THE BATMAN EPISODE REVIEW:
ORIGINAL AIRDATE: February 3, 2007
CAST: Rino Romano, Alistair Duncan, Jerry O'Connell (Nightwing), et al.
WRITING CREDITIS: Greg Weisman
DIRECTED BY: n/a
OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS: One thousand years into the future Gotham City is terrorized by a dangerous villain from it's past. Can the city defend itself from such a threat without the Batman?.
REVIEWER: Bill Ramey
POSTED: Monday, February 5, 2007
THE BATMAN is like being on a see-saw for me. Sometimes it’s up, sometimes it's down. Usually when it's down, THE BATMAN eased into “kiddie” territory. I’m willing to bet if most of the talent and creators behind this show had their druthers, the kiddie factor would be eliminated altogether.
But that’s an op-ed for another day.
With first new episode of 2007, “ARTIFACTS,” I’m glad to say that the juvenile quotient is virtually non-existent.
Here’s the deal: It’s 1,000 years into the future and Gotham, or “New Gotham” as it is called, is under attack by Mr. Freeze. Attempting to find a way to thwart the villain, do-gooders from the future find the ancient Batcave hoping the secrets of The Batman can help save the city.
In flashbacks, we get to witness the final battle between The Dark Knight and Victor Fries that takes place some 20 years later from THE BATMAN‘s current timeframe.
Aiding the late 40ish/early 50ish Batman -- who looks quite a bit like his counterpart from the classic THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS -- is Barbara “Oracle” Gordon and (former Robin) Dick “Nighwing” Grayson. Both of these characters are pretty much as they are in current DC Comic's comic book continuity. And yes, Barbara is in the wheelchair, although it is never mentioned how or why.
This probably won’t make sense right now, but it will once you’ve seen this episode. “ARTIFACTS” is sort of a combination of the aforementioned THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, BATMAN BEYOND, and -- and I’m totally serious -- the live-action film BATMAN AND ROBIN. On that last one, it’s not bad as you might thinking -- trust me! Hell, there's even a slight nod to BATMAN BEGINS in the form of the 2027 Batmobile.
Anyway, that’s the overall, spoiler-free deal with “ARTIFACTS.” I enjoyed this episode quite a bit, although I was expecting something a bit better based on this particular installment of THE BATMAN‘s pre-show buzz and hype.