Mr. Mxyzptlk

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Everything posted by Mr. Mxyzptlk

  1. The difference is that 'Captain Planet' is so bad it's funny, but 'The Terrible Trio' is so bad in COMPARISON to what we expect of the series that it's so incredibly horrible.
  2. Pre-Episode Banter Video-game stuff is lost on me; haven't kept up with the next-gen systems at all, though I'm hoping for a Wii this Christmas. Can't wait for 'Teen Titans' season 4 (haven't started collecting 'The Batman', not sure if I want to); have the first three seasons, and season 4 is when I stopped watching the show (not because I found it bad, simply because of being too busy), so I can't wait. The episode I'm mainly looking forward to is the Control Freak episode with all the TV parodies. Apparently the fifth season is pretty bad, simply because it tried to be too serious and lost a lot of the humor and creative facial expressions; I'm still getting it for the fight scenes. The fourth 'The Batman' season is apparently the best they've done so far, probably the one worth getting. E-Mails Have to continue to side with Mike on 'Trial'. There's supposed to be a site? Didn't know that. If it gets launched, can't wait. Bah, I like 'The Killing Joke', it makes an awesome point that shouldn't be disregarded simply because of preferred portrayals of the character. And I like Batman laughing; it makes everything so surreal and it goes well with the abrupt ending, and I'm not even sure how to interpret it, but that it's a bit ambiguous and that each interpretation for me is pretty cool, I like it. Anyway, yeah 'Mystery of the Batwoman' isn't that good; loses WAY too much of the dark edge and the animation is bleh. The TNBA design of Croc is garbage. The B:TAS design is infinitely better. Yes, 'A Bullet For Bullock' IS the best score. Whoever's defending 'Trial' is dead wrong. It wasn't a gradual change, it was a sudden change that made no sense and was incredibly forced. The review of mine I quote in the other episode refutes it perfectly. GUYS, IT WAS ME WHO WROTE IT!!! YA GOTTA REMEMBER!!! Oh well. He's right about 'House and Garden'. She DID want a family. It was stated in the episode that she was using the money to fund her plant babies. I'm POSITIVE. And yeah, I know that she never loved her husband, but the point was that she wanted children: she created the plant babies for the purpose of raising children in her own twisted way. And your take on it isn't even bad at all anyway. Sorry I never wrote an E-mail or checked back at the episode; I may do it later. Just a case of laziness. Yeah, my parents wouldn't approve of swearing, so I just wear headphones. I personally don't swear (except for maybe very rare occasions; I may have said bitch in my review of 'Terror in the Sky' though), but I don't mind it. Episodes The Terrible Trio- Crap. Blatant crap. The message is forced and cliched, Bruce uses a gun, and the entire rant on 'they're worse than the Joker, at least he has an excuse' would NEVER happen. Still isn't the worst 'B:TAS' episode; 'Cat Scratch Fever' is miles below it by far. And the animation is HORRRRRIBBLLLE. Even the direction is terrible (ha); the scene where Robin is telling Batman to go after them at the beginning has literally three different camera angles on Robin over the course of like two seconds. It's glaring and doesn't even take a critical eye to notice. And there's so many off-model shots. I think this is the same Jade Studios that did four of the final S:TAS episodes, and they're always terrible. And look at that, y'all go on to talk about how bad it is! It's AWFUL! I knew you guys were going to massacre that awful line about the Joker; I knew it would be one of your biggest gripes. I'm pretty sure it was 'Joker's Wild' that you thought he was psychic. Just knowing that Kaiser was creating a plan that Joker would blow it up and get all the insurance; you thought it was stupid that he just guessed that. Harlequinade- Awesome awesome episode. It's funny, going for the style of an old romantic comedy farce and it works oh so well. The animation is great and as light-hearted as it is, Batman is always in perfect dark form. And the ending is simultaneously hilarious and a very good look into the relationship of Harley and the Joker. Come on Mike, you're seeming so apathetic. The whole episode is classic Joker material. And how can you not like the Batman/Harley interactions? It's so great. The police/auction thing seems more nitpickish than anything, no offense. When the police show up at the site, the last thing I'm thinking of is why they were there, it just doesn't seem important, much less a 'major issue'. Batman letting Harley get away is justifiable for me; it's taking liberties for the sake of the comedy. And in my mind, Harley is only dangerous or bent on murder when she's with the Joker; he exploits her, but when she's away from her, she isn't going to try anything. 'Harley's Holiday' is a perfect example of her being away from the Joker and consequently reaching a state of reform. Here, Batman probably understands this or knows that she wouldn't try anything with him right there nearby. I don't know, I buy it fine. I'm almost positive that there was an explanation for the Mayor Hill thing, maybe I'll go back to the episode. Oh, and I see Joker's waiting around as typical Joker fun. He can't just pull of a plan, he has to relish it, wait and take pleasure in what he's about to accomplish. That's my explanation. At least you love that awesome ending. Time Out of Joint- Decent. Sort of slow-paced. It's definitely artistically striking at points, but meh; the animation is pretty average (note that animation and visuals aren't necessarily the same; I find the blue tint and some of the visual concepts relating to the time premise awesome, and a lot of the effects, but the actual fluidity in the regular animation was only okay given how great this season was) and it's all kind of forgettable. So I'd say it's just average. Didn't notice the 'See No Evil' reference. Ahhh, I just saw 'Tabula Rasa' but I can't for the life of me remember the house from 'Time Out of Joint'. I doubt it though, because the one in 'Rasa' was surrounded by a river and had a specific architectural style and wasn't in a remote area. This one was. I do think the one in 'Speed Demons' is probably similar. James is right about the new intro. I actually think that 'Catwalk' is the only episode from here to the end that DOESN'T have Robin. He' s also in 'Lock-Up', 'Harley's Holiday', 'Deep Freeze', etc. I like the new intro for the revised theme, which sounds, to me, a bit cooler because it's extended to a slower, lighter (but not in a way that denotes the dark edge of the show), just, I don't know, more dramatic overall. I thought that way about Clock King playing with time. I mean, I guess I feel that giving him a time machine thing was a bit of a cliched thing to do with a time-themed character, when the first episode gave him a bit of an edge as being really in-tune with time's precision and that cool angle. I do like James' point about him controlling time. Oh yeah, I also remember that something Batman said about how fast time was moving not matching at all with light and day going by constantly. Yeah, that's what I always wondered about the Flash. If he could use his speed to give him the momentum to make him that powerful, then he could be an easy match for Superman (especially given he's faster, although Superman is strong without being fast, so if he used any speed, that'd be a huge increase, so...yeah I'll stop). I get your complaint of the 'society isn't ready..'; seems like a cliche. Catwalk- The only GOOD Catwoman episode. Explores the Selina/Catwoman duality better than any other episode, and