It’s been 10 years since Christopher Nolan’s comic book masterpiece. His finest work to date and still arguably the greatest comic book movie ever made.
Christopher Nolan – “You’ve changed things. Forever.”
Funny world we live in, can’t believe its been 10 years since I waited outside a packed theatre. The lineup was legitimately wrapped around the entire building. The hype was real, it was like nothing I had ever seen at this point in my life, and well Christopher Nolan and company didn’t disappoint. I saw The Dark Knight 9 times in the theatre, I couldn’t get enough of this experience. I was like LeBron James when he went to Miami – “Not one, not two, not three, not four.” It has everything you want in a movie, and I don’t mean just a comic book movie, this is such an enjoyable movie experience, it simply meets all your needs. One of the biggest takeaways all these years later, is that people forget that this just isn’t a comic book movie. It’s so much more. This movie simply changed the game, it changed everything. It took the world by notice, that comic book movies should be and can be taken seriously. Everyone saw this movie, even your Mom. People couldn’t stop talking about it, everyone wanted to be the Joker, everyone had their own Batman voice. Ever since this movie, other film makers have been trying to replicate this formula, without that much success (Power Rangers, Fantastic Four). Since the turn of the century this sticks out as one of the very best films we have set our eyes on, and remember you either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain.
Where does one even begin with this movie? The incredible opening scene, the best of any comic book movie to date. The way they introduce the Joker at the beginning of this film is so brilliant, and unique. Watching the bank heist in IMAX was such a treat. The whole premise of this bank job taking place with the Joker, yet the rest of the crew has no idea he’s sitting right in front of them, all while they are picking each other off one by one. I could rewatch this scene again and again and it would never get old. I think from the opening moments you knew that this would be something truly special. The way it was shot, the dialogue, everything about that opening scene was so different and transformative. It’s not like this is the only rewatchable scene in the movie, jesus the whole thing is rewatchable. Christopher Nolan was showing us moments that I will just never forget. The “sky-hook” scene and the 18-wheeler being flipped over are things that just blew me and the audience away. Speaking of the 18-wheeler, that entire sequence is one of my favourite in all of cinema. I remember seeing the trailers and knowing that the Batpod was going to make an appearance in the movie, and I kept waiting and waiting for it to show up, and when it finally does, and how they introduce it. I don’t think I’ve ever smiled so hard during a movie. Gotta be one of the most “Batman” moments ever. Then the showdown between Batman and the Joker on the street – you know the one, HIT ME!!! Which ends with the reveal that Commissioner Gordon isn’t dead after all. Just next level movie making stuff. Dark, gritty, grounded are three words that surrounded this movie, it’s what Nolan built this franchise on. He took a character and moulded him the way he saw fit, and he didn’t rely on heavy CGI, insane action sequences to do so. When you think back to The Dark Knight, there isn’t much action to be had, in fact, for a summer blockbuster that just so happens to be a comic book movie, there is very little. His take on the Caped Crusader was so radical, that at first people didn’t know how to react. Since this trilogy, we have gotten another depiction of this character, which is more comic book like than Nolan’s approach. In Batman v. Superman and Justice League we see Batman fighting aliens from other worlds and teaming up with the worlds strongest heroes, that was not the reality in which Nolan’s universe took place. At the end of the day, I can never decide which version I like best. Scorn by critics alike, Ben Affleck’s Batman or “Batfleck” is incredible. People tend to forget that comic book characters are malleable. They can be shaped and formed however someone sees fit. Dark and gritty or fun and light. They can be part of a shared universe or not at all. These aren’t the things that make these movies special, it’s the vision, and having an idea about these characters that will, in the end, make them memorable. I say this because what followed Nolan’s Batman franchise was Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel movie, where you could tell from the trailers that it had a definite Nolan influence. Man of Steel turned out to be the greatest Superman movie ever made, and one of the best comic book movies made to date. People were thrown off about his interpretation of this beloved hero, but it was his take, just like Nolan’s take on Batman. The new Superman is just so different from Richard Donner’s 70’s hero, that people believed it was totally wrong. They can’t see that these characters can be whatever we want them to be, and if you can’t see where the artist is coming from, doesn’t mean the artist is wrong.
It all started with the legendary Batman Begins, at the end of the movie where they tease the Clown Prince of Crime. Batman tells Commissioner Gordon that “he’ll look into it,” and that was our first mention of the Joker. When that happened fans everywhere were on pins and needles to find out who would be playing Batman’s greatest foe. So when Heath Ledger was pinned as the Joker, the world didn’t really know what to think. He was a heartthrob, known for Brokeback Mountain and 10 Things I Hate About You. People were on the fence about the whole thing, they wanted this to be right, and some people didn’t think it was a great fit. Well we all know how that turned out, not only did Heath give us the greatest comic book performance we have ever seen, he even won an Oscar for his role. We all know the tragedy that comes with this movie, sadly Heath died shortly before the films premiere.
Some men just want to watch the world burn. Words can’t really describe how I feel about the Heath situation, for so many reasons. His performance is hauntingly beautiful, where it’s almost put a curse on this character because I just don’t see anyone ever topping it. There will be other interpretations no doubt, there’s already been one, but something about his is just magical. Here’s the other thing, if Heath doesn’t die, I don’t really know what happens over at WB. I know Nolan always had his vision for his Batman trilogy, but if he’s alive, there’s no way he’s not part of the final installment of the franchise. Maybe it keeps going. There’s no way we don’t get to see him in this iconic role again. It’s saddens me to say that, because it sounds selfish, but the way we leave his character, just hanging and laughing hysterically because he believes he has beaten the Batman. I just have always wanted more from this Joker, I want to know what happens to him, why he’s never mentioned again. I know these are all unanswerable questions, it’s just every time I watch The Dark Knight, this is always something that crosses my mind. One of films biggest “what-ifs” because I personally think the DCEU might not be where it is today if he were still alive. There was just to much story to flesh out with his character. I always dreamed of WB releasing never before footage or a scene of the Joker, maybe we will get something this week, it’s a pipe dream, but a man can dream.
The movie flows pretty flawlessly, I’ll admit though, the ending does get a little cloudy and messy. I just don’t believe everything that happens, from the ferry scene and the cell phone stuff. Something just seems off about that bit of the movie, but that is a serious nit-pick. Everyone is sitting atop apex mountain. Nolan, Bale, Caine, Eckhart, Ledger, everyone is firing on all cylinders. Comic book movies just aren’t written like this, the screenplay is just brilliant. Comic book movies didn’t tackle things like politics and and philosophical discussion that comes with being a hero and a villain. The interrogation scene, is one of the best Batman/Joker confrontations just not in the movies, but in all of history as well. Joker knows that Batman has one rule, and the way he manipulates and deceives Batman is incredible.
Harvey, Harvey, Harvey Dent. I’m so bittersweet about how they handled this amazing villain. The way he is introduced. I remember my first viewing and when Batman walks into his warehouse, and realizing that Rachel is about to die, it really made you think. It’s such a powerful moment, and happens with the voice over of Rachel telling Bruce that she is going to marry Harvey Dent. Within Nolan’s trilogy it’s by far the most vulnerable we see Bruce Wayne, he is crushed that she is gone, because he believes she was going to wait for him. Two-Face is one of many iconic Batman rogues, and I know when they were making this film they didn’t know what was going to happen to Heath, but again it’s a real shame that they killed off Two-Face at the end, because I think there was so much more to explore with him. They could have adapted The Long Halloween or another great Two-Face story.
What more can I say about this masterpiece of cinema. From Hans Zimmer epic score, to the cinematography, the acting, and everything in-between. It not only helped shape the landscape for movies but how the audience and Academy perceive them as well . The backlash that followed when The Dark Knight wasn’t nominated for best picture, ultimately led to the Academy expanding the best picture nominee category. It’s hard to imagine another comic book movie taking up the mantle of greatest of all time. Because this is more than just a comic book movie, it feels so real. There aren’t any super powers or even super heroes involved. That’s why it’s so special, Nolan was able to tap into something unique and make this so grounded, that it was just about a man in a mask and terrorist clown. It’s everything around that, that makes this a truly special piece of film. The Dark Knight didn’t just set the standard for comic book movies today, but it set a standard for movie making itself. It will never grow old and will be a timeless classic. It’s easy to forget why this movie is so special, because so many comic book movies have been made since. But for me, this is always looked at as a crime thriller-drama, that just so happens to have a man in a batsuit chasing a man dressed up like a clown throughout a city. These two are truly destined to do this forever.
94 million dollars. That’s what Justice League made its opening weekend at the domestic box-office. Avengers on the other hand made 208 million all the way back in 2008. It’s one of the most successful movies ever made, and highly regarded as one of the best CBM ever made. Fans alike are in an uproar over Justice League as word has been spreading about WB studios completely and utterly destroying Zack Snyder’s original cut and vision. So all in all, not a good weekend for WB and the DCEU. Now is it time for them to seriously consider hitting the panic button and rebooting all of this? Personally I don’t think so, that would be a terrible move on their part because if you take fragments from Justice League and other DCEU you definitely have something there. Yes it’s not as concrete as the MCU, but that is WB’s problem. It’s time for them to stop trying to “catch up” with Marvel and just do their own thing. That’s how we got into this whole mess in the first place…..
The Success of Christopher Nolan’s Batman Trilogy
Remember back in 1997 when Batman & Robin was released and people said it ruined comic book movies (for the time being) it was a simpler time then, no shared universes, no big summer blockbusters, in 1997 comic book movies just weren’t all the rage they are today. Superman was still dormant after the successful run of the Christopher Reeves movies and Tim Burton’s Batman’s were the talk of the town in the early 90s. When Nolan decided it was time to bring back the Bat in 2005 with Batman Begins, people didn’t really know what to think. Myself included, but I was young and stupid back then and it wowed critics and audiences alike. The new grittier, darker, grounded take on the Caped Crusader really resonated with people and the start of a trilogy was born. At this time there were no big Superhero franchises really occurring other than the Spider-Man trilogy which fell flat towards the end, and the X-Men trilogy that met the same fate. People didn’t think too much of comic book movies during this time. Teasing us with the Joker at the end of Batman Begins well three years later we got him in what I regard as the greatest sequel ever made, The Dark Knight. It made over a billion dollars at the box-office and Heath Ledger even won an Oscar for his portrayal as the Clown Prince of Crime. This trilogy finally finished in 2012 with The Dark Knight Rises which was another smash hit, these movies were met with the highest praise from fans and critics. So WB decided it was time to cash in on other DC Superheroes. They attached Zack Snyder to bring to life a Superman story in Man of Steel. They thought it would be reasonable to build their own universe and bring the same tone and themes from The Dark Knight trilogy and cast it upon these other DC heroes. Questions loomed whether Christian Bale would come back to play Batman for this universe and when he was out, they decided that Man of Steel would be their jumping off point for the DCEU, and that’s where it all began…..
The Success of The MCU
“Tony Stark, I’m hear to talk to you about the Avengers initiative…..” Are words that I and countless others will never forget. Those words were uttered back in 2008, a time when audiences weren’t too sure what a “post-credits scene” meant. We were unfamiliar with comic book universes, hell most of us were unfamiliar with Iron Man himself. But still this started the MCU, and well the rest is as you know is history. Billions of dollars and 17 movies later the MCU is stronger than ever and is still going full steam ahead. In the first four years, they released five movies, all leading up the the highly anticipated Avengers. They had built a solid foundation for their shared cinematic universe, something us fans were not accustomed too. Meanwhile over at DC, they were still going strong with the Batman Nolan trilogy, but they had ZERO plans of following suit, and starting a cinematic universe for their heroes. The Nolan Batman trilogy ended the same year the Avengers came out, and once the Avengers dropped, people realized, that all their movie going experience over the last 4 years had finally payed off! They got too see a real Superhero team up movie, and not only that, it was quite the spectacle. In that moment, WB knew they needed to follow suit and even other Hollywood studios knew that a “shared universe” was the way of the future. This is where things get messy for DC and Warner Brothers. because well Marvel was already six movies deep, built this incredible vast shared universe, and well DC was at ground zero. Even today, as I’m writing this, the DCEU has only put out FIVE movies, and most of those movies have been met with mixed reactions. The biggest problem with DC is they kind of want to be like Marvel, well here’s the thing, don’t be. Do it your own way, you have so many incredible characters and stories to tell, that you don’t need to follow Marvels plan. Just put out great movies, with great directors and tell us those amazing stories we have been reading our entire lives. DC feels the need to play “catch up” well you can’t. When the Avengers came out, WB had no plans for a Justice League movie, that was not on anyones mind, no Batman was planned, no Green Lantern and not even Wonder Woman. The only movie they had coming out of the DC pipeline was Man of Steel. That being said they were so far behind from the get-go that attempting to even do that was so nonsensical and studio heads should have known better. Which leads me into my next segment.
The Reaction To The DCEU Movies So Far
The year is 2013, Nolan’s TDK trilogy is no longer with us, and DC is using Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel has the launching point for the new DC world. I remember at the time, I wasn’t the biggest of Superman fan, I really didn’t know a whole lot about the character except for what I had read in some comics. The trailers started pouring i n and I was hooked instantly. I was intrigued with the new outlook and take on the classic character. Don’t get me wrong, Superman is a very difficult character to bring to life on the big screen. His essentially unstoppable so anyone you pin against him, is no match, his powers are unlimited. Henry Cahill was tapped to play the Man of Steel and he looked like he was literally ripped from the comic books. The rest of the cast was incredible with Michael Shannon, Amy Adams Diane Lane and Kevin Costner. They were trying a new take, and it wasn’t met with the best reactions. They went with TDK template, and they changed his mythos and overall character and it was met with some serious backlash. They wanted to ground his character is philosophy and Snyder certainly had a vision for him. Man of Steel just kind of fell short of expectations and more importantly didn’t do what Iron Man did all the way back in 2008, which was begin a “shared universe.” Personally I loved Man of Steel, from the cinematography to Hans Simmer’s epic score, I fell in love with this Superman, just it wasn’t the start to the new DC universe WB wanted. After the slow start with Man of Steel, WB decided to kick things into high gear, and announced Batman v. Superman and everyone lost their goddamn minds. I remember it was at Comic-Con and they gave the Batman speech to Superman at the end of The Dark Knight Returns, and I thought to myself, “if they pull this thing off in live action, it will be the greatest thing ever made.” Shortly after, they pinned Ben Affleck to play the Caped Crusader, and the internet was very torn. From the get go, I have always believed Affleck would kill it has Batman, and he has honestly been the best thing in the DCEU so far. Later they grabbed Gal Gadot to play Wonder Woman, and no one was on board with that decision. Only being in a few Fast and Furious movies, people didn’t know if she had the acting chops to play this role. That’s all in the past now, because Gal was born to play the warrior princess. Everything behind Batman v Superman, from the trailers, the ads, posters, seemed like this was going to be a home run. Then it was released………..
