Eight years after the Joker killings, Gotham City is in a state of peace.

Under powers granted by the Dent Act, Commissioner Gordon has nearly eradicated violen t and organized crime. However, he still feels guilty about the cover-up of Harv ey Dent's crimes, and at a function celebrating Dent he plans to admit to the co nspiracy, but decides that the city is not ready for the truth. While following a lead in the abduction of a senator from the function, Gordon's speech falls in to the hands of terrorist leader Bane. Gordon is shot in the process, and he pro motes patrol officer John Blake to detective, allowing Blake to report directly to him. As Batman has disappeared from Gotham City, so too has Bruce Wayne, locked up in side Wayne Manor. Wayne Enterprises is crumbling after he and executive board me mber Miranda Tate invested in a clean energy project designed to harness fusion power, but shut the project down after learning that the core could be modified to become a nuclear device. Wayne suspects that his business rival, John Daggett , has employed Bane to aid in an aggressive take-over of the company. When he at tempts to intervene in an attack on the city's stock exchange, Wayne comes into conflict with Alfred over his plans to return to the streets of the city as Batm an. Alfred finally admits that Rachel Dawes chose to live her life with Dent, an d leaves Wayne's service in an attempt to force him to recognise that he cannot survive as Batman. Following a trail left by cat burglar Selina Kyle, Batman confronts Bane, who cl aims to have assumed the leadership of the League of Shadows following the death of Ra's al Ghul. Bane kills Daggett and reveals that he was using Daggett's con struction firms to stage a heist on Wayne Enterprises' Applied Science Division. He steals Wayne's arsenal before crippling Batman and condemning him to a priso n from which escape is impossible. While there, Wayne learns the story of a chil d who escaped; not out of righteousness or justice, but out of necessity and the sheer force of will. He believes Bane is the child. Bane lures the Gotham police department underground and sets off a chain of expl osions across the city, trapping the officers underground and turning Gotham Cit y into an isolated city-state. Any attempt to leave the city will result in the detonation of the Wayne Enterprises fusion core, which has been converted into a bomb. Addressing the citizens, Bane reveals the cover-up of Harvey Dent's death , and sets free the prisoners locked up under the Dent Act. The rich and powerfu l are dragged from their homes and put before a show trial presided over by Dr. Jonathan Crane, where they are given the choice between death or "exile" (in act uality the chance to escape Gotham across a thin layer of ice). After an attempt to sneak Special Forces soldiers into the city disguised as aid workers ends ba dly, the government blockades Gotham. Meanwhile, Bruce Wayne retrains himself to be Batman and successfully escapes Ba ne's prison to return to Gotham. He enlists Selina, Blake, and Fox's help in lib erating the people of the city and stopping the fusion bomb. Batman confronts Ba ne, only for Tate to intervene as she reveals herself to be Talia al Ghul, the t rue leader of the League of Shadows. It was she, not Bane, who escaped the priso n as a child, and Bane was permanently scarred as he tried to help her. Gordon s uccessfully cuts off the bomb's ability for remote detonation and Selina kills B ane, allowing Batman to chase Talia. He tries to force her to take the bomb to t he fusion chamber, where it can be stabilised, but she remotely floods the chamb er. Batman forces her truck off the road and she dies in the resulting crash, co nfident that the bomb cannot be stopped. Using a helicopter developed by Fox, Ba tman escorts the bomb beyond the city limits, allowing it to detonate over the o cean. In the aftermath of the explosion, the world believes Batman to be dead, and Bru ce Wayne to have been one of the casualties of the riot. As his estate is divide d up, Alfred witnesses Bruce and Selina together alive in a cafe in Italy, while

John Blake, whose first name is revealed to be Robin, inherits the Batcave.