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Batman: White Knight

(The Murphyverse #1)

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  8,480 ratings  ·  1,097 reviews
He’s been called a maniac, a killer and the “Clown Prince of Crime” but “white knight”? Never. Until now…

Set in a world where the Joker is cured of his insanity and homicidal tendencies, The Joker, now known as “Jack,” sets about trying to right his wrongs. First, he plans to reconcile with Harley Quinn, and then he’ll try to save the city from the one person who he thinks
ebook, 232 pages
Published October 9th 2018 by DC Black Label
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Average rating 4.33  · 
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 ·  8,480 ratings  ·  1,097 reviews

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(A-) 83% | Very Good
Notes: A deconstruction and amalgam, it’s a clever, catchy ditty, with a punky, fresh aesthetic: sooty, grim and gritty-pretty.
If this is any indication of what DC's Black Label will be putting out, I'm all in.


Black Label is apparently a mature audience version of the Elseworlds stories, which means this doesn't take place in the regular DC universe. <--so, no harm, no foul.
I like this kind of stuff because writers can screw with the characters and whatnot...without futzing up everyone's day.


The gist is that the Joker takes some anti-crazy pills to prove a point, gets sane, and then sets about proving that he could fix
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an awesome story. This is the best comic mini series I have read in a long time. The blurb at the back said that this was

"Unlike anything we've seen before".

For once this is not just hype. This is truly unlike any Batman story I have ever read. Every Batman fan has heard of the Joker and everyone has an option on him. Now I met Jack Napier, and he could be even more dangerous then the Joker.

Removing the Joker' s insanity was one thing the made this comic great, the second ingredient wa
Sam Quixote
May 24, 2018 rated it did not like it
The Joker takes some magic pills and is no longer “crazy”. In his newly sober state, he decides to help Gotham by ridding it of its greatest scourge: Batman!

Oh boy, White Knight is all kinds of hot garbage! I knew Sean Murphy wasn’t a good writer after reading his laughable book Punk Rock Jesus but I thought he might’ve improved after five years – nuh uh! If anything he’s gotten worse.

The only way Murphy can make his feeble story work is by writing everyone out of character. So Batman is sudde
Oh, boy, you are in for a show here!

I bought this in its single comic book issues, and even I did reviews of each one of those, however I thought that it was wise to arrange a review of the whole story, using fragment of the previous individual reviews. This TPB collects “Batman: White Knight” #1-8.

Creative Team:

Writer & Illustrator: Sean Murphy

Colorist: Matt Hollingsworth

Letterer: Todd Klein


Joker might have been responsible for terrorizing Gotham, but you wer
Sean Gibson
Oct 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As a general rule, I’m not a big fan of What If?/alternate universe-type stories. On some level, it feels like cheating to take characters created by others, throw off the shackles of continuity under which most of their creators have to operate, and do whatever you want with them with no repercussions. It’s like if you were an Olympic diver who only needed to pull off a half-assed belly flop (or maybe a no-assed belly flop, because if your belly and ass can hit the water at the same time, methi ...more
Mar 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, netgalley-2019
So I guess DC's Black Label is intended to be a mature version of Elseworlds. I'll start with saying Sean Murphy's art is amazing. It's got some Jock and Bill Sienkiewicz influences but with more definition and flare. Murphy's character and Batmobile designs are top notch. I love the look of his version of Batman's rogues gallery.

To enjoy the story though, requires a heavy suspension of disbelief. Characters are written severely out of the norm. Batman is a huge asshole who cares nothing about
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Though I devour a fair amount of comics / graphic novels I was in the dark (haha) about DC's recent 'Black Label' imprint. Thanks to trustworthy Wikipedia (though we all know Abraham Lincoln once said "Don't believe everything you read on the Internet.") I found that the idea is to use the known characters - such as Batman and Superman - in standalone stories intended for mature audiences.

