[World of Bats] JLA #43-46 "Tower of Babel"

Hello everyone and welcome to the World of Bats, the Batman Book Club!

First, sorry for the slight delay, got this idea for it way late and wanted to get the JL Book Club leader’s permission first before I kinda poach on his stuff.

That said, seeing as how we got the release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League coming this week, let’s explore a story of Batman in the Justice League, and what’s a bigger one than JLA #43-46, “Tower of Babel,” written by Mark Waid and drawn by Howard Porter?

Luckily, the fine folks at DCUI decided to group all four issues in a handy-dandy Storyline link which you can find HERE!

Current reading from 2021-03-14T06:00:00Z2021-03-19T05:00:00Z, though of course you can always come back later if you so please.

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And if you’re still looking for more Batman and Batman-adjacent goodness, you can check out the reading from some of the other awesome groups and clubs in the DCUI Family. :smiley:

As before, we’re continuing to partner with the Renegade Robins group, dealing with the last half of the books We Are Robin and Batman & Robin Eternal. The group is also following Damian Wayne’s harrowing misadventures during Death of the Family in Batman & Robin and Jason Todd’s post-breakup blues in his now solo Red Hood: Outlaw series!

Over at the Dick Grayson Book Club, the club is continuing to cover the arc from the Rebirth era of Nightwing, “The Untouchable.”

Over at Harley’s Crew, the group is just about finished covering the acclaimed mini-series Harleen!

Over at the Birds of Prey Club, they’re spotlighting some classic series featuring Black Canary, Oracle, Huntress and Catwoman, specifically Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters and Birds of Prey: Manhunt.

And if you’re looking for more Justice League books to read, check out the Justice League Club’s reading of Scott Snyder’s saga of Dark Nights: Metal!

Also, over at the House of Horror, they’re covering the story “The Tenth Circle,” by the big Marvel team of Chris Claremont and John Byrne!

And there isn’t a link for it yet, but there’s going to be a REALLY cool new club related to some of our stuff coming tomorrow that you’ll want to take a look at…!


Ah, the all-time classic “Batman is a Jerk” story.


It’s been a long time since I’ve read this one. I remember thinking it was very good. If I remember correctly, the plot shares some similarities with the animated film Justice League: Doom.


I am reading this via my old TPB which also includes JLA Secret Files 3 and JLA 80-Page Giant 1.

It just so happened that I get to live my best life as I do this as Spotify has decided that I should listen to mid-90s Madonna and I cannot complain about that decision that the algorithm gods have made for me.

Just finished reading this. It has been a while since I have read Tower of Babel. Overall, there is a lot of fun to be had in these pages but Batman does come off umm, too Batman-like. In the TPB I have there were “bonus” stories for the conclusion that features Oracle complaining to Batman about his actions and how the Bat Family is being affected. As for the story itself, I really enjoyed Talia’s role. The way she gathered data and then the realization that she was being used by her father. Priceless.


True, though really Ra’s is the bigger jerk here.

Yeah, they tweaked it to add a Legion of Doom in there, but I think it even lists the book in their credits as “based on the comic book.”

I have that one too! Though sadly I’m pretty sure mine is still in storage, like a lot of my comics and trades. :frowning:

I was also surprised to find out that wasn’t a cover to one of these issues at all, since I link that image so much to the Tower of Babel story.

It’s also interesting seeing Porter’s art from the early 00s and comparing it to his art style of today. For those who don’t know, Porter was out of the comics biz for a while because he injured his dominant drawing hand, pretty much lost the ability to use his right thumb, so he had to relearn how to draw again using only his fingers. Insane. For comparison, here’s a cover he did for the recent Deluxe Edition of this story:


is sufficiently intrigued

Have the details of this been released yet?

By the by, thanks for the shout-out. :slight_smile:

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Oh, I was talking about the DC Book Club, they started yesterday with Justice League: The Totality.

And you’re welcome. :slight_smile:


So…no Booster Gold Book Club then?


One day. One day…

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That’s super impressive that he drew that without using his thumb. Wow!

Having finished my reread earlier today I still think this arc is really good. There were some plot points I had forgotten about that surprised me a little bit (mainly that the ending wasn’t the League destroying the tower; I totally forgot about the bioweapon). I think the writer, Waid, did a really good job balancing all the characters and giving them each their own voice.

One thing that bugs me a little about Batman’s traps here is that several of them would be been fatal without others intervening. That doesn’t fit Batman’s character. I’m thinking that we are to believe that Ra’s altered Batman’s plans to make them more deadly, but I would like to hear other thoughts on this.

Should Batman be kicked out of the Justice League?
  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

Or Crisis Book Club. Where we read and discuss every crisis/event.

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This was a great title and is want the animated Justice League “Doom” was based on. It’s been a while since I’ve read this one too, but I remember liking this better than the movie, subtle differences like, GL is Kyle rather than Hal. Now, i’ve gotta reread this one. But certainly a great title.