Shortly after the release of Batman v Superman fans were divided, critics were firmly set in place and executives over at WB were dumbfounded about their situation. They just released a movie with both Batman and Superman and even Wonder Woman, and boy it was not met with a positive reaction. I think this was the start of the downfall for the DCEU, they had this “masterpiece” and they just really blew it. They tried to cram 10 pounds of shit into a 5 pound bag. Essentially they tried to tell, “The Dark Knight Returns” “Introduction to Wonder Woman” and “The Death of Superman” all in one movie. The last 40 minutes of BvS is just a straight up cluster you know what. The movie needed to be Batman vs. Superman, you have so much source material for this epic showdown and I think they really blew it. It wasn’t a great fight, nor lived up to the hype. That could have honestly been 15 of the greatest minutes in cinematic history. I personally think they let us fans down with this movie, I know there are a ton of people out there that love this movie, that love Zack Snyder’s vision. There’s nothing wrong with that, I just think we deserved a much better showdown between Batman and Superman. Not to mention they shoehorned Wonder Woman into this movie, because again WB was trying to play “catch up.”
Now we had another DCEU movie coming out in 2016, Suicide Squad, which was put together with duck tape and glue. Script was written in 6 weeks, and this movie ended up being a complete and utter disaster. The trailers for this movie were incredible, I couldn’t wait and I haven’t watched Suicide Squad since opening night. Biggest take away, was obviously reintroducing The Joker, making Jared Leto a soccer hooligan. Stick to what you know, don’t drastically change this iconic character, especially after what Heath Ledger did in TDK. Leto was just okay, there wasn’t enough of him, and now his future in the DCEU is up in the air. Harley Quinn was the best part of the movie, Margot Robbie was born to play her, and I really hope she comes back, because I think in a better movie, under better direction, she could probably give a Ledger type performance in a future DCEU movie. So 3 movies in a row for WB and the DCEU and three strikes. You’re out right? Well thank the lord for Patty Jenkins and Wonder Woman, because they were up next. We waited almost a year for the next DCEU movie to hit theatres and it was worth the wait. Wonder Woman, the most successful film of the year (so far), 92 percent of Rotten Tomatoes, the highest prior to that was 55% for Man of Steel. People thought this could be the turn around WB needed, Wonder Woman felt fresh, felt like Patty Jenkins had passion behind this project, that is wasn’t rushed and it was just a simple origin story movie. It’s exactly what the doctor ordered. The DCEU was saved! Or so we thought. Well then the marketing campaign started for Justice League and well we all know how this turned out. I already wrote a ton of Justice League, I’ll say this, it’s a bummer what happened to Zack’s movie, that isn’t right, I hope we see his cut of the movie because it does sound amazing. But other than that, it’s honestly just water under the bridge at this point, nothing us fans can do, except bicker and complain on the internet.
What I think WB Needs To Do Going Forward
Batfleck is out, it sucks, but I have come to terms with it. Worst part is, I think Matt Reeves is going to make a special Batman solo movie and only Ben Affleck should star in it. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe he will stick this thing out for one last movie, his solo movie, and if that day comes and he’s in the Matt Reeves solo Batman movie. MY GOD.
Warner Brothers. here’s the thing. STOP, stop trying to be like Marvel. Stop trying to play catch up, just go out your own pace. Stop trying to force these things on us. Great stories take time to tell, just like in the comics. The best comic writers didn’t pile so much shit into each issue, they took their time and flushed great stories out over many issues. It’s time to shift focus not on team ups but solo movies. We have Aquaman coming out next December. Let James Wan do his thing with this movie. Don’t mettle, don’t interfere, you don’t bring on a brilliant film maker like Wan and then make him follow a strict guideline. Maybe sprinkle in a cameo of some sorts. Cyborg? Here’s my thing with Cyborg, he was great, I wanted to see more. Does he need his own solo movie? No! But he can be the League member who pops up in everyone else’s solo flicks. Ray Fisher is the least famous cast member and probably the least expensive, so use that to your advantage. Cyborg is the jack of all trades, he can do so much, so why not have him come help everyone out. That makes so much sense to me. If he sticks with fans and the audiences after a few cameos then yes, green light that solo movie. Find directors and people that are super passionate about these characters and want to tell their stories, that want to bring these characters to life in a grand fashion. You have one year to figure all this out, because you are back at square one. There are so many great stories out there about these characters, more stories than you could imagine, pick one and adapt it, it’s not rocket science. Personally base most of these solo movies off the New 52 comic book run. Geoff Johns wrote a ton of it and he’s the man over looking the DCEU, this isn’t hard to figure out. Don’t make a Joker origin story movie, we don’t need that. We don’t need a Suicide Squad 2, or Batgirl film. Stick to the basics, stick to the basics, stick to the basics. Also call in the big guns, and I mean Dwayne Johnson. Get that man in the Shazam movie, make him badass, and make him a big part of Justice League 2. He dines’t need a solo movie. Black Adam and Shazam are like peas and carrots, they belong together. The Rock saves franchise, use him while you can and before he bails. I would rather wait a little longer and get great stories, incredible movies and successful ones, then have WB rush all of this out and make the DCEU as forgettable as it’s slowly becoming. DC fans deserve much better than what has transpired thus far, I know and I think deep down WB knows it.
Something I’ve learned recently, don’t listen to anyone, if you want to see a movie go see it and form your own opinion about it, but clearly still read my review.
This is something I need to say before I get into the review!
Ever since Nick Fury was waiting inside Tony Starks condo at the end credits of IronMan, all the way back in 2008, I knew I wanted nothing more than a Justice League movie in my life. Weird starting a Justice League review with an insight at Marvel, but well they certainly had a game plan all the way back in 2008 and here we are 9 years later, and their plan is still in motion. The DCEU on the other hand, hasn’t had the same luck, the financial success or the critics appraise as we have come accustomed to in the MCU. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy the MCU movies as much as the next person, but when it comes to the heroes over at DC, well I know more about those characters and who they are and what they stand for, then most people on planet Earth. I love each and everyone of the heroes for DC and do so in a unique way for each one. So when it was announced a few years ago that we would FINALLY be seeing all these people come together one the big screen I was a little more than excited. Even with the mixed reviews with BvS, which I have come to grips with. Overall I just don’t like it, not the manner in which the movie was made, I think Zack Snyder has a very creative and stylish way of doing his movies, but they just tried way to hard to keep up with Marvel, it ended up diluting the product. I put that all behind me, because I knew the people over at WB heard what the complaints from both the fans and the critics were and tried a little bit of “course correction.” Which is something that was needed, I’m all for a bare knuckle boxer Batman, but he doesn’t need to hate the entire world, because that isn’t who Batman is as character, and they certainly needed to adjust Superman’s character arc, because he is suppose to stand for hope and kind of be the ultimate good guy/good person, and they haven’t really shown that to date. They hit a grand slam this summer with Wonder Woman, and it appeared that DC was once again King of the castle, even if only for a short period of time. Going into Justice League, I knew a few things; first, I knew this movie would get ripped apart by critics and it would divide fans alike. There are “DC Fanboys” and there are “Marvel Fanboys” who love to prick and pry on every little detail about each others movies. Critics just kind of don’t like Zack Snyder, his style, the way he shoots movies. The fact he kind of likes grittiness and brooding and things to be maybe a little more complex then they have to be. That being said, for the most part, everyone knew that half way through production, he had to leave Justice League because of the tragic events, that was his daughters suicide. It happened before the movie began production, and he thought he could work through it, but he couldn’t. So now hearing people shitting on this guy, who went through the hardest thing a parent can go through, just isn’t right. The guy is a genius and brilliant film maker, and if you don’t happen to like his style, then so be it, but don’t ostracize the man. Clearly from the get go, his heart was never fully on board with Justice League, even though Zack himself is such a fan boy and loves this stuff probably more than the majority of people sitting in the theatres this weekend to watch his movie. I don’t always agree with his work, and I would have taken Batman v. Superman in a million other directions but that’s all in the past, and from everything that I saw up to his departure looked so promising for this movie. Not to mention after BvS came out and the script and pre-production was already in full force for Justice League, the execs at Warner Bros realized that something needed to be done, and things needed to change. Imagine this big of a blockbuster weeks before shooting, that the script needs to be lighter, the movie needs to be shorter, and pretty much whatever you had done so far, may or may not be thrown out. At one point this movie was rumoured to be almost 3 hours, it’s actually 1 hour 59 minutes, so where the fuck is the other 40 minutes of this movie? In steps in Joss Whedon to finish off the movie, do a little rewriting and could they have picked a guy who is pretty much the polar opposite of Zack Snyder? Like come on WB, that was not going to mesh well at all. Pretty much like vinegar and oil at this point, it’s pretty apparent in the movie as well, if you know these kinds of things, and of course geeks like me do. I’m not going to say Joss ruined the movie, because he didn’t, I’ll get more into that in my actual review, but that was never going to work. I thought it could, I think I even wrote a blog post about it. I was wrong and when I think about it, I should have known back then, but I guess I had Avengers on my mind, because Joss is responsible for directing the first two Avengers movies. I just honestly feel bad for Zack Snyder at this point, he’s gone through enough, and I would have loved to see his full version and vision for this thing, maybe we will on the directors cut. The next big sore thumb going on during production. The Batfleck saga. Imagine your star just wanted nothing to do with the franchise and wants out more than anything. I love the Batfleck, Ben is the definitive Batman, I know people love Christian Bale, but if you read enough Batman comics like I have, you’ll realized that he is the Batman. The Nolan movies are so incredible and The Dark Knight is truly a wonder that will forever stand the test of time, but Ben Affleck is Batman. So it breaks my heart to know we will never see him wear the cape and cowl ever again, because it’s just not happening, and I understand why he wants out, he has a lot of outside stuff going on in his life. He is battling demons and I think when he signed on, Zack Snyder might have pitched “The Dark Knight Returns” to him and who wouldn’t want to be the Batman for that movie, and the final product certainly was not it. Then came the backlash and the awful reviews for BvS, the Sadfleck meme and everything else in between. His own movie ‘Live By Night’ completely bombed and I think that really broke him. He puts so much into his work, especially when it’s his own work, and I just know in my heart, he ain’t coming back. Which sucks because I can’t wait to see what Matt Reeves brings to the table for the Batman franchise, so that must have been awkward and just over putting on the set. Ben is a professional and he’s really good in Justice League, he certainly didn’t mail it in or take a back seat, but still at the same time, there as just constant bad press and bad behind the scenes things going on mainly because of Affleck over the past year. It’s warranted but that would never happen over at Marvel, I’ll just say that. So like I said going in, I knew this movie would have problems, because it’s been having problems since the very beginning, and if you didn’t realize that, you just don’t pay attention to this stuff so it won’t even affect your judgement on the film, or you did and you can’t allow to affect your judgement. I’ve never seen another film this grande in scale switch directors half way through, the amount of re-shoots was record breaking, and not to mention moustache gate involving Henry Cavill. Justice League was simply doomed from the get go, no matter what, everyone has a bad taste in their mouth still from BvS, it’s like a bad fart that just won’t go away. I have no idea what WB is going to do next, I know I’m excited to see more of these characters and now I want to share my thoughts on Justice League!
First things first, I saw this movie 3 times in a 36-hour span. Does that tell you anything about how I feel about this movie? I’ll start the review by saying I totally understand where the critics and some fans are coming from with this film. JusticeLeague is a flawed one, but all in all I think the good (which there is a lot of) totally outweighs the bad of the movie. Like I mentioned above, if you bothered reading it, some critics and a lot of fans were skeptical going in JusticeLeague, because of the track record of the DCEU this far, especially those films made by Zack Snyder. I waited till the end of the weekend to write the review, because I wanted to see box-office numbers, and it’s being reported that Justice League is going to make less than 100 million dollars at the box-office this weekend. Pulling in 96 million, is a total and complete disaster for the studio, and we are about to see a major shake up. The next DC movie is slated to be released in 13 months when Aquaman comes to theatres next December. I have no idea what kind of changes are coming, but I know for certain Justice League will be Affleck’s final time wearing the cape and cowl. I just wanted to get that off my chest before I dive into the movie.
So after the events of Batman v. Superman, everyone knows Superman is dead and Batman is trying to come to grips with his guilt and try to turn a new leaf. When it appears that a threat from far away is on the horizon, he takes it on himself to recruit a group of “warriors” to defend the human race from extinction. We got our first taste of Wonder Woman in BvS and we got our full dose this summer with her solo flick. One thing this movie does really well is the characters, their introductions, the banter and chemistry between the team is really special. I knew that would be the case the entire cast of the League is great, Batman (Ben Affleck), Superman (Henry Cavill), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Mamoa), Flash (Ezra Miller) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher). People give DC a hard time, because unlike the Avengers who all had their own solo flicks before teaming up to save the world, we got a good taste of who these characters were, and became very familiar with them. I didn’t mind the whole no solo flicks before the team up, as long as they did a good enough job introducing the three new members of the league in this movie. I would say they did a pretty good job, and now rumblings are coming out of all the scenes that were cut from the film, including a bunch of Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg stuff, which is super disheartening. They all get their own “hero” moment, which was incredible to see, there’s one scene involving Aquaman, it’s kind of like his true introduction, when we get to see Atlantis, which just makes me laugh and smile overtime it comes on the screen. James Wan is going to direct the hell out of his solo movie. I want to see more from all of these characters, and that should have been one of the big goals going into production. Jason Mamoa kind of looks like he isn’t from this world to begin with, so I thought it made sense for him to play Aquaman. This kind of reminded me of a little Oceans 11, you know going around recruiting a team, different characters, witty banter, it all work really well. Whenever all of these characters were on screen together, I couldn’t take my eyes off it. What they do next is beyond me at this point, I expect in the next few weeks a lot of information will be coming out about future plans and future movies, even maybe new cast members. Everyone kills it in their roles, they did such a great job casting the League. Ray Fisher was my favourite I think, he really had a great character arc from start to finish in this, and I really love the character of Cyborg. Flash and Aquaman are also so cool, and they need solo movies like now.
