Comic Books

The Most Influential Batman Story is Finally Being Finished

The Long Halloween is getting even longer.

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 22: A Batman costume from the 1997 Batman & Robin film worn by George Clo...
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There are many iconic on-screen versions of Batman, and there are a plethora of comic book stories that have inspired them. In 1996 and ‘97, a limited comic book series shaped the Christopher Nolan Dark Knight trilogy, as well as aspects of the Robert Pattinson-led The Batman. Now, 28 years after it was first published, this influential Batman story — The Long Halloween — will get a sequel series called The Last Halloween. Almost three decades after the tale began, one of the best Batman stories of all time will finally come to a close.

On May 25, DC Comics revealed that a new 10-part comic series called Batman The Long Halloween: The Last Halloween, will release its first issue on September 28, 2024. According to IGN, the series will be written by Jeff Loeb, who wrote The Long Halloween (1996) and its sequel Dark Victory (1999). Sadly, the artist responsible for the haunting look of The Long Halloween, Tim Sale, passed in 2022. Instead, as IGN reports, The Last Halloween will be illustrated “by a rotating team of artists working in tribute to Sale.”

The Long Halloween focused on Batman’s early years as he tried to unravel the mystery of a murderer named Holiday. Halloween’s spooky vibes grip Gotham City for an entire year, and by the end, nearly every single villain of note in Batman’s rouges’ gallery, from the Joker to The Mad Hatter, gets involved. The Long Halloween is also something of a retelling of how Harvey Dent went from Batman’s ally to the villainous Two-Face.

“I believe in Havey Dent,” a campaign slogan made famous by The Dark Knight, comes from The Long Halloween.

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When you watch The Dark Knight, you’re watching, in part, a very streamlined adaptation of The Long Halloween. Christopher Nolan’s depiction of Gotham’s crime families, specifically the Maronis and the Falcones, is similar to how those mob groups appear in The Long Halloween. This is true of The Batman as well, in that the film also takes place near the start of Batman’s career and focuses on the more realistic aspects of the criminal underworld. It’s hard to imagine either film happening without The Long Halloween coming first.

Because Dark Victory was a retelling of Robin’s origin, The Last Halloween could be a reimagining of the story of Nightwing. The official description of The Last Halloween says, “While a new threat looms over James Gordon’s head, Batman and Robin find themselves tested like never before.”

Perhaps most importantly, The Last Halloween promises to finally reveal Holiday’s true identity. And with that mystery solved, maybe even more inspiration for movies will follow.

Batman: The Last Halloween #1 arrives on September 28, 2024.

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