If Batman: White Knight is any indication, I think it's a strong beginning. Taking much inspiration from -
White Knight plays on the nature of villainy—villains as saviors and saviors as villains—and what it means to maintain one’s humanity in spite of such madness. Probably one of the most fascinating and original Joker stories I’ve ever read, especially because it so richly redeems this typically grimdark character. It’s incredibly illustrated, and detailed at a fanboy-level fanaticism.
Michael Finocchiaro
Great art, original story - the idea of switching Batman and the Joker is fun and engaging!
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Amazing read! This is honestly one of the best Batman stories I've read in a long time and I mean that fully! So the story is set in a alternate universe, where Batman has gone off the rails and has become more violent and careless about his actions, that effect the people of Gotham. Then The Joker takes some magic pills that turns him back into Jack Napier and he becomes a politician, with an anti-batman campaign and slowly turns everyone against The Dark Knight!

This is one of the very few Bat
May 10, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I've wanted to check this out for a while, but I'll be honest... I couldn't finish it, the story makes absolutely no sense, its like an exercise in disbelief, are we suppose to believe that Joker gets pardoned from prison after a life of terrorism just because Batman got a little too rough on him? This just didn't work for me, it is too long, political, preachy and tedious to finish, not the kind of Batman story I like to read. ...more
L. McCoy
Gosh... people like this? For real?

What’s it about?
Batman and Joker are fighting (big surprise) and Joker’s big plan is go un-crazy. He takes some pills to be sane and then becomes Jack Napier, candidate for city councilman (they’re acting like that’s better but TBH, at least a homicidal maniac is honest about being a criminal, a politician ain’t honest about anything). Batman of course doesn’t trust him.

Why it gets 1 star:
When I heard about the hype for this book I was skeptical because it soun
James DeSantis
Nov 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was on the fence about this title when first released but glad I gave it a go.

So the joker is reformed. He is no longer the crazy killer clown we all know. Batman doesn't buy this bullshit for one second and brutally beats down the joker. However as the story progresses we actually see the joker isn't lying. With surprise twist from characters like harley Quinn, a new take on nightwing, and barbs and more we have a elseworld that feels different.

Good: the art is of course great. Murphy alway
Apr 22, 2020 rated it did not like it
You hand a big character such as Batman to someone who barely wrote anything before that, and you expect it to be good? No!
The Joker becoming sane? Well, as a concept it sounds good, but the execution of it was poorly done, in my opinion. The writer literally didn't do anything with it, and just the story by itself was bad.
Everything in it sucked big time.

Aug 11, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-french
At this point, all I'm doing is reading Batman comics, and can you blame me? They're fucking awesome. After deliberating long and hard about which Batman comic to pick up next, I settled for a fairly new one: Sean Murphy's take on the Caped Crusader. In Batman: White Knight, Sean Murphy plays with the idea of an unhinged Bruce Wayne whose actions get more and more out of control versus a seemingly cured Joker. I really like these alternative universes / "what if" scenarios, as they allow writers ...more
Paul E. Morph
Nov 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you can get past the slightly ridiculous nature of the premise, which does require your suspension of disbelief to pull a double shift, this is an interesting book and pretty damned entertaining. The artwork is really good, too, although Sean Murphy’s work looks so much like Matteo Scalera’s stuff I thought Scalera was the artist for a while. I wonder who’s emulating who? Those razor sharp noses can’t possibly be a coincidence...
Aug 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, dc, superhero
Personally, I find Joker stories to be an overdone Bat-subgenre. Like how many times can are we supposed to freak out over the dichotomy of Batman as order against his chaotically disturbing violent stakes-upping archnemesis?

But with White Knight, artist extraordinaire Sean Murphy has actually crafted a Bat vs Joker tale with originality. In fact, Joker is the main protagonist of this miniseries. Or rather, his other personality Jack Napier.

And seriously: The art! Jagged figures and sharp arch
Jul 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Not terrible. There's the germ of a good idea here, but Murphy just isn't able to bring it to fruition. Basically, the Joker takes some pills that turn him into Jack Napier, a normal guy who is soon pointing out the corruption within the GCPD and the higher ranks of Gotham City, most of it revolving around Batman (there's a "Batman Devastation Fund" that is hidden in the city's books, and used to pay for the damage caused by fighting supervillains, etc.). Through a pretty contrived sequence of e ...more
I received this from Edelweiss and DC Comics in exchange for an honest review.

