Both the movie and the comic begin with an innocent family wandering the streets of Gotham, only to encounter a group of armed criminals - an intentional echo of the Wayne family's fatal encounter. Batman hears the screams and tracks down the criminals to bring them to justice. Unlike the comic, however, the family in the film survives the encounter.
In both stories, after the crime is committed, one of the criminals reprimands the other for his methods while the other remains unrepentant.
Later, Batman pretends to be killed in order to trick the criminals, thus making them more fearful later when he tracks them down.
Another noteworthy aspect of 'Night of the Stalker' is Batman's lack of dialogue throughout the story. He uses the same intimidation-through-silence technique that Batman deploys in the movie.
The rooftop confrontation also reflects Batman's very first comic appearance in 'The Case of the Chemical Syndicate' (Bill Finger) in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). Batman's first appearance in this story sees him fighting two goons on a rooftop right after they commit a crime.
Like The Joker in Batman #1 (Spring 1940), the muggers are surprised to see that Batman is unaffected by bullets, unaware that he is wearing armor to protect himself.
During the confrontation, Batman trips a fleeing criminal using a batarang with a rope attached to it. An example of this happening in the comics can be seen here in 'The Batman Encyclopedia' (Detective Comics #214, December 1954).
Batman's suit is pretty much the Neal Adams's Batsuit, with cowl and cape being seemingly one piece. yet detaching separately. Note how the cape drapes over his body when Batman is standing still.
The chest emblem in the movie is different from the conventional design as it features two additional points. The emblems in The Dark Knight Returns and The Killing Joke also featured two extra points.
Accompanying Gordon at the party is his wife. While her first name is never given in the film, we can assume this is Barbara Gordon, James' wife from the Pre-Crisis era.
Also present at the party is district attorney Harvey Dent. Dent, originally called Harvey Kent, first appeared in 'The Crimes of Two-Face' (Detective Comics #66, August 1942). As in the comics, the movie version is depicted as a charismatic crusader working closely with the mayor and Commissioner Gordon to take down the organized crime rackets in Gotham. Over the course of the film he starts to display signs of buckling under pressure; subtle hints of the repressed anger that will one day surface when he becomes Two-Face.
In keeping with the art theme, The Joker later crashes a museum wearing a beret. He dresses in a similarly outrageous manner in 'The Joker's Happy Victims' (The Batman Kellog's Special, 1966).
It is during this scene that The Joker dances to Prince's 'Partyman'. The Joker has danced with his goons in several comics over the years. One of the more famous examples would be in The Killing Joke.
The Joker has also been shown to dance to popular songs. In 'The Last Ha Ha' (Joker #3, October 1975) he sings his own demented version of 'Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah' while dancing to celebrate the death of one of his victims. He and his henchmen dance to 'There's No Business Like Show Business' in 'Sherlock Stalks the Joker' (Joker #6, April 1976).
The Joker also delights in destroying priceless works of art, as seen here in 'A Clash of Symbols' (Detective Comics #617, July 1990).
The Joker makes a point of stopping Bob from slashing Francis Bacon's 1954 painting 'Figure with Meat'. In the Elseworlds story JLA: The Nail (1998), The Joker slaughters Batgirl and Robin and compares his work to a Francis Bacon painting. Evidently, both versions of The Joker share an affinity for Bacon's work.
In both the film and in Detective Comics #27, Batman's second appearance in the story is stopping a crime at a chemical factory.
Much like the origin in 'The Man Behind the Red Hood', The Joker's insanity is triggered by his realization about his appearance upon looking at his reflection.
The moment where he sees his reflection for the first time, doubles over as if crying, then starts laughing maniacally, is also clearly influenced by Alan Moore's The Killing Joke (1988); a copy of which Tim Burton is said to have carried around with him on set.
Jack Napier's fall into the chemicals reflects the origin of The Joker in the Pre-Crisis comics, as first depicted in 'The Man Behind the Red Hood' (Detective Comics #168 by Bill Finger).
When in need of an escape route, the Golden Age Batman would use gas pellets to disorientate his enemies.
Also reminiscent of the first Joker story in Batman #1 is the way The Joker talks to himself as he concocts his latest scheme.
Later in the film, The Joker summons Grissom's former associates to a meeting. To mask his features, he covers his face in skin colored makeup. The Joker in the comics has used similar cosmetics to disguise himself on several occasions, dating back to his first appearance in Batman #1.
Another example of him doing this can be seen in Detective Comics #45 (November 1940), 'The Case of the Laughing Death' by Bill Finger.
When Antoine Rotelli objects to the Joker's takeover, the Clown Prince of Crime electrocutes him using a high-voltage electric buzzer. The Joker's buzzer is one of the many gag-style weapons he's used in the comics over the years.
