Sunday, November 20, 2011

Batman: The Brave and the Bold - Mitefall!

After watching Batman (Diedrich Bader) and Aquaman (John Di Maggio) stop Gorilla Grodd (Di Maggio) from stealing a ocean laboratory with the use of robotic sharks Bat-Mite (Paul Reubens) laments the Silver Age hijinks of his favorite show who he believes has jumped the shark (literally!). In the mood for a more dramatic version of the Caped Crusader the imp decides to use his power to sink the show for good in Batman: The Brave and the Bold's final episode.

Batmite's plan involves adding a love interest, giving Batman an adorable kid and a studio audience laugh track, inserting more toy props into the show (enter the Neon Talking Super-Street Bat-Luge) and replacing Dimaggio as the voice of Aquaman with Ted McGinley.

Thankfully for Batman there's another hero on the case to help save the Dark Knight Detective. The bad news is the only hope for our hero is Ambush Bug (Henry Winkler), who Bat-Mite remarks is a pretty obscure hero even for this show.

This episode has everything, even Alpine Ice Climber Batman, Ace the Bathound and his annoying new Scrappy-Doo-like sidekick, a promo for a Batgirl cartoon, Batman surfing the Malibu waves, the end of Batmite, and a final farewell featuring as many Batman: The Brave and the Bold characters as the artist could fit on-screen (even G'nort makes it into the shot!).

Not to be outdone by the main story, the episode's opening segment is one of the most bizarre of the entire series (take a second to think about that) as Batman travels to a parallel Earth and saves President Abraham Lincoln (Peter Renaday) from a steampunk powered John Wilkes Booth (Dee Bradley Baker).

The show may not be as good as Batman: The Animated Series (what is?), but despite being stuck with long hiatuses and scheduling issues the show provided some great moments and very memorable episodes. I'm sad to see it go, but at least Paul Dini (who wrote this episode) found a way for it to go out with a bang poking fun not only at the show itself but the problems that creep into so many super-hero cartoons. Alpine Ice Climber Batman, indeed.

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