The Lego Batman Movie (2017) gives us both a unique Batman and a Batman considered to be in the continuity of every iteration of Batman - in the comics, the ‘40s serials, the films, the animated shows, and even - or, perhaps, especially - Batman ’66. In this episode we take note of a movie about a Batman that is emphatically NOT the Adam West version, but nonetheless is making dozens of references to the West version.
ALSO: Burt Ward talking about injuries on the set, and a jazzy version of Hefti’s theme performed by Les and Larry Elgart!
-- The Joker, in a line cut from "The Joker's Epitaph"
It's interesting how it took a movie based on and starring a toy line to incorporate elements from most filmed version of Batman without it ending in disaster. Why, I do not know, because at the end of the day, whether using real actors or CG-version of Lego bricks, the story and approach would be the same. The only odd things was the "I hate you" / "I hate you more" exchange between Batman and Joker; if this film was written as if a child created the adventure, I cannot see the kid having Batman and Joker speak in that manner.
Robin presented as a naive, sort of clueless boy was another odd part, when I cannot recall a version from the comics and certainly not Burt Ward's interpretation that plays that way. I think the writers went too far exaggerating Robin's "golly gee" behavior to hit viewers over the head as a contrast to the super-serious Batman.
Batman in his "Hugh Hefner" robe struck a wrong note for me, while Robin came across too "twee"; he made Burt Ward's Robin feel like Connery's James Bond in comparison or like some girl teeny-bopper anime fan's dream boyfriend; and the Joker's weird wannabe emotionally intimate relationship with the Caped Crusader felt off, especially in a movie for children.
The finale reinforcing this more emotional Batman, especially towards his arch-nemisis really missed the mark.
While I think its kitchen sink approach to some of pop-culture worked better than Ready Player One (how could it not) the inclusion of Sauron and co. felt needlessly gratuitious.
To top if off (wait there's more? Holy Downer!) Barbara as hypercompetent police-woman/commissioner (?) and superhero just made an already over-crowded movie feel even more bloated.
Holy Don't Hold Back and tell us what you really think!
Was it all bad? Nah.
I do enjoy this version of Batman, the ego, the voice, the inability to admit he's wrong or ask for help; I think I saw a clip of youtube where he throws batarangs over and over until he finally hits the target and acts like he did it on the first try. Though that's a different movie (I think) it's still amusing. And the microwave gag was funny.
This wildly egotistical, over-dramatic and self-involved take is pretty good and shows how the '66 "less serious" approach is now seen as valid as Burton's gothic fantasy or Nolan's darker, slightly more real version.
While the main subject of this podcast didn't interest me, I respct you fellas stretchin' the parameters of your show.
If it weren't for you constantly 'Mr. Magooing' (your term) your way into unintentional timely tie-ins, I'd think you planned this to synch up with the fact the director of this movie also is the director of the just-released streaming blockbuster The Tomorrow War. But I know by now it's always just a happy accident when something such as that occurs on this show.
You made some good points, as always, including how a lot of this would go over kids' heads. With that in mind, I'm not sure if Will Arnett's choice for Batman's voice was all that child-friendly. Too much Christian Bale in it for my taste. And Joker and Robin thus came off kind of anemic vocally by comparison.
I can't see it being my thing, but that's just me. I personally don't find the Lego shapes pleasing to the eye in animation form.
As far as the reference to Robin not being his son, that actually reminded me of the scene in the series finale when Minerva called Robin Batman's son and Batman said he'd be proud if he was. Just my .02.
My hobbies include gazing at the Siren and doing her bidding, evil or otherwise.
'She had a devastating, hypnotic effect on all the men.'--A schoolmate describing Joan Collins at age 17
Anyway, I think you mentioned something about Flex Mentallo. Was it in this episode or a different one? I found some panels online and thought I'd share. I happen to like the character a lot.
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