Michael Keaton's Batman is back in Batman '89 preview

Batman '89
(Image credit: DC)

Update: A first look preview at interior images and variant covers for DC's new Batman '89 has been released by DC. 

The August 10 debuting six-issue series is written by Batman and Batman Returns screenwriter Sam Hamm and illustrated by artist Joe Quinones. 

As the title implies, it's set in the universe of the seminal superhero films directed by Tim Burton and starring Michael Keaton. 

Not only that, the new comic book series "will pull on a number of threads left dangling by the prolific director..."

"Gotham City is being torn in two as citizens dressed as Batman and The Joker duke it out in the streets!" reads DC's descriptions. "As D.A. Harvey Dent tries to keep the city together, he targets the one problem tearing it apart: Batman! And he'll get Bruce Wayne's help in taking down the Dark Knight!"

Check out the interior pages and the new covers in our gallery and then check out more information about the series and its companion series Superman '78 below. 

Original story follows...

Return to the worlds of some of your favorite superhero movies this July as the stories of the 1978 Superman film and the 1989 Batman film will be revisited - and continued - in two new DC comic book series.

(Image credit: Wilfredo Torres (DC))

Launching as part of DC's growing 'Digital First' line of titles, Superman '78 and Batman '89 follows up on a formal DC started several years ago with comic books based on the '60s Batman show (Batman '66) and the '70s Wonder Woman show (Wonder Woman '77). Several months back Newsarama speculated that a Batman '89 comic book series would be viable, and it appears DC agrees with us.

The Superman '78 comic book title by writer Rob Venditti and artist Wilfedo Torres is apparently set between the first film and 1980 sequel, Superman II

"In Superman ’78, bystanders are surprised and delighted by Superman’s abilities, and Lois Lane doesn’t (yet!) know that Clark Kent is secretly Superman," reads DC's description of the series. "The sheer thrill of seeing a man fly, leap, or stop a bullet will be reflected in this environment where Superman has just been introduced! Inspired by Donner’s classic, timeless style of superhero storytelling, in Superman ’78 Venditti and Torres will show fans that a man can truly fly."

(Image credit: Joe Quinones (DC))

For Batman '89, the co-writer of the 1989 Batman (and its sequel, Batman Returns) Sam Hamm returns to continue the story he and Tim Burton started 30+ years ago. Working with artist Joe Quinones, Hamm's new Batman '89 series will act as an in-continuity third film (diverging from the Joel Schumacher films) with more of a Michael Keaton Batman, more of a Michele Pfiefer Catwoman, the growth of Billy Dee Williams' Harvey Dent into Two-Face, and the debut of a new Robin.

Keep in mind this all comes as Keaton is set to reprise his role as Batman in the upcoming Flash film.

Superman '78 and Batman '89 will debut digital-first on July 27, with six digital chapters each (three comic books' worth of stories each). New chapters will then be released for the next six weeks, for a total of 12 chapters each. DC plans to publish printed issues (two chapters per issue) beginning in August, with hardcover collections already mapped out in October for Batman '89 and November for Superman '78.

Where does Michael Keaton rank on your list of the best Batman actors ever? Compare your list with ours over in our best Batman actors of all time.

Chris Arrant

Chris Arrant covered comic book news for Newsarama from 2003 to 2022 (and as editor/senior editor from 2015 to 2022) and has also written for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table. (He/him)