The image of Batman standing on a rooftop, silhouetted by lightening, has been burned into our psyche. Batman has come a long way since Tim Burton‘s Batman (1989). Batman: The Animated Series was first broadcast in 1992 and with it, we got some of the best cartoons that ever came out of DC and Warner Bros. Before you start scratching your head and say that Christopher Nolan gave us the best version of Batman, hold on. Because the Batman as you now know him, first came to life through the work of Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski.
Another brilliant stroke of genius. Not one word is spoken or said. All that you see are the lights, the night, and the Batman seeking justice. Set to a theme by Danny Elfman, this opening sequence gave us one whole minute of what Batman does. Check it out and see for yourself.
Who are these guys? One of them is the Jedi Master who brought balance to the Force and the other is the most iconic voices of Batman ever. Mark Hamill actually had a blast while working on this series. He is the voice of Joker. In fact, his laugh and his voice took a caricature and turned him into a bad guy worthy of Batman’s attention. As for Kevin Conroy, he made us believe in the Batman. Through simple words, we entered the Dark Knight’s world and we feel his pain. The show was also noted for the fact that Kevin Conroy used different styles of voice to portray Bruce and Batman. Do you know where you have heard that before? In Nolan’s universe. Cool huh?
In Batman: TAS, we finally got to see a whole list of who’s-who in the DC world of villainy. From Joker to Clayface to Mr. Freeze to Man-Bat to Ras ‘Al Ghul to Riddler to Bane to Catwoman. This series gave proper backstories for all of them and thereby laying the foundation for an entire generation of kids. Name your favorite Batman villain and why… for 5 points.
Where would the Joker be without his Harley Quinn? A sad and lonely clown indeed. Given life by the wonderful Paul Dini, Harley Quinn quickly gained popularity and soon she was written into the DC world. Crazy huh? Harleen Quinzel made us smile everytime she said “puddin.” Her manic energy and wit makes her one of those villains who we just love watching. Also she was never one to play second fiddle to the Joker. She gave as good as she got. More often with a mallet.
Okay, not side-kicks but partners. We got better versions of Robin and Batgirl. And true to the canon, this version of Robin is Dick Grayson- pre Nightwing. We got to see Batman’s ward grow into the capable crime fighter that we all adore. And Barbara Gordon’s Batgirl in this series established a basis for the Oracle. Smart, savvy and tough, Batgirl showed that she could do some damage.
Batman: TAS had a brilliant soundtrack. The music of the show set the tone. With tracks for Joker and other antagonists, the soundtrack didn’t just pay attention to the Batman.
This series gave us the iconic Batman. Brooding, driven by justice and will he became the night. The cape and cowl are just parts of his costume. The Batman’s psyche was truly laid bare for all to see. It defined the Batman universe.
That’s it. Those are just a few of the reasons why Batman: TAS was epic. Drop us a comment about why you loved this amazing TV show.