In the hit show that continues the Batman storyline from the EmmyO-winning Batman: The Animated Series, two years have passed and Batman still protects the streets of Gotham City from the demented criminals that inhabit it... more »s dark alleys. But irreconcilable differences with Dick Grayson lead to the collapse of the Batman/Robin crimefighting duo and to the birth of Gotham's new hero Nightwing. Batgirl fights at Batman's side, and a new Robin takes flight after Batman's chance encounter with young Tim Drake. In these 24 thrilling episodes, the Gotham Knights face their worst enemies - Joker, Penguin, Mr. Freeze and many more - in a comprehensive 4-disc set that completes the Batman animated saga!DVD Features:
Audio Commentary:Commentary on "Over the Edge", "Critters" and "Legends of the Dark Knight" by Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Glen Murakami, James Tucker, Dan Riba and Moderator Jason Hillhouse
Featurette:Arkham's Finest: Inside Batman's Rogue Gallery« less
"These episodes were produced two years after the original Batman: Animated series ended, and were made for the KidsWB Saturday morning block, which was still relatively new at that time. What's notable about these episodes is that the character designs have been totally revamped, and this was when the "DC animated universe" really began, as Batman stories would often cross-over with the Superman series and vice-versa.
The real shame about The New Batman Adventures is that KidsWB basically stopped production after 24 episodes, so we don't get to see the new revamps as much as we'd like (ex. Riddler, unfortunately, only shows up in minor cameos). A host of new villains and femme fatales appear, including Calendar Girl, Roxy Rocket, and the (dreaded) Farmer Brown and his mutant farm animals. Etrigan and The Creeper make their first animated appearances, but only get an episode each (Etrigan was later fleshed out in Justice League). Most telling is that certain plot threads feel rushed, including the introduction of Tim Drake as the new Robin, the departure and return of Dick Grayson as Nightwing, and even a new twist involving Two-Face. There just weren't enough episode to tell everything the staff wanted to tell (and maybe they told one Joker story too many).
Are these episodes as good as the original B:TAS? Overall, no. It's more about comic book fights and action now. Bruce Wayne's a little stiffer and darker, and the stories have lost that humanizing touch the best B:TAS episodes had (with exceptions of course). Is the quality still there? Yes. This is still excellent entertainment for kids and adults alike, and new viewers may be surprised at how mature these episodes feel compared to the stuff on KidsWB these days.
Definitely pick up vol. 4. It's a nice supplement to the initial 3 volumes, and continues the animated legacy of Batman nicely. Here's hoping Batman Beyond gets the box set treatment next."
N. Durham | Philadelphia, PA | 10/13/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The episodes compiled in this fourth collection of the animated Batman series is from the Kids WB New Batman Adventures, which hit Saturday mornings a while after the classic Batman: The Animated Series was over with. Most of the voice cast was retained (including Kevin Conroy as the Dark Knight), but the animation underwent a complete overhaul, which would be seen on the animated Superman series as well as the current Justice League Unlimited. The animation transformation isn't for everyone, but it works for the most part, and the storytelling is still top notch. In the episodes collected here, we learn why Dick Grayson quit being Robin and became Nightwing, and we also see the origin of the new Robin, Tim Drake. DC character the Creeper makes his animated debut, and there's a delicious new, and horrifying, twist and look to the Scarecrow (voiced by Jeffrey Combs). The "World's Finest" episodes are here as well, which is the first (of many) cross overs with Batman and Superman as they team up to take down the Joker and Lex Luthor. However, this volume does have it's share of low points. The attempted new twist on Two-Face doesn't work, and the re-vamped animation is definitely going to be a downer for some. However, the strikingly mature tone of these episodes (including a nightmare-esque scenario where Batgirl is killed and Commissioner Gordon launches a full scale attack against Batman and co.) makes this set worth owning for longtime Bat-fans, and this is most certainly better than what's being passed off as a Batman cartoon these days."
From The New Batman Adventures!
