The DC Book Club Returns! Join the Holiday-Themed December Book Club: Batman Noël!


Just in time for the new year: The DC Book Club has returned!

Join us next week for the return of the DC Book Club with a holiday-themed DC classic: Batman Noël! This month’s DC Book Club will kick off on 2021-12-13T05:00:00Z, and will run through 2021-12-31T05:00:00Z!

Batman Noël is FREE to read as a registered member all month, so give it a read HERE and join the discussions in this thread all throughout December!

Grab a cup of hot chocolate, throw a few more logs on the fire, and settle in for a snowy adventure through Gotham! With appearances of some of our favorite DC heroes and villains, this wintery read from Lee Bermejo is perfect for the holiday season. Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like The Bats taking on the city’s criminals while a layer of fresh powdery snow covers the streets of Gotham. Strap in! Its going to be a long, cold night…:batman_hv_5:


For this month’s DC Book Club, we’ll be splitting the book into thirds (as listed in DCUI):

  • First Third (Dec. 13-19): Pages 1-27
  • Second Third (Dec. 20-26): Pages 28-54
  • Final Third (Dec. 27-31): Pages 55-83

Here are some thought starter/discussion questions to kick things off!

First 3rd Discussion Questions
  1. What do you think the holiday season feels like in Gotham City? Hopeful? Fearful?

  2. In the opening pages of Batman Noël, the narrator asks the reader to believe in something…how did you take this ask? Was it something you were onboard with, or did you need a little convincing?

  3. How do you feel about the character of Bob? Do you think he’s a hardened criminal, or is he just trying to get by in life?

  4. Fear is an unusual concept to pair with the holiday season. What role do you think fear plays in this book? Do you enjoy the way Bermejo plays with the theme of fear in a holiday-themed comic book? If so, why? If not, why not?

  5. The correlation between Batman Noël and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is clear from early on in the book. Did you enjoy the intertwining of these storylines?

Second 3rd Discussion Questions

1: Batman states “They all have children” when Alfred questions him about the risks he’s taking. Do you think that Batman has lost his way in this statement or is it sometimes necessary to risk the innocent in the fight against crime?

2: When Robin appears to Bruce in the Batcave, do you think this was a vision or a hallucination caused by his sickness?

3: On page 40, the narrator states that a beautiful girl appears at Batman’s bedside, but the following scene with Catwoman takes place on a rooftop. Do you think this is an error made by the narrator, or an indication that a majority of the night’s events never actually happened?

4: On Page 48, we’re taken back to the tragic death of Bruce’s parents. Do you think their killer is in a similar position to Bob? Just a desperate man doing whatever he can to survive who makes a mistake?

5: Superman’s appearance in Gotham comes as somewhat of a surprise. Do you think he’s a good choice for the Ghost of Christmas Present?

Final Discussion Questions

1: The narrator describes Scrooge as wondering how the citizens of Gotham always “kept the faith” and how they always “seemed to fill a glass that was constantly half empty”. How do you think they kept the faith? In a city full of wild criminals and a seemingly weak police force, how do you think Gotham’s people pushed on?

2: What did you think of Bermejo’s portrayal of Joker as the third spirit? Do you think Joker is a fitting personification of the Ghost of “Gotham Yet-to-Come” (Jitsu trademark, patent pending :wink: )?

3: How did you feel about the representation of Gotham’s future, with violent gangs inspired by Batman and the Joker constantly clashing in the streets? Do you think Batman runs the risk of doing more harm than good?

4: Batman seems to struggle with his legacy in the final pages of Batman Noël. How do you think this struggle motivates him to do good in Gotham? Do you believe Batman needs to change his ways in order to preserve his legacy?

5: The book ends with Bob and his son enjoying a quiet Christmas dinner together. After all that happened in Batman Noël…what do you think? What’s the moral of the story?

Thank you for joining this DC Book Club, and have a wonderful rest of your year! See you in 2022! <3


What would a DC Book Club be without some awesome digital perks? Check out these wonderful Batman Noël wallpapers and bookmarks!

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Yay! DC Book Club is back! :open_book: :tada:

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Woooooooo!

And it’ll get even bigger and better next year…get EXCITED :wink:

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image

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Woohoo! Can’t wait to get my hands on this and join the discussion in a few days.
:batparrot: :christmas_tree:
wj9ic2Q

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Can’t wait to participate.

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Love the Christmas theme, can’t wait to read it!:grinning::christmas_tree::santa:

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Oh yes, this is actually a favorite of mine, and one I tend to read every December, so this works out very well. :smiley:

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Batman: Noel is easily my favorite of Lee Bermejo’s works, with or without Azzarello. I recommend it all the time. I love how it recontextualizes Batman as Scrooge, and the way it utilizes the other players in Batman’s life to show him that somewhere along the line, he may have lost his light.

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Bookmarked. Amazing to see the club rise from the ashes, this thread would have been just as inspiring no matter what we were going to read, yaaaaaahoo!

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Welcome back, DCBC! :partying_face: :batparrot: :snowboarder:

I loved Noel in 2011, and am looking forward to a re-read of it, via the High Holy of Book Club Holies that is the DC Book Club.

This just in: Black Adam wanted to welcome back the DCBC:

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Although difficult, I managed to stop at page 27.
Now on to the Q&A part of the club.

