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Batman - One Bad Day: The Riddler #1

Comicscore Index
Generally favorable ratings

Based on 17 critic ratings.

The Dark Knight’s greatest villains get their greatest stories yet! The Riddler, Two-Face, the Penguin, Mr. Freeze, Catwoman, Bane, Clayface, and Ra’s al Ghul-Batman’s most iconic villains all given 64-page prestige format specials that show why they are the greatest villains in all of comics, spearheaded by today’s top talent.

We begin with Batman – One Bad Day: The Riddler! Tom King and Mitch Gerads, the Eisner Award-winning duo behind Mister Miracle, The Sheriff of Baghdad, and Strange Adventures reunite to dive deep into the mind of Batman’s most intellectual foe…the Riddler.

The Riddler has killed a man in broad daylight for seemingly no reason, but…there’s always a reason. The Riddler is always playing a game, there are always rules. Batman will reach his wit’s end trying to figure out the Riddler’s true motivation in this epic psychological thriller; this is not to be missed!

Publication Date
Kindle Edition
Print Length
68 pages
Amazon ASIN

Cover Artist

17 Critic Ratings & Reviews from:
  • 100

    But Why Tho?

    Batman – One Bad Day: The Riddler #1 is a frightening yet irresistible tale. It removes the restraint from a character that can often be considered comical or ridiculous, turning him into something terrifying. The usual format that Batman and Riddler stories usually unfold with is fractured and it means that it is very difficult to predict what is happening. It is an achingly pretty one-shot as Gerads brings his evocative style to the book. This is a creative partnership that only leads to gold.

  • 100

    Dark Knight News

    Batman: One Bad Day: The Riddler lives up exactly to what it needed to be. I loved it! This is the Killing Joke for the character. Read this book Batfans! You won’t be disappointed!

  • 100

    Comics From The Multiverse

  • 95


    An excellent start for the One Bad Day series, as Tom King and Mitch Gerads deliver a compelling psychological thriller about one of the greatest villains the Dark Knight has confronted.

  • 95

    The Super Powered Fancast

    The Story: King brings the reader into an intense, dark and intellectually thrilling new story with this one shot. The plot is beautifully layered and filled with great dialogue, character development and danger. King brings a level of tension to the story that is riveting and that tension culminates in a conclusion that is a brilliantly dark, slow burn leading to a final reveal that is awesome for the character.

    The Art: Mitch Gerads brilliantly captures the dark intensity of the story with the art. The style beautifully lends itself to the gritty, film noir detective vibe of the story and that final page is both intense and visually thrilling.

  • 92

    Monkeys Fighting Robots

    The artwork and writing connect on an emotional level that penetrates the soul. A must-read.

  • 90

    Geek Dad

    Tom King’s Gotham work isn’t always as strong as the rest of his library. His sensibility, when applied to the overly dark world of Gotham, can sometimes feel oppressive. A few scenes here feel like they push things too far, particularly Riddler’s attack on a guard and Batman’s interrogation tactics. But it all builds to a brutal face-off between the two rivals, light on violence but high on tension, as Riddler lays out a new status quo. Does it work in every way? I think it’s a lot smoother if you assume that this is just an alternative universe and doesn’t reflect the actual Riddler we know, because this take is terrifying. It ends in an oddly ambiguous way, but it delivers in showing us that any villain can be an incredible threat when pushed too far. Definitely a strong start for the line.

  • 90

    The Comicbook Dispatch

    BATMAN: ONE BAD DAY – THE RIDDLER #1 by King revamps the RIDDLER and puts a frightening spin on the character that fans will hope gets explored further by Tom and Mitch. Fans of the RIDDLER should definitely check this out, as well as King BATMAN haters. Sure, the narration and dialogue were disconnected at points BUT the overall theme and understanding were understandable, clever, and edgy. Continuity aside, as someone who’s been extremely hesitant of King’s BATMAN work, I can openly admit that this issue of BATMAN: ONE BAD DAY was a winner and deserves a good read.

  • 88

    Graphic Policy

    Batman: One Bad Day – Riddler is a hell of a start to this series of one-shots. It delivers a rather unnerving tale as the Riddler unravels and builds himself back up. It’s a new status-quo that hopefully becomes the Riddler we know going forward creating an even more frightening foe for Batman to tangle with. On it’s own, it’s one hell of a read that’ll stick with you.

  • 88

    Comic Watch

    This is a great study in how to write and draw a psychological thriller that includes beloved characters that have a long and established history. Whatever you think you knew about the Riddler and the Batman – you can leave it behind when you turn the cover.

  • 75

    Bleeding Cool

    The craft used in creating this book is breathtaking. If it were labeled as an Elseworlds, or better yet, told with analogies Watchmen style, this would be a bright star. As it is, it’s good, but clearly, a cute detour before we turn back to the same circular road.