Servo | Atlanta, GA USA | 09/16/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"New adventures await you and the Gotham Knights in Batman: The Animated Series, Volume Four - The New Batman Adventures! Revamped from the dark deco days of the original series with a simpler yet stylized new look, the New Batman Adventures featured the Gotham Knights: Batman & Robin, Batgirl and Nightwing in some of their most memorable episodes. Introducing the voices of Mathew Valencia as Tim Drake, the new Robin and Tara Charendoff-Strong (replacing Melissa Gilbert-Brinkman) as Barbara Gordon/Batgirl, this 4-disc (521 min.) set contains all 24 episodes from the series which include classics "You Scratch My Back", "Old Wounds" and fan-favorite "Over the Edge". Other highlights include "Legends of the Dark Knight" which acknowledges the works of Bill Finger, Dick Sprang and Frank Miller. Not to mention "Never Fear" featuring the most horrific version of the Scarecrow (chillingly voiced by Jeffrey Combs) ever animated. The New Batman Adventures not only refined the designs of the characters (a "taste great/less filling" matter of opinion) but also how the stories were presented to viewers. The show's pacing and even balance of mature melodrama and stylized action would serve as a blueprint for the success of future shows Batman Beyond and Justice League Unlimited. Here are the contents of this set:
Disc 1: Holiday Knights Sins of the Father Cold Comfort Double Talk You Scratch My Back Never Fear
Disc 2: Joker's Millions Growing Pains Love Is a Croc Torch Song The Ultimate Thrill Over the Edge
Disc 3: Mean Seasons Critters Cult of the Cat Animal Act Old Wounds The Demon Within
Disc 4: Legends of the Dark Knight Girls' Night Out Mad Love Chemistry Beware the Creeper Judgment Day
Special Features: Commentary: On "Over the Edge", "Critters" and "Legends of the Dark Knight" by Bruce Timm (Producer), Paul Dini (Producer), Glen Murakami (Art Director), James Tucker (Storyboards), Dan Riba (Director) and Moderator Jason Hillhouse.
"It's about time!!! WB has finally gotten off of their butts and finally got these episodes out. Now, if we could just get them to release the soundtracks to these episodes, I'd be in absolute heaven.
I, personally, don't get what the thumbs-down reviewers mean by "cheap animation". These episodes were WAY more animated; smoother and swifter. In the previous seasons, you never saw Batman do moves like he does here. Batgirl takes little back-steps to give her some leverage before springing into jumps. Tim Drake (the New Robin) uses his size to give him the edge while taking out huge thugs. Nightwing's combat style is a little more graceful and acrobatic than Batman's. All these little details add to a very realistic animation. These prior reviewers must have been watching this show with their eyes closed.
The story-telling was for a much more mature audience. Just look at the Scarecrow; the guy's got a lynch around his neck! Occasionally, a plotline will take a turn and become almost Hitchcockian. The story-telling stays on the edge throughout, constantly challenging the boundaries of a "normal" animated series.
As far as the visual style, while this version evolved from the previous seasons, WB really showed hesitation in straying at all from (Character Designer) Bruce Timm's rendition of this universe, and with good reason. It works, and it works REALLY well."
Mixed Bag But Good Story Line Continum
Ervin Griffin | Bluefield, WV | 12/08/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Continuing the storyline from the original Batman: The Animated Series, we find Bruce Wayne still fighting the good fight in Gotham with a brand new Robin and Batgirl by his side. Dick Grayson (the first Robin) has meanwhile left The Dark Knight and established his own identity as Nightwing but still fights with Batman occassionally.
This set is a mixed bag. While not as classic as the "dark deco" episodes, there are some gems among this collection:
Holiday Knights - Three different tales that take place during the Christmas and New Year holidays where Batman, Robin and Batgirl faces off with Poision Ivy, Harley Quinn, Clayface and The Joker!
Sins Of The Father - Tim Drake, an orphan left homeless by his criminal father, stumbles across a confrontation between Batman and Two-Face. A series of events follow that lead to a new Robin.
Cold Comfort - On the heels of the animated feature "SubZero", Mr. Freeze unexpectedly returns to seek cold revenge! His fate on the heels of that tale will shock you!
Double Talk - The Ventriliquist fights his past as Scarface by trying to go straight but some of his old buds won't leave the past in the past.