I think I'm in the minority here, but this was a lot of fun, and read almost like an old Elseworlds book: how would Batman respond, as well as the rest of Gotham City, if the Joker was cured of his insanity.

I read this expecting this to be another insane plan by the Joker and the other super-criminals, looking for the hidden secrets showing that I was right. I was surprised at how it played out.

Good artwork and good w
Alexander Peterhans
Sep 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bought-digital
Just really, really good. And even more timely today, than it was in 2017.

(Also the first time I've liked the character of Harley Quinn.)
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This completely flips the switch on the characters in Gotham. The art is amazing!! He has to be up there with Ribic as my fave artists. The story is unique. I know it takes traits ane ideas that made us fall in love with the original characters but I felt like it made its own. It wasn't trying to be the same, it was giving it a new flavour. ...more
Scarlet Cameo
Feb 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rc-19
It was good but, it feel like that start so up and slowly go down.

I'm not completelly sure about how I feel with the end (view spoiler).

Not a must read but a fun One.
Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)
You can find my review on my blog by clicking here.

Where the hell do I begin? To mark the debut of their DC Black Label imprint, fans are served with a stand-alone Elseworlds story that joins the high ranks of comic book masterpieces that have graced this universe so far. With the imprint currently in the process of reprinting some of their most iconic stories, it could not have been a better choice but to begin the process with the release of Batman: White Knight and its bold re-imagining of Go
Wing Kee
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5! Pretty fantastic internal logic and world building.

World: The art is Sean Murphy, that's all you need to say. It's gritty, it's expressive and the art direction is fantastic. I've loved his art for so long and now I get to read something he's written and it's pretty great. The world building here is also absolutely fantastic. It's a mash up of all the best parts of Batman: Animated, TV, Movie, and comics. All the pieces we love are here and mashed together with a backbone of the Animated Se
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dc, hoopla
The Joker goes (dangerously) sane and poses the very real question, "Is Batman Gotham's greatest villain?"

As an Elseworlds tale this was one of the better ones I've read, and as a casual Bat-fan and DC Lore enthusiast I really dug all of the shout outs, nods and Easter Eggs SGM worked in to the text and the art. He particularly seems to have been influenced by Batman The Animated Series, which works for me as I- nostalgically speaking- still see it as a high water mark in the whole Batty Mythos.

Very thought provoking. The Joker… sane. Still channeling his energy into a sane defeat of the Batman, but caring. The author did a great job, I thought, setting up all the pieces to make this believeable, and human, and still fit (mostly) within the canon of the DC Universe.

If you are a purist, you are going to notice some non-canon moves -- bring a healthy dose of Suspension of Disbelief. And bring a hanky.

Seasonal Reading Challenge 2018 Fall Task 10.8- Happy Anniversary SRC! (published in
Sep 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Boring, mediocre and forgettable story, amazing art.
David Dalton
I liked this collection. Very well written and drawn. A super good storyline. Picked up the 1st two issues free (sort of) via Comixology Unlimited. But I got hooked and ended up buying the whole collection. One of the best Batman vs Joker thrillers out there.
The description of this story led me to believe that this was going to be about Batman being the bad guy and Joker being the good guy. I was really excited about that but, unfortunately, it's not really about that at all. Basically, the Joker becomes a lot less of an asshole, and Batman becomes a lot more of an asshole. Batman is still trying to save the day (and being a major jerk about it), and Joker is still unleashing terror on the city (but he's just so swell now).

There are also two Harley
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Goodreads Librari...: Please combine editions 2 11 Jun 05, 2019 05:25AM  

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After breaking into the industry at a young age, Sean Murphy made a name for himself in the world of indie comics before joining up with DC. In his tenure, he has worked on such titles as Batman/Scarecrow: Year One, Teen Titans, Hellblazer, Joe The Barbarian, and the critically acclaimed miniseries American Vampire: Survival Of The Fittest and The Wake with Scott Snyder. Murphy also wrote and illu ...more

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The Murphyverse (2 books)
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