Books and Documentaries About the History and Analysis of DC Comics

Looking for something to read? The next best thing to reading comics, is reading books about the history of DC comics and superheroes and comics in general. This thread is for the community to help build a resource listing for quality books about the history of comics and a place to talk about them. The first two posts are wikis which allow you to edit and add information. Also, if you edit a wiki you earn a badge. Below that, add your recommendations, images, comments and any discussions.

About Wikis

Using a wiki on DCU is simple. Just click on the orange pencil in the upper left corner of the post. A screen will appear with the text of the post. Click on ‘edit wiki’ add your changes and save.


DC Comics

  • 75 Years of DC Comics: The Art of Modern Myth Making, Paul Levitz. Oversized book with info and pics covering DC history

  • Comic Book Implosion: An Oral History of DC Comics Circa 1978, Keith Dallas and John Wells. Pulled from interviews of DC creators and exec about the cancellation of much of DC’s input in the '70s.

  • DC Comics Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle. An oversize book with images on info organized by year.

  • Secret Origins History of DC Comics in our video library
    DC Universe

  • Slugfest: Inside the Epic, 50-Year Battle Between Marvel and DC Reed Tucker

  • The DC Vault, Martin Pasko



  • Psychology of Superheroes, Jennifer Carzonem.
    ** Superheroes Best of Philosophy and Pop Culture


  • Batman and Bill. Documentary on creation of Batman. (Hulu)
  • Becoming Batman, E Paul Zehr
  • Batman Unauthorized, edited by Dennis O’Neil
  • Batman and Psychology: Dark and Stormy Knight, Travis Langley
  • Batman A Visual History, Matthew K. Manning
  • Tales of the Dark Knight Batman’s First Fifty Years: 1939-1989, Mark Cotta Vaz


  • Dick Grayson Boy Wonder: Scholars and Creators on 75 Years of Robin, Nightwing and Batman, edited by Kristen L. Geaman


  • Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero Larry Tye
  • Superman and Philosphy: What Would the Man of Steel Do? Mark D. White

Wonder Woman

  • The Secret History of Wonder Woman, Jill Lepore. Bestseller covers the creation of Wonder Woman
  • Wonder Woman, Pyschology: Lassoing the Truth, Travis Langley and Mara Wood. A collection of academic essays about Wonder Woman and her psychology.
  • Wonder Woman and Philosophy: Amazonian Mystique, Jacob Held.


  • Becoming Superman: My Journey from Poverty to Hollywood, J. Michael Stracynski. A fantastic account of JMS’ troubled upbringing and wildly up and down, and important career.
  • Man of Two Worlds: My Life in Science Fiction and Comics, Julius Schwartz. An autobiography by one of DC’s most important editors.
  • Fifty Who Made DC Great. Profiles of 50 creators and companies

Comics General

  • Comic Books and the Cold War, edited by Chris York and Rafiel York. Essays on Graphic Treatment of Communism, the Code and Social Concerns, 1946 to 1962.

  • Comic Book History of Comics: Birth of a Medium
    Fred Van Lente

  • History of Comics Vol 1 & 2, Jim Steranko.

  • Necessary Evil. Documentary on the concepts of villains, their general history and their function in comics.

  • The Great Comic Book Heroes, Jules Feiffer


The first book I want to plug is Jill Lepore’s The Secret History of Wonder Woman. This is a compelling read about the not just Wonder Woman but her creator William Moulton Marston. That is one complex contradictory dude.


Something I posted a year ago


Wow! I love it. I bookmarked this and Turok’s for future reference and study. Have a few of these, would love to get more.


The Boy who Loved Batman A Memoir
Michael.E Ulsan

Forgotten All-Star A Biography of Gardner Fox
Jennifer DeRoss

Voyage in Noise: Warren Ellis and the Demise of Western Civilization
Kevin Thurman

Becoming Superman
J. Michael Straczynski


In our video. ibrary

Secret Origins History of DC Comics

And reluctantly because he is convicted of particular bad criminal offenses to children and whose comics are not allowed here

Men of Tomorrow
Geeks Gangsters and the Birth.of Comic Books
by Gerald Jones
Contains info not found elsewhere
Jerry Siegel, Jack Liebowitz, Joe Shuster, Harry Donenfeld, Charlie Ginsberg (M C Gaines), Bob Kahn (Kane), Stanley Lieber (Lee), Jake Kurtzberg (Jack Kirby), Mort Weisinger:

He is interviewed early in the Secret Origin video which summarizes part of his book.

Official DC History like Secret Origins cover Siegel Shuster creators of Superman and Bill Finget Co Creator of Batman were treated by DC

This Book tells the true story.


Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human


Batman and Bill on Hulu


While not in our video library here in DCU.

Necessary Evil: a documentary film on the concepts of villains, their general history, and their function in comics.

Worth seeing if you haven’t and it’s narrated by Christopher Lee. (Someone who knows plenty about villainy.)


@TurokSonOfStone1950 sorry I didn’t see your previous work on this. As always you did a fantastic job. I’ll add your entries to the wiki above


Wanted to drop in to say thanks for making this post and to everyone who responded. Been looking for books along this line to read so this will be a great resource.


Just plugging my own work on.the subject

if you want to learn significant events in super hero genre history

if you want to learn how Superman Batman.and Wonder Woman were created


Thanks to the adds from @TurokSonOfStone1950 and @DeSade-acolyte I’ve changed the title some and have included documentaries. I’ll try to keep the wikis somewhat organized for ease of finding/reading.


@msgtv & @TurokSonOfStone1950 This is a great thread thank you!


I enjoyed Jim Steranko’s History of Comics Vol. 1 & 2. Two tabloid sized paperbacks.



That was a great set of books

I wish I still had them

I remember two parts of it.

On the Spectre killing people in sadistic ways: “No social work.for him.”

Also a quote from.a siimilar character to Superman in the book.Gladiator describing the Invulnerable hero as he ran toward the enemy in World War I, like Wonder Woman would do in.her movie.

“They had seen it before. A type of madness had descended on him. They continued to fire at him.”


Luckily, I still have them. :grinning:


I still have

The Great Comic Book Heroes
By Jules Feiffer.