Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Batman: The Animated Series: For reals this time, honest

I couldn't resist doing an April Fools this year, and I'm both sorry, and not sorry for the lame joke. I do however admit Rising Rainbow came out better then the Rick Roll. That one was last minute after all,

I've stated a few times now that I personally prefer DC's animated projects over their Live Action ones, and while I do plan to cover more in the future, for now, lets take a look at some that many remember from their childhoods... I don't because I was too young at their prime, but still. Up first, the one that started it all, and one of the cartoons that has probably helped inspire much of children's television to this day, Batman: The Animated Series.

Starting with the plot, you can almost throw the plot out the window for this. This is a show from the 90's, they don't have cohesive, season long story arcs... more often then not. The show primarily follows the Bat Family, with exceptions every now and then to focus on the Rogues gallery. Each episode puts the characters into interesting situations that do flesh out their characters in some way. It could be something as spectacular as New Years Eve, trying to stop the Joker from killing everyone at the party, to some of Batman's iconic villains playing Poker and telling stories. It is simple, but it's open to how shows were presented at the time. Unless the episode had "Part 1" or "Part 2" in the name, they were shown at random, so this structure means that you're not having general viewers at the time going "When did that happen?"

Very quickly, the show originally had three seasons, but was brought back a few years later with a fourth season, featuring new character designs and some new voices when needed.  Between the four seasons, I love pretty much all the characters here, either visually, personality, or both. Some characters look better in season 4 like Scarecrow, Robin, Nightwing (who was introduced then) and Poison Ivy. Many remain the same like Batman, Batgirl, Harley Quinn (who made her debut in this show) and Two Face. Others... weren't as lucky, in particular The Joker and Catwoman. Honestly though, after the brand has been going on for this long, its up to you for personal preferences in terms of designs. To me, while visually they may be hit and miss, I love the personalities and voices for the whole cast. These personalities are what I think of when I think of Batman. Not too dark, not "weight of the world on my shoulders" depressing, but something that know when to be serious, and when to have a sense of humor.
That's one ugly kitty

The same can be said about the visuals and the music, again, this is Batman to me. The visuals are dark, but it means that the characters pop when on screen, you know what you're meant to be looking at. And that soundtrack, absolutely amazing. In true 90's WB style, it knows when to take center stage, and when to take a back seat. If I have any fault, its that the backgrounds can be a bit too dark, as when I tried watching this on my TV once, it was so dark that it looked like they were fighting on a black screen. That of course depending on how bright your TV is.
Don't lie, you find that intimidating alone

This show has stood the test of time, and is one of my favorite shows to go back to if I'm in that kind of mood. It's only genuine fault, is that now my standards for this franchise now are a lot higher, which only goes to show just how good Batman the Animated series is. It is absolutely worth the watch. Coming next week, Superman: The Animated Series and, while I'm not sure when, due to the nature of the game, I am in the process of working on an Addendum to Hyrule Warriors's review, covering the 3DS port, Hyrule Warriors Legends.
So that's where that Jingle Bells parody comes from...

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