the the Batman/Catwoman relationship isn't nearly as horribly overt as in 'The Cat and the Claw'. And the animation is great, much better than any Catwoman episode before this. An interesting review I read sees it as a metaphor for marriage vs sex, Batman representing a figure of authority, wanting a relationship of commitment who breaks no rules, and Catwoman being wild and all about fun, so that caused me to think about it on a neat level. I think you're getting Veronica confused with the other woman in 'The Terrible Trio'; maybe it was just a mention. But yeah, she definitely became a more prominent character this season. I think it's that the priceless animal will never be able to be recovered, whereas Catwoman will always be out there for him to apprehend. I like that they downplay it; it was a tad ridiculous and overly blatant in 'The Cat and the Claw'. Oh yeah, this episode does continue the cliche of Scarface getting crushed up at the end of EVERY Ventriloquist episode. But the first Catwoman episode is a bad episode, it has so much cheesiness in the drama, and it was so blatantly played out and just awful. Selina's coldness shows continuity in the fact that Batman and Catwoman has been constantly at odds since their first relationship episodes. Bane- meh; the animation I felt could have been better, and the story is only okay. That's about it. Bane's actually one of my least favorite villains, given that he lacks the awesome psychological depth of the others. And the voice acting on him makes him feel lame; Henry Silva did much better in TNBA. I really don't want a movie though, too much. I don't think he fits with Nolan's style AT ALL. Do agree about the Croc scene; probably the best moment in the episode. Along with the climax with the venom overload. My favorite action cue was Batman grappling him with that massive gun. Sorry, but I think Silva did FAR better in TNBA. NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! It’s the same person; he just changed his voice a WHOLE lot. The actor only changes in ‘Mystery of the Batwoman’. Scores The Terrible Trio: You- 0 / Me- 1 Harlequinade: You- 7 and 6 / Me- 9 Time Out of Joint: You- 7.5 and 5 / Me- 6.5 Catwalk- You- 5 and 5 / Me- 8 Bane- You- 7.5 and 7 / Me- 7 After next episode, do you think could just finish off the last six episodes of the series in a single show, even though you usually do five? An extra episode for the final WFP of 'B:TAS'. Great job as usual. I'll be back next time of course.
  3. Sorry that my routine post isn't in yet, my internet went down last night, but I was able to save my post. Unfortunately I'm at school right now, so I'll post it as soon as I get home.
  4. I haven't updated my iTunes' version in forever but I still get them perfectly (the episode's downloading as I type); didn't know it was a problem for others.
  5. Starting it up in a bit; love these every other Wednesdays.
  6. This talk of a commentary reminds me of a podcast for the DCAU that's basically commentaries by a comic book enthusiast named Trevor Balena. He's got them all on iTunes; if anyone's interested, here's his site: Just for anyone's interest.
  7. Great, it's always good to find someone else who loves the series (and I'm eagerly anticipating Mike's and James' coverage of it). It's always looked down upon in many circles because it isn't Batman and lacks that series' revolutionary qualities and also lacks the scope of 'Justice League', but so many of these people sort of gloss over all of the best aspects of the series, such as the continuity, the orchestral music, and the amazing animation. There were definitely poor episodes, but I don't think those compare at all to the series' overwhelming set of great episodes. It's always neat to read the opinions of someone who's newer to the show and comics in general. And thanks for taking the time to write out longer posts and being so civil; I look forward to conversing with you in the future.
  8. Yeah, I don't pay attention to comic book continuity. Oh well.
  9. I must apologize in part Mxyzptlk for how little of this particular post I'm quoting, but it caught my eye and I thought I would respond to it. I really don't see Batman as a virgin or someone who's having very little sex over the years. Now I would like to point out, I don't think this because Batman is my favorite of the comic book characters, or because I just want Batman to be the uber pimp, or because since he's usually such a good philosophical and visual foil to Superman that he should be in this category as well. (From my limited understanding of Superman, it seems like Lois and maybe Lana have been his only sex partners.) I think the real reason he has sex on a semi-regular basis is a few key factors. First, Batman has had alot of women he's been interested in. Now granted, it's probably in part because Batman has never really been able to have that one perfect character that works with him on all of his various psychological layers, but that fact remains. Second, Batman strikes me as a secular humanist who would not have the more traditional Puritan ideas of sexuality, so not being married wouldn't bug him, though I see him having monogamous relationships with these women during these different periods of his life. Third, Batman risks his life every single night, as well as the lives of men and women he feels are his family. (Dick Dreyson as Robin, Jason Todd before the Joker, Tim Drake, Barbara Gordon, etc...) I think he certainly would be aware of the dangers of STDs, but I don't see him having casual sex with women he barely knows, and he might be just obsessive enough to screen their blood for himself anyway. And finally, his image. He's seen as a vapid playboy, in the traditional sense that he screws around with female celebrities and such. If Bruce isn't having sex, I don't think that facade would be maintained. While I think in women in general are wonderful, certainly there are those select individuals that would try to embarrass Bruce if they could get neither his money or even some fun time in the bedroom. We would start having people wondering if the rumors that Bruce might be gay or have ED are true. Rumors that have never been said in the comics themselves when it comes to Bruce Wayne, though there is certainly the out of universe Seduction of the Innocent I suppose. And I do think those rumors would have to start after awhile if he's not having sex at all and no, I'm not mentioning the original Robin's costume in my analysis. :laugh: Yeah, part of my version of Batman definitely has root in my strict moral upbringing, so while it's probably a given that Bruce goes around having sex to maintain his image, I haven't been exposed a lot to how frequently sex occurs given how morally conservative I've been my whole life that it's hard for me to picture one of my favorite heroes engaging in the act every so often. While I think that avoidance of STDs is probably the only concrete reason Batman would abstain from it, I do admit that looking at it realistically, he's probably not a virgin. So yeah, there's definitely a lot of personal bias in my preference of a less sexually active Batman portrayal, but I guess it's what floats your boat. In any case, I still have trouble imagining that Bruce maintains his playboy image at all during 'Justice League', given how busy he is on the League and how hard it is to conceive that he's spending any time whatsoever in Gotham. As for your more recent post, just wondering, what did you think of 'Superman: the Animated Series'? Given that that's probably the least talked about series of the Timm-verse, I'm always curious as to what people think about it (as you may have already read, I'm a fervent defender of it and find it to be criminally underrated).
