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STUDIO: Warner Home Video
RATED: Not rated
RUNNING TIME: 145 minutes
- Joker’s Challenge Game
- Get the Picture: Batman
- Get the Picture: Superman
- The Art of Batman & Superman music montage
- A Conversation with Bruce Timm
- Science vs. Superstition
- City of Knight interactive game
- Voices in Close-Up
I am darkness, I am the night, yadda yadda yadda.
Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly, Clancy Brown, Mark Hamill, Dana Delany, Arleen Sorkin, Rino Romano, Peter Stormare, Kevin Michael Richardson, Tom Kenny, Alastair Duncan.
Warner takes two Batman animated features, both of which are fairly good, and slaps them together into a DVD double-feature.
When it comes to Batman, I’m thinking that kids of the last 20 years have had it better than previous generations. There have been six feature films and the acclaimed Batman: The Animated Series, which is one of the best incarnations of the Dark Knight in any medium. I also found The Batman pretty entertaining once I gave it a chance. Throw in Justice League and the new Batman: The Brave and the Bold, and it’s been a pretty good time to be a Batfan. This offering pairs together two movies from The Batman and Batman: TAS cartoons, the former where he goes up against Dracula, and the latter where he does a superhero team up with Supes to take on the Joker and Lex Luthor.
Hitting upon Batman/Superman first, this was a pretty enjoyable tag team pitting DC’s two preeminent superheroes. This is the umpteenth release of this particular movie, I personally had it as part of my Superman: TAS collection. Everything that you like about the TAS takes on Bats and Supes are here, including Hamill as Joker and Brown as Luthor. I think this particular movie looks the most like the old Max Fleischer Superman movies that inspired the look of BTAS. But the animation does get dodgy at times and nothing special has been done with the quality of this transfer.
For BvD, the animation of this movie is better than its counterpart and is transferred better. This is a fun movie where the young Caped Crusader goes against the Prince of Darkness before he can take over Gotham and the world. The element that I liked the best was having the Joker turned into a suckhead. And there’s good humor and action interspersed throughout. I initially passed on The Batman when it first came out because I didn’t respond to the pseudo-Gen-X-ing of the character. But I did later become of a fan of the show and I liked the character designs they came up with, although having the Joker being a simian-like carnival tumbler was different, but also fun. Making the Penguin more formidable also was a nice change of pace. Although how the hell Batman is supposed to fight in a cape that hangs a couple feet on the floor always seemed a bit off.
The movies are presented on the flipsides of the same disc. The Batman/Superman side has special features including a Joker’s Challenge Game; two quickie features called Get The Picture, where you see a time lapse of an artist sketching both superheroes; The Art of Batman & Superman music montage, and a Conversation with Bruce Timm that lasts about five minutes. BvD has a quick featurette: Science vs. Superstition, regarding Batman turning vampires back into humans. There’s also City of Knight, which has an interactive search game and mini-featurettes like the Joker’s Challenge Game. Finally, Voices in Close-Up is a five-minute spotlight on the voice actors. If you don’t have either of these titles, this is a good pickup for not a lot of money.