  1. What do you think the holiday season feels like in Gotham City? Hopeful? Fearful?
    Well for the first 23 pages it was more depressing than fearful, although you could almost smell the depression and fear of of old Bob. After that it began becoming a bit more cheerful with a glimmer of Hope, though the underlying depression and fear was there as well.
  2. In the opening pages of Batman Noël, the narrator asks the reader to believe in something…how did you take this ask? Was it something you were onboard with, or did you need a little convincing?Just considered it part of the story, I always try and if the tale is engaging immerse myself in my reading, so not sure I believe, yet but am interested in how it plays out.
  3. How do you feel about the character of Bob? Do you think he’s a hardened criminal, or is he just trying to get by in life?I think Bob is someone overwhelmed with life, who tries but can’t finish things and blames the world for his , as to a hardened criminal, so far I don’t get the vibe he is a killer more of an opportunistic criminal who wants to take shortcuts instead of working for it.
  4. Fear is an unusual concept to pair with the holiday season. What role do you think fear plays in this book? Do you enjoy the way Bermejo plays with the theme of fear in a holiday-themed comic book? If so, why? If not, why not?Well, as of now, although set during the holidays, I don’t consider it a Holiday themed comic book after the first 27 pages. As to the fearful mood, well this is Gotham and except for the elite, I would think most folks there go through life afraid and depressed. At this stage, I get a more depressed vibe than fearful.
  5. The correlation between Batman Noël and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is clear from early on in the book. Did you enjoy the intertwining of these storylines? Too early to tell, though in general, I do enjoy new portrayals of old stories. The references throughout does make the comparison obvious though.
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This is my first time reading Batman: Noel and I thoroughly enjoyed Bermejo’s spin on A Christmas Carol. Batman feels like the perfect character to play the role of scrooge and Gotham is a great backdrop for the story.

I think this really depends on the year and universe. The general vibe I get from the city in Noel is more fearful and desperate than it is hopeful, though there is clearly still hope from the younger population.

I found this ask quite easy, but that may be a personal bias. I think everyone feels like the bad guy at some point in their life, but then has the ability to change and to improve. I don’t think it’s ever fair to deny someone that chance!

He’s definitely just trying to get by in life. I viewed Bob as the epitome of the whole ‘man steals bread to feed his family’ ethical dilemma. He’s definitely not violent, there’s no hint of that within him when confronted by Batman. Most of Gotham’s hardened criminals seem to have no issue pulling a knife or gun out to fight the Bat. Bob is definitely not one of those people.

Fear is almost like a character within itself in Noel. Without fear, there’s no driving force for Bob to be the character that he is and without that, Batman wouldn’t have a reason to improve later on in the comic.

Whilst it’s not something I’d enjoy seeing in every holiday comic from this point onwards, I think it works really well in this particular spin of A Christmas Carol. It feels very appropriate when you view the source material. Scrooge has his own fears of being alone and letting others in, for example.

I love it. The 3rd person narration is really fun, especially as the narrator (and their audience) are both unsure how accurate the tale actually is. It gives me vibes of a father reading ‘The Night Before Christmas’ with their child on their lap and a roaring fire, which is a cozy image and perfect for the holidays!


Just wanted to say a big thank you to @Jitsu for managing to get Batman: Noel added to DC Universe Infinite and for resurrecting the book club. I really appreciate it! :slight_smile:

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Hello @Jitsu,
This was my first time reading the book, it was so well done, I wanted to keep on reading. Love the arts graphic in the story as well.:grinning:
Here’s my answers to your questions…

  1. For a guy like poor Bob, pretty much fearful and Cold. A kid like Tim always hopeful and happy.

  2. I was fine with this question when ask, I believe in Christ who was born on Christmas day to save us. It’s always good to have that hope.:slightly_smiling_face:

  3. I think Batman judge Bob too harshly, how does he know if Bob is a criminal? There must be a reason why he’s following the instruction in the letter. So I like him all ready for now.

  4. Bermejo is definitely a talented writer and artist, this book is making me a fan of his work. I don’t know if I wanted to say this book is full of fear just yet, since I’ve just started to read this.
    For the first 28 pages, yes we see poor Bob in fear. I hope by the end of the book we’ll see him being happy with no fear.

  5. I’m a huge fan of A Christmas Carol, I have 11 different movies on DVD, have a book as well. Again Berrmejo is a genius, putting a classic novel Christmas story into a Batman universe. Can’t wait to read more of it.

And there you have it, looking forward to reading more and answering more questions.:grinning:

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First off i must say The art was great

1: Hmm… well i would say it can be a bit hopeful in Gotham as there are examples in books like B: TAS the adventure continues where the rogues tend to take the holidays off.

2: I can believe something like this can happen…I have had pneumonia so I know what bats would be going through with it.

3: Well it seems like this was inspired by a certain episode of B:TAS so I feel he is a guy down on his luck and taking the job to try to make his kid’s life a bit better.

4: I read the book in its entirety as I have had a copy for a year and this got me to finally read it. I feel this is a darker future of Batman 66 pre-season 3 mixed with Golden Age Batman as there is no Babs in it and no other Robins. I feel the fear in this is Batman’s fear to live and move on after his ward/son Dick was killed. Thus becoming more jaded from that loss. Yet he finds the will to live again as Bruce Wayne and Batman in the end.

5: I found it interesting however it’s been a long time since I saw the adaptation was done by the muppets of a Christmas Carol (I never actually read the story) however it does work very well with Batman.

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PS: The book reminded me of Hinder’s song What Ya Gonna Do.

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I like that you pointed out this difference! Interesting that both have different views, but live together.

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I can definitely relate to this :sweat_smile:

I tend to do this as well–just follow the story and get immersed in the world, as it presents itself.

Nice observation here. What specifically made you view him as someone who wants to take shortcuts? Would love to know more about how you came to this conclusion so far!

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Really like this idea of Batman’s “fear to live and move on”.

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Agreed here. Especially in the early pages, it seems to me that Bob is a scared man pushing himself to do bad things to provide for his family.

I LOVED this too. It makes me feel like I’m just listening to someone next to me tell a wild story. I also really like how it’s not entirely clear which character the narrator is referring to a few times–makes following the story more fun.

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