* AlternateCharacterInterpretation: It's entirely possible that the Batman we're seeing on page is not in fact the real Batman. [[WebVideo/AtopTheFourthWall Some have theorized that he's actually a crazy hobo named Steve who found a Batman costume and won the lottery, becoming inspired to be Batman.]]
** The fact that Batman keeps laughing like a maniac while Joker never even smiles makes you wonder if the two have swapped costumes before the story started.
** Similarly Wonder Woman's insanely out-of-character behavior has caused some to declare that she's actually [[WebVideo/AtopTheFourthWall a deranged mental patient named Bonkers Betty who's stolen a Wonder Woman costume from a convention and is impersonating her.]]
* ArcFatigue: With [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters all the characters]], sideplots that may or may not have anything to do with the narrative, confusing time frame, and [[ScheduleSlip fairly bad schedule]], it took a while for Dick Grayson, age 12, to even ''become'' Robin.
* SugarWiki/AwesomeArt: Say what you want to about the writing, but the art is ''amazing'', both Lee's interiors and Miller's covers. The art is what's been selling the book. All the critics who absolutely hated the writing said DC could do the fans a better service by reprinting the books with blank speech bubbles.
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment:
** Neo-Nazi woman with swastika pasties standing guard outside a motel door. It's ''supposed'' to be a ContinuityNod to an extra that appeared in ''ComicBook/BatmanTheDarkKnightReturns'' but [[UnusuallyUninterestingSight ... Yeah, it's just too weird to work.]]
** A ''lot'' of events in the comic go nowhere and have no importance to anything except for {{Padding}}. Black Canary, Catwoman, Batgirl, Vicki Vale, Jimmy Olsen, and the Justice League, all feature in the series, but across ten issues they each get about two or three scenes in which they do little, if anything, of relevance. It's particularly egregious because the series is ''supposed'' to be about Batman and Robin, but Miller keeps cutting away to other characters.
* BileFascination: The whole reason the book continued selling: once word about it began to spread, people who haven't read it yet just can't believe it's ''that'' bad.
* CrackPairing: Batman and Black Canary.
* CrazyAwesome: What a lot of Batman's actions appear to be intended as. Unfortunately, he ends up looking just plain crazy.
* DarknessInducedAudienceApathy: When both your protagonists are at best sociopathic jerks without sincere empathy for other human beings, it's hard to feel genuine sympathy.
* DesignatedHero: Batman. He's psychotic, unstable, and an-all round {{Jerkass}}. He kidnaps the twelve year old Dick Grayson, age twelve, forces him to live in the Batcave alone (and expects him to hunt the rats and bats in there for food), and then complains about having him around and physically assaults him. And he goes out on patrol laughing about how awesome he is as he gleefully poisons criminals, sets them on fire, and attacks police officers; while it isn't outright stated, FridgeHorror implies many of them don't survive. For some reason, readers are supposed to like him.
* EnsembleDarkhorse:
** Alfred, for refusing to put up with Batman's crazy crap.
** Hal Jordan, for calling out Batman on his terrible treatment of Dick Grayson, age 12, and being pretty much the only hero that doesn't do or say anything stupid or offensive. Ironic given Frank's opinion of him.
* FanonDiscontinuity: Many fans like to believe that this story (and ''ComicBook/TheDarkKnightStrikesAgain'') is in no way connected to ''Batman: Year One'' and ''ComicBook/BatmanTheDarkKnightReturns''.
* FauxSymbolism:
** The close up on Vicki Vale's panties reveal that the design is that of a Bat. This, much like Vicki Vale herself, has no real importance to anything.
** When Dick Grayson, age twelve, is huddling alone in the Batcave, his shadow cast on the floor forms an "R." In case one of the five people in the world who ''don't'' know that Dick becomes Robin picks up the comic and wonders who the kid is.
* FountainOfMemes: It is, after all, Batman TurnedUpToEleven -- now with extra crazy flakes.
* HarsherInHindsight: The 1994 ''Batman/Spawn''[[note]]also written by Frank Miller[[/note]] crossover had Batman riled up at Spawn's lethal methods, vexing him to the point where he chucked a batarang in Spawn's face when Spawn asked to shake hands. At the time it was understandable; in ''ComicBook/BatmanTheDarkKnightReturns'' and ''ComicBook/BatmanYearOne'' he never used lethal force. After his child abusing, cop-killing antics in ''All Star Batman'' his attitude towards Spawn killing seems flat out hypocritical. However, it's completely in line with Miller, as Spawn ''asks'' Batman why ''not'' kill her - and Batman can't think of anything. FacePalm.
** Likewise, a lot of scenes from ''Year One''. Especially the scene early on where Bruce breaks out of a cop car but winds up crashing it and ''still'' goes out of his way to save the two unconscious cops inside, even one of which is shown to be somewhat of a dick because of his willingness to let Bruce bleed to death, in light of the cop-killing scene early on in ASBAR.
* HilariousInHindsight:
-->'''Robin''': [[Film/TheDarkKnightSaga "It's like [Batman's] doing some lameass Clint Eastwood impersonation."]]
** The love scene between Batman and Black Canary also count. In the story, they make out while keeping their masks on. The scene might be Squick, sexy, or even outright funny to some people. Fast forward three years later, Batman and Catwoman have SEX with their masks on. The scene is [[http://scans-daily.dreamwidth.org/3372244.html?#cutid1 here]] if you want to check it out (NSFW)
** Although the "I'm the Goddamn Batman" is the most remembered part of the quote, right before it, he says "[[Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann Who the hell do you think I am?]]"
