Batman: The Animated Series was an American animated television series based on the DC Comics superhero Batman. Produced by Warner Bros. Animation, the series originally aired on the Fox Kids programming block from September 5, 1992 to September 15, 1995 and later aired new episodes (featuring altered character designs and a different animation style) on the Kids WB programming block from September 13, 1997 to January 16, 1999, lasting 109 episodes altogether. The series was the first in the continuity of the shared DC Animated Universe, and spawned the theatrical film Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993).
The series was heavily influenced by Tim Burton's 1989 Batman film and its 1992 sequel Batman Returns, in addition to the Superman theatrical cartoons of the 1940s. The visual style of the series, dubbed "Dark Deco," was based on the artwork of producer and artist Bruce Timm. The orchestrated soundtrack of the series, composed by Shirley Walker, emulated the same style as Danny Elfman's music from the Burton movies. The series was widely praised for its thematic complexity, dark tone, artistic quality and faithfulness to the title character's crime-fighting origins. The series also won four Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Animated Program.
The series was more adult-oriented than previous superhero cartoons. It was the first such cartoon in years to depict outright physical violence, bloodshed, drug use (though both the bloodshed and drug use were minimal due to network censors) and the use of firearms (though Commissioner Gordon was the only character on the show to be depicted as having suffered a gun wound, in the episode "I Am the Night," which he received off-screen). First-time producers Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski reportedly encountered resistance from studio executives, but the success of Tim Burton's first Batman film allowed the embryonic series to survive long enough to produce a pilot episode ("On Leather Wings"), which, according to Timm, "got a lot of people off our backs."
Cartoon Network began airing re-runs of Batman: The Animated Series on March 2, 1998. The series first appeared on Toonami during the 24-hour marathon, Toonami: Full Cycle, from April 8-9, 2000. The series was later added to the lineup of Toonami's Rising Sun block, beginning on May 13, 2000.
The series features the adventures of the Dark Knight of Gotham City as he battles the evil that inhabits the city with the occasional help of Robin and Batgirl in stories that are faithful to the comics in both spirit and tone.
New villains such as Red Claw, Baby-Doll, Kyodai Ken, Tygrus, and the Sewer King were invented for the series, but to little acclaim. On the other hand, the Joker's accomplice Harley Quinn, Gotham City police detective Renee Montoya and the vigilante Lock-up achieved such popularity that they became characters in the comics. Older villains that were lesser known from the comics, such as Count Vertigo, the Mirror Man and the Clock King, were modified for the series in both appearance and personality. The series was also the first to suggest that Harvey Dent had a pre-existing dual personality before becoming Two-Face. This idea came from Alan Burnett, one of the series' producers and head writers.
Aside from creating characters that crossed over into the main line of DC Comics, several of the series' reinterpretations were carried over as well. Mr. Freeze was revised in the comics to emulate the series' tragic story, the success of which actually compelled DC to bring the character back after "killing" him off some years earlier; Clayface was revised to be much more similar in appearance to his animated counterpart; and Two-Face's double-sided, black-and-white suit has become a common appearance for the character.
One of the most noteworthy changes made in Batman: The Animated Series was the treatment of Batman's alter ego Bruce Wayne. In nearly all other media, including the comics, television shows and films, Bruce deliberately plays up his image as a self-absorbed and not-too-bright billionaire playboy. In the animated series, his character is instead treated more seriously; he is assertive and intelligent, and actively involved in the management of Wayne Enterprises, without jeopardizing his secret identity. For example: in the episode "Eternal Youth", Bruce is shown angrily ordering one of his directors to cancel a secret deal with a timber company in the Amazon rainforest. In addition, during the episode "Night of the Ninja", he revealed to reporter Summer Gleeson that he has some martial arts training, as the reporter previously researched that he once lived in Japan, though he later throws a fight with the ninja Kyodai Ken in front of Gleeson to disguise his prowess. The psychological issues stemming from his parents' deaths are usually shown in the form of self-hatred when Bruce is alone. Voice actor Kevin Conroy is notable for being the first person in animation to use two distinct voices to portray Bruce Wayne and Batman, which was his own idea.
