Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Batman, Volume 1: The Court of Owls” as Want to Read:
Batman, Volume 1: The Court of Owls
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Batman, Volume 1: The Court of Owls

(Batman (2011) #1)

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  45,861 ratings  ·  2,038 reviews
Following his ground-breaking, critically acclaimed run on Detective Comics, writer Scott Snyder (American Vampire) alongside artist Greg Capullo (Spawn) begins a new era of The Dark Knight as with the relaunch of Batman, as a part of DC Comics—The New 52!

After a series of brutal murders rocks Gotham City, Batman begins to realize that perhaps these crimes go far deeper th
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published May 9th 2012 by DC Comics (first published May 1st 2012)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Batman, Volume 1, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Marcus Yes! This is the first compilation of the Batman New 52 models. Technically, this volume starts with "Issue 1." It ASSUMES you know nothing.

If you're…more
Yes! This is the first compilation of the Batman New 52 models. Technically, this volume starts with "Issue 1." It ASSUMES you know nothing.

If you're trying to get into Batman comics, now is the time. Start with the Court of Owls! This is issues 01-07. The series is currently on issue 36.(less)
Jordan Leverett I would say probably treat it as PG-13 comparable.
Batman, Volume 1 by Scott SnyderWonder Woman, Volume 1 by Brian AzzarelloBatgirl, Vol. 1 by Gail SimoneThe City of Owls by Scott SnyderJustice League, Volume 1 by Geoff Johns
The New 52
321 books — 375 voters
Batman by Alan MooreBatman by Frank MillerBatman by Jeph LoebBatman by Frank MillerBatman by Jeph Loeb
Best of Batman
524 books — 886 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.32  · 
Rating details
 ·  45,861 ratings  ·  2,038 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Batman, Volume 1: The Court of Owls
(A) 85% | Extraordinary
Notes: A book of apocalypse: an awakening where silent darkness emerges from myth and rhyme into the light of existence.
A solid beginning of New52's era of Batman

This edition collects issues from #1 to #7 of "Batman"

Writer: Scott Snyder

Illustrator: Greg Capullo


Beware the Court of Owls, that watches all the time, ruling Gotham from a shadowed perch, behind granite and lime. They watch you at your heart, they watch you in your bed, speak not a whispered word of them, or they'll send The Talon for your head.

You thought that you knew Batman and his world. You thought that you couldn'
Jun 04, 2012 rated it liked it
It wasn't so awful that it deserved less than 3 stars, but to say I'm disappointed is an understatement.

Capullo is a talented artist, but I'm not a fan of the chubby Batman. Ok, maybe chubby isn't the right word. Bobble-headish. You know, when they have the impossibly large head and chin? Anyway, not my cuppa. I'm sure others will love it.

Was the story any good? Ehhhhhhh. It wasn't bad, but I had some problems with the way Batman was portrayed.
He doesn't believe the legend about the Court of Ow
David - proud Gleeman in Branwen's adventuring party
In this thrilling adventure, Scott Snyder breathes new life into the Batman franchise by introducing a terrifying new enemy...The Court of Owls!

While waging his war against crime, Batman has seen many horrible things...

But all this time, an unseen horror has lurked in the shadows of Gotham City. For over a hundred years, rumors have been whispered about a secret society that rules the streets of Gotham, an omnipresent group known as the Court of Owls. Most people assume the tales to be mere camp
holy shit this was SO GOOD and bloody. also those fucking plot twists gave me 20 heart attacks, I didn’t sign up for this pain 😤😤😤😤 but i love batman so i guess i’ll just die 🤷‍♀️
Dan Schwent
Jul 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cool-covers, 2012, comics
The Court of Owls, a long rumored secret society from Gotham's past, makes its presence known in the form of a knife wielding assassin called The Talon. Can Batman hope to defeat an enemy even more familiar with Gotham than him?

For my money, Scott Snyder can do no wrong. Batman: The Court of Owls is no exception. At first glance, the tale looks like a combination of Batman: The Black Glove and Batman: Gates of Gotham but it's a better story than either so far.

