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Batman - One Bad Day: Ra's Al Ghul #1

Comicscore Index
Generally favorable ratings

Based on 13 critic ratings.


For centuries Ra’s al Ghul has wanted to save the Earth from the worst of humankind, and for centuries he has failed. Recently his greatest obstacle has been the Dark Knight Detective, Batman. Ra’s offered Batman a chance to be a part of his new world order, but Batman refused. For years their cold war has raged, but Ra’s will have no more. Ra’s will remove Batman from the equation and save the world, re-creating it in his image and bringing the peace and prosperity all the good-hearted souls of this Earth deserve.

Don’t miss this epic tragedy from the all-star creative team of Tom Taylor (Nightwing, Superman: Son of Kal-El, DCeased) and Ivan Reis (Detective Comics, Blackest Night): the last of the One Bad Day specials, and one of the most epic to date.

Publication Date
Kindle Edition
Print Length
66 pages
Amazon ASIN

13 Critic Ratings & Reviews from:
  • 100

    Dark Knight News

    This comic is Wonderful! Truly storytelling at its finest. On the whole, I’ve loved this series. It’s had highs, and it has had lows, but what a way to finish!

  • 100

    DC Comics News

    Between emotionally poignant artwork and a story that feels straight from the mind of Ursula K. Le Guin, Batman: One Bad Day: Ra’s Al Ghul #1 is a stand out Batman book. We’re not just compelled to empathize with the villain because he lived through something terrible, we’re compelled to consider that his actions may guarantee humanity a brighter future. That’s a tough pill to swallow, but comics that cause readers to think deeply about morality and the world we create are the beating heart of superhero narratives. I certainly recommend this book, if not for the creative team’s brilliant work, then for the dialogue it creates. As fans of heroes and of justice, what is the right answer? When the planet faces extinction, should the definition of good and evil shift? For me, the jury is still out.

  • 96

    Zona Negativa

  • 95

    Geek Dad

    The final installment of the One Bad Day series continues the pattern of taking a completely different path with each chapter. These interconnected stories all seem to have one piece of DNA in common—giving the villains a psychological spotlight—but they can’t seem to agree on whether the villain is supposed to be scarier than ever (Riddler), a tragic villain (Clayface), or even the hero of the story (Penguin, Bane). Which one Ra’s Al Ghul falls into will depend on your perspective—but it’s pretty clear Tom Taylor has some sympathy, if not for the character’s actions, then for his motivations. Taylor has been deeply passionate about the environment for a long time, and this issue makes that its core DNA. (…) The story takes several unexpected turns, and while it’s clearly out of continuity, it doesn’t feel like it’s distant from the versions of the characters we know. Its take on Ra’s is incredibly ruthless and terrifying in places, but never completely lacking in his moral core. Ivan Reis was the perfect choice to illustrate this issue, capturing both natural beauty and bloody violence. It’s a fitting close to a fascinating experiment.

  • 95

    The Super Powered Fancast

    The Story: An exciting, insightful and thrilling story from Taylor. The story offers not only some great insight into Ras Al Ghul and his motivations, but it also gives some great context and layers to his relationship with not only Batman, but Ras’ own family. His concepts of right and wrong are multifaceted and that makes him and this story more intriguing and engaging as you dive deeper into it. Taylor allows for the complexity of Ras’ motivations to come through and that creates a story where you feel conflicted at times almost to the point of rooting for him to succeed. A great complicated story for a complicated and often conflicted time.

    The Art: Ivan Reis delivers some beautifully detailed and visually immersive art throughout the issue. The imagery is both beautiful and brutal at times and I loved the expressive moments with characters as well as the blistering action.

  • 90

    But Why Tho?

    Batman: One Bad Day – Ra’s Al Ghul #1 is a fantastic exploration of a man who has lived for centuries. It’s a brilliant script depicting a man with his own sense of honor, displaying that he has a reason for everything he does. Like every member of Bruce Wayne’s rogues gallery, Ra’s is unique. He has an ancient intellect and no qualms about slaughter. His actions show him as a villain, but his reasons are justified. Taylor’s story can be seen as a man being evil because that’s necessary, and there is even a bit of hope at the end. It’s also a comic with consequences, with huge events that may lead to ramifications in Gotham.

  • 90

    Penciler Ivan Reis, inker Danny Miki, and colorist Brad Anderson light this spectacle of ecoterrorists battling against caped vigilantes for the planet’s future in a familiar style appropriate for a grand event in the DC Comics tradition. There are abundant splashes posing both Ra’s and Batman at their most fearsome, and the sword fights that inevitably follow are bound by well-defined muscle, sleek steel, and plenty of fast-paced panels. Even the detective sequences make good use of specific details to remind readers of Batman’s nigh-omnipotent array of abilities. The presentation of indulgent superhero sequences encourages readers to expect what they’ve read before and makes the issue’s final notes all the more surprising when there is no final twist to reveal why Ra’s al Ghul’s plan was bound to fail.