  • 60

    Weird Science DC Comics

    Batman: One Bad Day – The Riddler #1 has only one goal: Push Batman to break his one rule. Unfortunately, it’s set it up in such an unbelievable way that you’re horrified by the misery of the story while dismissing it under basic examination. This story will leave you feeling dirty and depressed.

  • 60

    Lyles Movie Files

    One Bad Day: The Riddler is another failing, flailing attempt by King to find that spark he once had on Batman before the aborted wedding twist. If you’re a fan of Gerads’ art this is almost worth checking out for his stellar work. Otherwise, this start to the One Bad Day focus gets off to a mean-spirited, miserable start.

  • 59

    Multiversity Comics

    “One Bad Day” Tom King in his zone, doing what he does best, and with excellent artwork to boot. But if you’re not a fan of nine-panel grids focused on character trauma, then it’s okay to pass.

  • 50

    The Batman Universe

    Batman: One Bad Day: The Riddler #1 is a beautiful book, but it stumbles over its half-earned attempts at cleverness. This is not an origin story we will remember in years to come.

  • 50

    Batman: One Bad Day – The Riddler delivers the first of eight prestige one-shot publications intended to showcase Batman’s most iconic villains from a collection of DC Comics’ most-accomplished modern artists and writers. The title itself sets expectations as the phrase “One Bad Day” is tied closely to an infamous Batman tale with a similar set up: Batman: The Killing Joke in which Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons delivered their definitive take on the Joker. It’s a potent comic book that continues to engage Batman readers after nearly thirty-five years, and a fine point of inspiration for that exact reason. Yet the first installment of One Bad Day is so devoted to crafting an homage to The Killing Joke that it never bothers to define the most significant portion of its title: The Riddler.

  • 40


    This book is bad. The whole “One Bad Day” line seemed pointless in the first place, and I’m still honestly not even sure what the theme is. Is it Batman’s bad days? Is it a showcase of these villains origins? Do we need it? The Riddler issue certainly seems to point to no.

More From Batman - One Bad Day: The Riddler (2022)

About the Author: Tom King

Tom King has emerged as a beacon of narrative brilliance in the comic book world, weaving tales that resonate deeply with both long-time enthusiasts and newcomers alike. With a unique blend of emotional depth and complex storytelling, King’s work has redefined what it means to engage with the medium of comics. From his groundbreaking run on Batman to the introspective Mister Miracle, King’s portfolio is a testament to his ability to explore the human condition through the lens of the superhero genre.

Before becoming a household name in comics, Tom King embarked on a path far removed from the world of capes and villains. As a former CIA officer, King’s experiences have infused his storytelling with a palpable sense of realism and gravity, setting his work apart in a crowded field. His transition from espionage to comics might seem unexpected, but it’s this very background that enriches his narrative voice, allowing him to craft stories of heroism and sacrifice with authenticity.

King’s ascent in the comic book industry began with The Vision, a series that turned the Marvel android into a tragic figure struggling with the concept of family and humanity. This work, characterized by its melancholic exploration of identity, laid the foundation for King’s reputation as a storyteller capable of blending superhero action with deep, literary themes. His ability to humanize iconic characters, making their struggles and triumphs resonate on a personal level, has earned him critical acclaim and a dedicated fanbase.

However, it is perhaps his work on DC Comics’ Batman that has most profoundly impacted the comic book landscape. King’s Batman is a figure shaped by vulnerability and introspection, a departure from the invincible hero trope. Through arcs like “City of Bane” and the poignant Batman Annual #2, King explores themes of love, loss, and redemption, offering a fresh perspective on the Dark Knight’s mythos.

In addition to his superhero narratives, Tom King has ventured into the realm of creator-owned projects, such as Strange Adventures and Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow. These works further showcase his versatility, delving into science fiction and cosmic drama while maintaining his signature emotional depth and complex character studies.

Beyond the pages of his comics, King’s presence in the industry as a thought leader and advocate for the medium is undeniable. His candid discussions about the challenges of mental health, the creative process, and the importance of storytelling in contemporary culture have made him a respected figure among peers and fans.

Tom King‘s contributions to the comic book world have not gone unnoticed, earning him multiple Eisner Awards and solidifying his status as one of the most influential writers of his generation. As he continues to push the boundaries of comic book storytelling, King’s legacy is that of a visionary who reminds us that at the heart of every superhero story lies a deeply human tale waiting to be told.

For those who seek to explore the depths of narrative artistry within the comic book genre, Tom King‘s body of work offers a rich, introspective journey into the soul of modern heroism, proving that within the fantastical, the most profound truths of our existence can be found.

[Latest Update: April 24, 2024]