|Bruce Wayne / Batman||Kevin Conroy|
|Dick Grayson / Robin / Nightwing||Loren Lester|
|Barbara Gordon / Batgirl||Melissa Gilbert|
Tara Strong (The New Batman Adventures)
|Tim Drake / Robin||Matthew Valencia|
|Alfred Pennyworth||Clive Revill (first three episodes)|
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. (rest of series)
|Commissioner James Gordon||Bob Hastings|
|Detective Harvey Bullock||Robert Costanzo|
|Officer Renee Montoya||Ingrid Oliu|
Liane Schirmer (The New Batman Adventures)
|Lucius Fox||Brock Peters|
Mel Winkler (The New Batman Adventures)
|Summer Gleeson||Mari Devon|
|Dr. Leslie Tompkins||Diana Muldaur|
|Mayor Hamilton Hill||Lloyd Bochner|
|Veronica Vreeland||Marilu Henner|
|Karl Rossum||William Sanderson|
|Jonah Hex||Bill McKinney|
|Simon Trent / The Gray Ghost||Adam West|
|Jack Ryder / The Creeper||Jeff Bennett|
|Joan Leland||Suzanne Stone|
|Jason Blood / Etrigan the Demon||Billy Zane|
|Kara Kent / Supergirl||Nicholle Tom|
|The Joker||Mark Hamill|
|Dr. Harleen Quinzel / Harley Quinn||Arleen Sorkin|
|Oswald Cobblepot / The Penguin||Paul Williams|
|Selina Kyle / Catwoman||Adrienne Barbeau|
|Harvey Dent / Two-Face||Richard Moll|
|Edward Nygma / The Riddler||John Glover|
|Dr. Victor Fries / Mr. Freeze||Michael Ansara|
|Dr. Pamela Isley / Poison Ivy||Diane Pershing|
|Ra's al Ghul||David Warner|
|Talia al Ghul||Helen Slater|
|Dr. Jonathan Crane / The Scarecrow||Henry Polic II|
Jeffrey Combs (The New Batman Adventures)
|Waylon Jones / Killer Croc||Aron Kincaid|
Brooks Gardner (The New Batman Adventures)
|Matt Hagan / Clayface||Ron Perlman|
|Jervis Tetch / The Mad Hatter||Roddy McDowall|
|Dr. Kirk Langstrom / Man-Bat||Marc Singer|
|Arnold Wesker / The Ventriloquist||George Dzundza|
|Roland Daggett||Ed Asner|
|Hugo Strange||Ray Buktenica|
|Lloyd Ventrix||Michael Gross|
|Kyodai Ken / The Ninja||Robert Ito|
|Mary Dahl / Baby Doll||Alison LaPlaca|
Laraine Newman (The New Batman Adventures)
|Dr. Emile Dorian||Joseph Maher|
|Red Claw||Kate Mulgrew|
|Boss Biggis||George Murdock|
|Sewer King||Michael Pataki|
|Temple Fugate / The Clock King||Alan Rachins|
|Maximillian "Maxie" Zeus||Steve Susskind|
|Rupert Thorne||John Vernon|
|Lyle Bolton / Lock-Up||Bruce Weitz|
|Professor Milo||Treat Williams|
|Count Vertigo||Michael York|
|Farmer Brown||Peter Breck|
|Thomas Blake / Catman||Scott Cleverdon|
|Roxanne Sutton / Roxy Rocket||Charity James|
|Leslie Willis / Livewire||Lori Petty|
|Garfield Lynns / Firefly||Mark Rolston|
|Klarion the Witch Boy||Stephen Wolfe Smith|
|Page Monroe / Calendar Girl||Sela Ward|
|Color||Season||Episodes||Season Premiere||Season Finale|
|1||65||September 5, 1992||September 17, 1993|
|2||20||May 2, 1994||September 15, 1995|
|3||24||September 13, 1997||January 16, 1999|
The series consists of three seasons that each have different titles. Season 1 is titled Batman: The Animated Series, Season 2 is titled The Adventures of Batman & Robin, and Season 3 is titled The New Batman Adventures. Each episode is approximately 22 minutes long, excluding commercials. The New Batman Adventures, although featuring different character designs and animation style, is still a continuation of the series' first two seasons. There are a total of 109 episodes from both series combined, along with multiple crossover episodes from Superman: The Animated Series and Static Shock. The entire series has been released to DVD by Warner Home Video in four volume box sets, as well as a compilation box set titled "Batman: The Complete Animated Series".
