people in. Batman and Black Canary have sex, in-costume, while recently defeated goons burn to death nearby. As if that’s not bad enough, the dialogue, both before and after, feels like it was written by a pubescent extraterrestrial who hasn’t been paying attention in “human” class.
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