It was 2000. The Batman books had just finished No Man’s Land, and so started a new era with new creative teams.
One downside to this era were the backup stories in Detective Comics and Gotham Knights. I have some of the backups listed below, as they have more direct ties to current era Batman.
This still requires a bit of copying pages since a lot of the backups share a page with the main story. I have also skipped the brief Larry Hama run of Batman, because those issues were just horrible.
(The B&W backups from GK 4-7 can all go in place. #1 could probably go in published order. #2 is a John Byrne Generations story, and #3 takes place earlier in Batman’s career.)
New Gotham 2
Turning Points 5
GK 13 (B&W)
GK 17 (B&W)
(None of the GK B&W backups from the issues in this volume actually go in place. I opted to skip GK 12, since it was a fill-in. It would have gone before or after Turning Points 5. The LOTDK issue is from a few years later, but has to go here based on costume details, and Gordon being Commissioner — although I suppose it could take place after Infinite Crisis. I included the issue only because I had gotten the Batman Begins trade for a different project, and had this issue left over. Since I hadn’t sent this volume to the binders, I opted to include the story here so it wouldn’t go to waste.)
Birds of Prey 27
Detective 758 (backup – Oracle)
Detective 759-762 (backups – Slam Bradley/Catwoman)
(The backup in GK #16 can go before the main story. Other than that, none of the other backups fit in this book.)
(None of the GK B&W backups from the issues in this volume actually go in place. I had a lot of back and forth on the placement of Detective 761-762, since they both follow each other and also follow up on the previous Tec arc. I ultimately moved them to the beginning of this book to try to even out the volumes a little bit.)
I had contemplated making separate volumes for each of the three core series on either side of Officer Down, but there were enough subplots crossing through them that it wasn’t feasible. At least with this map, I only have 5 volumes, instead of 7.
Tie-ins to Joker: Last Laugh and Our Worlds at War are included here, since none of the main Batman titles really tied in that directly with the crossovers. Also, because of the timing of those two events, it would have left us with very thin volumes.
The Josie Mac backups that start in Detective #763 will go in a Dead Reckoning volume, which will come after Fugitive. The Jacobian (Detective #746-757) has no direct ties to Batman, so can easily be skipped, or just placed at the end of one volume as a bonus feature.
Of course, all of this leads into Murderer/Fugitive.