  10. I'm pretty certain it was over the loss of her 'family' that she created. Didn't Batman say something to the effect of, 'But when Ivy said that she wanted a family, I think she really did mean it', then cut to the tear and the photograph? That's my point. She never wanted a true family, but she did want a family. Only due to her psychologically obsessed mind, her idea of family is a warped concept involving genetic plant experiments. I'm positive that they were at the end of the episode. I'll rewatch it later tonight and give you the quote. No no no. The scene when Ivy comes in to the lab after Batman finds her babies. He tells her she hasn't changed and she immediately responds with 'But I have!' Her aim really is to start a family of genetic plant experiments. That's my point! She married Carlyle for the purpose of starting a twisted family of genetic plant babies, which she considers her 'family'. It's so bad it's good. Ha! I thought the music was to illustrate how sad the "freaks" felt at having been tricked by Croc. :laugh: That's pretty funny.
  11. But she did. That was the reason that it ended with Batman saying that maybe she really was happy, and the reason why she shed a tear at the end. If she really hadn't wanted a family, then there would be no reason in ending it like that whatsoever. And didn't it state that the crimes were done for the purpose of financing her genetic experiments? I'm almost absolutely positive. And when Batman tells her she hadn't changed, and she immediately responds that she had, by stating that this is really the kind of family she wants, or something similar, you get the feeling she means it. If she had no care whatsoever for her little plant babies, she wouldn't have been so defensive (rather a 'you're right Batman, I haven't changed, blah blah blah') nor would she have been so motherly to her little creatures. The 50s happy homemaker life was certainly a ruse; the point was that to her sick genetic offspring, she was truly genuine. That's why it's so creepy and psychological. She didn't reform, but she did want a family, and the tear at the end is solid evidence. It's not 'calling attention to crappiness'. it's paying an homage. It's a small tribute to the style of old B-movie serials that dealt with such fantastic adventures. And having Batman say that is pretty much the writers telling us not to take this seriously; it's straying from typical B:TAS to tackle a different story style. I sort of felt from the semi-sad evocative music that that's what it was going for. Oh well.
  12. Pre-Episode Banter C'mon James, you HAVE to see 'The Great Brain Robbery'. Just get the DVD. E-Mails The problem I have with y'all doing Static Shock is that the only reason it's part of the universe is because of some cheap crossovers instigated by the WB, which is sort of exactly what happened between all of the Marvel shows. That massive Spider-Man cartoon with all of the heroes that Beyonder set up was awesome. I like Stavros's point of the problem with Joker being a hitman. Really good stuff. It doesn't bother me, but it's definitely a great look at it all. 'Long Halloween' would be awesome if it was transferred to animation. As long as they emulate Tim Sale's style then I'd be perfectly satisfied. I envy Thomas. Nah, it's not the 'Citizen Kane' of cartoon movies. I don't think it's quite that good. Episodes Sideshow- Meh episode. Some great backgrounds and awesome animation at the climax, but the attempt at humanizing Croc was terrible. Trying to strike sympathy with 'I was just being myself' is utterly stupid, because if being yourself refers to being an ass and stealing from people who took you in, there's no way that either evokes sympathy or humanizes the character. It just makes him more deplorable than he ever was. I did sort of like the sideshows though Mike, I enjoy your Croc voice. Yeah, that was pretty Clark Kent-ish now that you mention it. Never thought about it. Didn't notice the Levitz reference. No, I highly doubt he was the president at this time. I just happened to have a DC book published in 1995, and it says the president was Jenette Kahn, so no, he came later. Yeah, Croc is far from insane. It's stupid that he's in Arkham in 'Trial'. Yeah, I do love the forest sounds, especially when coupled with the artwork. I didn't know that was Brad Garrett. He's done a lot more for the DCAU, including Lobo and Bibbo. A Bullet for Bullock- One of my ALL-TIME FAVORITES. Best music in the series, most well-established noir atmosphere, and awesome animation. I love it to death. Yes! You guys agree with me absolutely! It's EASILY my favorite score. The Batman theme done jazz is probably the second greatest musical moment behind the piano solo at Dan Turpin's funeral in 'S:TAS'. I'm hoping that this is going to be a perfect ten. Trial- Don't like it. It's hilarious at points and the animation is good, but the story is very weak. I wrote a review at another site that I'll go ahead and post: "Just watched it on DVD, and I must say, it's grown worse the more I watch it. Janet Van Dorne is an embarrassment of a character. What I think of as her comic-book counterpart, the anti-Batman Commissioner Ellen Yindel from 'The Dark Knight Returns' has far more valid and reasonable criticisms against the Dark Knight. Janet Van Dorne has nothing more than her own personal claims, which were embarrassing to listen to. As soon as she listed Two-Face among those Batman created, I wondered if Dini was keeping in mind the origin of the character, that it was Rupert Thorne who caused everything, and if there was a lack of evidence in the first place, it's still documented that the Two-Face personality lived in Harvey for his entire life. Even if the episode wasn't big on continuity, Janet is still portrayed very ignorant for my taste. The scene in Arkham in which she has a change of heart is cringe-worthy. If you recall, she realizes the criminals changed themselves as soon as she, apparently, starts to remember the facts of what happened. It's almost as if she says, "Wait a minute. Let me just remember that Mad Hatter kidnapped an innocent girl, Harley fell under Joker's manipulation, Poison Ivy was an insane activist, etc. etc. all before Batman. Even though all this information has always been in my brain and the inmates here said nothing to convince me, I still for some reason used my non-factual theories to justify a disdain for Batman. Silly me. Now that I bother to rack my brain for the facts, I guess Batman's off the hook." It makes her earlier position on Batman seem incompetent and embarrassing. So after that rant on why Janet Van Dorne is a wasted character, here's my grade of 2 and 1/2 stars, simply because there were some saving graces (Joker for instance)." Isn't the Penguin in Stonegate ('Second Chance')? Jimmy Levitz? I can't believe I didn't notice that! The Punisher? Seriously??? That's awesome. Didn't notice that issue with Scarface. Mike's Joker/Harley rant is awesome. Yeah, I agree that Batman is an optimist. A pessimistic Batman would be way too depressing. Avatar- Awesome episode. It may be over-the-top, but its so clearly an homage to old adventure serials that I can't take it seriously. It's so much fun, but