  • 90

    Multiversity Comics

    Having a one-shot comic give the essence of a character, to easily read even for newcomers, is extremely important. Having the comic give a new perspective on a character, to give true pathos, is another. Many a story may have one or the other, but rarely both at once. With “Batman: One Bad Day – Ra’s Al Ghul” #1, Tom Taylor somehow manages this dual focus, crafting a tale of past and present that makes even the hardened international villain at the head of the League of Assassins, one of Batman’s primary foes, elicit true sympathy from readers. His horrific actions are never downplayed, and in fact are shown on panel. However, by giving a look at the eponymous character’s struggles, the ways in which the League works in both violent and non-violent ways to achieve his goal of a better world, even through means plainly obvious as terrorism and assassination, Taylor allows the audience to see both the harm he does through the perspective of the Dark Knight Detective and the ways Ra’s hopes to prevent atrocities he witnessed in his centuries of life through the man and his daughter Talia. (…) Artwork, colors, and writing work together expertly to tell a fascinating, heartwrenching tale about one of Batman’s primary villains.

  • 82

    Comic Watch

    In a series of character examination one-shots, Ras al Ghuls should stand out. He has watched centuries pass. His goals, as he sees them, are noble. His ambitions are on a scale far beyond anything Batmans other main antagonists are capable of. And his relationship to Batman is frequently conflicted. Unfortunately none of that rich tapestry is put to use in this issue. Aside from the ending, which is only made possible because these one-shots dont strictly fit in continuity, Batman One Bad Day Ras Al Ghul #1 offers little more than what might be found in a story arc in one of Batmans ongoing series.

  • 80

    The Comicbook Dispatch

    Batman: One Bad Day – Ra’s al Ghul #1 presents a fascinating look at one of Batman’s most formidable foes. It showcases both his ruthlessness and empathy, believing himself to ultimately be doing the right thing. Yet, this is also a story about Batman too, and how his compassion is juxtaposed to Ra’s Al Ghul. Damian recognizes the difference between how both his father and grandfather operate, and chooses to side with the former. In his own way, Ra’s is also committed to preserving life, even though he uses unethical methods.

  • 55


    The aims of Ra’s al Ghul have always been distinct from those of other Batman – One Bad Day protagonists. With the philanthropic goal of protecting the world from humanity, his aims differ from those of The Riddler or Bane. With Batman – One Bad Day: Ra’s al Ghul, Tom Taylor and Ivan Reis have come together to offer a unique look at a world in which Ra’s al Ghul can chase his utopia to its purest form. (…) While Batman: One Bad Day — Ra’s al Ghul #1 provides an interesting look into the goals of one of Batman’s greatest villains, it doesn’t go far enough. More space to tell the story would have done wonders for the issue. The opportunity to explore his new world could have made the somewhat forgettable comic into the masterpiece it had the potential to be.

  • 50

    The Batman Universe

    Batman: One Bad Day: Ra’s al Ghul #1 is an incredibly beautiful issue, and it may very well be one of the most eye-catching One Bad Day titles on the shelves. Artist Ivan Reis and colorist Brad Anderson create a monumental behemoth that gives readers pause. The paneling is exceptional, as is the pacing of the fight scenes. The battle between Batman and Ra’s al Ghul in the final few pages feels like a well-choreographed flurry of blows that is moody, poetic, and tense. If there’s one thing Batman: One Bad Day: Ra’s al Ghul #1 has going for it is that it’s a mastercraft in art, color, and beauty. (…) The problem is that it feels like one note. The art is incredible, and the narration is dripping with poetry and rhythm. The story, however, feels underbaked. It feels like there should be more, some emotional beat to cling to. What we get is Batman dying at Ra’s hand and coming back to life only a few short pages later. Robin weeps for his father, then does little else but leave and lie in wait for his father’s return. Why?

  • 40


    Batman: One Bad Day: Ra’s al Ghul #1 focuses less on exploring the character of Ra’s al Ghul, and more on using him as a soapbox to oversimplify important global issues. Doing so requires that Ra’s’ character and motivations be altered, and the world itself bend over backwards to fit that rhetorical goal. It’s a comic that wants you to come away thinking “wow, maybe Ra’s was correct” but can only accomplish that by creating the perfect scenario where he would be, regardless of whether it makes sense.

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