The plot of “Knightfall” begins with the master criminal Bane freeing all of the maximum-security inmates of Arkham Asylum, a notorious psychiatric facility in Gotham City. Aware that he would lose in a direct assault against Batman, Bane’s plan consists of weakening Batman by forcing him to deal with the deadly villains simultaneously. Among the freed inmates, there are numerous high-profile villains. Batman becomes weaker and weaker as each criminal is put away and gets pushed to his mental and physical limits.
Bane makes his move and attacks Batman at Wayne Manor, had deduced the secret identity of Batman. By this time, Batman is so exhausted from the exertion of catching the escaped criminals that he cannot even defend himself. Bane beats him mercilessly before breaking Wayne’s back over his knee inside the Batcave below the manor, symbolically “breaking” Batman and assumes control of Gotham City’s underworld and takes over several illegal operations within it.
After his defeat, Bruce Wayne enlists the aid of Dr. Shondra Kinsolving to rehabilitate him and asks Jean-Paul Valley to take up the mantle of Batman so that Gotham has a protector.
Soon Jean Paul confronts Bane, leaves him broken mentally and physically, though he struggles with the choice of whether to simply kill Bane or hand him over to the police. He decides that he will let Bane go to Blackgate Prison. Jean-Paul continues to watch over Gotham after the fight, but grows increasingly unstable.