at the same time there are some surprisingly serious moments. I actually have to say that I enjoy it better than 'The Demon's Quest'. I disagree with you. Even if it's silly and over-the-top, I think that Ras has lost none of his edge and despite the plot, he remains characteristically intact (though I suppose you have a point with the scroll scene; I don't remember it being that terrible though). I mean, Batman himself calls attention to how absurd it all is, "You sound like a bad afternoon serial, Ras". It's such an homage and it's totally not meant as being serious and realistic that I can justify all the craziness. I love it. Other positives, the ending with Ubu, Batman's completely black without blue color-scheme is awesome, the animation is pretty stellar, and the dialogue is pretty awesome. And you can't deny that the Ras/Talia relationship is progressed a bit. His quickness to reject her sort of sets a precedent for his basically killing her in 'Out of the Past' from 'Batman Beyond'. And the storyboards for this one are awesome (they're included in the book 'Batman Animated'). House and Garden- Awesome awesome awesome. Best, and perhaps the only remotely good, Poison Ivy episode ever. It humanizes her and delves into her psychology. Simple as that. But this one freaked me out SO MUCH when I was a kid. The little plant baby saying 'Mommy' in the dark and creepily orchestrated underground chemical lab? I was scared out of my mind. And the ending is eerily touching. Your summary is so hilarious. You hated the episode?!?!?!?!?!? It's awesome. The monsters were awesome; if they creeped me out as a kid then they did their job. And Jim Cummings did the voice! It doesn't get better! But this is a great episode!!! What's the problem????? Jason Hillhouse? I think he's good friends with Paul Dini. I don't get why he came back in later DVD extras though. Well I know James has it right with his description of part 2, but then he's dead wrong when he says he doesn't like it because it's such an awesome episode. I mean, in all objectivity and stopping the joking, there's a massive psychological undertone to the episode. The whole point is that it's showing how Poison Ivy, in trying to pursue something other than crime, a usual human desire for a family, she ends up still twisting it to her own psychologically screwed up standards. It's just such deep insight into her character that her idea of happiness is making screwed up plant babies by keeping a guy captive. No other episode comes this close to giving her an interesting characterization. And the title card is creepy as well. I don't see the problem with Robin's weeds whacked line. Hasn't he always made lame puns, even in the best of episodes? But this is still hilarious. "Show me Dick!" And yeah, I do agree with most of your nitpicks. Scores Sideshow: You- 7 and 9 / Me- 5 A Bullet for Bullock: You- 10 / Me- 10 Trial: You- 8 and 5 / Me- 4 Avatar: You- 2.5 and 3 / Me- 9 House and Garden: You- 3.5 and 3 (such lowness?!?!?!?) / Me- 9.5 So many disagreements...except 'A Bullet for Bullock' of course. I swear, you're getting an e-mail from me on 'House and Garden'.
  13. I'll have my post tomorrow; had stuff to do today.
  14. Okay, here goes: Pre-Episode Banter Never seen any Saw movies. My friend said that after the first two films the series got awful, but he tends to like it and I tend to always a agree with him; he's 17, but he may as well be in his thirties he's such a genius. I really don't care about the Wiki stuff to be honest. I don't really care about references that much, and I already know enough of those to be satisfied anyway. E-Mails Legion continuity bugs me. I don't even want to think about it. Bat Embargo: Yep, stupidest thing ever. No kid is going to get confused between different versions of the same characters. I agree with whoever talked about Veronica. I actually like Veronica in a way. She was a spoiled brat who was playing a joke without being aware of the consequences, but if you look at her in episodes like 'Harley's Holiday' and at the end of 'Birds of a Feather', she's actually a pretty nice person. I know that Penguin robs from the rich, but I don't really think that the show should be THAT intent on continuity. The downloads are fine for me. And I do sort of see Batman as a virgin, even though there was implied sex in MOTP, but I buy it there given he's the more emotional BTAS version of the character. In TNBA and JL I highly doubt that he'd engage in sexual relations due to his emotional repression and deeper intent on his duty as a crime-fighter. As for sex without true love, I see him as eliminating any chance of inhibitions, and that includes STDs. Oh, I'm Stuart. Forgot I made that E-mail. I do agree that if the show is really hard to place in continuity if it IS in continuity. Given that the show made by a different crew, I seriously don't see it as being the same universe. I definitely think it should be covered because it's a great show and is always associated with the rest of the DCAU, but I just prefer to see it as its own universe. Cool to see I stimulated so much discussion. Explosions are just action cartoon cliches. You can't get rid of them. I'm one of the people who really enjoy 'Fire From Olympus'. Jay Allman's review is perfect justification. Your diatribe on how we're all on crack is pretty funny though. 'Read My Lips'- It's definitely MPD (Multiple Personality Disorder) or DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder). But the semantics about insanity are pretty cool though. I agree with Ian and Mike about how to handle the reevaluations; really want to see Top and Bottom episode lists. Mask of the Phantasm Okay, here we go. It's such a massive film that I won't bother reviewing it. I'm simply going to respond to you guys. What about 'The Savage Time'? It was a three-part JL episode, so will it also be treated as a movie? PG Rating- surprisingly, a lot of people actually think that 'Return of the Joker' Uncut shouldn't have been PG-13, which I find even more surprising. 'MOTP' was pretty sophisticated and everything but I don't think it was PG-13 material. The blood wasn't enough to be truly discomforting and there really weren't any sex/language scenes really. So yeah, I agree with the rating more or less. 