I really want to gush about this bu

Snyder and Capullo create a modern Batman in a world of dark horror, mystery, and emotion. Much in the way Morrison retconned Batman’s continuity, Snyder expands his mythology, including his trauma, family, training, and Gotham’s underworld. "Never let your emotions guide you on a case," Bruce says, but that's precisely what he does.

This is an ambitious first volume, attempting to recreate the character while doing so in innovative storytelling, like the labyrinth scenes. These scenes, like the
Jul 15, 2012 rated it liked it
As part of the DC’s reboot of the month, the New 52, Bruce Wayne is back as Batman. I won’t be reading any other New 52 stuff because DC is addicted to retconning, and I don’t want to be an enabler. However, this one seems to have kept a big chunk of recent Bat-happenings. I am kind of oddly bummed that Dick Grayson isn’t Batman anymore, but that’s probably partially due to how much I loved Scott Snyder’s Black Mirror story.

Anyhow, Batman goes up against a secret society called the Court of Owls
I have read a few Batman graphic novels and they have not impressed me. I was wonderfully surprised by this. It's been awhile since they've introduced a new villain in the Batman hall that was really good and decent. I think Harley Quinn was the last one back in the 90s cartoon.

The Court of the Owls is a great new villain, at least starting out. We see the Talon, their assassin give Batman a run for his money. The story starts out fairly normal and quickly someone threatens to kill Bruce Wayne.

The New 52 reboots Batman as the capable Caped Crusader but this time around he has some blind spots in thinking he knows everything there is to know about Gotham City.

Enter the urban legend of the Court of Owls. Batman doesn't believe they exist (because he couldn't find any indication of them when he was an investigator boy so talk about a blind spot) and ignores the talk until the urban legend begins to reveal itself as it targets Batman.

“Beware the Court of Owls, that watches all
Mar 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"I have an apparently unstoppable killer running around Gotham with my name on his list." -- Batman

After reading average (Batman vs. Predator) or just plain blah (Batman: Damned) titles earlier this year it was refreshing to jump back into solid Dark Knight storytelling involving big action and suspense clothed in darkness. Yes - the 'World's Greatest Detective' gets to put his vaunted investigatory skills to work alongside the expected fisticuffs. In a nice change-of-pace, the adversaries invol
Jan 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It's not often that a creative team adds something to the Batman mythos that sticks. The Court of Owls shaped the Bat-family for several years. The idea of Batman discovering a secret society that has been pulling Gotham's strings for hundreds of years is very cool. I loved the thing with the 13th stories. The best part of the book is still Batman wondering through the labyrinth. The art getting trippier with each page as Batman hallucinates while having to turn the book as if the reader is walk ...more
Dirk Grobbelaar
I haven’t read all the New 52 titles (who has the time these days to read everything they’d really like to?), but so far I’ve been fairly impressed. There have been numerous reboots and retcons in the DC Universe, but the New 52 actually does feel like a fresh start and not just another attempt to cash in on the resurging popularity of comic culture.

There are quite a few New 52 Batman titles, and Batman #1 kicks off the Court of Owls arc. It’s a sinister and atmospheric tale about secrets, cons
Aug 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comix
The New 52 Batman under the authorship of Scott Snyder comes into being fully formed. It opens with a punch out at Arkham Asylum featuring Batman against almost his entire rogue’s gallery. The Joker backs him up!?! Fashion note: Nice touch Riddler sporting a question mark shaped hairdo, but you’re still dull as dishwater.