Now lets start with some of the mess that is Justice League. This movie certainly has its problems, but several re-writes, two directors, changing the landscape and the tone of the DCEU as a whole. The CGI in this movie is not great, especially in certain places and certain characters. The big baddie of Justice League, Steppenwolf, is 100 percent CGI. They did not have anyone do motion capture for his character, which I thought was a massive mistake. So essentially he’s never in the movie, he is rendered in afterwards, and in some parts of the movie, he just looks awful. Like this is the Justice League movie, you can’t have your villain not even appear physically on the screen at least once. Ciara Hinds who voices him does an excellent job, like his voice is menacing and he has some pretty badass moments. This was just another serviceable bad guy, for our heroes to punch and he only talks in depositions, and this just wasn’t who I wanted our heroes to take on, especially in the Justice League movie. This is suppose to be big, and grande in size and scale, like this is the kind of movie some people have been waiting their whole lives for, and it just didn’t feel like the Avengers. This feels like the movie before the “movie” you know. The build up, we didn’t even get to see the big-baddie Darkseid, who I wanted to see so badly. Overall, they really dropped the ball for the villain in this movie, you can’t have him be 100 CGI, especially with how far motion-capture has come recently. I just have a problem, with looking at a scene and just know NOTHING is there, just like Steppenwolf, he’s not actually in the scene, the actors are looking at nothing. There’s a few shots of our heroes, and you just know its a green screen behind them, and it was just bothering me a lot. Because it was so noticeable. All movies, especially comic book movies have CGI, so it’s difficult to talk about it, because they all the do the same thing, but the CGI in Justice League in certain moments was just really bad. And that upsets me because this is your most important movie, and it felt like they just said “fuck it” in certain scenes, and that isn’t right. This is your baby and should have been cared for, like this was the end of the world. There was so much riding on this movie and it came up short.
I’m not going to go into any spoilers or easter eggs because that’s not fair, but there are quite a few, and some are pretty wicked. The two post credit scenes are two of the best ever, but after the third time I walked out of the theatre I realized, they might not even matter. Because I have no idea what is in store for the DCEU and all of these characters. I don’t think they will hit the panic button the be exact, but my god someones hand is hovering over it. I had a lot of fun with this movie, regardless of what I have written above, I think it’s just more frustration at this point. Part of me doesn’t believe it deserves a 40 percent on Rotten Tomatoes but another part of me does. I’m very conflicted, but I love all of these characters so much that seeing them together on screen, I think outweighs the bad. I want too see them team up again, and I want the Justice League movie we the fans deserve, we deserve the big, grande spectacle that is the Justice League, this was suppose to be a really big deal, and this movie should have made 150 million dollars this past weekend, but it didn’t. WB needs to take a long look in the mirror and ask themselves, if they want to continue with this. If so, they need to find the right people to anchor this ship, because it looks like Zack Snyder is out the door, and thats a shame, because I wanted to see his vision for this movie. He may be a flawed film-maker, but he’s a great visionary film-maker. One of the best to be working today, I have no clue who can step in and right this ship, but something needs to be done quickly, before even the die hard fans like myself, finally just give up. Avengers Infinity War comes out in May, if I’m WB I’m taking a long hard look at that movie and telling myself, this is how you do a team up movie, and you need to start doing what they are doing. DC has all the best characters, their heroes and villains are vastly superior to that over at Marvel, we need to start getting the movies and the stories told that we deserve. It’s that simple. I’m just exhausted at this point, but in conclusion, I’m standing behind this movie, I hope and pray we get Zack Snyder’s cut, and we see the 40 minutes that was essentially cut from the movie. Ben Affleck it was fun my man, you did your best and I hope you had fun, you will always be my Batman, it’s a shame we will never get a solo Batfleck movie. Justice League isn’t as bad as some are making it out to be, but at the same time, this movie is not for everyone, plain and simple.
Check ya later,
Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Justice League = 80/100 – That hurts me
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Ben Affleck was born to play Batman.
Warner Brothers. really saved the best for last didn’t they? Has any comic book movie been under more pressure, and had more going on behind the scenes than any that have come before it. There is a TON of pressure on Justice League, from fans, critics, box-office success, and just over-all people being happy and this finally leading the DCEU in the right direction. All I want is for this movie to be successful, I love all of these characters, we deserve a great Justice League movie, and I think this was a really fantastic last trailer. Things are finally taking shape and really coming together for this movie, and this trailer showed us that, and I think the die hard fans will be pleased, but I also think those that were on the fence about this movie will come back around and be intrigued enough to be in the theatre opening weekend.
There is a ton of new footage here and plenty of stuff we have already seen. I feel like we got the Joss Whedon effect in the trailer, in terms of everyone seems to be happy and smiling and even The Dark Knight himself was cracking jokes. It feels a little lighter in tone, but it does remain to have that dark presence, and this still feels like a Zack Snyder movie and that is totally okay with me. This will still be his movie, but Joss came on just to like decorate the cake. Zack baked it, but now it just needs its finishing touches. 40 more days until we all finally get to sit down and experience this for ourselves, and I’m just pretty nervous for everyone involved, like I said above, there is just a lot riding on the success of this movie.
Once again I think Jason Momoa and Ezra Miller were the highlights, they seem to really stand out from everyone else in the league. Aquaman might already be the coolest superhero we have ever seen in a comic book movie. The man is a rock star and everything we have seen so far of him has just blown me away. Ezra Miller will truly be the comic relief for this film, and he’s just got some great comedic timing. The visuals are simply stunning, the shot of Batman standing in front of the Batwing was so badass. We all knew the visuals would be top notch, it is a Zack Snyder movie after all, but now with 3 trailers, I think they just got this right. The trailer proved to us, and it was Warner Brothers. telling us that, it’s okay fans, we got this. I couldn’t be happier we didn’t get to see Superman, and the dream sequence was the perfect way to tease him. We don’t need that big reveal in the trailers, that was really well done by the marketing team.
So buckle up because this movie is going to be a roller coasting and November 17th needs to just get here already, because this wait has been killing me.
You know a trailer is pretty dope, when you have to watch it on your phone a few times and it still tickles your fancy. Been waiting a long time for the newest JusticeLeague trailer to drop, and it didn’t disappoint. Pretty much perfect if you ask me, and ever since the colossal disaster that was BvS & SuicideSquad, Warner Bros. and the DCEU have been turning this ship around.
First things first, the past few days, it’s been rumoured that my boy the Batfleck is leaving the cape and cowl. He’s got some serious personal problems, so at the end of the day, it’s just a movie and fans should understand if he wanted to step away. But today at San Dieg Comic Con, he nipped those claims in the butt himself and promised fans that he isn’t going anyway. That’s a huge sigh of relief for me anyways. He’s the best part of the DCEU, and it really needs him to stick around.
Back to the trailer, everything about it was really well done. I’m glad they didn’t show too much, or ruin any big surprises. Still no Superman, and they haven’t really shown off the villain Steppenwolf either. The less we know going into this movie the better. The Flash is hilarious, the little gag at the end of the trailer about everyone just vanishing was fantastic and it’s so true. He’s got a great sense of comedic timing, and will give the DCEU a much needed comedic boost. Aquaman continues to be a rock-star, he actually came on stage today at SDCC playing his trident like a guitar, so Jason Mamoa remains to be a beauty. Like he surfed on a Parademon, what more do you want from the man. Even Cyborg looked way better than he did in the first trailer. So hopefully that will shut some people up that were complaining about the CGI months ago.
Happy we got to see Alfred in this. He seems to be playing a vital role in the movie and well I’m going to come out and say this, he’s the best Alfred we’ve ever had. He didn’t nearly have enough screen time in BvS. His Penguin reference was also interesting, that’s two Batman villains the DCEU has teased now, with The Riddler and now The Penguin. Commissioner Gordon appears again, in what seems like his only scene of the movie, but it’s shaping up to be one hell of a scene.
Listen WB has a ton riding on this movie. But it feels and looks so much different than anything that has come before it. I mean that in the best way possible. I think Zack Synder and company really listened to fans and changed up not only the tone of the movie, but added in some colour as well. I’m sure we will get one last trailer in the up coming months, but I’m sold on this movie and I’m sure everyone else is too. Let’s just hope Ben Affleck isn’t pulling a fast one on us, because I need the Batfleck in my life.
You know the drill by now, here are episodes 42-23!!
42 – Trial. Season 3, Episode 12. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Paul Dini
So many of Batman’s villains, all in one place! Batman is on trial people, after the new district attorney feels that he is actually a burden on Gotham. He promotes more crime and ends up doing more harm than good. It’s really awesome seeing his entire rogues gallery interacting with one another, and almost working together. They all want one thing, to see Batman go down, but not before finding out his true identity. One thing about this episode is, it sort of feels rushed. Having all these great charters together, you could have maybe stretched this out to be a two-parter. A few episodes in this section suffer from that same fate. Joker playing the judge is actually hilarious, and it turns out that Batman is responsible for a lot of the villains in Gotham. I hope that the writers of The Batman live action take a few notes from this episode, seeing how they want a lot of his rogues gallery to appear in the up coming live action movie! Grade B
“I just wanna say, if there was no Batman, there’d be no Joker, and I’d have never met my Puddin’. Thank you, Batman.” – Harley Quinn
41 – Catwalk. Season 3, Episode 18. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Paul Dini
Selina Kyle is bored, she’s got nothing going on in her life. No longer dressing up like a cat and robbing people, Catwoman is no longer a part of her life. Until the Ventriloquist wonders if she still had an itch to suit up. Well guess, she does. So when he asks her to steal something from Gotham socialite Veronica Vreeland, Scarface ends up double crossing her. When she’s stealing one thing, they are doing another job. I just love the interaction between these two villains, and I enjoy watching a vulnerable Catwoman, as she is trying to decide what’s the best life for her. It’s always interesting with the Ventriloquist, because when Scarface usually goes bye bye, it’s a weird and emotional bit. He’s just a puppet, but he’s more than that to his creator. Always found that intriguing. Grade B
“Now we’re gonna found out if there really is more than one way to skin a cat.” – Scarface
40 – What Is Reality? Season 2, Episode 20. Director: Dick Sebast, Story: Marty Isenberg
Another great Riddler story! This time he sends Gotham PD a nice little present. A virtual reality video game, and when the commish gets stuck inside, it’s up to Batman to save him. This is a fantastic episode and one that really showcases Riddler’s intellectual side and his passion for riddles. Watching Batman battle wits with The Riddler is always a pleasure to watch, people can forget just how smart Batman is, he’s more than just a brawler. I always thought this episode would make for a great live action bit, and would be a great way to showcase The Riddler on the big screen. With the Riddler Easter egg we got in BvS, he might show up sooner rather than later! Grade B
“Careful, vigilante, you know what they say. Curiosity killed the Bat”. – The Riddler
39 – The Strange Secret of Bruce Wayne. Season 2, Episode 9. Director: Frank Paur, Story: David Wise
Man, they really screwed the pooch on this one. This would have made the best two part episode, but instead, sadly they crammed it all into one. Dr. Hugo Strange has built a machine that sees people’s thoughts. When Bruce Wayne goes to visit, well the good doctor finds out his secret identity. I love Hugo Strange, he was so incredible in Batman: Arkham City, and he’s only ever in this one episode, which is another failure on its own. When he ransoms off the video tape to The Joker, Two-Face and the Penguin, they are licking their chops to get their hands on this tape. That’s right, these three villains are in this episode, together, sharing scenes and it’s great. Another reason why I felt that this episode was rushed. You can’t have these three guys come together for only 5 minutes, it’s just a tease. At one point Two-Face and Penguin pull out guns and the Joker pulls out flowers and it’s so funny. In the end, Batman is able to pull one over on Strange, in a really clever way. It’s just a shame we really only get one episode like this, honestly it’s one of my favourites. Grade B+
“That’s absurd! I know Bruce Wayne. If he’s Batman, I’m the King of England.” – Two-Face
38 – Sideshow. Season 3, Episode 10. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Michael Reaves
The start of this episode!!! Croc on a train, chained up and the guards are laughing at him. Well until he tells them, that crocodiles have the strongest jaw and boom he’s free! Batman shows up and it’s pretty awesome how he hunts and tracks Croc through the woods, and well almost gets smashed by a giant rock (hopefully you get that reference). Croc stumbles across a band of misfit circus freaks, and they welcome him in with open arms. Obviously he lies about who he is and what he is doing in their neck of the woods. When Batman shows up, they think he’s the bad guy, until Croc shows his true colours. I remember this episode clear as day from my childhood, the fight on the water wheel at the end is something I’ll always remember from this show. It’s one of the very few episodes I actually remember watching as a child, so it holds a special place in my heart. Doesn’t hurt that it’s also a great episode. Grade B
“You said you could be yourself out here, remember? I guess that’s what I was doing. Being myself.” – Killer Croc
37 – Growing Pains. Season 4, Episode 8. Director: Atsuko Tanaka, Story: Paul Dini
The final appearance of Clay Face, is also his saddest episode. Such a troubled soul, and has some of the most emotional episodes this show has to offer. This is also a incredible character building episode for Tim Drake’s Robin. The run down is this, Robin meets a girl, who can’t seem to really remember to much about herself. Robin begins to develop feelings for her. But something is off with her, and he can’t seem to figure out what it is. She’s looking for someone, and her “father” is looking for her. Turns out it’s Clayface, and she’s just a part of him. When we last saw Clayface he fell into the water, but managed to create this girl to go off and find a cure. Robin is devastated when he finds out, that not only is she not real, that he can’t save her. It’s just really sad and emotional to see him find out that sometimes in life, things just don’t work out. The quote I attached to his episode sums it up perfectly. Batman knows all too well about being broken, and he can see the pain that Robin is going through, but he can’t do anything to ease his pain. One of the episodes I wish took place during the first three seasons. It’s a shame really.