'Return of the Joker', however, DEFINITELY should have been PG-13 and was a lot less kid-friendly than 'MOTP'. The 3-D opening credits looked amazing! The reason it fails in JL(U) is because its so standard CG with overly shaded designs, but in the opening credits, the 3-D is really a 2.5-D, in that it integrates really well with the 2-D animation but is still technically a 3-D model. It was also used briefly for a rain shot. Amazing music as well. The Spectrum animation is really a step-up from the series save the TMS episodes of the show. And even then the backgrounds are much more textured. Yeah, the fights were far more creative than usual here. Love that table scene. I'd adore to see any parent's reaction to the movie. I actually showed the movie to my dad a few months ago. He thought it was great. The two freakiest scenes for me was the statue scene in which it crushed Chuckie and Sal Valestra's smile after the Phantasm turns around the chair. And when Joker got kicked in the balls, because I always flinch whenever someone gets hit in the balls no matter how its animated and no matter who it is. Alfred was truly at his best here. Terrific balance between sardonic humor and serious father figure. Whoa, James just said that. Oh yeah, Dana Delaney is Beaumont! Strange that Bruce has had romantic relationships with two characters voiced by Delaney. Oh yeah, speaking of Hamill, I think this is one of his ALL TIME GREATEST performances. Arthur Reeve's actor was also great, especially in the laughing scene. It sounded so creepily real. The animation was done by Spectrum and Dong Yang partially (though the film feels mostly like Spectrum). Spectrum also did 'It's Never Too Late', 'Heart of Ice', and 'Robin's Reckoning pt 1'. Great stuff. I rather like the idea of a young Bruce Wayne Smallville thing. I wonder what the spin-off's title would be. Also love the outdoor training scene. Along the lines of Mike's talk on a more innocent portrayal of Bruce, I do really think that this movie more so than in most other episodes, Bruce feels like a real emotional human character. You don't get that a lot in TNBA and JL, where he's just such an emotionally repressed straight-up badass that he sometimes doesn't feel human. Agreed. Danny Elfman rules. Oh, in the 'Bruce's first night out scene', did y'all notice Bullock in the old-timey cop uniform that was used in 'Robin's Reckoning'? did. Yep, noticed the Radomski easter egg; don't think I noticed anything else. Haha. 'Bruce has got some serious mojo!' Love Joker's backstory actually. The fact that he never speaks shows that he was still a badass even before he became the Joker. And yeah: no name = best way to handle a Joker past. I definitely don't mind the differences from 'The Killing Joke' (I really need to reread that). Your gripe doesn't bug me at all. I just don't think that hard about it. Oh yeah, absence of Gordon. I really agree with you there. I still wouldn't remove points for that (the only points I'd remove would be for predictability and too much exposition). Didn't notice the 'On Leather Wings' cop. I don't think the biker was meant to be anyone in the series. It was definitely Chuckie. And no, I don't think they should re-use Thorne, especially given some great episodes coming up feature Thorne ('Second Chance'!!!!). The Wayne tombstone scene is amazing, very well animated, perfectly scored, and brilliantly acted. Excellent scene. Love your sarcasm about the 'laying the roses down at Crime Alley'. Completely agree. Speaking of the line, 'My God!', did you know that Toon Disney edited it out in 'Heart of Ice' when they were re-airing it recently. Made me so mad. Ha, fate contradiction. My favorite Joker line is: '(angrily) GET YOUR HANDS OFF ME!....(cools down) I don't know where they've been.' My other problem is that two of Andrea's lines are too similar. 'If anyone's still ruled by his parents, it's you!' and 'if anyone knows the answer to that, it's you!'. Both are great lines, but they're just so similar to each other. Joker being the killer was amazing, and the static direction on that scene actually works for a change. It's so subtle and nonchalant. He walks in, gunfire, he walks out, and she cries, or something like that. It was so awesome. I thought it was in Europe too Mike. Oh yeah, one more scene that bugged me was the animation in Batman's fall to the ledge in which he falls during the police chase. Very awkward looking. I think having the pre-Joker not talk is not only mysterious, but so so cool. You just get the sense that this guy's a monster by the way he smiles sinisterly without saying a word. The meat joke made me laugh out loud, honestly. Totally disagreed about the 'if the killer was caught, he wouldn't be Batman'. I think Batman's quest is far more deeply rooted than simple vengeance. Wasn't the other part of his reasoning 'to make sure what happened to him never has to happen to another eight-year-old boy'? I mean, he fights the Joker, and Joker's definitely not the killer, but he still fights him right? Ditto Two-Face, Poison Ivy, etc. He also helps the innocent; that certainly doesn't help him catch the killer, but he does it anything. No, Batman goes far beyond vengeance. The Joker death is really hard to figure out. I prefer not to think about it. I don't think the closing shot was at all the best animation. The entirety of the climax was probably the best. James's theory on how she dropped the locket is pretty great; never thought of that before. Mike, you forgot 'Beware the Creeper' from TNBA!!!!! That was a connection to 'MOTP'. The first part talks about how Joker was a nameless gunman for the Valestra mob. I loved it the first time I saw it, but I don't remember much of the experience. I remember it being on Cartoon Network's Cartoon Theater but little to do with my actual watching the movie. Re-watching it this past year was like a new experience for me. Scores You: 9 and 9 / Me: 9 Closing Ooh, nice choice for a closing scene. Keep up the great work. Some of my favorite episodes next week: 'A Bullet For Bullock', 'Avatar', and 'House and Garden'. Can't wait.
  15. Agreed that S:TAS suffers from bad animation done by Jade Studios (I actually remember cringing at that scene in 'Superman's Pal'), but that was only in three or four episodes, and none of those half as bad as the worst of B:TAS ('Moon of the Wolf', 'I've Got Batman in My Basement', etc.) or even the first season of JL (almost every episode had AWFUL animation). I love JLU, but it does have a few problems. A few terrible episodes. 'Hawk and Dove', 'Chaos at the Earth's Core', 'Dark Heart', 'Far From Home', and 'The Ties That Bind' were all pretty bad. The animation also suffers occasionally due to the continuation of lousy CGI. As well, there is a large directorial inconsistency. Joquaim Dos Santos, who directed such visually appealing episodes as 'Initiation', 'Divided We Fall', and 'The Cat and the Canary' (best fight scenes JL(U) has ever seen), was vastly superior to Dan Riba, who although great in previous DCAU shows, fails to impress when doing JL (perhaps because of the emphasis on action and the grand scope or whatnot). His episodes included 'This Little Piggy' (hilarious episodes but the animation direction was SO by-the-numbers), 'Dark Heart' (I do enjoy the entire JL cast in a single battle, but compared to the large scale fights in Santos' 'The Return', there's no comparison; here they're very static and almost every shot is a member shooting or crushing a few techno-beings, with only a few truly creative action sequences, such as the Atom vs the worm), and 'Hawk and Dove (which is terrible in every respect). I will give him props for episodes like 'Clash' and 'For the Man Who Has Everything', but Santos is so much better. I think the problem is that Riba excels far better in subtleties ('Epilogue') and focused one-on-one action scenes ('Clash'), which were both rarities in JLU. And finally, the third season was a huge letdown from the amazing second season. After an intricately plotted season of awesomeness, we get an inconsistent season with nothing but run-of-the-mill adventure stories. So yeah, not stellar.
