The New Batman Adventures

I just completed the 2 seasons of The New Batman Adventures.  Like I said in the previous post, I’m not a big fan of the art style.  It’s simpler, and villains are far more cartoony.  My understanding is that it is also far cheaper, which explains why they switched.  The storylines also focused more on the surrounding characters [Nightwing, new little kid Robin, and Batgirl] rather than just Batman.  The storylines seem geared towards a younger audience [with a few notable exceptions.. if kids knew what Roxy Rocket was doing on that missile…] , and some of the “new” villains introduced are really lame. There were some things I really did like, though.  The voice acting was the same, and still amazing.  The story lines for the characters continues where they left off in Batman: The Animated Series and the related animated movies. Loose ends and unknown fates are picked up and answered (Clayface, Mr. Freeze, The Ventriloquist), new alliances are maintained (Harley and Poison Ivy), and conflicts introduced are played out (Robin leaving and becoming Nightwing).  Also, they changed some characters for the better.  The Penguin, in particular, is a much more interesting character in this show than his flipper counterpart in The Animated Series.

So, with all that said, there were a couple episodes that stood out as being really amazing, and a few that stood out for be surprisingly awful.

The Bad


The Creeper

A reporter covering the 7th anniversary of Joker’s acid accident suffers a similar acid related fate [at the hands of the Joker], and is turned into a flamboyant, TV catch-phrase spouting motor mouth called “The Creeper”.  He’s capable of defeating both the Joker and Batman without any real difficulty.  Joker begs for Batman’s help, and Batman manages to subdue the Creeper by injecting him with some antidope that turns him normal again.  Then Batman gives him a small patch to wear that’ll prevent him from going crazy again… and leaves… and he takes the patch off!  Hey Batman! Why not inject him again instead?  That way he won’t just take the patch off instantly and go crazy again. (Also, at one point in the episode Harley asks Joker if he wants to “eat her pie” while standing in a giant custard pie. This was a kids show.)

The Demon Within

You know what my favorite part of Batman is? Magic! Not slight-of-hand, “a big round of applause for Zatanna!” magic, but the magic where some creepy dude says an incantation, and turns into a giant Demon, and is then forced to do a little Eddie Munster look-alike’s bidding because he hit him with a cattle prod after a cat turned into a giant furry and stole it from Bruce Wayne/Batman, who is completely overwhelmed by a small carpet fire… (because he’s never seen fire before apparently). Eddie Munster then uses his giant Demon to… steal cake. This all actually happened in the episode. This was terrible.

The Good


Growing Pains

Young Robin helps save a girl who seems to have no knowledge of who she is, but knows she’s running from someone. Enter said someone, and Robin and the girl get separated. Batman decided to do research, while Robin goes off to find her himself. Eventually Robin meets up with the mystery girl, and then try to reclaim her memory by visiting the places she does have a vague memory of: A Lighthouse. Again enter the mystery man, who reveals himself to be Clayface, who attacks them both. Mystery girl gets covered in bits of Clayface, and as it is absorbed into her body, she remembers who she is and where she came from: She’s Clayface. At the end of the episode “Mudslide” [Season 2 of Batman: the Animated Series] a waterlogged Clayface had falled off a cliff and washed out to sea. When he was able to pull himself together by the lighthouse, he created the girl out of part of him to find out if it was safe for him back in the city.. but when she set out, she forgot, and he’d been chasing after her ever since. So Robin vows to protect her, but is instantly captured by Clayface, and mystery girl sacrifices herself to give him time to get free. Clayface absorbs the girl, Batman shows up, fighting leads to explosions, and Clayface is taken away in a fancy pod chamber.

Mad Love

This episode tells the origin story of Harley Quinn. Harleen Quinzel was an intern at Arkham Asylum, studying super criminals. Joker befriends her, and promises to tell her his secrets. He tells her about his abusive father, and wanting to make people happy, and yada, yada, yada Harleen falls for him. When Joker escapes, and is brought back to Arkham bloodied by Batman, Harlene snaps, goes out and creates the Harley Quinn character in order to cheer the Joker up.
Flash to present day, and Harley is again trying to get the Joker’s attention. She manages to trick Batman, and gets him rigged up in one of the Joker’s elaborate joke/death machines. Batman explains that the Joker is using her, and that the secrets he told her way back where just elaborate lies to use her. She calls the Joker to come over and show him what she did for him, and the Joker is furious that she’s stealing his thunder, and that she didn’t “get the joke” [“If you have to explain a joke, there is no joke!”]. Then the Joker knocks her out of a 4th story window. Batman and Joker fight, and it looks like the Joker falls to his death. Harley is sent to Arkham, and she vows to give up on the Joker forever. Shen she enters her room, there’s a flower waiting for her from “Mr. J”, and she’s instantly smitten again. The end.
(Also, in this episode, Harley asks Joker if he wants to “rev up his Harley” while mimicking driving a motorcycle. This was a kids show).

Over the Edge

This episode is fantastic. You should watch this episode. It begins with Commissioner Gordan and the Gotham City police chasing (and shooting at) Batman and Robin through the Bat Cave. Gordon: “Bruce Wayne, stay where you are!” Then they blow up the Batmobile, and corner the duo. Batman grabs Robin, and leaps off a cliff. Robin: “We are gonna die.” Gordon has Batman in his sites and is ready to take the shot when Alfred jumps him, given the duo just enough time to escape in the boat… where they are chased by police boats which shoot missiles at them… until Nightwing shows up on a jet-ski and takes out the police boat.
At Nightwing’s hideout, we’re told what’s happened: Scarecrow had seized City Hall. Batgirl (Gordon’s daughter Barbara) chased after him, and Scarecrow knocked her off the top of the building. She landed on Gordon’s police car on the street below. She lived just long enough for Gordon to arrive and realize it was her… They attempted to arrest Batman for murder, and he escaped. Gordon checked Barbara’s computer, and figured out Bruce is Batman. They attacked Wayne Manor…

Back to the present: Nightwing gets arrested, Robin is told to leave, Gordon is ordered to step down. Gordon decides to take matters into his own hands, and makes a deal with Bane: Capture Batman and he can get him out of jail. So now Bane is hunting Batman. He finds Batman during Barbara’s funeral… and the start an epic fight. Bane: “Do we fight to the death?” Batman: “It makes no difference now.” They fight from rooftop to rooftop until then end up on top of the police headquarters. Gordon is waiting for them, and demands Batman alive. Bane says no, and pushes Gordon to the edge of the roof. He attempts to push Gordon off, but Batman stops him. The fighting resumes. Bane: “Time to die!” Batman: “You first!” and then Batman electrocutes Bane! Batman runs over to help Gordon up, but Bane, with his last breath throws the Bat Signal at Batman, and he and Gordon are pushed off the roof to their deaths.

Flash to the Bat Cave. Batgirl wakes up in a panic. She’d been gassed by the Scarecrow and forced to endure her worst nightmares throughout the night. Barbara decides she has to tell her dad that she’s Batgirl, and invites him over for dinner. She begins to tell him, when he interrupts: “You are capable of making your own decisions. You don’t need me to approve or even acknowledge them… and in this case I can’t. All you need to know is I love you… all of you. And that is all I have to say on the subject.”
Credits.

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