“Sometimes there are no happy endings.” – Batman
36 – Sins of The Father. Season 4, Episode 2. Director: Curt Geda, Story: Rich Fogel
Tim Drake’s origin story. As we find ourselves without Dick Grayson being Batman’s sidekick. For the new Robin, they blended both Tim Drake and Jason Todd, both having unique characteristics, and compelling backstories. So the writers decided to go with the name Tim Drake, but he has parts of Jason Todd inside of him. When Tim’s dad goes missing and Two-Face is looking for him, Batman gets tangled up in this mess as well. I loved how they took a Batman villain and made him be a part of Robin’s origin. Am I fan of Robin being a little kid, absouletly not. It just made the show feel more childish, something I didn’t like about the revamp. But this is a great episode none the less, and one of the better episodes from the final season. Grade B
“Yeah, my dad used to work for old puke-face” Tim Drake
35 – On Leather Wings. Season 1, Episode 1. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Mitch Brian
There’s no better feeling, than when I put in season 1, disc 1, and the theme for ‘On Leather Wings’ starts playing. The start of the journey, and it’s a kick ass start. This is an all around fantastic episode. It certainly feels like the first episode also, with everyone out to get Batman, even Commissioner Gordon is unsure of the Cape Crusader at this point in the show. Harvey Dent is just the DA, and shows no signs of his alter ego, and even Batman feels like the new guy in town. I’ve always been a huge fan of the Man-Bat and they do him serious justice in his first episode. This is a rare episode that almost feels like it could be adaptive to live-action quite easily, just the way it looks and feels. It feels like such a classic Batman story, and there’s honestly no better way to start the show off. From Harvey and his S.W.A.T team attempting to take down Batman, from even the interactions between Batman and Alfred, I just love this episode so much. It’s honestly one of the Batman stories I’ll never forget. Grade B+
“I gather you’ve been reading, How to Make Friends and Influence People”. – Alfred
34 – Pretty Poison. Season 1, Episode 5. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Paul Dini
Harvey, Harvey, Harvey Dent. Was totally getting it on with Poison Ivy!!! What a dirty dog. These are the little things I love about this show. Poison Ivy’s first appearance in the show and I just really love this episode. She’s pissed because well Bruce Wayne and Harvey Dent destroyed a ecosystem to make room for well a prison. A little ironic if you ask me. But when they did this, they destroyed a very rare plant. So rare that Poison Ivy now holds the remaining one and she’s used it to create a deadly toxin. When she kisses Harvey after a date, he slips into a coma, and it’s up to his pal Bruce/Batman to save him! A few things I love. It shows just how close Bruce and Harvey were before his “accident” and just how good of a person he truly was. The whole Poison Ivy kiss thing too, well that craptastic Batman&Robin movie totally stole that move! I always get a kick out of Bullock interrogating the chef and asking him what he put in the chocolate mousse. Batman also fights a giant Venus Fly Trap, and that’s totally badass! I was always a huge fan of Poison Ivy in this show, they portrayed her so well and this just happens to be her best episode. GradeB+
“Batman. A late night rendezvous? To what do I owe the honour?” – Poison Ivy
33 – Legends of The Dark Knight. Season 4, Episode 19. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Robert Goodman
Three different Batman stories in one episode! Different animation styles and voices! This is a very special and unique episode to say the least. It takes all sorts of different elelments from the 80s and the 50s, as we see kids telling their take on the Dark Knight. We they are confronted by Firefly, it’s up to Batman to stop him. My favourite part is by far the Dark Knight Returns part. Seeing how that’s one of the greatest Batman stories of all time. I love his fight with the Mutant Leader. And love the actual animated two part movie that came out a few years ago. They tried hard to make that happen in BvS, but that didn’t turn out too well. Grade B
“Batman! I call you coward! Come out and face your death like a man! I kill you! I eat your heart! I show you who rules Gotham City!” Mutant Leader
32 – Vendetta. Season 1, Episode 23. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Michael Reaves
Killer Croc’s first episode! And let me tell you, it’s a real doozy. I can never say enough good things about this character, especially when he’s done right. His appearances in the first three seasons are nothing short of spectacular, and well, they straight up RUINED him in the revamp. So Bullock has been framed for doing a lot of shady things, and no one seems to believe him. Until Batman gets on the case, and starts putting together the pieces to this puzzle. One thing I’ll never forget with this episode, will be the actual introduction to Croc. When Batman finds his underwater cave lair, which is so badass by the way, and hell of scary. When he appears from the water, it was actually really frightening as a child. He wasn’t always the brightest crayon in the box, but physically, he was always a lot for Batman to handle. This is another great Bullock episode, that deals with his past and how he just has so many enemies. That mixed with a great Croc story, makes for one hell of an episode. The fight in the sewer at the end, is one of the best action/fights, this show has to offer. This is the incarnation of Killer Croc I would love to see in live action, because I think it is simply perfect. Grade B+
“Terrific. Just what I need now. The freak job in the cape.” – Killer Croc
31 – Read My Lips. Season 3, Episode 8. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Alan Burnett
Honestly, this show really waited a long time to introduce this awesome villain. I know, it’s a doll, I know the concept seems so stupid. But this show did this character right. This is such a fascinating and complex episode, and it’s such a shame it takes so long to introduce this guy. The Ventriloquist is actually quite the badass, and honestly one of the more impressive villains the show has to offer. He’s smart, has the best muscle, Rhino is the biggest goon this show has to offer. When Batman finally understands what is going on, it’s so cool for him to be kind of impressed with a bad guy, and Arnold’s ventriloquism skills. He’s the best he’s ever seen, and he was once trained by one of the greatest. It’s just such an interesting concept, the audience never really knows who is fully in control, is it Arnold Wesker or is it Scarface? When Batman uses some ventriloquism of his own, Scarface points a gun at Arnold’s head, when he thinks he is the rat among their group. It’s one of the most intense scenes, that ends with one of the more violent acts the show ever produces. Scarface gets riddled with bullets, and I know it’s just a doll, but it’s very violent and it symbolizes a ton. The back and forth between Scarface and his creator is incredible, and the vote acting is so perfect. It also has a very dark ending, with Arnold supposedly healed in prison, but when he is crafting another doll head, and stabs a knife into its wooden face, and starts dragging the knife down its face, makes for a very haunting moment. This episode really has everything I want in a Batman animated cartoon, it’s damn near perfect. Grade B+
“Now, Mr. Scarface, remember your blood pressure!” – Ventriloquist
30 – Time Out of Joint. Season 3, Episode 17. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Alan Burnett
Temple Fugate, what a name. Actually in Latin it means ‘time flies’ now that’s pretty neat. This should be a stupid, terrible, hilariously bad Batman villain, but guess what? He’s actually a smart, sophisticated and worthy opponent. Again, I can’t say this enough about certain characters, that just never got enough screen time in this show, and the Clock King is one of them. This is his second and last appearance in the show, and it’s a really fun and interesting episode. Time obsessed, Clock King is back on the scene, but this time, he literally has the power of time on his side. Stealing a device from a scientist, he is now able to manipulate time itself, and he is committing crimes using this very device. He’s full of hatred for Mayor Hill, but I’ll save that for his other episode! He wants to kill the Mayor this time around, and well, lets just say he wants him to go out with a bang. There’s an awesome part in this episode, where Clock King attaches one of these time devices to the bat-mobile, and Batman and Robin get stuck in time for a brief moment, and when they are able to break free a few days have past, and I just always thought that was really cool. Batman gets to show off his brains in this episode too, because well the show always did a great job, showing us that he’s more than just a brawler. I just never would have expected to enjoy this villain as much as I do, so I give tons of credit to the writing staff of this show, for making this guy interesting and giving us great stories, for who is honestly, a C level bad guy. Grade B+
“A trial run, and it went like clockwork!” – The Clock King
29 – Mudslide. Season 2, Episode 24. Director: Eric Radomski, Story: Alan Burnett
Its a shame he wasn’t in more episodes, but before the revamp apparently Clayface was super expensive to animate and thats why he wasn’t in more episodes. Sad episode, about love and wanting to be loved. Stella, who once worked with Hagen on set, is misguided and loves Matt Hagan, not Clayface. She knew him before the accident and even still watches his movies (creepy, right!) she wants him to return to normal so they can be together once more. A lot of movie and popular culture references in this one. Batman wants to help Clayface, but he’s deranged and insane, so he assumes the worst of him, but he wants to give him the same treatment the Stella is using. Always loved when Clayface absorbed Batman and tried to suffocate him to death, and when Batman bursts out of his body, it makes for an awesome moment. The ending is really sad, when Clayface falls to his apparent death, he was such a tortured character. It’s just a poetic episode, with a lot of meaning behind it, I’ve always had a soft spot for Clayface, he’s a fantastic character, I really loved his appearance in Arkham City, again he was used to perfection.He’s one of those villains that deep down you are somewhat rooting for. He never asked to be Clayface, and now he just wants to go back to his normal ways, he just has a misguided way of going about it. Grade B+
“Too late, curtains going down” – Clayface
28 – Perchance To Dream. Season 2, Episode 2. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Laren Bright
Bruce Wayne vs. Batman! Honestly what more can a Batman fan ask for? This episode is a rollercoaster of emotion, with so much going on. Batman is in pursuit of a few petty criminals, and all of a sudden he sees a bright light. When he wakes up, well lets just say there are a few changes to his life. The biggest one being that well his parents are alive, and oh yeah, he’s no longer Batman. Shocked by this revelation, Bruce Wayne can’t really explain what is going on. He is thrilled to have his parents back in his life, but he is confused. When he goes to see Leslie Thompkins, she tells them that he has created an alternate reality, one in which he is Batman and his parents were murdered that fateful night. He’s even set to marry Selina Kyle, who is no longer Catwoman. Bruce couldn’t be happier with his new life, and he believes that his nightmare is finally over. Until he tries to read the newspaper and well can’t make out a single word. When he realizes he is in a fantasy world, and this is not real, he is full of rage and anger. When he discovers that Mad Hatter is behind all of this, because of how he ruined his chance with Alice, Bruce Wayne is so full of rage and anger he does the only thing he can do. He kills himself inside this dream world so he can awake in real time. This episode for me asks so many questions. What if his parents never died, would he still become Batman? What does he truly want out of his life? What makes him happiest, having his parents or being Batman and protecting people. But Batman decides he would rather have his parents be dead, then live in a world that is a lie, no matter how attractive that lie or dream may be. It’s a really powerful episode, that leaves Batman and Bruce Wayne searching for answers, and you realize just how much being Batman means to Bruce Wayne. Grade A-
“Oh, but it is! It’s a beautiful story! You have love, wealth, a family, all you ever wanted! Your own private Wonderland!” – Mad Hatter
27 – Bane. Season 3, Episode 19. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Mitch Brian
BANE!!!! Remember when they tried to make Bane cool in Batman & Robin? Remember how they failed miserably, but at the same time, they kind of had the right idea? Then The Dark Knight Rises came around, and they grounded the shit out of the character? Both time, they just couldn’t find a common medium for Bane, one of my all time favourite Batman villains. But you know who did? The creators and writers of this show, because in my personal opinion, Bane from BTAS is the best representation of the character outside the comic books. Sadly, like usual, he really only appears in one episode. Until the revamp and they change his look so much, that he kind of looks like a dominatrix. Bane shows up to Gotham, after Rupert Thorn pays him to kill the Bat. He wants to get his attention first, and there’s a great scene when he crosses paths with Killer Croc in the sewer, you don’t see anything go down, just the shadow of Bane becoming bigger after his venom injection. It’s a really great scene, but I would have loved to see, Batman’s two biggest physical foes go toe-to-toe. The way he looks, the way he talks, his accent is perfect, and for me, they made Bane the perfect size. He’s not so big, that it looks fake, and he’s not so small, that he doesn’t tower over Batman. They have a great fight scene, and there’s actually a pretty scary part when Bane chases down Robin. Can’t say enough good things about how they represented Bane in this show! Grade B+
“You can’t do this to me, I am invincible, I am Bane!” – Bane
26 – The Clock King. Season 1, Episode 25. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: David Wise
The Clock King is back! This time around, it’s his origin story. See Temple Fugate was a simple man, and he kept a very strict schedule. One day he just so happens to be sitting beside the soon to be Mayor Hill. When Hill tells him to change up his schedule and not be so tight, Fugate listens. When that backfires on him, and he loses everything, he goes into hiding. Resurfacing as the Clock King, out for revenge on the Mayor. He’s such a simple villain, but like I said during his previous episode, he actually is a challenge for Batman. Time obsessed can really come in handy, and he just always knows what he is doing, and always seems to be one step ahead. The battle at the end between him and Batman, in Gothams clock tower is pretty awesome, and actually Kevin Conroy gives one of his best Batman war-cries during this encounter. I also really enjoy Batman having a great MacGyver moment, when he’s stuck inside the bank vault and somehow is able to escape using only a cassette tape, pretty awesome Batman moment. It seems like Fugate goes out like a boss, and crumbles with the tower itself, but we all know that’s not the case. One of the best origin episodes for any villain in this show, big fan of the Clock King! Grade B+
“The 9:15, is always 6 minutes early” – The Clock King
25 – His Silicon Soul. Season 3, Episode 7. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Marty Isenberg
Imagine Batman mixed with The Terminator. Because that’s pretty much what this episode is about. Remember H.A.R.D.A.C? The giant computer that made robot copies of the important people of Gotham? Well right before it got blown sky-high, it made one last copy, of Batman. The start of this episode is pretty awesome, as we see some petty thugs inside a warehouse, where they are trying to steal some goods. When they come across a box and open it, it appears Batman has come to save the day. You don’t really know what’s going on because they make such good use of shadows and the lightning that’s occurring outside. But when Batman is shot, well turns out he’s a robot. There’s a pretty deep emotional message with this episode, see this robot Batman as programmed so well, that it thinks its real. It has memories, and feelings and knows people, but when Rossum tells him it’s only data, well he flips the hell out. It’s also been programmed so well, that just like the real Batman, it cannot take a life. It has a soul, so when Batman is fighting the robot Batman, and it appears the real Batman falls to his death, the robot is so disgusted with itself, it blows itself up essentially. All the robot wanted was to be human, but that was an impossible task, but it also couldn’t tell the difference between certain human emotions. Here’s a great interaction between Batman and the robot Batman. Grade A-
BD: Why do you resist? HARDAC’s goals are identical to your own.