In this volume, the male sidekicks are all here: Nightwing, Red Robin and Damian, with NIghtwing playing the role of resident Batcave wit. Batman also is able to access his comp
May 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of graphic novels and/or Batman
I was blown away by this graphic novel, which collects the first seven issues of "The New 52" reinterpretation of Batman. The hardcover book and dust jacket are beautiful, the artwork is gorgeous, and the storyline, which introduces The Court of Owls -- a new, worthy nemesis for Batman -- is enthralling. It is easily on par with the beginnings of Batman: The Long Halloween and Batman: Hush, which are my two favorite Batman arcs. I cannot wait for Volume 2 to see where this is going. ...more
Sam Quixote
May 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
The book starts with the inmates of Arkham Asylum being set loose and I groaned, thinking Scott Snyder had fallen into using the template Batman story of the Dark Knight playing roundup with the villains but thankfully Snyder disposes of this tired trope quickly, almost as if he were winking “just kidding” before starting on something better. Bruce Wayne is threatened by an assassin called the Talon, a seemingly indestructible villain, used as hired muscle by a shadowy organisation called the Co ...more
With his first volume in the New 52 Batman rebranding, Scott Snyder brings the Caped Crusader back to the basics! I'm normally not a fan of the Batman stories that feature him going up against monsters, aliens, or other super fantasy bad guys. I gravitate towards the stories that are more grounded. So I really enjoyed Snyder's take here. In this story, Batman goes up against a secret society that has ruled Gotham from the shadows all the way throughout history. It's an organization that exists i ...more
Dave Schaafsma
Nov 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: batman
I wrote this is October 2013 when I first read it:

Snyder seems to be particularly good with Batman stories. This is better than most. The art work, story, dialogue, all work.

I re-read it so I can move through the series and liked it even more. Snyder adds gravitas and style to the Batman story and Capullo's art is great. They know this stuff and create a nee (New 52) challenge for the Batman, that a Court of Owls has always been underneath all the Bad stuff in Gotham. The is basically a set up v
May 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, superhumans
What did New 52 mean for Batman? Apparently... nothing. It seems like the Bat family books have picked up exactly where they left off. Where this will put them in the grand scheme of things come crossover time, I don't know. But let's forget that for the time being.

The Court of Owls is Gotham's mythical bogeyman association. As far as I know, it's a completely new innovation by Snyder, and it could open up a whole new line of storytelling for Batman. Bring on the paranoid conspiracies! Except t
Kosta Voukelatos
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is my first modern Batman graphic novel that i have read and i can say that it definitely gave me high expectations for the rest of this run. Firstly, the artwork by Greg Capullo was impressive and contributed greatly to the overall tone that the novel was going for. The writing by Scott Snyder was really well done and made for a mysterious and page turning story. I highly recommend any graphic novel/Batman fan pick this one up!
Hannah ◇ReaderintheRough◇
Aug 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crimes, enamoured
I love the pictures, I love the story. My kid even picked this up and said "Wow!" (see picture)

Is it obnoxious that Batman is disbelieving of The Court of Owls? Yes. But unfortunately adults can be blindsided by legitimate truths. I've known adults who thought Mexico was a state. I currently know adults who think Trump will be a great president *stabs self in the eyes*

So yes, Batman can be skeptical of a myth.

Another of my daughter, because yes:

Nov 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: completed-series
Somehow, this book floated around my Goodreads account, review-less, for about 5 years. Thinking I had skipped it, I started it again, then filed it on my Fallen-Off-[the]-Shelves shelf.

So I just decided to clear up my confusion with a reread.

This is a pretty complex story. It has gritty, everyday-unsolvable-killer-on-the-loose Batman, until it twists and it has gritty, conspiracy-on-the-loose Batman. Another twist, and we play find-the-supervillain. Then gritty, crazed, against-all-odds Batman
May 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Beware the Court of Owls, that watches all the time, ruling Gotham from a shadowed perch, behind granite and lime. They watch you at your heart, they watch you in your bed, speak not a whispered word of them, or they'll send The Talon for your head.


Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Yep! I wanted more! Stupid, fucking cliffie.

Anyways... First of all, I would like to thank all the people who recommended this to me!

It was... a thrilling read. I'm happy to say that I genuinely enjoyed this
And old Gotham nursery rhyme tells the story of the Court of Owls, an secret society that has been controlling the city since it’s very beginnings. Bruce Wayne thinks them an urban legend, until he is attacked by the Talon, the Court’s assassin…

That’s the story in a nutshell, and while I’m not crazy about the Bat, I do love a secret society story! And this one is remarkably weird and creepy! This was Scott Snyder’s first Batman graphic novel, and I confess myself impressed. The story is surprisi

4.5 stars

“Beware the Court of Owls,

That watches all the time.

Ruling Gotham from a shadowed perch,

Behind granite and lime.

