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Batman #137

Comicscore Index
Mixed or average ratings

Based on 25 critic ratings.

Batman descends on Gotham City, full of rage and force, more driven than ever to save his home.

But the new landscape has turned friends into foes.

Can anyone stop his reign of terror?

Should they?

The Gotham War continues in this second chapter!

Publication Date
Kindle Edition
Print Length
34 pages
Amazon ASIN

25 Critic Ratings & Reviews from:
  • 100

    Comic Watch

    Batman #137 thrusts Gotham War into a new, hyper-kinetic gear that continues to explore the ever-growing rift between Batman and Catwoman. Bruce barrels forward into his distorted reaffirmation of his central mission to stop crime, not caring about who he hurts in the name of justice. Zdarsky makes evident from page one just how out of his mind Bruce has gone and makes it a point to bash the readers over the head with this idea to excellent effect.

    Jiménez picks up on that lack of subtle storytelling and infuses the direct nature of the issue into his linework. The action beats are explosive but still feel in orbit of the street level, while the anatomy and expressions showcase the book’s dueling tones and concepts. These get picked up and segmented in Morey’s coloring, which echoes the previous plots of the run and creates subtle references to the influences on the book. Batman #137 course corrects the flaws of last week’s opening to Gotham War and makes a clear thesis for the book going forward on every level.

  • 95

    Geek Dad

    The idea of Batman always required a man who wasn’t entirely well, but I don’t think any writer has ever taken that as literally as Zdarsky. We’ll have to see how the Howard chapters play out, but this is a fascinating story of the unraveling of the Batman so far, with a great last-act surprise.

  • 90

    First Comics News

  • 90


    Batman is in a really interesting place with this new crossover, and I’m enjoying how it’s all playing out as sides are drawn and twists are thrown about.

  • 88

    The Comicbook Dispatch

    Batman’s #137’s unique storyline is cluttered with some fascinating layers built mainly from prior narrative dynamics by Zdarsky himself. As far as this issue goes, this story runs quickly with high energy and a Batman that’s full of aggression. Nevertheless, I’m a little worried about the premise as well as the believability of the Civil War aspect of the narrative. Not only are some of the characters on the wrong side, but the how and why seem like a bit of a reach as well.

    Nevertheless, I’ll give this storyline a fair shake due to Chip’s track record that normally lands heads up. Plus, Zdarsky is generally great at starting a storyline with the premise being one angle and completely ripping the ground out from the narrative switching towards another direction quicker than it started. Meaning, this Civil War premise might just fade away anyway. No doubt, I’d give Batman #137 a good strong look. Additionally, Jimenez’s art was pretty solid like usual. However, there were a few small parts that seemed uncharacteristic. Nevertheless, I’d follow this story through to Catwoman #47 and see i where it goes.

  • 87

    The Super Powered Fancast

    The Story: Zdarsky is crafting something interesting with this new arc. The story is filled with great action and thrills and I love the tension throughout the plot. I like that Zdarsky is exploring Batman’s mortality and mission in a story that challenges them both. This challenge to the Dark Knight takes some unexpected and difficult turns for him and I look forward to seeing how dark and twisted this story gets.

    The Art: Jimenez delivers some beautifully detailed and brilliant art throughout the issue. The visuals are fantastic and just as thrilling as the story.

  • 84

    Batman on Film

    Overall, this issue ties in well with this new battle in Gotham. A good dilemma that has supportive views on both sides, and our hero stands firm to his character. I’m in to see how this continues.

  • 80

    Graphic Policy

    Batman #137 is a vast improvement on the opening chapter. You get a sense of the frustration within by everyone. There’s also a solid case to be made no matter your viewpoint, so you get a sense of where everyone is coming from and where they are. And, add in some great visuals, this is a second issue “The Gotham War” needed.

  • 80


    The Gotham War is shaping up to be something incredibly interesting, hopefully setting up exciting things to come.