Batman: How do you figure that?
BD: Picture a world completely free of crime, free of suffering, free of frailty.
Batman: You mean free of choice, compassion, free of humanity?
“Could it be it had a soul, Alfred? A soul of silicon, but a soul nonetheless.” Bruce Wayne
24 – The Cape and The Cowl Conspiracy. Season 2, Episode 3. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Elliot S. Maggin
For those of you, who are still reading, did I rank this episode way to high? I feel like people dislike this episode a lot, but I think it’s genius, and one that continues to grow on me. It’s got no great villain, none from his famous rogues gallery, but it just has a really great story, and Batman just being a straight up boss. So Wormwood is a guy who is pretty much Jigsaw from the Saw movies, except like not so extreme. He uses death traps to get information out of people, so when Batman is on his trail, Batman sets out on a mission to take this guy down. Wormwood has also been hired to get Batman’s cape and cowl from him. So there is a ton of back and forth between the two, and Wormwood actually ends up getting his cape and cowl. In a really awesome trap I might add. But here’s the kicker, the guy who hires Wormwood to get it, WAS FREAKING BATMAN HIMSELF. Talk about a mindfuck, am I right? Batman was playing him for a fool the entire time, and it’s just such a great reveal at the end, and then they even have a awesome fight involving workout equipment, which is cool. The cherry on top of the sundae is Batman mails Wormwood his cape and cowl when he’s locked up in Arkham, with a little riddle attached to it, freaking awesome stuff! Grade A
This is an episode I feel like people hate, but i think its genius and one of the greats.
Kind of like a toned down Jigsaw, less blood and death, more just fear of dying
“Alright. I’ll get you the Batman’s cape and cowl. That won’t be difficult. He is only human, after all.” – Wormwood
23 – Day of The Samurai. Season 2, Episode 16. Director: Bruce W. Timm, Story: Steve Perry
Without doubt, this episode has the most intense moment in the show. Bruce Wayne’s and Batman’s enemy Kyodai Ken is back and this time he means serious business. He’s pissed at what transpired the first time they had an encounter, so he sets off to find some legendary scroll, that teaches you “the death touch”. He kidnaps a student at the dojo that they once trained at, so Batman must travel overseas to help. The ending to this episode is just so incredible and that moment I talked about, well actually now that I think about it, it really has two of these moments. The first is when Ken successfully applies the death touch to Batman, and it appears that he has died, but then you realize that, well he’s Batman so that’s not going to happen. But as a kid, you are more than likely freaking out. Secondly, and I just love this moment so much, after Ken realizes Batman is okay, they fight some more, and well they are fighting on an active volcano, I know, so badass! When Ken is corner and standing on a rock with no where to go, Batman throws him a rope so he can jump across to safety, and this fucking guy just kicks the rope away like a boss and goes down with the ship. There’s no way he survives this, not a chance and it’s just so a real moment for a cartoon, and something that really sticks with me as a Batman fan. Batman could not save him, and that really crushes him, but Ken did not want to be saved, and it’s just the look on his face before he literally goes up in smoke, that makes you realize just how incredible this show truly way. Grade A
Ken goes out like a champ, but Batman feels like its another death that must rest on his shoulders. He feels the burden of his actions.
No surprise here, women can make incredible movies and it needs to happen more often. Wonder Woman is simply delightful.
Well it only took 75 years, but the world finally got a Wonder Woman movie and boy it didn’t disappoint. Wonder Woman has so many things to be proud of. It’s the first superhero movie with a female lead in almost a decade (but we really shouldn’t count Catwoman), it’s the first ever superhero film directed by a woman (Patty Jenkins) who is a goddamn rock star, and it’s the first movie to gross over 100 million dollars in its first weekend with a female director! It took awhile, longer than it should have and this was a momentous and important weekend for woman and their role in the film industry. Along with the fact, it’s the first funny, and overall one of the best DCEU movie to date, with a staggering 93% on Rotten Tomatoes and universally loved by critics and fans alike – this movie was a grand slam for Warner Bros. The financial and critical success is wonderful, it’s exactly what the DCEU needed, but it shouldn’t over shadow the significant cultural impact this movie will have on the world. Wonder Woman has breathed new life into the superhero genre and certainly into the universe where she comes from. After last years Batman v Superman when the world got introduced to Gal Gadot and her portrayal of Diana Prince, I honestly knew then and there that this was a casting decision made in heaven. I had a blast watching this movie and when I left the theatre I couldn’t stop thinking to myself, “why don’t more women get the opportunity to make great movies.”
First things first, THIS MOVIE IS COLOURFUL PEOPLE! Holy moly, I was blown away by the entire thing, but the DCEU is kind of known to be dark and very “doom and gloom.” This movie had that stuff in it, but so much more, and some of the colors, and visuals throughout WonderWoman are breathtaking. The movie opens up with a young Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) in Themyscira as she watches over the other Amazonian warriors train, and she is mimicking their movements, she is determined to be the greatest warrior ever. When her mother Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen) forbids her from becoming the warrior princess she wants to be so badly, it’s up to her Aunt Antiope the fiercest Amazonian ever (Robin Wright) to secretly train her. Themyscira looks stunning, it has a real Troy vibe to it, dealing with the Greek Mythology background. The set pieces and on set locations are terrific and the first action sequence takes place on a beach and it’s epic. Robin Wright steals the show during this scene, showing an acting side we’ve never seen before. She also has one of the coolest moments on the movie during this scene where she shoots three arrows at once, at three different German soldiers. Before this epic battle, we have our male hero, Colonel Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) crash land in the waters of Themyscira. Now this place was hidden from the outside world, but not anymore, and the Amazonian’s are in fear, that everything they love and protect could be in danger. When Steve Trevor tells them exactly what’s going on in the outside world, that the ‘war, to end all wars” is going on, Diana feels the need to help. I should mention that the reason why they have been hiding all this time is due to the God of War himself, Ares. Now with this war going on, they believe it’s Ares behind it, and he needs to be stopped. I just want to talk about Chris Pine for a second here, and just how good he was in this movie. Without a doubt, this has the best love interest/relationship I think I’ve seen in a superhero movie. The chemistry between Gal and Chris was incredible, and even though this was a war movie, it had a lot of rom-com feels to it, and they played off one another extremely well. There are a few scenes that feel like they are straight out of a rom-com and when I say that, I mean the best of what a rom-com has to offer. The last scene of the movie between these two characters was so well done, and so brilliant and just nothing seemed forced between these two. You know that they will fall in love, but it’s really special how they go about doing it. These movies always have a love interest who is always finding themselves getting into trouble and need to be saved or it’s just cheesy and doesn’t really make sense, but with Chris Pine’s character none of that happens, and he’s a big part of the movie, he’s almost the driving force for the whole thing. So shout out to Chris Pine, who just continues to give really good performances, and I hope he returns to the DCEU.
So when Diana decides she is the only one who can stop Ares, she leaves with Colonel Trevor and heads for jolly old London. This is where the movie really opens up, and we get to see the side of Diana that’s very naive and innocent. One of the things the movie does so well, and Patty Jenkins did such an amazing job, at capturing the spirit and essence of the character. Diana is such a strong, independent and passionate woman, but now that she’s in the real world, she quickly realizes just how little women are appreciated or respected. She just wants to explore the world, and she loves the simplest things. There are a few great moments, one involving a baby and she just falls in love immediately, and another is actually taken from one of the animated movies, where she eats ice cream for the first time and her reaction is priceless. It makes sense, imagine going your whole life without ice cream and just think of what your reaction would be. It was just little things, and little moments like this, that truly made this movie special. Gal Gadot was born to play this role, and I know she might not be the greatest actress working in Hollywood today, but she owned this role, and has come a long way in such a short period of time. Usually when people get casted as a superhero, you spend some of the movie thinking if someone else could do better or someone that is more suited to play the character. That never happened once for me, at times, I felt like Gadot was ripped straight from the pages of a Wonder Woman comic book. Zack Snyder has really casted the DCEU perfectly, when you think about it. She owned this movie, and I really hope that puts all the haters and doubters of Gal to sleep, because she really gave it her all and it showed in her performance.
Once they arrive in London, they meet Sir Patrick Morgan/Ares (Professor Lupin!), and three of Trevor’s running mates, Charlie (Ewen Brenner), Sameer (Said Taghamoui) and Chief (Eugene Brave Rock). We also get to meet Steve’s secretary, Etta Candy (Lucy Davis) who was really funny in her role. From the little screen time she had, she did the best with it. She makes a routine shopping trip, into one of the funniest scenes in the movie. All the side characters work in Wonder Woman, just another reason why this movie worked so well. Honestly they all had something to do, and they are given just enough background and development that you end up caring about them. So when all of them arrive at the front lines of the war, known, as “No Man’s Land” which I thought was clever and smart. Diana wants to stay and help, but Steve insists they keep going, and that no man has ever crossed these lines and made it back alive. She tells him that ‘she’s no man’ and we have the best moment of the movie. When she walks out of the trenches in her Wonder Woman outfit, I had some goose bumps. This is where the colors of her suit shine and it’s just a really beautiful moment. Which leads into one of the best action sequences, it’s Wonder Woman’s warehouse scene (from BvS). Not only that, but from this scene I got a little Saving Private Ryan vibe, and whenever you can compare a movie to that one, well you’re only singing praises at that point. The whole second action sequence is something I will want to watch over and over again, it’s perfectly done, and they really show off just what Diana can do in combat. I loved how the lasso of truth looked, and how she used it throughout the movie.
With every great hero comes a villain, and in Wonder Woman we get a few bad guys. Not the greatest of villains but they were okay. Danny Hutson plays Erich Ludendorff; he’s a German general who does not want to see the war end. I got a Red Skull comparison in mind from Captain America, and he was hopped up on some sort of gas the entire time, but his character felt a little stale to me. His sidekick was actually a side chick, a chemist, Doctor Poison (Elena Anaya) who is creating some horrible toxic gas, which looks to end the war and kill millions of people. I actually really liked this character, I just think they didn’t fully utilize her, and she had some layers to her, and I wish they had explored her just a little bit more. It’s really hard to have a great villain these days, but they all did the trick. Now for Ares. He was okay, but he comes at the end of the movie, and really my only problem with this entire thing was the ending. Wonder Woman was doing such a great job at not being like every other superhero movie, and then it becomes just like every other superhero movie in the end. You know, the big CGI-filled fight scene with the big bad guy at the end. They didn’t need to do that, I understand why they did, but they had something really special going on, and it just takes you out of the movie. I also just found the fight scene to be really dark, and I had a hard time figuring out what exactly was going on. Honestly though, that was really my only nitpick of the entire thing.
A lot of movies in the past few months have been very forgetful, and I don’t really think about them too much a few days after I have seen them. This isn’t the case for Wonder Woman. I’m just amazed how this thing turned out; obviously going into it I had my doubts. The DCEU hasn’t been on the best of tracks lately, and the last movie they released was Suicide Squad, and well I’m just not going to go there. Gal Gadot and Chris Pine did their thing, they were the stars of the movie, but Patty Jenkins needs to get a lot of credit for this. I really hope executives from movie studios take note, and start to let women direct bigger budget movies. I just felt happy the entire time watching it, there are so many laughs and great moments throughout the movie, and I’m just really happy for her, because this is a really big deal, and I hope people can understand that. This isn’t like a top 5-superhero movie, but it’s the second best DCEU movie, but I have a feeling I will end up liking this more than Man of Steel in the long run, but it’s just a really good/well made movie. Wonder Woman is such an incredible character with great morals, and values and I’m glad that we finally got to see all this on the big screen. I don’t know if she becomes the driving force of the DCEU going forward, or can be the Captain America for the Justice League. I know I’m much more excited for the Justice League movie now, I just hope they can continue with this great momentum they have built. All I’m going to say, is this movie is way above average.
Also I’m fan casting Sofia Boutella as Cheetah for Wonder Woman 2.
“Sometimes, old friend, I wonder if I’m really doing any good out there”
Lets keep this party going! We’re almost in the top 50 here folks! Hopefully you have enjoyed reading this so far, and are coming back to each part! Here are numbers 62-43!