You Scratch My Back - The first appearance of Dick Grayson as Nightwing as he forms a dangerous alliance with Catwoman to take down gun smugglers, much to the dismay of Batman.
Never Fear - Exposed to The Scarecrow's new gas that suppresses fear rather than induce it, Batman's rages threaten to turn him into what he swore to fight against.
BONUS: Interactive Arkham Asylum - See files and hear from the creators of Batman: The Animated Series on some of The Dark Knight's more fearsome foes.
Joker's Millions - When a rival crime boss dies from natural causes, he leaves millions of dollars to The Joker....or so it seems!
Growing Pains - Robin, in his first rebellion against Batman, tries to save a girl from a superstrong mysterious individual against Batman's orders.
Love Is A Croc - Feeling they are kindred spirits, Baby Daul helps free Killer Croc only to discover that though they are both viewed as freaks, they are not soulmates.
Torch Song - Unable to cope with rejection by a famous singer, a former stage worker turns his fascination with fire into a dangerous weapon and becomes Firefly!
The Ultimate Thrill - Roxy Rocket, a former stuntwoman who was bored with that world, turns to crime to find the ultimate thrill and seeks the ultimate chase with Batman!
*Over The Edge - One of the best episodes of this version of the series as Batman, Robin and Nightwing face off with....Commisioner Gordon?!
*This episode has alternate commentary from Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Glen Murakami and James Tucker.
Mean Seasons - A crazed former model goes on rampage in Gotham's higher society.
*Critters - Farmer Brown, a brilliant bio-chemist, turns to extortion to continue to fund his research by creating super bugs, animals and other freaks to tear Gotham apart.
*This episode has alternate commentary by Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Dan Riba, Glen Murakami and James Tucker.
Cult Of The Cat - Batman & Catwoman become reluctant allies against an insane cult when Catwoman steals a valuable item from them.
Animal Act - Batman & Nightwing team up to find out who is using circus animals to commit robberies. The fingers seemingly point to someone from Nightwing's past but it is someone far more sinister.
Old Wounds - In this story, we finally find out what happened that split up Batman & Robin (Dick Grayson).
The Demon Within - An old friend of Bruce Wayne is under siege by his alter ego, the demon Etrigen!
*Legends Of The Dark Knight - While tracking down Batman and Firefly, three youths tell tales of the Dark Knight. This episode was in tribute to Dick Springer (50's Batman artist) and Frank Miller (80's Batman artist/known best for The Dark Knight Returns).
*This episode has commentary from Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Dan Riba, Glen Murakami and James Tucker.
Girls' Nite Out - With no Robin, Nightwing or Batman, Batgirl teams with Supergirl (from Superman: The Animated Series) to help her take down Poision Ivy, Harley Quinn and Live Wire!
Mad Love - Very grim tale that recounts how Harley Quinn met and joined up with The Joker.
Chemistry - Bruce Wayne unexpectedly marries but becomes Batman again when one of his oldest friends goes missing. Plus, an old foe returns and revelations about his new wife!
Beware The Creeper - Reporter Jack Ryder gets exposed to the same toxic chemicals that created The Joker! Now, Batman must decide if The Creeper is a threat or an ally.
Judgement Day - A new hero named The Judge is taking out Gotham's Underworld....but using lethal means to do so! This brings him into confrontation with Batman and the revelations about The Judge are interesting to say the least.
I have to say this version of the series is a mixed bag. While some eppys are okay, some are very good while a couple just stunk! My faves from this volume are Over The Edge, Sins Of The Father, Mad Love (the darkest of all the eppys in this volume) and Growing Pains.
As for the revamps, I can accept the changes to the Bat-team. The worst change without question was The Joker! Thank God they went back to closer to what he looked like in the original series when they made Batman Beyond: Return Of The Joker and of course, Justice League! The best change was The Scarecrow. He actually looks menacing in this version.
Overall, this set is still a must have if you wish to see all the Batman episodes outside of Batman Beyond or Justice League. Until the Batman Beyond set is released, this volume will round out Bruce's journey nicely!