The series originally aired on Fox, as part of the Fox Kids programming block, from 1992 to 1995, with reruns airing until 1997. The series was then picked up by The WB and 24 new episodes, retitled The New Batman Adventures, were created and aired as part of the Kids' WB! block from 1997 to 1999. Afterward, reruns of The New Batman Adventures continued to air on Kids' WB! until July 29, 2000. Beginning on March 2, 1998, Cartoon Network aired reruns of the series, including stints on the Toonami block, until the network lost the rights to the show in 2003. Reruns of the series next aired on Toon Disney (rebranded as Disney XD in 2009) from 2007 to 2009. The series most recently aired on the defunct network The Hub from 2011 to 2013.
- United States (Fox) — September 5, 1992 - 1997
- United States (The WB) — September 13, 1997 - July 29, 2000
- United States (Cartoon Network) — March 2, 1998 - 2003
- United States (Toon Disney) — September 30, 2007 - 2009
- United States (Disney XD) — 2009
- United States (The Hub) — September 6, 2011 - 2013
- Japan (Cartoon Network) — 2001 - June 2003
Toonami Broadcast History
Batman: The Animated Series first appeared on Toonami during the 24-hour marathon Toonami: Full Cycle from April 8-9, 2000. A few months later the series aired on Toonami's afternoon block from July 3, 2000 to November 3, 2000, after briefly appearing on the Rising Sun from May 13, 2000 to July 1, 2000. The series returned to the afternoon block from December 13, 2000 to February 16, 2001. From February 23, 2002 to January 4, 2003, a truncated version of the Rising Sun was aired in an early morning time slot on Saturdays (technically Sundays), from 2-3 AM. Batman: TAS and Superman: TAS were the only two series aired on this version of the Rising Sun.
- Toonami (United States) — April 8-9, 2000; July 3, 2000 - November 3, 2000; December 13, 2000 - February 16, 2001; January 1, 2002; January 21-26, 2002; April 1, 2002
- Toonami (Japan) — July 22, 2002 - June 2003
The following is a list of Toonami marathons in which at least one episode of Batman: The Animated Series appeared.
- Toonami: Full Cycle (April 8-9, 2000)
- Villaintine's Day (February 14, 2001)
- A Night of New Year's Eve-il (January 1, 2002)
- Batman VS. Superman (January 21-26, 2002)
- Joker's Day (April 1, 2002)
All series and movies are also part of the DC Animated Universe:
- Superman: The Animated Series ("World's Finest")
- Batman Beyond
- Static Shock
- Justice League
- Justice League Unlimited
- Batman: Mask of the Phantasm
- Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero
- Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker
- Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman
- "Toonami - "Full Cycle" - Promos & Commercials (4/8/2000) ". youtube.com. February 27, 2015. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEO_U-Gpch8. Retrieved on March 26, 2015.
- "TOONAMI CHANGES ". animenation.net. May 12, 2000. https://www.animenation.net/blog/toonami-changes/. Retrieved on September 28, 2020.
- "Cartoon Network T.V. Schedule ". cartoonnetwork.com. June 16, 2000. https://web.archive.org/web/20000616021253/http://turner.gist.com/cartoon/tv1.dpg?genres=All+Categories&daypart=9&channel=TOON.12131....est. Retrieved on February 19, 2015.
- "Outlaw Star re-runs added to Cartoon Network ". animenewsnetwork.com. January 26, 2001. http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2001-01-26/outlaw-star-re-runs-added-to-cartoon-network. Retrieved on April 5, 2015.