  • 80

    Derby Comics

    I thought this was a major step in the right direction for the event after Battle Lines. It gave depth to Bruce’s mindset and every character’s actions felt more earned that they did in the event’s prologue. If Zdarsky continues shining a light on Bruce’s psychological trauma and coming to terms with his own mortality, I think this event can lead to some really intriguing long-term ramifications for Batman and Gotham-at-large. The surprise reveal of Vandal Savage at the end was a true surprise as I was fully expecting it to be Selina or the new alliance of Batman’s rogues. It will be interesting to see how this impacts the Gotham War, which continues in Tini Howard’s Catwoman #57 out on September 19th, and if it’s what ends up causing fences to be mended between Bruce and Selina.

  • 80

    Nerd Initiative

    The battle of Gotham rages on with an excellent second chapter. The pace is set early building the tension up to a great breaking point with the art and writing. The final page will have fans guessing as to where we head from here, but there’s no doubt this story is one to watch.

  • 80

    Get Your Comic On

    A speedy and somewhat ferocious second part to The Gotham War story, Zdarsky digs in to Batman’s psyche whilst pitting him against everyone he loves. Backed against a wall, what is the Dark Knight expected to do?

  • 80

    But Why Tho?

    Batman #137 is where Gotham War starts to take sides. The comic doesn’t take long to carve the Bat Family open as none of them seem to be acting like themselves. It’s leading to some devastating moments and some of the most striking set-pieces that have been in Batman comics for a while. What is tearing the group apart is not quite as sturdy a plot as it was when it was first established, but what it is generating is some fantastic character moments. The Bat Family is being forced into this situation, but it really hurts seeing it happen anyway.

  • 80

    Dark Knight News

    Batman #137 moves the narrative of Gotham War along perfectly. It raises the stakes and severs ties in ways that may not be retrievable. The sense of impending doom is tangible and I cannot wait for Catwoman #57 to hit the shelves so we can see just what happens next!

  • 78

    The Batman Universe

    I’ve always enjoyed Zdarsky’ voice for Batman. He brings it to another level in Batman #137 as Batman has to face off against his family (again). Let’s hope Tini Howard can keep the momentum going in part 3 of the Gotham War.

  • 75

    Caped Joel

  • 65


    As it stands, Batman #137 is a clear, well-structured, and great to look at issue. The character choices make sense within the context of the run, and Zdarsky is using the crossover to further Batman’s crumbling psyche from previous arcs, possibly explaining the character’s aggressive stance within The Gotham War. It’s a bit light on plot, and there is no guessing where the story might end. If you’ve been enjoying Zdarsky’s run so far, you’ll likely continue to do so. If it has yet to be what you’ve been looking for from the Batman series, unfortunately, this probably won’t be the issue to change your mind.

  • 60

    Comic Book Revolution

    Batman #137 spotlights all the problems with Gotham War as the Batman Family are portrayed out-of-character and the weaknesses on Batman and Catwoman’s sides are clear. There is just no hiding how rushed this event has been right out of the gate. The saving grace on the writing side of this rushed storyline is the potential roles Batman’s Rogues Gallery and a surprise DC Universe villain can play. That along with Jorge Jimenez incredible artwork save Batman #137 from being a complete loss.

  • 60

    Fortress of Solitude

  • 60

    Comics From The Multiverse

  • 50

    Lyles Movie Files

    The Gotham War didn’t sound like an idea and if the Batman story in this event was disappointing, the odds are good that the Catwoman installment for this month won’t be any better.

  • 45

    Weird Science DC Comics

    Batman #137 takes the foolishness of Catwoman’s plan from the Battle Lines prologue comic and Turns it up to 11 when the entire Bat Family (except Damian) suddenly decides Catwoman’s Henchmen Union is a great idea and actively scheme to stop Batman from interfering with Catwoman’s approved robbers. This story is ridiculous, the execution is ridiculous, and DC is absurd for sending it to print.