They watch you at your hearth,

They watch you in your bed,

Speak not a whispered word of them,

Or they’ll send the Talon for your head!”


So, when I heard that DC Comics was doing a reboot on all of their comics, I will admit that I was pretty hesitant about trying out any of the rebooted comics, especially after I heard so many bad things about DC’s New 5
Feb 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing

***Buddy Read with the Shallow Readers! I was late, but this one was all about the Batman!***

This was my first strictly Batman. I've read so many so far that have appearances from him, Inustice, Batgirl, Wonder Woman. But Reading about him in such a large role is very different. And I really dig the Bats.

My favorite part of this volume was the labyrinth. You see a side of Bruce that's vulnerable, crazy, intelligent, and flawed all at once. Also, the way that a few pages are laid out gives you a
Dec 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
This one is really interesting. I’m eager to read volume 2 and make up my mind about this storyline. I’m going to be thinking about it for a while.
Jan 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
I hadn't actually read any other Batman comic before. However, I can tell how different Snyder's approach is. This is a dark story that follows Batman deep into his battle against The Court of Owls, which is more or less a battle against less profound enemies. I liked how the side stories serve the main one in a way that's not so clear at the beginning but soon becomes essential. The ending leaves the story open as it continues in the second volume. ...more
Brittany Lee | Healing Happy
Setting: Gotham City
Villain: The Court Of Owls

A few things I love: Gotham city and all its chaotic villain-ery, Scott Snyder, The Court Of Owls

Bruce Wayne is HOT in this one! Did I really just say that? YES!🤣 When he doesn't have the mask on, his sexy 5-o'clock shadow is conveniently showing. (screaming symbolism)
I see you 🦇🖤 I LOVED this aspect.

-Was a little violent and bloody upfront, but became more balanced as the story developed.

-Had classic Alfred and Batman banter, which I always apprecia
Apr 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really loved this. Batman is quickly becoming a favourite of mine. The seedy secret Owl group may have infiltrated Gotham. Batman has to invetsigate some murders and a bigger conspiracy which involves the Wayne family. Great writing and lovely artwork.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
gotham 1 12 Aug 03, 2017 12:52AM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: #116: Batman: The Court of Owls by Scott Snyder 1 4 Dec 19, 2013 07:57PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Batman: Hush
  • Batman: The Long Halloween
  • Batman: The Dark Knight Returns
  • Batman: The Killing Joke
  • Batman: Year One
  • Batman: Arkham Asylum - A Serious House on Serious Earth
  • Flashpoint
  • Batman: The Dark Knight Returns #1
  • Batman: A Death in the Family
  • Superman: Red Son
  • Justice League, Volume 1: Origin
  • Kingdom Come
  • Batman: Earth One, Volume 1
  • Batman: Dark Victory
  • Joker
  • All-Star Superman, Vol. 1
  • Batman: The Man Who Laughs
  • Batman, Volume 1: I Am Gotham
See similar books…
Scott Snyder is the Eisner and Harvey Award winning writer on DC Comics Batman, Swamp Thing, and his original series for Vertigo, American Vampire. He is also the author of the short story collection, Voodoo Heart, published by the Dial Press in 2006. The paperback version was published in the summer of 2007.

Other books in the series

Batman (2011) (10 books)
  • The City of Owls
  • Batman, Volume 3: Death of the Family
  • Batman, Volume 4: Zero Year: Secret City
  • Batman, Volume 5: Zero Year: Dark City
  • Batman, Volume 6: Graveyard Shift
  • Batman, Volume 7: Endgame
  • Batman, Volume 8: Superheavy
  • Batman, Volume 9: Bloom
  • Batman, Volume 10: Epilogue

Articles featuring this book

Billy Jensen is an investigative journalist who focuses squarely on unsolved murders and missing persons. He helped finish Michelle...
41 likes · 55 comments
“Beware The Court of Owls, that watches all the time, ruling Gotham from a shadowed perch, behind granite and lime. They watch you at your hearth, they watch you in your bed, speak not a whispered word of them, or they'll send the Talon for your head.” 17 likes
More quotes…