62 – The Last Laugh. Season 1, Episode 4. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Carl Swenson
It’s April Fools Day in Gotham, and you know what that means. Joker is going to try and kill a bunch of people, by making them laugh to death! Talk about a punch line! It’s got one of the greatest April Fools jokes ever, remember when Alfred “drew Batman a bath” and shows him a picture of a bathtub, classic Alfie! But when poor old Alfie gets infected by this laughing gas, Batman has a little more incentive to stop Joker. It’s weird, but I really dig the background music in this episode, it’s pretty catchy, and overall it’s a great Joker story. It’s got a giant clown robot that Batman fights, and just a boatload of puns, and who doesn’t enjoy a good pun. It’s even got Batman smiling and cracking jokes, and that is a super rare thing to come across. Seriously though, look at Batman in that picture, isn’t it adorable!!! Grade C+
“Oh, that’s a joke, right? Batman finally told a joke!” – The Joker
61 – Lock Up. Season 3, Episode 26. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Paul Dini
Lyle Bolton is his name, get it BOLT-ON, and his alter ego is Lock Up. Wow, I don’t know if that’s extremely clever or corny. This guy is a grade A psycho, I’ll tell you that much. See Lyle was a prison guard, one of the best, but he wanted more, he wanted the prisoners to fear him, and he felt like they were all the scum of the Earth. When the inmates complained, they get Lyle fired, and boy does he not take that lying down. Some time passes and he is now, Lock Up, and is kidnapping some of Gotham’s finest (Summer Gleeson, Commissioner Gordon, Mayor Hill) and wants to punish them for creating a poor justice system. He’s even got some cool lock gadgets that are pretty handy. I kind of wish this guy was in more episodes, he’s huge and pretty damn smart, but when he gets stopped by Batman in the end, since he’s so psychotic, he can now watch all the criminals inside Arkham. Maybe this guy is just a pure genius who knows! Grade C+
“Just what this town needs, another psycho in a Halloween costume.” – Harvey Bullock
60 – Fire From Olympus. Season 3, Episode 7. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens
Maxie Zeus, just another wack job in Gotham. See he believes he is the reincarnation of Zeus himself, and thinks he can wield thunder bolts. When he wants to steal an experimental weapon from Gotham and use it to destroy the city. I’ll admit, if I did these rankings years ago, this might be a bottom 10 episode, but there’s something about it. It grows on me with each new watch, and I don’t know if its because I’ve come to know the character more, or because I’m realizing it’s actually just a great episode. The ending of this one, when Zeus is being taken through Arkham and he’s comparing all the rogues to well know Greek Mythology characters is actually so brilliant, and it’s just a really cool scene. Grade C+
“To the depths of Tartarus with you!” – Maxie Zeus
59 – Deep Freeze. Season 3, Episode 28. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Paul Dini
Awe, imagine if Walt Disney, had gone batshit crazy and wanted to be immortal. Well I guess, he did freeze himself, and I don’t know if this episode has anything to do with that, but it reminds me of that, so back off! Grant Walker a billionaire with way to much free time on his hands, breaks Mr. Freeze out of Arkham, so he can help him become just like him. Not only that, Walker wants to turn the world into a skating rink, and start the next ice age, man Gotham really has some sick people in it. Maybe I’m to hard on this episode, but anything that’s not Heart of Ice, has a lot to live up too. This episode just doesn’t really do it for me, and to be perfectly honest, I was always so pissed they waited like 60 episodes to bring Mr.Freeze back. So in the end Freeze helps Batman and Robin, so he can help get his wife back. I just wish we would have gotten a few more Mr. Freeze episodes, but there’s just something about this episode that doesn’t feel right to me. Grade C+
“She’ll wake up in a dead frozen world, that you helped destroy. She’ll hate you for that!” Batman
58 – You Scratch My Back. Season 4, Episode 5. Director: Butch Lukic, Story: Hilary J. Bader
Boy, is there an awful lot of sexual tension in this episode. Hilary wasn’t holding back on this one. Nightwing wants to get out of Batman’s shadow, so he decides to take down a smuggling ring all by himself. Or so he thought, because Catwoman joins in on the fun, and wants to help the boy wonder. She also seems to want to make Batman jealous by having a somewhat of a sensual relationship with Dick (see what I did there). Meanwhile Batgirl and Nightwing got their own thing going on, and it’s just a cluster of emotions going on. Being the double crosser Catwoman is, she is just using Nightwing, to get to some rare antique. He ends up double crossing her, by secretly working with Batman the whole time, he even pulled one over on me the first time I watched it. Pretty mature episode for being a kids cartoon, so I’ll give it props for that. It’s also just an enjoyable episode! Grade C+
“The only cucumbers in there are .38 caliber” Nightwing
57 – The Cat & The Claw. Season 1, Episode 15/16 Director: Kevin Altieri, Dick Sebast, Story: Sean Catherine Derek
We made it, to the first two-part episode! It happens to be Catwoman’s origin, and it happens to feature Red Claw (BOOOOO). If I’m not mistaken these were the first two episodes ever aired, but I go by the box sets, but that’s a fun little fact! So Batman is dealing with this new cat burglar in town. And it just so happens Bruce Wayne has been swept off his feet by the new gal in town, Selina Kyle. Coincidence, I think not! So Selina is pretty pissed because this mountain lion exhibit is being destroyed, by The Red Claw, so both Catwoman and Selina are doing everything they can to stop it from happening. Bruce Wayne is falling for Selina, and Catwoman is falling for Batman, it really is quite the conundrum. When things start to go wrong for Selina, Bruce is there to help, and Batman is also trying to protect Catwoman. When Red Claw steals a deadly plaque on a military train, it’s up to Batman and Catwoman to stop her. Once Batman finds out who Catwoman really is, he has a hard time controlling his emotions and knowing what the right thing to do is. The Catwoman origin stuff, and her arc with Batman in these two episodes are so fantastic, but they get penalized because of the Red Claw. She’s such a horrible villain, and she just was such a buzz kill for these two episodes. The dynamic between Batman and Catwoman is compelling to say the least, and they arguably have the most intriguing relationship in the show, it’s just to bad they couldn’t of had a better baddie to go up against in their first episodes together. Grade B-
“I’m an equal opportunity crime fighter!” Batman
56 – Christmas With The Joker. Season 1, Episode 2. Director: Kent Butterworth, Story: Eddie Gorodetsky
One of my all time favourite traditions. Watch this episode on Christmas Eve! This episode gives us a lot of good moments, I feel like I’m screwing up majorly by putting it this low on my list. We get the Joker rendition of ‘Jingle Bells’, which is an all time classic. Him riding through the roof of Arkham on top of that christmas tree is something special. But overall it’s just not the best of episodes. So it’s Christmas Eve, and Batman is not satisfied with his nightly patrol with Robin. When Robin finally convinces him to head home and put on “It’s A Wonderful Life,” Joker interrupts the broadcast, to declare madness on Gotham! He has capture some people, and it’s up to the dynamic duo to stop him. I feel like if it were December this would be higher on my list, I don’t know what it is, I think I’ll regret putting this episode here. Grade C+
“They don’t call ya Batman for nothing!” Robin
55 – Zatanna. Season 2, Episode 26. Director: Dick Sebast, Story: Paul Dini
Talk about a little sex pot. Zatanna and Batman have all sorts of tension and chemistry between them. When Bruce Wayne visits with Zatanna’s father to learn the ways of illusion and to become a great escape artist, he meets his daughter Zatanna. When he learns all that he can, he leaves and never sees Zatanna again. Until she comes to Gotham, as she grew up to become a great magician. When the final act goes horribly wrong, and she is framed for stealing a lot of money, Batman will stop at nothing to prove her innocence. It doesn’t take her long to figure out that Batman is “John Smith” the man from her past, when he uses an old nickname. They work together to bring down an evil illusionist Montague Kane. I like Zatanna, she’s a great character and I thought she was well portrayed in this episode. I just wanted a little more from the episode. She’s another character they bring into the show and never come back to, which was a total bummer. Batman also cares deeply for this girl and cared for her father, and I love the bond they share, and how close they still are, despite being away from one another for so long! Grade B-
“What do you care about some leggy dame in nylons- or have I just answered my own question?” Zatanna
54 – Appointment In Crime Alley. Season 1, Episode 26. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Gerry Conway
One of the more emotional episodes of the entire series. Batman’s yearly tradition of visiting the site of his parents tragic murder. Crime Alley, a place that Batman hates, yet holds so close to his heart. Well it’s that time of the year, but Roland Daggett is doing everything he can to stop Batman from making that appointment. Daggett is planning on burning Crime Alley to the ground, with or without its residents still living there. He needs the land to build his empire even greater, and will stop at nothing to do so. Batman is also getting held up with various other crimes going on around Gotham, and his head and his heart are not in the right mind frame. The ending to this episode is just so powerful, they really don’t have cartoons like this any more. Like not even close. Once the day is saved, finally Batman and Leslie Thompkins head to Crime Alley, so he can deliver his roses to his parents. He kneels over and Leslie puts her arms around him and it’s just such a powerful scene, that sometimes even Batman is vulnerable and needs compassion every so often.
“Good people still live in Crime Alley” Batman
53 – Blind As A Bat. Season 3, Episode 3. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Mike Underwood
Imagine Batman was like blind. Bats are blind, so why shouldn’t Batman be blind. Well in this episode, that’s exactly what you get. Penguin steals some military badass helicopter from the Gotham airshow, and Bruce Wayne happens to become blind, when he gets caught up in some cross fire. But you know Batman, he never quits, so he uses some sweet technology to give himself sight, but it has a few problems. Watching Batman be completely blind and trying to fight people, is actually hilarious, and I can’t help but laugh every time he falls into those barrels! His glowing red eyes, actually make him look more terrifying and menacing as The Dark Knight. Just kind of a meh episode for me, obviously he gets his vision back….. Grade C
“You’re blind as a bat. Sightless and helpless.” Penguin
52 – Heart of Steel. Season 2. Episode 10/11. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Brynne Stephens
Seriously, Bruce Wayne really knows how to pick em. Imagine going on a date with a woman, to only find out she’s a robot, and wants to kill you. Robots! Lots and lots of robots. So these episodes are kind of all over the place. So there are a ton of robberies going on around Gotham, and Batman discovers it to be a mechanical briefcase (I’m not kidding). So he tracks down his old pal Karl Rossum, who is an expert in robotics and has lived a sheltered life, after his daughter was killed in a car crash. There he meets the lovely lady/robot assistant Randa Duane. He doesn’t know she’s a robot, and now that I’m thinking about it, why would Karl even let that go on for a second? He must be a sick guy. Any who, he also shows Batman his most prized possession, H.A.R.D.A.C a super computer capable of incredible things. Things that even Rossum doesn’t know. Like make robotic duplicates of some of Gotham’s most important people! I almost forgot, we get introduced to Barbara Gordon in these two episodes, and she’s awesome. When her Dad gets taken away and replaced with a duplicate, she knows something is wrong right away, there’s also a moment when she thinks she has killed Bullock, but it turns out to be a duplicate also. Imagine that wasn’t the case though, and she straight up just killed a guy! So when Bruce Wayne goes on a date with a robot lady, she sneaks into the batcave and tampers with the bat-computer. When Batman investigates he gets attacked, and realizes something is severely wrong in Gotham. With the help of Barbara, they head back to Rossum, to confront him, but he doesn’t even realize what’s happening, and together they free all the kidnapped citizens, and destroy H.A.R.D.A.C once and for all. This is a two parter that I find myself disliking with each viewing, I’m not sure why, so that’s why its so low on the list! Grade B-
“His human imperfection endangers the plan. He must be improved upon.” H.A.R.D.A.C
51 – A Bullet For Bullock. Season 3, Episode 11. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Michael Reaves
Thee Harvey Bullock episode! Finally, one of my favourite characters from the whole show. A tortured soul, a good cop, but simply misunderstood. He believes we don’t need Batman, and in this episode, Bullock finally comes around to the idea of Batman, and hell even thanks the man. Someone is trying to kill Bullock, and wants him dead bad, and well he doesn’t have the slightest of clue as to who it is. So like any desperate man, he turns to Batman for help. This is a really character driven episode, and us as the audience and even Bullock himself learn a lot about this guy. He realizes that his demeanour and his behaviour has created some of the unlikeliest of enemies. He becomes self aware of how he treats people, and maybe realizes it’s time for a change. They scour Gotham, and pinpoint someone from his past as the culprit. That wasn’t the case, it was Bullock’s landlord who wanted him dead, and even pulls a gun on him at the end of the episode. He had driven this poor guy mad, and you just learn to really love the guy by the end of the episode. I really want to see this guy in The Batman movie. Grade B
“You wanted my apartment? You mean, this whole thing was about rent control?” Bullock
50 – It’s Never Too Late. Season 1, Episode 12. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Tom Rugger
There’s a crime war going on in Gotham, between Rupert Thorne and old timer Arnold Stromewell, and it is sweeping through the city. When Thorne wants a “truce” Stromwell shows up thinking that this is really happening, meanwhile it’s a trap! You gotta know better old man, but Batman is on the case and saves Stromwell from an exploding building. He needs Stronwell’s help, and needs him to testify against Thorn. He pulls out all the stops, Batman tracks down his son, who is a drug addict but is getting the attention he needs. See Arnold had a trouble upbringing, when he was a boy, is brother lost his leg, when the pair of them were playing on the train tracks and he’s never forgiven himself for it. Now a priest, with the help from his brother and Batman, Arnold swears off crime and even helps bring down Thorne. This is another emotional episode, with all sorts of emotional baggage and layered story telling. Dealing with some serious subject matter for being a kids cartoon. An episode that honestly only gets better with time. Grade B-
“Stay away, Michael! The last time you tried to help me, you lost your leg!” – Arnold Stromwell
49 – Never Fear. Season 4, Episode 6. Director: Kenji Hachizaki, Story: Stan Berkowitz
Imagine Batman without fear. His deepest fear is becoming what fights every night in Gotham. He never wants to cross that line, and become one of them. Well we kind of get that in this episode, when Scarecrow makes a new toxin that eliminates fear as we know it. So when Batman gets exposed to the gas, he thinks nothing of it. Until he starts acting radically and is being more dangerous and reckless. Sensing this, Robin decides he must do this on his own. Knowing Batman is a threat to not only Gotham city, but to himself as well. Probably the weakest Scarecrow story, but the idea behind Batman losing control is a really neat idea, and something that should be taken seriously. Doing this again, but making it a little more edgy could be awesome to see, because Batman without limits, is a scary man to think about. There is a great exchange between Robin and Batman in this episode. Where Robin knows, that Batman is now such a threat that he needs to stop Scarecrow alone, it’s just a really powerful scene between the two. Considering Tim Drake is just a kid, and he’s not afraid of Batman, even when he is unhinged. Grade C+
“Untie me, you little… UNTIE ME!” – Batman
48 – House And Garden. Season 3, Episode 14. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Paul Dini –
This episode is just straight up creepy. Poison Ivy is a broken woman in this one. We see her “building a new life” becoming free of crime and Batman is in shock. She’s turned a new leaf (plant pun!) and decided it’s time to settle down and start a family. She meets a nice professor that teaches at Dick’s school and together they raise his two sons. Batman at first is skeptical, and starts to spy on Ivy, but when he comes away with nothing, he even feels bad for pressuring her so much. Meanwhile, a giant plant like man is terrorizing Gotham, and it would appear that all fingers lead to Ivy, but Batman simply can’t connect the two. At one point in the episode Ivy tells Batman “She’s the happiest, she’s ever been”, and Batman tells her that he believes it. When it turns out, that Ivy is in fact making “people” and that her family isn’t real, Batman and Robin are able to put a stop to her insane plot. She eventually flees Gotham and is seen on an airplane, looking through photographs of her family, with tears in her eyes. Just an emotional episode, showcasing that even though her family and life weren’t real, it was in fact the happiest she’s ever been. Sad stuff. Grade C+