- "Monday, December 31, 2001 ". toonzone.net. December 31, 2001. https://web.archive.org/web/20040820155336/http://www.toonzone.net/shows/cnschedules/2001-12/31.html. Retrieved on March 20, 2017.
- "Monday, January 21, 2002 ". toonzone.net. January 21, 2002. https://web.archive.org/web/20040820110048/http://www.toonzone.net/shows/cnschedules/2002-01/21.html. Retrieved on March 20, 2017.
- "Saturday, January 26, 2002 ". toonzone.net. January 26, 2002. https://web.archive.org/web/20040820110254/http://www.toonzone.net/shows/cnschedules/2002-01/26.html. Retrieved on March 20, 2017.
- "Yay! A special Joker themed Toonami on April 1st! ". Toonzone.net. March 10, 2002. http://www.toonzone.net/forums/toonami-archived-forum/22501-yay-special-joker-themed-toonami-april-1st.html#.U22UoF5U0jI. Retrieved on May 9, 2014.
- "Batman: The Animated Series Schedule ". cartoonnetwork.com. February 3, 2002. https://web.archive.org/web/20020203225134/http://alt.cartoonnetwork.com/Schedule/0,3671,CTN%7c0%7c306587%7cEastern,00.html. Retrieved on February 19, 2015.
- "TV Schedule - Batman: The Animated Series ". cartoonnetwork.com. December 16, 2002. https://web.archive.org/web/20021216194033/http://schedule.cartoonnetwork.com/servlet/ScheduleServlet?action=viewAll&showID=306587&show=Batman:+The+Animated+Series. Retrieved on February 19, 2015.
- "Batman" (1992) - Awards. IMDB. Retrieved May 31, 2011.
- "Batman / Superman Awards on Toon Zone ". toonzone.net. http://www.toonzone.net/shows/awards/batman-superman.html. Retrieved on July 19, 2010.
- "Kids’ WB! comes of age ". kidscreen.com. November 1, 1997. http://kidscreen.com/1997/11/01/19928-19971101/. Retrieved on April 29, 2019.
- "KIDS' WB! Announces Spring 2000 Schedule ". warnermediagroup.com. April 11, 2000. https://www.warnermediagroup.com/newsroom/press-releases/2000/04/11/kids-wb-announces-spring-2000-schedule. Retrieved on April 29, 2019.
- "Kids' WB!/Saturday Morning Schedules ". tviv.org. http://tviv.org/Kids%27_WB!/Saturday_Morning_Schedules#1997. Retrieved on April 29, 2019.
- "Batman: The Animated Series Schedule ". cartoonnetwork.co.jp. August 3, 2003. http://web.archive.org/web/20030803195756/http://schedule.cartoonnetwork.com/servlet/ScheduleServlet?action=viewAll&showID=306587&show=Batman:+The+Animated+Series. Retrieved on August 11, 2016.
- "CN Schedule ". cartoonnetwork.co.jp. September 23, 2001. http://web.archive.org/web/20010923061155/http://www.cartoonnetwork.co.jp/tv/sch_det.asp. Retrieved on August 11, 2016.
- "Toonami Lineup ". cartoonnetwork.co.jp. June 18, 2003. http://web.archive.org/web/20030618073500/http://www.cartoonnetwork.co.jp/toonami/lineup.asp. Retrieved on August 11, 2016.
- "Toonami has landed in Japan ". Toonzone.net. June 15, 2002. http://www.toonzone.net/forums/toonami-archived-forum/37428-toonami-has-landed-japan.html#.VA-nJ0v5jB0. Retrieved on September 9, 2014.
- "Toonami Lineup ". cartoonnetwork.co.jp. July 3, 2002. http://web.archive.org/web/20020703212739/http://www.cartoonnetwork.co.jp/toonami/lineup.asp. Retrieved on August 1, 2016.
|Cartoon Network (1997-2008)|
|Adult Swim (2012-Present)|