  16. Any particular reason why you found S:TAS to be awful, despite the fact that it, purely objectively, has the most famous Japanese animation studio (TMS) working on almost half the episodes, an actual authentic orchestra, continuity from episode to episode, the first major attempts to flesh out the DCAU, etc.? And subjectively, in matters I can't see anyone possibly disagreeing on, the voice acting was excellent, the series had so much more variety as far as story angles as opposed to JL, the writing was incredibly consistent, the fight choreography was much better than JL(U) (even actual animation critics who frequent the Toonzone boards agree to that), etc. It just seems to me that JL(U) is so often praised for its scale and scope and cast of characters despite the inferior animation, bland writing, occasionally lame and un-fleshed out characterizations, and some really really crappy voice acting (even Kevin Conroy's voice became more smooth and less menacing than it was in B:TAS, not to mention season 1 George Newbern and the occasional dreadfulness of Susan Eisenberg). I also think that S:TAS gets such a bad wrap for being Superman (who, as we all know, is so vastly underrated in today's world, where everyone prefers cynical anti-heroes to anyone resembling the Big Blue Boy Scout). B:TAS was so dark and the first DCAU show and it was so revolutionary that it gets praised, JL was such a landmark in comic book animation history due its breathtaking scope that it gets praised, whereas S:TAS, for reasons no one seems to be able to provide, gets nothing.
  17. I'd say JL(U) belongs below 'B:TAS' and 'S:TAS' but probably above 'Batman Beyond' (for having more consistent writing). However, the animation for 'Justice League' was consistently terrible and Dan Riba's direction in 'JLU' always pales in comparison to that of Joquaim Dos Santos that watching his episodes feels really underwhelming. While the stories are often very well-plotted, there is also a plethora of lame dialogue. The show's main strong point is its scope and continuity, but I don't think that can compare to the superior animation, music, and all around consistency of 'S:TAS'.
  18. Okay. That makes sense. I really can't wait to see what all you're going to be able to cover for this. I'm thinking it'll be a nice change of pace.
  19. Pre-Episode banter I CAN'T wait until Brawl. It's the main reason I'm asking for a Wii for Christmas. I keep up with the updates everyday and every single one makes me drool with delight. And Smash is excellent for being one of the most fun multiplayer experiences, a fighting game that unlike other fighting games, has some of the most strategic and versatile game-play featuring loads of variety between characters (each one with his own specific move set). Not to mention the sheer amount of combat modes, items, and stage diversity. Once you understand how to play it Mike, you'd be HOOKED. Oh yeah, it isn't much fun unless you're playing with friends. Brawl's going to have online play so you won't need to have to be within a ten foot radius to play someone. Other games I'm probably going to pick up are 'Super Mario Galaxy', 'Twilight Princess', and maybe 'Metroid Prime' and 'Paper Mario'. And I LOVED 'The Wind Waker''s graphics; The cartoony look is awesome. E-mails LOVE Chris's comparison between the Bullock/Batman relationship and the Batman/Superman relationship. Excellent job on his part. I don't think there was any validation that Curare was part of Ras Al Ghul's terrorist group. I remember her being part of some type of assassins' league, but not the specific League of Assassins of Ras. Okay, I want you to do 'Teen Titans', and I can even slightly buy some theories that it's in continuity, but that 'Static Shock' line I'd prefer to ignore, because it implies that the Tim Drake Robin of TNBA is the Robin of the Titans, whereas it's already been established in 'Teen Titans' that the Robin is simply Robin and no more, and if he does have an identity, it's most likely Dick Grayson, due to the LOADS of hints given by the show (Nosyarg Kcid, Starfire relationship, 'Haunted' allusions to the candle oath and his parents' death, Nightwing, etc.). I think I'm going to e-mail this. I like 'The Batman' SOLELY for the fight scenes and animation, which are both very very excellent. It's definitely not an awful show. As far as being an action show that appeals to kids, it does its job very well, whether or not you're upset by the lack of truly intelligent story-lines. Mike is spot-on with his assessment that Batman is such an excellent character due to the fact that he can be constantly re-interpreted. Ahh, 'Legion of Superheroes', another show I watch mainly for the animation. Objectively, it's probably better than 'The Batman' in that the characterizations are stronger and the dialogue better. Episodes 'His Silicon Soul'- LOVE this episode. Very eerie, and very avoidant of cliches for an archetypal man vs machine episode. I very much enjoy the idea that a robotic duplicate and grow to emulate its human counterpart to the extent that it retains the original's morals and non physical properties. The ending is pretty ambiguous, as well as being kind of freaky (just looking at the mangled and deactivated mess of machine just gives me chills in a way). One of the little touches I really enjoy are Rossum's lines to the duplicate concerning implanted memories and actual emotions ('when was the last time you tasted a really good steak?'). NOOOOO!!!! TMS did 'The Demon's Quest'!!!! Dong Yang did 'His Silicon Soul'. Still, I understand the mistake namely because volume 3 of the series is the point in which Dong Yang started becoming really good. I understand the over-the-top complaint, but I accept it given it was an unstable robotic duplicate and not the genuine article. And especially given that if there's anything Batman wants to avoid no matter what, it's taking a life. That definitely has to be the most serious guilt-inducing action Batman could ever commit. I really love the fact that the cave extends beyond what we usually see to a trophy/lab rooms that actually exist in even deeper unexplored areas. 'Fire From Olympus'- An underrated episode that offers crisp animation, great music and voice-acting, and the only main flaw is the slow pace that is occasionally irritating. The ending is also particularly awesome. You hate it? Aww. I find Maxie to be one of the more psychologically interesting character of the series and whole episode is filled to the brim with awesome Greek mythological allusions. The backgrounds particularly stand out to me. I'll stop gushing and wait for your criticisms. First your praises- 1) Mike's comment on animation- agreed 2) decent story structure- agreed 3) brand new villain- agreed. It's one of the few episodes I didn't watch as a child and running through the episode guide later as a teenager, I was eagerly surprised to find that Maxie actually made an appearance. 