“Batman — The Brave and the Bold”

[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1213218/]

His­to­ry: It all start­ed with ’ ”Bat­man: The Ani­mat­ed Series” and con­tin­ued with ’ ”Super­man’ “and final­ly “The Jus­tice League”. These series were extreme­ly pop­u­lar with both adults and chil­dren, large­ly for their clever writ­ing and the excep­tion­al voice tal­ents (Michael Iron­side as Dark­seid, Michael Dorn as Kalibak, and, last but not least, Adam West as a washed-up, stereo­typed actor, for exam­ple) under the direc­tion of voice direc­tor Andrea Romano. When they final­ly end­ed, the icon­ic char­ac­ter of the Bat­man was returned to screen in a new series, “Bat­man: the Brave and the Bold”.

So how does it stand up?

It stands up very well. The writ­ing is just as good and while I quib­ble about the ani­ma­tion qual­i­ty, it suf­fices. But most of all, it stands up because of the change to the for­mat. Where­as the orig­i­nal series were just about Bat­man, “B:TB&TB” takes after the orig­i­nal com­ic book, which is about the Bat team­ing up with a num­ber of oth­er DC heroes, famous and not-so-famous. One episode can see him teamed with the Green Arrow (with whom he has a friend­ly rival­ry, large­ly from Green Arrow’s point of view) and the next episode in the future team­ing up with Kaman­di or in the past with the Demon Etri­g­an (and Sher­lock Holmes.)

But all in all, it is obvi­ous that the peo­ple involved are hav­ing fun with the series. And I think noth­ing demon­strates this any bet­ter than the fol­low­ing song and dance rou­tine by the Birds of Prey.

Did any­one catch the adult humor there? (Flash being too fast or Aqua­man’s “fishie”?) Or did any­one notice the “Char­lie’s Angels” trib­ute pose?

And I have to say, the voice cast list is just as impres­sive (as I would expect from Andrea Romano) as the pre­vi­ous incar­na­tions. I mean, David McCal­lum as Mer­lin the Wiz­ard, William Katt as Hawk­man, Julie New­mar, Tim Con­way, R Lee Ermey, Olivia d’Abo, Mark Hamil (who is famous for play­ing the Jok­er in the pre­vi­ous series but this time played the Spec­tre), John Wes­ley Shipp (who starred in the unfor­tu­nate­ly too-quick­ly-end­ed series “The Flash” but here plays the Flash’s arch-ene­my Pro­fes­sor Zoom), Peter Wood­ward: I could go on and on but that should give just a taste of the tal­ent involved.

Rec­om­men­da­tion: Def­i­nite­ly rec­om­mend­ed! Catch it soon, because this third sea­son is sup­posed to be the last. Groups of whole episodes can be found on YouTube if you search.

Adden­da:

  • Accord­ing to Andrea Romano, a cross-over between Bat­man and “Scoo­by-Doo” is in the works.
  • I would be remiss in not men­tion­ing “The Brave and the Bold: the Lost Issues”. The own­er of the blog takes a clas­sic B&TB cov­er and inserts a char­ac­ter, which can be any­one from the Sil­ver Surfer to the Son of Satan.

4 Responses to ““Batman — The Brave and the Bold””

  • ronin1861 says:

    Hi Ter­ry, excel­lent blog! Did­n’t Bat­man & Robin meet up with Scoo­by-Doo in the 60’s?

    • HypnoMedia says:

      Yes, they did and I remem­ber it. It was very camp, just like the TV show, espe­cial­ly the cheesy voic­es. (They could­n’t afford or want to get Adam West or Burt Ward, but the pro­duc­ers could at least have got­ten some­one bet­ter.) The vil­lains were the Jok­er and the Pen­guin, IIRC.

  • diginoodles says:

    there’s anoth­er episode in the same series that deals with a woman that gets a spell to exchange bod­ies with bat­man. The sell­er of the spell has a few nice awry begin­ner’s embed­ded com­mands, it made me laugh…

    • HypnoMedia says:

      Not hav­ing a cable con­nec­tion (for finan­cial rea­sons, cable is a lux­u­ry for me right now) I haven’t see that episode but I will have to search for it. The one I real­ly want to write about, though, is the one with the Music Meis­ter in it.

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