“She’s done nothing more incriminating than return an overdue video – even paid the late fee.” Batman
47 – If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Rich? Season 2, Episode 12. Director: Eric Radomski, Story: David Wise
The Riddler! One of my all time favourite Batman villains, and guess what? They do him such proper justice in this show! The episodes before the revamp that The Riddler is in, are just quality stuff. His origin story episode however, is my least favourite. The way he looks, speaks and intellect are all so on the money, it’s not even fair. So kudos to the guys for really nailing this character. So Edward Nygma creates a world famous game called “The Riddle of The Minotaur,” and is on top of the world. But when his boss, Daniel Mockridge fires him, so he can keep all the profits of the game for himself, Nygma vows revenge as he leaves the building. Fast forward two years, and Mockridge is getting riddles all across Gotham, and he knows it can only be one man. The Riddler ends up kidnapping Mockridge, and swears to put an end to Mockridge. Batman even feels a little for Nygma, knowing he was the creator of the game, and got screwed over. But they have to stop him from killing Mockridge, who he has hidden in the middle of a life size replica of the game he created. This is where the episode takes a downturn for me, I’m not a fan of the life sized game, it just seems so unrealistic (I know it’s Batman, but you know what I mean). It feels so out of place, and this is when we learn that Batman is a terrific riddle solver, and it damn near pisses Riddler off every time. Mockridge is saved, but he ultimately ends up living in fear for the rest of his life. Side note: I love how they got a guy who’s last name is Wise to write this episode…… Grade B
“My, my, my, can we actually have a brain beneath that pointy cowl of ours?” The Riddler
46 – Mad As A Hatter. Season 1, Episode 27. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Paul Dini
Jervis Tetch, a Wayne Enterprises scientist, is madly in love with one of his secretaries Alice. You know where this is going, he eventually snaps, and becomes his alter ego Mad Hatter. I like this character, I enjoy the play on the whole Alice in Wonderland thing. Jervis is a broken man, who just wants to be loved. When he can’t have that, he makes it happen, by mind controlling those around him. He can actually be a pretty worthy advisory to Batman, with his mind controlling devices, seeing how anyone can be targeted. So when Alice gets engaged to her boyfriend, Jervis doesn’t like that one bit, and sets off on a rampage to win her back. I’m a big fan of the end to this episode, with all the characters from Alice in Wonderland being involved, and I just think Mad Hatter is a really interesting and unique Batman character. Just an overall, really well done episode in my mind. Grade B
“You’re mighty in Gotham, Batman, but in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter reigns supreme.” Mad Hatter
45 – Fear of Victory. Season 1, Episode 24. Director: Dick Sebast, Story: Samuel Warren Joseph
Imagine being afraid of just about everything and anything. Well Scarecrow’s newest toxin does just that. When he’s intoxicating star Gotham athletes and making a fortune off their poor performances, he thinks he has it made. He even gets Robin’s roommate, quarterback of their universities football team, and at the same time Robin becomes infected. He doesn’t know until he’s on patrol with Batman, and finds himself, afraid of heights all of a sudden. This episode is all about facing your fears, and being master of your own mind. In the first season, Scarecrow is involved in 3 incredible episodes, and I really wish they didn’t go away from that character in later seasons. He is always testing Batman’s limits, and in this episode, Robin feels like he is a burden to Batman. Once Batman finds the connection between the athletes and Robin, he knows it’s the professor of fear behind it, and when he goes to confront him in Arkham, well guess who broke out. There’s a great part, when it appears he’s in his cell, just rocking back and forth on his rocking chair, but it’s just an actual Scarecrow. Like just how bad is security at this place? Grade B-
“I need the money, Batman. You know the cost of chemicals these days.” Scarecrow
44 – Night of The Ninja. Season 2, Episode 7. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Steve Perry
Kyodai Ken, man this guy was so cool! For being a lesser known rival to Bruce Wayne and later Batman, this guy was pretty badass! He’s only in two episodes of the show, but honestly they are two of my favourites. The reason I have it only at number 48, is well, remember what show we are talking about here. So when Bruce Wayne goes to Japan to learn the ways of a samurai, he meets Ken, who is a formidable foe. He is better than Bruce in the dojo, but he has his heart on a rare sword, and tries to steal it. When he is stopped by Bruce and their master, Kyodai Ken swear revenge. Some years later, robberies are happening all over Gotham, and to Wayne Enterprises subsidiaries, he comes face to face with a worthy opponent. When trying to get away, he notices a back tattoo, the same one that Kyodai Ken has. Fearing that he might not be able to beat him, like he could never do in the past, Batman is a little on edge. One of the reasons I love this episode so much, is there’s also a great Robin story in here too. That Robin sometimes feels like Batman isn’t proud of him, or that he isn’t grateful to have him around. Towards the end of the episode, it is Bruce Wayne that defeats Ken, but needs the aid of Robin, due to the fact that he’s fighting him in front of Summer Gleeson. He can’t defeat him with her watching, because it might start to raise unwanted questions. I think I’m really screwing up by making this episode 48, but the truth is, the next time Kyodai Ken comes around, it’s even better! Grade B+
“I have to be the best there is, no matter what it takes!” – Batman
43 – See No Evil. Season 1, Episode 17. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Martin Pasko
This episode for me at least, has it all. A great story, animation and a really good character. Lloyd Ventrix is a fresh out of jail father, who can no longer see his daughter. So he makes a suit, that’s made up of a special plastic that can bend light. He’s therefore invisible, and when he’s invisible he can see his daughter. See she thinks it’s her new best friend Mojo, and there’s something about this, that’s both sweet and creepy. He’s also using the suit to commit various crimes around Gotham, and when Batman goes up against him, and realizes what exactly he is going up against, he digs deeper into this matter. When he finds out the plastic is toxic and will eventually kill Ventrix, he tries to console him about losing his daughter. All the animation with him being invisible is incredible for the 90’s and they have some stellar fight sequences in this as well. Towards the end when Batman uses a dripping water tank to see Ventrix, and it’s just really well done. He’s only ever in one episode but man I just love that character, it’s a real mature story for a kids show. It really only gets better with each viewing in my opinion. Grade B
“See you ’round, Batman! Too bad you can’t say the same!” – Lloyd Ventrix
Everyone has their favorite television show; they can be a great place of escapism and can bring hoards of people together. I have fallen in love with many great shows throughout my life; Mad Men, Parks and Recreation, Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad and The Wire but for me one show trumps them all. Batman: The Animated Series, created in 1992 by Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski who at the time were working on Tiny Toones for FOX, Warner Bros. Animation decided it was time to venture into an animated Batman series due to the success of Tim Burton’s Batman movie. They pegged these two to shoot a short pilot episode, which ultimately ended up becoming the opening credits for the show. From the get go this show was praised for its quality of animation, which to this day is still considered to be top notch. The darker tones and overall thematic complexity of the show, which again dealt with some mature situations and subjects for being a kid’s show. It had a very film noir look to it, bullets fly (but they never hit anyone, terrible aim those bad guys!) the villains are out for blood, and in certain episodes a lot is at stake. I know people may think, this is just a cartoon, how can that be? For being a kids cartoon, it certainly has an adult feel to it and it’s one of the main reasons I fell in love with it from the very start. All of that makes the show feel timeless, and again the show was praised for its modernization of its titled character. For me, the thing I love most about this show, aside from the storytelling has to be the cast. The voice acting is some of the best to ever be in animation, and as the casting director Andrea Romano put it, they wanted to cast voices with character. Not just people doing cartoon voices. Kevin Conroy (Bruce Wayne/Batman) and Mark Hamill (The Joker) for me will always be those two iconic characters, and have been providing their voices in animation and video games for almost 30 years now! The show works so well, because in the end it wasn’t made with a younger audience in mind and I think that’s the main reason why I think the show still holds up so well today. Considered to be one of the greatest cartoons ever produced, actually only The Simpsons is held in higher regard. They produced 109 episodes, all unique and special in their own way. This show is responsible for some of the best Batman stories ever told, which is quite the feat, considering you are working with almost 80 years of Batman mythos and history. Batman: The Animated Series is actually responsible for the creation of Harley Quinn, and we can thank one of the shows writers Paul Dini for that. My only gripe with this show was how they changed the animation up after season 3. It never resonated with me, and when I stop and think about it, it honestly makes me angry. I understand why they did it, they wanted to have a more kid friendly show, but it almost ruins the experience. That’s the only problem I’ve ever had with Batman The Animated Series. I have a yearly tradition where I sit back and watch every episode, and I thought this time, I would rank every single one. So that’s exactly what I’m going to do, all the two part episodes will be considered as one, so in total I’ll be ranking 102! This show has a special place in my heart and I consider it to be the greatest representation of The Dark Knight outside of the comic books. So sit back, relax and enjoy this, because I know I’m going to enjoy writing it. I’m going to break it down into 5 parts! Here are the numbers 102-83! The grades don’t reflect the rankings; they are just there so you can get a better sense of the episodes
102- Prophecy of Doom. Season 1, Episode 19 – Director: Frank Paur, Story: Dennis Marks
This guy was the villain of the episode need I say more? Starting off the list was the very forgetful episode, in which we see Batman take down a cult. The Brotherhood is run by the mystic Nostromos who has the ability to “predict the future.” Turns out he’s just a con artist who rigs near fatal accidents so he can warm up to Gotham’s elite and later take their money. One of the few episodes I will actually skip in my yearly run through, it’s just that bad. Grade F
“Do not apologize. She will believe. They all will believe….after the great fall” – Nostromos
101 – The Underdwellers. Season 1, Episode 6 – Director: Frank Paur, Story: Tom Ruegger
Batman wrestles a few alligators in this one, and that’s the only highlight or memorable moment. Premise on the other hand, it deals with some wackjob taking kids underground and essentially make them his servants. They go up to the streets of Gotham at night and rob its citizens, when one of them gets taken away by Batman, he brings him home to Alfred to care for the boy. Early on in the series, the show was still trying to get its feet wet. I just can’t take an episode seriously when the episodes villain was the Sewer King… Grade F
“You play chicken long enough, you fry” – Batman
100 – Critters. Season 4 , Episode 14. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Steve Gerber
So when a farmer goes crazy, I guess it’s up to Batman to stop him. Farmer Brown is his name, and after his failed attempt at creating bigger livestock, he becomes the laughing stock of Gotham, which leads to him losing all of his money. A year later, Gotham City is terrorized by giant animals and bugs. Farmer Brown plans to fire a rocket with all these “critters” into Gotham and watch it fall apart. All I can really do is shake my head at this episode, like this isn’t Batman, not at all. Just one of the many horrible episodes from season 4. Batman vs. a couple of hillbillies, come on Warner Bros. you can do better. Grade F
“That’s a lot of bull” – Tim Drake
99 – Mean Seasons: Season 4, Episode 13. Director: Hiroyuki Aoyama, Story: Rich Fogel
Honestly, it’s like they weren’t even trying for parts of season 4. Look out folks, Calender Girl is on the loose!! Some has been actress is kidnapping the people responsible for her apparent “botched” surgeries. Turning the dirty 30, once the brightest star of the film industry, now just a thing of the past. These botched surgeries aren’t true, she’s still the same beautiful woman she’s always been, but she cannot see that anymore. She just sees her flaws. Another painful episode to sit all the way through, because there’s just nothing exciting happening what’s so ever. Like one of her henchmen is a knock off Fabio, give me a break…. Grade F
“Beware the Ides of March!” – Calender Girl
98 -Cat Scratch Fever: Season 2. Episode 8. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Sean Catharine Derek
Stray cats, this episode is about stray cats…. I might as well just end this review right now. Roland Dagget is planning on using the stray cats of Gotham and infecting them with a new viral plague. He will be the only person with the means to cure this new disease, for a quick and easy money grab. So When Isis goes missing (not that Isis, Catwoman’s cat) she investigates the matter and stumbles upon his scheme. When she becomes infected herself, it’s up to her beau Batman to save the day. Grade F
“Tonight on the news they called you a hero. You keep this up and they’ll start making Catwoman dolls” – Maven
97 – Beware The Creeper: Season 4, Episode 23. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Rich Fogel.
A knockoff Joker, in an episode with the Joker. News reporter Jack Ryder, falls into the same vat of chemicals that made the Joker who he is. But Jack was also covered in Joker’s laughing gas, makes for a weird combination. We get The Creeper out of it, all I can say is wow. Pretty much just a horny Joker, I’m not even kidding. They leave the episode open-ended and that’s the worst part, because as an audience we never get to see The Creeper again. So that makes it even worse, just another terrible villain season 4 managed to pump out. Grade D
“They call me, Yellow-Skinned Wacky Man!” – The Creeper
96 -Birds of A Feather. Season 2, Episode 19. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Chuck Menville
I feel like people might enjoy this episode much more than I do. Penguin gets out of the slammer and still thinks he’s high society. Until no one comes to pick him up or throw him an extravagant party for his return. Veronica Vreeland is also feeling the heat with her recent struggles to throw a great party. So she whips up the idea to invite the Peguin to her next bash. It works to perfection, actually too good, because the bird starts to fall for Ms. Vreeland. It’s not until he overhears her telling someone she’s just using him, that everything goes to complete crap. The Peguin is usually involved in great episodes, but this is by far the worst. Just rich snobs being rich snobs. Grade D+
“I guess what they say is true: society is to blame. High society” – The Penguin.
95 – Showdown. Season 3, Episode 22. Director: Kevin Altieri, Story: Kevin Altieri.
Again another episode that I think would be higher on other people’s lists. It involves Jonah Hex, and this episode just never clicked with me. I’ve never liked it, maybe it’s because I’m salty about this being the last episode we get to see Ra’s Al Ghul and he is completely WASTED! One of my favourite villains from the whole show, and this was his swan song, honestly it’s somewhat heart breaking when you think about it. He tells this story to Batman about Jonah Hex and how his son, who is part of the story as well is still alive today. He was also exposed to the Lazarus Pits and is very old. So when Batman finds him at a retirement home and they chase them to the nearby airport, Batman actually lets him walk free. Shows that deep down Batman actually has some feelings. Fun fact about his episode though, Robin straight up dick punches a guy, the one and only punch of its kind in the show! Grade D
“Come now detective, I still have a few good years left. We will cross swords another day” – Ra’s Al Ghul
94 – Love Is A Croc. Season 4, Episode 9. Director: Butch Lukic, Story: Steve Gerber.