The Joker then conducts a one-sided conversation with Rotelli's corpse. He does the same thing in The Killing Joke. In both stories the person he's talking to was killed with a lethal handshake.
Bruce's attempts to patch things up with Vicki are ruined when the Joker shows up. The Joker's insane romantic interest in Vicki is similar to his obsession with Dinah Lance in 'A Gold Star for the Joker' (Joker #4, December 1975). In both stories The Joker becomes fixated on a beautiful woman who happens to be the girlfriend of a superhero (Batman/Green Arrow). His attempts to woo this woman become increasingly violent and insane, and her boyfriend ultimately has to intervene in order to save her.
The scene in Vicki's apartment also has strong parallels with the scene where Barbara Gordon is crippled in The Killing Joke. In both the movie and the comic we see a man and woman talking in an apartment. The door bell rings and the woman answers it. The Joker then enters the apartment flanked on either side by his goons. The scene ends with one of the room's occupants being rendered unconscious while the other is shot by The Joker.
The two goons accompanying The Joker in The Killing Joke may have inspired the look of his henchmen in the film. In particular, the goon standing to the left of The Joker as he enters the apartment resembles Bob.
While the thug that beats up Gordon resembles the henchman Batman fights in the cathedral at the end of the movie.
The apartment scene ends with The Joker rendering Vicki unconscious with a non-lethal prank involving flowers and a spring-loaded hand. A similar moment occurs in 'Dreadful Birthday, Dear Joker!' (Batman #321, 1980, Len Wein).
The Joker's message prompts Bruce to reflect on the night his parents were killed. His brooding pose is similar to the one in Detective Comics #33, which was the first comic to depict his origin. Detective Comics ran from issues #27-32 without revealing Batman's origin or the death of his parents, similar to how the film delays revealing his back story until the final act.
In the haunting flashback scene, Thomas, Martha, and young Bruce Wayne are shown leaving the Monarch Theater. In 'The Man Behind the Red Hood' the Monarch Playing Card Co. was the name of the company the Red Hood robbed on the night he became The Joker. The police attempted to catch him in the act, so he fled into the adjacent chemical factory and tried to outmaneuver his pursuers by leaping into a vat of chemicals.
'Monarch' has been referenced in later comics as the name of the cinema Bruce and his parents visited to see The Mark of Zorro (1940) (or a similar film) the night they were murdered.
During the flashback sequence, Jack Napier's partner grabs Martha Wayne's pearl necklace and breaks it. This is similar to the flashback sequence in Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns.
But it turns out the whole parade is a death-trap and The Joker's parade balloons are filled with lethal laughing gas. In 'Laugh, Town, Laugh' (Detective Comics #62, April 1942), The Joker poisons some of his victims using balloons filled with laughing gas.
The parade scene also has similarities with the final chapter of A Death in The Family, specifically regarding The Joker's fondness for "large dead crowds".
Towards the end of this story The Joker goes to address the U.S. General Assembly on behalf of Iran, but instead unleashes his lethal gas upon the crowd. Just like he does in the movie.
Luckily Batman comes to the rescue in the Batwing. While the Batwing had been dubbed the "Batplane" in the comics, the vehicle in the movie may have been inspired by the Batplane's precursor, The Bat-Gyro, which was introduced in 'Batman Versus The Vampire, Part One'.
Bob Kane would frequently draw it against the moon. The Batwing in the movie draws visual influence from the Batplane in the comics as well.
Furious that Batman took away his poisoned balloons, The Joker decides to take his anger out on his right hand man, Bob. The Joker in the comics has also been known to spontaneously kill his own henchmen for fun, as seen here in 'The Laughing Fish', when he shoves one of his goons in front of a truck for being too nosy about the master plan.
A similar scene also occurs in 'Clue of the False Faces!' (Detective Comics #430, December 1972).
After dealing with the thugs, Batman and Vicki go for a ride in the Batmobile. Batman remains mysteriously taciturn through this scene, evoking a similar moment from 'Batman Versus The Vampire, Part One' (Detective Comics #31, September 1939) where Batman drives with Bruce Wayne's fiance, Julie Madison, and refuses to speak to her.
Later in the scene, Vicki screams when the Batmobile drives straight through a rock wall. But it turns out the wall is merely a hologram. This may have been influenced by a similar moment between Batman and the Carrie Kelly Robin in The Dark Knight Returns. According to Les Daniels Batman: The Complete History, The Dark Knight Returns was one of the comics Michael Keaton read when researching the role.
Batman also took Vicki to the Batcave in her debut story, 'The Scoop of the Century!'.