4) Batman as Hades- definitely agreed 5) tragic ending- agreed Criticisms- 1) episode's need of origin story- I can accept it easily; I prefer that there's no exposition and rather we have to infer the extent to which Maxie got stressed out running his business to the point that he associated himself with Zeus (a real psychologist actually went through the villains and assigned them with specific disorders; he assigned Maxie with 296.44 Bipolar I Disorder, Most Recent Episode Manic, with Psychotic Features). 2) Maxie should be dead- of course he should, but it's a typical action cartoon suspension of belief 3) the dialogue is AWESOME!!!! Maybe his lover should have been less blatant and sad, but she displays some well-written wit, and the Greek touches in Maxie's dialogue sounds so awesome and makes the character come alive 4) Bat-grenade- eh, I don't really care 5) oh yeah- the elevator is awful, as is the plot hole that she gets captured by the goons on the elevator but then soon after sneaks to the top 6) mentally broken character- I sort of understand, but then sort of don't. You'd be surprised how mentally screwed up someone can get for little reason and with minor transition; I can buy Maxie's predicament. Oh and the 'how does he still run his company?'; what I also like about the episode is that despite his mentally screwed up mindset, he is obviously still very intelligent; despite the fact that Batman speaks in non-Greek terms concerning the electric discharge canon, Maxie is still sane enough to understand every word of it. He's a smart guy, only he's stuck in a messed up sense of identity. Just to throw it out there, here's one of the essays I used to quote all the time, and I think it may offer some neat insight into reasons why the episode can be considered good. 'Read My Lips'- AMAZING TOP TEN A+ episode. The music is perfect, the animation (TMS) is perfect, the script is perfect, the acting (George Dzundza I love you) is peerrrrffffeeeecccctttttt. I know that the Batman death scene will be mentioned but when the episode is this well written, I could really care less about something so minor. YES! You love it. Hooray Huzzah, you agree with me. Yeah, the dialogue is mentioned in the commentary. Michael Reeves owes it to Joe R. Landsdale, who also wrote 'Showdown' (the Jonah Hex episode), who's a master of witty dialogue. James is dead-on about the old-timey jazz music that perfectly fits the dark gangster theme. George Dzundza is excellent, I must agree (also note that he's Perry White in 'S:TAS'). That he can transition between two completely different voices is astounding. Oh yeah, and the psychology of the character is very well-done. He actually does have the same diagnosis as Harvey Dent in 'Two-Face' pt 1, but to a much greater extent (the Scarface personality has reached a level of equal control as the Wesker personality, and the fact that each personality pops up in response to the other shows just how bad it is). Here's the actual psychologist's assessment: And note that Multiple Personality is the equivalent of Dissociative Identity Disorder. And did you know that in extreme MPD cases, there can be up to 100 different personalities? (I just did a project on it for Psychology class because I wanted to see how it matches up to Two-Face; as expected, 'Two-Face' pt 1 is completely accurate in regards to Harvey's MPD). The gripes: yes I know he's dead. I knew this would be brought up. I'll just say that I accept it because it's just such a fun episode that stepping outside the realm of physical reality doesn't bug me and doesn't detract from the episode. No matter what nitpicks you can possibly have concerning the ending, it was just necessary. They had to do it. I don't mind the goon not realizing he's shooting Scarface, because there are several times where people can have late reaction time to something, and he was obvious so into the moment that it probably took him a second to snap back to reality and figure out what was happening. Agreed about the empathetic crying scene. But nothing will ever beat Two-Face's shrieks at the end of 'Two-Face pt 2'. 'Perchance to Dream' is awesome and one of the most psychological episodes ever. 'The Worry Men'- The epitome of average. A typical Batman vs a rogues gallery with no real depth but with good plotting. Just pretty meh. Yeah, this is when Veronica Vreeland started showing up a whole lot. I can buy Wayne associating with her because she, unlike her friend, was actually remorseful and felt sorry for the Penguin at the end. I don't think she was really that awful in 'Birds of a Feather' and I can buy that they still associate. What bad Mad Hatter episodes? This is the first weak episode so far because he's lost any ties to his past and is simply an ordinary thug. 'Mad as a Hatter' and 'Perchance to Dream' are both excellent excellent excellent episodes, despite what either of you think. No, he doesn't have another episode until Gotham Knights (which is 'Animal Act', which is awful). Scores 'His Silicon Soul'- You: 6 and 6 / Me: 8.5 'Fire From Olympus'- You: 4 and 6 / Me: 7 'Read My Lips'- You: 8.5 and 9 / Me: 10 'The Worry Men'- You: 3 and 4 / Me: 5 Final words Oh, and I just want to say that I'm going to have a few bones to pick with JL when the time comes to discuss it. Prepare to be taken aback by my criticisms, given how much you appear to love it. I actually much prefer 'S:TAS'. Any reason why you're moving to 'Mask of the Phantasm'? And great job.
  20. Forgot about the podcast yesterday due to loads of homework. Going to start right now.
  21. I know its meant to be a different continuity and everything, but I just look at that and think "what's the point?" Seriously, is Lucy Lawless Wonder Woman because her voice acting suits the part, or because she's well-known as Xena? First of all, it's because the voice fits her portrayal in the graphic novel, and same with the rest of the cast. Have you read the comic, because it definitely needs a different cast than regular continuity. Second, I see no flaws with the animation, and I think Darwyn Cooke knows what suits his own style, and he thinks it's doing its job perfectly. I certainly don't understand the problem.