  • 40

    Covered Geekly

    Batman #137 by Zdarsky is not his best work on this run. The writing is poor and lazy, which is disappointing to see.

    The Gotham War event may be difficult to continue with, but there are a few interesting aspects that make me curious to see how it will unfold.

    Unfortunately, it seems that this Batman event is being forced without any clear intention, and I fear that it may lead to negative outcomes.

    While this issue may not be Zdarsky’s strongest, I have confidence that he will be able to restore the series after the event, provided that the damage isn’t too severe.

  • 20

    If the opening of “The Gotham War” was bad, Batman #137 just doubles down on it to be just as terrible. The conflict makes no sense and Zdarsky is failing Batman as a character hard, so hard that Batman isn’t even recognizable as DC’s iconic hero. Instead, he’s the problem at the center of this and while there would be value in telling a story in which Batman realized that he is as much a contributor to Gotham’s problems as he is a solution, that’s very clearly not what is at play here. The only thing of any value here is that the fight sequences look interesting, but they narratively are garbage so what actual value they have is almost entirely negated. This issue feels very much like they’ve just taken literal years of Batman development and thrown them in the garbage to push through a half-baked idea of pure, rushed, nonsensical ridiculousness.

  • 20


    This is DC Comics’ flagship book and it’s not up to par. The conflict is forced and nonsensical. Batman is written completely out-of-character to a point that his scenes become boring. The fights are kind of okay, except some of the choreography during the Batman vs Jason segment isn’t that great, and the fight scenes don’t mean anything without well-developed drama. In conclusion, this book isn’t worth your money and definitely not your time. I recommend you read something else, or simply keep your money in your pocket.

More From Batman (2016)

About the Author: Chip Zdarsky

In the ever-evolving landscape of comic books, Chip Zdarsky emerges as a figure of immense creativity and versatility. Known for infusing his narratives with both humor and emotional depth, Zdarsky has charted a course through the comic book universe that is as diverse as it is compelling. From the groundbreaking humor of “Sex Criminals” to the gritty streets of Marvel’s “Daredevil,” his journey is a testament to a talent that refuses to be pigeonholed.

The man behind the pseudonym, Steve Murray, became a household name with “Sex Criminals,” co-created with Matt Fraction. This series broke new ground with its audacious blend of comedy, romance, and the supernatural. It was here that Zdarsky’s knack for balancing wit with genuine storytelling first shone, earning the series critical acclaim and a dedicated following.

Zdarsky’s portfolio, however, spans a broad spectrum. His unique voice has breathed new life into “Howard the Duck,” where he explored themes of identity and belonging, and his run on Marvel’s “Daredevil” has been celebrated for its moral complexity and rich character development. But Zdarsky’s talents are not limited to writing. As an artist, he has lent his distinct visual style to numerous projects, enhancing his narratives with expressive artistry and dynamic visuals.

In recent years, Zdarsky has ventured into the shadowy alleys of Gotham City, bringing his distinctive flair to the world of Batman. His work on Batman titles has quickly garnered attention for its fresh take on the Dark Knight, blending the character’s traditional brooding intensity with new layers of psychological depth. Through stories that delve into Batman’s complex psyche and the morally ambiguous landscape of Gotham, Zdarsky adds to the rich tapestry of Batman lore, proving yet again his ability to navigate and innovate within established universes.

Beyond his impressive body of work, Zdarsky’s engagement with the comic book community — through social media, conventions, and insightful industry commentary — has made him a beloved figure among fans and fellow creators. His contributions have not only earned him awards and nominations but have also solidified his role as a pivotal voice in contemporary comics.

As Chip Zdarsky continues to explore the darker corners of Gotham City, his journey exemplifies the power of storytelling in comic books — where humor meets heroism, and the human condition is explored in the flicker of a bat signal against the night sky. For those drawn to the art of comics, Zdarsky’s work offers a masterclass in creativity, inviting readers into worlds both wildly imaginative and intensely real.

[Latest Update: April 8, 2024]