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Category:    Home > Reviews > Superhero > Action > Adventure > Animated > TV > Batman: Brave & The Bold – Season One, Part One (Warner Animation/DVD Set)

Batman: Brave & The Bold – Season One, Part One (Warner Animation/DVD Set)

 

Picture: B-     Sound: B-     Extras: D     Episodes: B-

 

 

Since his creation, Batman has fascinated audiences across the board as he continually evolves across the many forms of media.  From live action to animation, Batman has seen it all and shows no signs of slowing down.  The caped crusaders newest incarnation is with Batman: Brave and the Bold, whose first half of Season One is under review here.  Brave and the Bold is not a new concept for DC Comics as it originally premiered in 1955 (in comic book form of course) and continues to be a popular take on the classic DC heroes to this day.  Essentially The Brave and the Bold series focuses on the teaming up of different superheroes from the DC comic catalog.  For the purposes of this new Batman animated series, it is specifically Batman who is teaming up with characters throughout the DC Universe.

 

Batman: The Brave and the Bold originally aired at the end of 2008 with very high expectations from fans; and to date has seemingly delivered.  As previously mentioned the series premise is nothing all too groundbreaking as each episode features Batman plus an additional superhero to thwart a “villain of the week.”  Mostly all episodes are standalone with no foreseeable overarching storyline; with that said the series is lighter in tone and detail than other Batman series (like Batman the Animated Series).  This form of Batman is lighthearted with a fast wit and seems to have targeted a younger audience, like that of The Batman.  Each episode starts off with a teaser “mini adventure,” then the theme song starts and the main adventure begins.  The creators of this lighthearted series have made the wise decision to align Batman with “lesser known” superheroes; avoiding the likes of Superman and Wonder Woman.  This decision ultimately introduces a younger generation to a host of not always utilized heroes and expands the universe of possibilities.  Superheroes such as Bronze Tiger, Green Arrow, Wildcat, Deadman, Plastic Man, Blue Beetle, Red Tornado and Aquaman all stand beside Batman to fight crime.  The series may be lighter in tone than other Batman series, but it manages to mix in some darker moments with the campiness of the 1960’s Batman live action series.

 

I truly enjoyed the first half of Season One with this Batman: The Brave and the Bold – Season One, Part One release, even with the jocular tone that the series has taken.  It managed to be different without disrupting the established Batman mythos that fans expect to see.   The addition of ‘lesser known’ heroes and villains is an excellent choice as it separates itself from the tired, formulaic model that fans have experienced time and time again.  The animation style like The Batman is rounder and cartoonier, obviously drawing inspiration (somewhat) from the 1960’s Adam West series and whereas not the perfection that Batman the Animated Series was but remains inspiring.  Brave and the Bold is a fun, creative series that stands on its own, borrowing elements from the best series and branding it Brave and Bold with its use of under utilized characters and inventive animation.

 

The technical features on this 2 disc animated series release are in line with other newer WB animated releases, being of a high quality, though not necessarily the best.  The picture is presented in a ‘matted’ widescreen format to preserve the aspect ratio of its original airing. The series has vibrant colors as the characters seem to be brighter than those found in prior Batman series and are framed nicely with the use of deep, inky blacks.  The image is crisp, clean and clear only showing that the series will transfer amazingly to Blu-ray.  The sound is a simple Dolby Digital Surround Stereo that mostly comes from the front, but in the heavier action sequences the surrounds do kick in to give a more immersive feel.

 

There are no Extras to be found, but it should be noted that unlike many of the recent WB/DC animated releases this 13 episode set does come with a nice cardboard slipcase.

 

 

-   Michael P. Dougherty II


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