As you enter the comic shop this week, you may realize that there is a certain void in your life. But just because there is no Death of the Family official crossover tie-in issue this week, rest assured that there is still lots of stuff available on the stands to help you get your Joker fix. I offer up this solution to your Bat-woes: An unofficial crossover checklist.  That’s right, these are the stories before the story. Pick them up while you still can, and join me again next week for the continued review series covering the already legendary event.

Joker Leaves Gotham

Detective Comics 1-5, 12
Tony S. Daniel

The story that started it all. This is the book where the Joker ripped his face off, scared the poop out of Gotham City, and disappeared for over a year. Also available in trade paperback (issues 1-5) and still on the stands now if you hurry (issue 12).

My Rating: 4/5

Batman 0
Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, James Tynion IV, Andy Clarke

A flashback story featuring the original Red Hood and his gang, also known as the man who would become the Joker.  Still on the stands now if you hurry.

My Rating: 5/5

Red Hood and the Outlaws 0, 13, 14
Scott Lobdell

A story narrated by the killer who influenced the life, death, and return of Jason Todd.  Still available on the stands now if you hurry (issues 0, 13, and 14).

My Rating: 4/5

Batgirl 0, 1, 6-8, 11, 12
Gail Simone

Quite a few flashback cameos by the monster who shot Barbara Gordon. Also available in trade paperback (issues 1 and 6-8) and still available on the stands now if you hurry (issues 11, 12, and 0).

My Rating: 3/5

Suicide Squad 1-13
Adam Glass

The unofficial Batman book you should all be getting, featuring the story of Harley Quinn’s physical and spiritual search for her long-lost Mr. J. Also available in trade paperback (issues 1-8) and still available on the stands now if you hurry (issues 9-13).

My Rating: 4.5/5

Batman and Robin 13, 14
Peter Tomasi

The reaction of both Gotham City and (more importantly) young Damian Wayne to the impending return of the Clown Prince of Crime. Still available on the stands now if you hurry (issues 13 and 14).

My Rating: 4/5

Nightwing 13, 14
Kyle Higgins, Tom DeFalco

Dick Grayson’s fear regarding the one man who scares his mentor, and the dire consequences concerning Haly’s Circus. Still available on the stands now if you hurry (issues 13 and 14).

My Rating: 4/5