5 DC Graphic Novels to Read Before Watching Batman v Superman

Friday, 18 December 2015 - 7:18PM
DC Comics
Batman v Superman
Friday, 18 December 2015 - 7:18PM
5 DC Graphic Novels to Read Before Watching Batman v Superman
Folks have been waiting 33 years to find out what became of Luke, Leia, and Han after the events of Star Wars Episode VI. With The Force Awakens now officially here, however, sci-fi fans are now beginning to look forward to what could possibly be one of the biggest films of 2016 as well as a union that comic fans have been waiting forever to see on the big screen: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

This March will mark the first time that the DC trinity of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman have ever been seen in the very same live action adaption, and as these are quite possibly the most iconic comic characters ever created, that's definitely something to get excited about. As Batman v Superman has already shown that it's drawing inspiration from a number of classic comic series, it's a great time to catch up on some reading and see just where the next big superhero blockbuster is getting its ideas from. Here's five DC comic series to read before B v S hits theaters this March:

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns



It's a well known fact that many aspects of Batman v Superman will be taken directly from Frank Miller's highly inspirational 1986 comic, The Dark Knight Returns. TDKR features an older Batman who comes out of retirement when he realizes his city needs him then more than ever. It also features the biggest brawl the Dark Knight has ever had with the Man of Steel in comic book history, wherein he uses the very same Bat-Armor that's been heavily featured in all the trailers thus far. From the Bat-Suit, to Bruce Wayne's age, to his hulking appearance on page and on screen, Batman v Superman clearly draws quite a lot of it's source material from the well of TDKR.

The New 52 Batman/Superman Vol. 1



Though there hasn't been a whole lot as of yet that ties B v S to the Batman/Superman series, it does play with a lot of the same themes as its first arc. In it, Batman and Superman meet for the first time, and both are highly suspicious of each other. Granted, it's for fairly different reasons than the ones in the movie. However, Batman/Superman vol. 1 is really all about how Bats and Supes learned to overcome their distrust for one another to work together, ultimately because of a worldwide threat that would one day come to their world: Darkseid. If some of the rumors are true, they may have to come together in Batman v Superman for the very same reason before the events of Justice League Part 1 takes place.

Lex Luthor: Man of Steel



It's no secret that Lex Luthor will take a place of prominence in Batman v Superman. He's the main villain, and based off the second trailer, the creator of this brutal version of Doomsday. In 'Lex Luthor: Man of Steel' (commonly abbreviated to 'Luthor'), readers are given a glimpse into the mind of a man who would like nothing more than to see Superman fall. He's presented as a complex, rational, and sometimes sympathetic villain with well thought out reasons as his motivator. His deceit is never called into question, however, and he manipulates Batman into fighting Superman by putting doubt into his mind about the Last Son of Krypton and equipping him with kryptonite. There's been hints that similar events might take place in B v S, and if anyone wants to get into the head of the evil Lex Luthor himself, they don't have to look any further than this brilliant piece of work by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo.

Batman: A Death in the Family



If there's one event more tragic than any of the others that's taken place throughout Batman's career as Gotham's protector, it's the death of his second Robin, Jason Todd, at the hands of the Joker. The comic series entitled 'A Death in the Family' documents how this crushing blow took place and just how much it affected the Dark Knight. It ultimately caused him to doubt himself and his non-lethal methods for a while, but ultimately it drove him to fight harder to protect his city and his family. With the defaced Robin memorial already prominent in all of Batman v Superman's trailers, getting inside the head of this bitter and angry Batman may simply be as easy as taking a dive into this epic graphic novel.

The Death of Superman



Quite possibly the most popular graphic novel of all time, The Death of Superman tells the tale of how the Man of Steel takes down the creature known as Doomsday but ends up tragically dying in the process. Of course, Superman's death isn't expected in this movie with Justice League Part 1 on the horizon. However, the book does do an amazing job of showing just how brutal and devastating Doomsday is. He takes out the entire Justice League before battling to the death with Superman in his first ever comic book appearance. If anyone wants to know just how big of a threat Supes, Wonder Woman, and Batman are up against, the Death of Superman is the answer.

With amazing works of art and literature like these serving as source material for the film, Batman v Superman has a lot going in its favor. Whether or not the film lives up to the works that inspired to it, however, is still yet to be seen. It's got almost everything that DC fans have been waiting for so long to see on the big screen; the crew just has to fit it all together in a way that really works. So here's to hoping Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is truly able to deliver a finished product just as memorable as the comics that made the film possible in the first place!
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