Okay, quick rant before I breifly talk about this episode. How bad does Croc look in the new animation style? My god, it’s painful, he looks so bad and they even changed his voice and the new guy just sucks. He was so good in the first three seasons and they completely ruined him and made him be involved in this putrid episode. Baby Doll is back (yay – that’s sarcasm) she feels for Croc for being an outsider, as she’s always felt that way. So they team up and become a common law couple and live in the sewers and the whole thing is just a disaster and it turns out chicks dig guys who look like crocodiles, who knew. Just the weirdest pairing of two rogues from Batman’s famous gallery that I can remember and truthfully it just didn’t work out. Croc straight up beats Baby Doll also, which I found to be a little disturbing. Grade F
“Ordinarily, I don’t approve of spanking but in her case…” – Batgirl
93 – The Demon Within. Season 4, Episode 18. Director: Atsuko Tanaka, Story: Rusti Bjornhoel
Without question one of the weirdest most out of place episodes. When you compare it to all other episodes, it just feels so out of place, so far from the realm of what the original feel of the show was. Also they have the creepiest villain, Klarion the Witch Boy, who possesses Jason Blood’s alter ego Etrigan the Demon. I know that was a mouthful to take in. I don’t even know what I’m talking about when it comes to this episode. It’s weird and certainly not the BTAS I grew to love. Grade D
“Whoa! So all of this is what I think it is, right? Magic? Sorcery?” – Tim Drake.
92 – The Lion and The Unicorn. Season 3, Episode 21. Director: Boyd Kirkland, Story: Diane Duane
A call back to British spy films – this episode focuses on Alfred. When he gets a mysterious phone call from his “cousin” Alfred drops everything at Wayne Manor and heads across the pond to London. I really try to like this episode but I can never really get into it. The one thing, I do enjoy though, is how they dive into Alfred’s past. Even Dick doesn’t know about how much of a badass Alfred used to be back in the day working as a British government spy. His cousin, who turns out to be his old partner and Alfred have the secret launch codes for a nuclear mission silo. They showcase his skills throughout the episode, but it’s biggest downfall has to be having Red Claw. She’s a terrible villain and we never really get to understand why she’s a terrorist or why she does the things she does. Her voice is also incredibly annoying. Grade D-
“There’s only one London Master Bruce” – Alfred
91 – Moon of The Wolf. Season 2, Episode 15. Director: Dick Sebast, Story: Len Wein
So this episode is hilariously bad, but I don’t hate it as strongly now as the first few times I watched it. It kind of grows on you to be honest, but that doesn’t excuse it from being laughable. Batman is suppose to be the worlds greatest detective, yet he thinks this werewolf is just a mugger in a mask. I don’t like when the writing dumbs down our Batman and makes it appear that he’s not so smart. Anthony Romulus was a star athlete, but wanted to be the very best. So he’s offered a chance of a lifetime, to experiment with a new drug provided by Dr. Milo. Turns out that there’s some timber wolf estrogen in the steroids, so it ultimately turns him into this wolf man. Just a classic filler episode, with little to no story, and just making Batman seem weak and stupid at times. Bruce Tinm once said that it was a “Tuesday” episode. Whatever that means. Grade D
“Do me a favour, Shaggy!” – Batman
90 – Tyger, Tyger. Season 2, Episode 14. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Michael Reaves
I don’t know what the producers of this show were thinking when it comes to Catwomans story arc. She’s such an incredible character, yet she’s apart of some of the most bizarre and quite frankly some of the worst episodes. Like she gets turned into a cat this episode… that’s right. Dr. Dorian has other pet projects, a giant ape like man, and Tygrus. Another giant cat, Tygrus serves as another love interest for Selina Kyle in this episode, and it makes the whole thing even stranger. She has such a complex relationship with our hero, and that’s kind of explored, but she’s just always part of some half-assed story. We just never get that great Batman/Catwoman story, like again SHE GETS TURNED INTO AN ACTUAL CAT. Grade D+
“Tyger, Tyger, burning bright. In the forests of the night. What immortal hand or eye. Could frame thy fearful symmetry?” – Batman
89 – Chemisty. Season 4, Episode 22. Director: Butch Lukic, Story: Stan Berkowitz
Another fine example of the writers making our Caped Crusader look kind of stupid. Bruce magically falls for a women and decides pretty easily that it’s time to hang up the cape and cowl for good. Really Batman? Just like that, regardless if she is the one, something seems off and Batman really doesn’t take notice, until it’s almost too late. Susan is her name, well that’s the name Poison Ivy gives her, see she’s one of her newest creations. Where she makes the perfect match for the wealthy of Gotham and poor Bruce can do nothing to stop the affection he has for dear old Susan. I just could never believe Bruce Wayne would fall that hard for someone, even if it’s out of his control somehow. He’s Batman, his mind control is like no other, and the fact that they just make him seem pretty weak and stupid in this episode bothers me a bit. Grade D +
“Everything’s changed for me in the past few weeks. The pain of my parents deaths…it’s still there, but it seems smaller” – Bruce Wayne
88 – The Cult of The Cat. Season 4, Episode 15. Director: Butch Lukic, Story: Stan Berkowitz
Another episode involving cats….I get it, she’s Catwoman and all but come on. Some original ideas would be nice. Here we find Selina stealing a rare cat statue from a cult, to only find out she has a lot in common with these people. Like a lot of episodes in the final season, we see Batman square off against larger than life animals, this time around it’s a saber-toothed cat. For this being the last time we ever get to see her in the animated series, it was just overall a lacklustre episode to say the least. In the end we realize that no matter how much Selina loves Batman, her true loves lies with her cats and well stolen jewellery. As we see her living in Paris, with those two things I just mentioned. Grade D+
“You can’t get rid of them. They are like old boyfriends. Or warts.” – Catwoman.
87 – Cold Comfort. Season 4, Episode 3. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Hilary J. Bader
Remember when Paul Dini came up with the idea that Mr. Freeze shouldn’t be a joke anymore. That they created one of the best Batman stories ever told with “Heart of Ice” which we will get too later. Mr. Freeze is one of the more sympathetic characters in the animated series, he’s lost all emotion, and you feel for the guy after he loses his wife to a rare disease (Well she’s frozen, but you knew that already!). That being said, this character probably gets the biggest change in the animation revamp and I HATE IT. He was literally perfect in the few episodes he appeared in with the old animation style, and now he just looks stupid. On top of that, he’s just a head, just a human head now, with a robot body, are you kidding me? They ruined his character completely, and the only saving grace is that they didn’t change his voice actor (Michael Ansara) who does such a terrific job at portraying this heart broken and completely loss man. This episode deals with Freeze being pissed off after his now cured wife has moved on with her life and she has remarried, so he’s going around Gotham destroying a bunch of things. Move on buddy and find another gal, I guess that’s hard to do though, when you are just a head I guess. He’s even got two stupid lady sidekicks and the whole thing makes me mad, so I’m going to stop writing now. Grade D
“You don’t have to do this. Wayne Enterprises helped save your wife’s life, and we can help you” – Bruce Wayne
86 -Animal Act. Season 4, Episode 16. Director: Curt Geda, Story: Hilary J. Bader
Man I don’t know who Mad Hatter pissed off, but wow, just wow. Mad Hatter is a terrific villain, and is feature in some of the best episodes this show has to offer. Why on Earth is this his last appearance? Why did they make him take control of circus animals as his final insane plot? So Robin’s old circus is back in town, and just like that, crazy robberies involving animals is going on in Gotham. This is straight up one of the more childish episodes we ever see. Not a single dark tone, or adult vibe to it, and that was the big concern for the revamp. I hate to throw people under the bus, but Hilary J. Bader is responsible for writing some of the worst and more immature episodes ever. For having Dick Grayson re-visit the place where he lost everything, you would think this episode would pack a little bit more of an emotional punch, No! Talk about a missed opportunity, and for a life long Batman fan, thats something us fans want to see. Grade D-
“You sure it’s locked this time? We’ve got enough yahoos running around this city without having to deal with Yogi and Boo-Boo too.” – Harvey Bullock
85 – Double Talk. Season 4, Episode 4. Director: Curt Geda, Story: Robert Goodman
The good old Ventriloquist, another great villain ruined by the revamp. Yes, he’s a little strange, but that’s the best part about him. I don’t mind that its a puppet, and to be honest it’s kind of scary that a man can get to be that insane. So Arnold Wesker is out of jail and got a sweet hook up by Bruce Wayne himself to start working at Wayne Enterprises. He’s “cured” of his aliment of being control by his other half Scarface. Well little does he know that’s not the case, and he plans a little robbery at his newly acquired workplace. Just not a great episode, they made Arnold look like a low budget grown up Charlie Brown. They even made Scarface look worse and he’s a puppet, just so not cool Warner Bros. animation. Grade D
“He’s not coming back! He’s gone!” – Arnold Wesker
84 – The Worry Men. Season 3, Episode 9. Director: Frank Paur, Story: Paul Dini
Veronica Vreeland, one of Gotham’s rich girls heads overseas for a vacation and comes back with some little dolls. These dolls are suppose to take away all of your worries. When she was in Central America, these dolls according to legend were put under your pillow at night, they would take away your worries for you. Little did she know, each doll had a tiny microchip placed inside by the Mad Hatter, and he was making the wealthy give him all of their money. Sneaky guy that Mad Hatter, I’ll give him props for the genius scheme, but the episode just kind of falls flat, and I want to like this episode every time I watch it, I just can’t AND I DON’T KNOW WHY!!!! Grade C-
“As the great Lewis Carrol himself once said, ‘One, two, one, two, through and through. And then the rope went snicker-snack. He left it dead and with its head, he went galloping back!” – Dr. Jervis Tetch/Mad Hatter
83 – Baby Doll. Season 3, Episode 20. Director: Dan Riba, Story: Paul Dini
I need to say this first. I don’t hate this episode, any episode written by Paul Dini isn’t bad. I understand the meaning behind it and why some people think this episode is freaking genius and really good. I feel that way about it too. The emotional punch and baggage that come along with this episode is pretty haunting. It’s different and unique and I totally understand that part. For me, it always boils down to the fact, that I just can’t ever picture Batman running around Gotham chasing a little girl. Yes I know, she’s actually 30 and she’s born with a rare disease that makes her not age or grow. But there’s something about Batman, the freaking Dark Knight chasing this little girl and I just laugh, because that just doesn’t happen, or maybe that’s just me? Baby Doll a once bright star, had herself a hit TV show, until well someone stole the spotlight from her, and when that happened, Baby Doll got super upset. She tried other methods of acting, but nothing worked, so her career ended pretty quickly. 10 years later she’s out for revenge, and starts kidnapping all her ex cast-mates, and well essentially wants to kill them all. I’ll admit the last few minutes of this episode are spectacular but that can’t justify putting it higher on the list. Baby Doll just never clicked with me as a villain. Grade C+
“Remember that time when Poison Ivy nearly smothered us in those vines?” – Robin
Well there you have it, the first 20 episodes are in the books! That took a lot longer than I expected, so hopefully the next part will be ready in the next week! Please feel free to leave a comment and let me know how you feel about my rankings!
So that was awesome right! Today is a tough day for me, well for most of us. It’s the one year anniversary of the release of Batman v. Superman, and obviously that movie wasn’t met with the greatest praise from fans or critics. But a lot can change in a year and here we are exactly one year later and Zack Snyder, that dirty dog drops this badass trailer for us to see. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m extremely nervous for the Justice League movie, the DCEU hasn’t really gotten off to a flying start, well they really haven’t even gotten off the ground yet. But that could all change with one simple trailer. I was absolutely blown away by this trailer, and maybe things could finally be turning around for Warner Bros. and the DCEU!
Now for the trailer itself, they did a fantastic job giving us fans a little bit of everything here. You can’t expect them to change their formula completely so the darker tone is still present in the trailer, but that’s okay because it does seem a little bit lighter and certainly more fun and humorous. It’s a great thing that they are clearly addressing certain problems from previous films and taking the fans and what they not only have to say, but what they want to heart. Ezra Miller who will be suiting up as the fastest man alive, The Flash, looks like the comedy pillar of the movie, and not only does it suit the character, he seems to be pulling it off with ease. Even Ben Affleck’s Batman looks like he’s having a lot more fun in this trailer, yeah we don’t need our Batman to be cracking jokes every scene, but a little light hearted Caped Crusader will go along way for fan service.
Ray Fisher the new comer who’s playing the football star turned half-man half-machine Cyborg looks pretty damn cool if I say so myself. He’s such a lesser known character but being the nerd I am, I know him for the badass character he truly is. He acts as a pseudo leader of the group and takes control usually when Batman isn’t around. I’m excited for the world to see this character come to life because he simply is awesome. Gal Gadot again looks great as Wonder Woman and the more I see her portray this character the more I like her. Time will tell, when her solo movie hits theatres June 3rd. She’s the strong and powerful female superhero this world needs, because right now there aren’t too many of those in the movies.
Now let’s chat about the stand out of the trailer, Mr. Jason Momoa himself who’s playing the King of Atlantis Aquaman. For myself, the fish talking, trident wielding, hero is my second favourite in all of comics. He’s never taken seriously because of some old school jokes that are made, but this guy knows how to throw down, and it shows in the trailer. He’s just such a cool character with great mythology and backstory and he’s got insane powers, and I can’t wait to finally see him on the big screen come November.
I had to watch this trailer twice, on my phone and I was still blown away and that’s not even me going through it with a fine tooth comb to find every little Easter egg and timbit that’s probably inside. The Parademons, those flying bug like creatures look so cool, and I’m really looking forward to seeing the League squash them. This is just a teaser too, so they didn’t really given away anything important plot wise, just little snip-its here and there. Aquaman and Batman look to have a serious bromance going on, and that will be a sweet dynamic to see. My two favourite superheroes best friends in the Justice League movie, brings tears to my eyes. Batman is also looking like a somewhat of a father figure for The Flash which is also neat, so I’m looking forward to going home and putting this bad boy up on my Apple TV, and watching it over and over again. November can’t get here soon enough.