  22. Okay, gotcha. --- Okay, I agree about 'Superman: Doomsday' being a disappointment, basically because we didn't get to know the characters well enough before Supes' death, so that none of the emotional moments worked. And the clone, though he spawned some of the best scenes, was still a retread of other plots. But the fight scenes were still awesome. And the lines on Superman's face look a lot better than they did in the first season of 'Justice League'; they didn't really bug me. And I really appreciated the new Luthor design. And I'm SO pumped for 'The New Frontier'. That WAS the BEST part of the DVD, because it looks EXACTLY like the comics and the voice cast is AMAZING. NOOOO!!!! The thirty-two flavors was at the beginning of 'Grudge Match', not 'Double Date'! Oh well. Ooh, 'Justice Society' would be awesome. And 'Legends' is easily in my top five favorite 'Justice League' episodes, it's just such a beautiful homage. Yeah, I prefer 'Gotham Knights' to 'The New Batman Adventures'. I personally call it neither: I simply abbreviate the latter title and say TNBA. I admittedly find some parts of 'Mad Love' funny, as there are definitely a ton of moments that were played were laughs despite the mature subject matter. But, like you guys are saying, as a whole it should definitely be looked at as being a sad and psychological story concerning abusive relationships. So, I see you forgot to throw in my Ferris Boyle/'Mudslide' comment, but I don't really mind. 'The Demon's Quest'- I've already thrown out my criticisms, so I'll just observe the podcast. Yeah, I don't think this should have been a movie, because 'Mask of the Phantasm' is so much more universal and delves more into characterization etc., whereas 'The Demon's Quest' is really nothing more than an epic adventure, which holds its weight better as an extended episode than I think an actual movie. I wouldn't say the score is the best it's been. Personally, I think that 'A Bullet For Bullock' has the greatest score ever (and I think it was mentioned in a commentary that it won an Emmy), because the jazz music is so awesome, and perfectly fits the episode. 'The Demon's Quest' was good, but I remember that at least one or two cues were overused, which slightly detracted from the score's impact. Oh yeah, David Warner is one of the greatest casting decisions EVER. I think you do have a point about Mark Hamill, honestly. He's actually pretty inconsistent when he plays the Joker, and you can see how is voice changes throughout the different series. David Warner, as you said, never fluctuated with his voice. And yeah, Batman the Detective is really great character aspect, and I'm glad that it was incorporated as well as it was into the series. And no way is this the all around best Batman episode. 'Heart of Ice' is the epitome of absolute perfection that cannot be touched in the slightest. About Bruce Wayne being the mask, I have to refer back to your criminally low-scored 'Perchance to Dream'. As far as the essays I always quote are concerned, the fact that the dream occurred from Bruce Wayne's perspective, i.e. it was Bruce Wayne's fantasy world, made it clear that Bruce Wayne was indeed the true identity. What the reviewer then argues is that in committing suicide and leaving this dream world in which he cannot be Batman, that is the precise moment when Bruce Wayne becomes the mask and Batman becomes the true self. One of the problems with Talia not recognizing Wayne is that I thought that she actually did, because when they went after Vertigo for the drill, she clearly refers to it as 'your drill', so therefore she knows it's Wayne. That's why I think 'The Demon's Quest' commits a grave continuity error with the 'fit your description' thing. Ha, you remembered 'Day of the Samurai' before I did (I too thought it was the first out-of-America episode). But I still got you good with CAPTAIN CLOWN. Oh yeah, the fight scenes and animation was SPECTACULAR in this episode. Kevin Altieri, the director, has a great thing for fight sequences, and the animation was one of the few times it was done by TMS. For those who don't know, TMS is considered to be top-of-the-line as far as animation is concerned (I think it's the top Japanese studio), and they also animated 'Two-Face pt 1', 'Feat of Clay pt 2', 'Read My Lips', and 'Fear of Victory', so you can tell how awesome the studio is. The fact that it was used on about a third of 'Superman: the Animated Series' is what makes that show probably the most well-animated DCAU show ever. As for Batman not accepting the offer, I can easily buy it. I think the refusal of Talia fits pretty much into the duty comes before romance, as explored in 'Mask of the Phantasm'. Second, I don't think Batman would trust the Lazarus pits. If they can drive you to temporary insanity, who knows what other potential effects are possible. 'Out of the Past' showed Bruce only giving in to the Pits when on the verge of being unable to function due to old age, and even then he admitted that it was a cheap way to cheat death, so there's that. And Bruce Wayne already owns a global empire, or at least we know it extends to other countries, and I don't see Bats willing to accept such a grand offer at the drop of a hat with little to no information about it. If Batman were to enlist people to become Batmen, I think, would cheapen the idea of Batman being a special entity meant for only the most devoted human beings, as opposed to a mantle that can be given to anyone willing to enlist in a program. Scores: You: 9.5 and 9 / Me: 8 --- Two unrelated notes that don't relate to the podcast but which are pretty interesting: 1) On the subject of spreading the awesomeness of DC to others (mostly it's been about passing them on to upcoming generations), there's a girl I know at school who has this kid she's babysitting, and she asked me for some DVDs to lend her, knowing that I have all the DVDs and the kid is really into superheroes. So I lent her BTAS Vol 1, STAS Vol 2, and JL Vol 1, but told her to watch 'Heart of Ice' and 'Two-Face', just to see what she thinks. Now she's genuinely interested in the show after having realized how amazing the writing truly is, and she actually bothered listening to some of the commentaries to understand what the producers were trying to accomplish. So that's pretty cool that I was able to obtain a new convert to the DCAU (not to mention the kid who's no doubt going to fall in love with these shows). 2) I'm taking a psychology class at school, and we got to choose a topic to research and present. I chose Multiple Personality Disorder, to see how the actual disorder compared to the way it is in 'Two-Face'. As it turns out, everything in 'Two-Face' is completely accurate and spot-on, and it just makes it so much cooler how much intelligent writing and through research went into the episode.
  23. Whoa, interesting decision to do an entire episode in honor of 'The Demon's Quest'. I'm not going to start listening just this second, but I am going to point out two flaws that I find with the episode. First, I think that Batman's assumption at the beginning of part two that because he wasn't going to marry Talia, Ras would continue on with his plan of wiping out human life was pretty ill-developed, and I don't recall Ras even implying that the plan would ensue because of Batman's refusal (unless I'm forgetting something of course), and it overall seemed like a convenient way to get Batman to confront Ras during part two. Second, Talia was poorly developed in that her only purpose is to progress the plot without having any real depth or character. The relationship between her Batman was had little basis. With that said, I'm quite fond of the rest of the episode, so maybe later tonight I'll check it out.