** As [[WebVideo/AtopTheFourthWall Linkara]] pointed out, Creator/FrankMiller once said he considered Batman the most pure and good of all DC superheroes. Fast forward to this comic and suddenly we have the Goddamn Batman [[SlasherSmile smirking gleefully]] as he slams the Batmobile into cops, abducts Dick Grayson, [[RunningGag Age Twelve]], and generally runs around acting so brutally out of character Linkara dubs him 'Crazy Steve' because even Batman In Name Only is still ''too much'' like Batman.
** When 12-year-old Dick Grayson, age 12, initially creates his costume with a hood, Batman cynically tells him to drop it, since according to him, this would be impractical in a fight. Flash-forward to Creator/GrantMorrison's run, when Damian Wayne becomes the new Robin. His costume includes a hood. Linkara has theorized Morrison might have done this on purpose as a TakeThat to this comic.
* IdiotPlot: A lot of the story would be over fast if Superman or Green Lantern didn't act like morons.
* MemeticMolester: It's often been pointed out that the way Batman treats Robin can get ''really'' uncomfortable. Says he's been watching him ''before'' Robin was orphaned, takes him away without the kid's consent, ''smiles'' as he thinks about putting the kid through hell...
-->"Fast hands, my little Robin. Fast hands, big mouth."[[note]]He's talking about how quickly Robin painted a house yellow while complaining all the while, but still...[[/note]]
* MemeticMutation: Several lines in the series, as well as the series itself.
--> "I'm the Goddamn Batman."
** ''Dick Grayson, age 12''.
** And then Miller had exactly the wrong reaction to the Goddamn Batman meme, as he threw the word more and more into Batman's lines until it's practically a VerbalTic.
** "Damn you and your lemonade!"
* NightmareFuel: Batman, when he isn't being completely ridiculous.
* OlderThanTheyThink: Some readers take exception to the Joker being emotionless and grim, a far cry from his usual depictions. However his early Golden Age appearances did have the Joker as a more morose character compared to how he would later become known.
* {{Padding}}: The series suffers from this. One critic noted the book felt like Miller was spreading 4 issues of story across 20. To put it in perspective, Batman meets Dick Grayson, age twelve, in Issue 1. They arrive at the Batcave in Issue 4. The time in between (the entirety of Issues 2 and 3) is focused on either inner monologue which repeats itself or scenes focusing on other characters (despite this being a book about Batman and Robin). Black Canary's introductory scene takes up half of Issue 3, but all that happens is her getting harassed and her beating up a room full of people.
* SignatureScene: Guess. Come on. ''Guess.''
* SoBadItsGood: The fact is that most people think this is a bad Batman story; that doesn't stop them from finding it ''absolutely hilarious''.
* SnarkBait: Virtually every other panel has some.
* StealthParody: Some people speculate the comic is intended as this. Though debatable, once you read the comic it is possible to see where they're coming from. Everything is so over the top, edgy, dark, etc. that it's kind of hard to take seriously. The fact that Frank Miller has proven long ago [[ComicBook/TheDarkKnightReturns that he can write the caped crusader very well]] also leads people to think he was trying to write a parody. The fact that he's also wrote stuff like ''ComicBook/HolyTerror'' just blurs things further.
* StrawmanHasAPoint: When Green Lantern confronts Batman, he points out that Batman is hospitalizing people with his excessive violence and endangering a boy as young as Dick Grayson, age 12.
* TheyJustDidntCare: Frank Miller has become so obsessed with making Batman "better" than the police or any other superhero, that he's stopped caring about making Batman actually do anything [[DesignatedHero heroic]].
** During the story, 12 year old Dick Grayson's face is on a Milk Carton... While he's ''still being driven to the Batcave'', meaning that either the trip takes several days, or Batman's car drove into a time warp.
** The Batcave has a wall of weapons that Batman in any normal story would never use, including guns in it. That's all.
*** The axe that [[RunningGag Dick Grayson Age 12]] picks up has a blade shaped like Batman's logo. This means that it wasn't just seized from another criminal or even bought off the shelf, ''Batman had it custom made.''
** Other superheroes such as Black Canary, Plastic Man, and Wonder Woman appear in the comic, and Frank Miller writes them all as psychotic murderers with no regard for who their mainstream counterparts are.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot: This series was part of DC's [[ComicBook/AllStarDCComics All-Star line of comics]], which was meant to encapsulate everything good about specific DC characters and their mythology. This comic failed spectacularly at it, ''especially'' compared to ''ComicBook/AllStarSuperman''.
* UnfortunateImplications: Most of Frank's infamous "calling cards" are present. Women treated as sex objects? Check. Casual homophobia? Check. Implying that fascism, torture and killing [[ViolenceReallyIsTheAnswer really are the answers when dealing with criminals?]] Check, check, checkaroonie. See [[WebVideo/AtopTheFourthWall Linkara]] go through each of them [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DofuVpdrMXA&index=1&list=PLEBU_96ItsxPRtTCEOUqu2r8mJP_cUhTz here]]
* WatchItForTheMeme: Many fans just read it to see Batman declare "I'm the goddamn Batman!"
* WhatAnIdiot: Had Green Lantern had a brain cell in his head, he'd have dismissed Batman's offer to meet him at a time and place of ''his specification'', and just captured him then and there with the power ring on his own terms.
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