Batman Cover to Cover: The Greatest Comic Book Covers of the Dark Knight

There are over 2000 covers to various Batman comic books and graphic novels. Batman Cover to Cover only collects a few hundred ranging from the 1930s to the 2000s. I started reading Batman comic books in the 1950s. They were cheap–a dime–and available everywhere. Down the street from my grandparent’s house was a drug store that had a large magazine section that included comic books. Every time my mother and father would take us to visit my grandparents, I managed to wrangle a trip to the drug store where I’d buy a couple of comic books, usually The Flash and Batman, my two favorites.

Basically, comic book covers marketed the product. That’s why the cover artwork on comic books look so bold and daring. Batman Cover to Cover brings back a lot of memories. Did you read comic books as a kid? What were your favorites? GRADE: A



The dark knight — 10
You never forget your first time / Reflections by Neil Gaiman — 34
Fearsome foes — 46
Creating the covers in the golden age / A chat with Jerry Robinson — 72
Welcome to fun city — 74
The dynamic duo — 85
Batman by design — 102
The cover logo / An examination by Rian Hughes — 126
Death traps — 128
Guilty — 150
Creating the covers in the silver age / Recollections by Neal Adams — 156
The Batman family — 158
Bats — 177
Creating the covers today / A chat with Bob Schreck — 186
Bizarre Batman — 188
Secrets of the Batcave — 195
Batman covers around the world — 206
A death in the family — 208
Assembling the covers — 220
Milestones — 222
World’s finest — 231
The greatest cover? / Alex Ross, Chip Kidd and Mark Hamill choose — 238

19 thoughts on “Batman Cover to Cover: The Greatest Comic Book Covers of the Dark Knight

  1. Steve Oerkfitz

    I read comics until I was about ten or eleven. After that I decided to spend my money on paperbacks and the sf magazines instead. My favorites were Batman and Uncle Scrooge although I read a lot of the usual suspects-Superman., Flash. Blackhawk. This was the mid to late 50’s. I missed out on the horror comics like Tales From the Crypt which stopped around 1955 or 56 with the establishment of the comic book code.

  2. Michael Padgett

    My comic book phase was intense but relatively brief, lasting maybe 2-3 years in the early Fifties. Except for Batman I was never much into the superhero comics, not even Superman. For me it was the horror comics and Uncle Scrooge. My mother disapproved of the horror comics but didn’t make a big deal of it. By the mid-fifties I was reading books, and the comic book phase quickly sputtered out. At some point I stumbled onto a Heinlein juvenile (I think it was “The Rolling Stones”), which led to the SF magazines.

    1. george Post author

      Michael, I was lucky that our school Library collection included Heinlein’s SF juveniles. By the early 1960s I transitioned from comics to ACE Doubles.

  3. Rick Robinson

    At the grocery story, Alpha Beta, I was allowed to buy one comic book out of the money from returning the glass soda bottles. We stopped on the way home from church, and after getting the money, usually 12 cents, I got to pick a comic and also get two penny candies. As I was under strict parental control, it was always a Disney comic, either Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck or Uncle Scrooge. I didn’t get to read Batman or superheroes until high school, and by that time I’d rather have a science fiction paperback or digest. This looks interesting, but I’d probably only read through it once. Maybe the library? I have discovered, however, that the library did not buy any new books after March 15, so maybe not.

  4. maggie mason

    I read the archie comics. I did also read Uncle Scrooge, but not on a regular basis. I also had a subscription to the Brenda Starr comics, which IIRC was short lived.

    Side note: my dad in his younger years worked at the straw board in KS. This was where they pulped old papers, etc for new paper. He used to bring home comics for his kid brothers and sisters. If only they’d saved them

  5. Fred Blosser

    Did I read comic books as a kid? Did I read comic books as a kid! DC (beginning with TOMAHAWK and pre-superhero BRAVE & THE BOLD), Marvel (beginning pre-superhero with the late ’50s Lee-Kirby monster titles) , Dell (Western titles, early on), Gold Key (when it debuted in ’62), Charlton, Classics Illustrated. Favorites? Difficult to choose, I read everything but Millie the Model, Sugar & Spike, and the like. I had first issues of Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Thor, Hulk, Iron Man, Ant-Man . . . all long gone. My older brother had some issues of old EC war comics around.

      1. george Post author

        Maggie, I forgot all about CLASSICS ILLUSTRATED! I loved them, but somehow they were hard to come by in this area.

  6. Patti Abbott

    All the Archie comic books, of course. But I also bought Superman, , Justice League of American, Little Lulu, Nancy and Sluggo, and Classic Comics. My kids read them too.

    1. george Post author

      Patti, in the 1980s and 1990s, Patrick and Katie had ZERO interest in comic books. They did read a lot of paperbacks. Katie was a fan of THE BABYSITTERS CLUB and Patrick read Terry Pratchett’s DISCWORLD series.

  7. Art Scott

    The dynamic artwork of Dick Sprang was always THE Batman to me (that’s his work on the Batman #20 cover). I had FF#1 also, bought it off the stands. Much later traded it for a half-dozen early Barks Four-Color one-shots (which I still have). Don’t regret it at all.


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