Toonami Wiki
Toonami Wiki

Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (also known as Batman of the Future: Return of the Joker in Europe and Australia) is a 2000 direct-to-video animated film featuring the comic book superhero Batman and his archenemy, the Joker. It is set in the continuity of the animated series Batman Beyond, in which Bruce Wayne has retired from crimefighting and given the mantle of Batman to high school student Terry McGinnis. As in the TV series, Will Friedle and Kevin Conroy star as Terry McGinnis and Bruce Wayne, respectively. Mark Hamill, who played the Joker opposite Conroy in Batman: The Animated Series, returns to reprise his role.

Before its release, the movie was heavily edited to remove scenes of extreme violence, and some dialogue was altered, thus creating the "Not-Rated" version of the movie. The original version was subsequently released on DVD following an online petition to have the original version released. It received a PG-13 rating from the MPAA for violence, the first animated Batman film and the first Warner Bros. Family Entertainment film to do so.

The movie premiered on Cartoon Network's Toonami block on August 9, 2002.[1] The movie also aired on Toonami on two other occasions: March 19, 2004 and July 26, 2008[2].


In Gotham City, the Joker resurfaces after having disappeared 40 years earlier. He has taken over a faction of the Jokerz, and on his orders, they steal high-tech communications equipment. One heist happens to coincide with Bruce Wayne's formal announcement of his return to active leadership of Wayne Enterprises, revealing the Joker to the world. Despite Terry McGinnis' intervention, the Joker escapes. Bruce insists that Joker must be an impostor, as he claims to have witnessed the real Joker's death decades before, yet all evidence suggests otherwise. Bruce, unwilling to let Terry face the Joker, impostor or not, demands that he return the Batsuit, to which Terry reluctantly complies.

Later, Terry and his girlfriend Dana are attacked by the Jokerz at a nightclub. At the same time, the Joker ambushes and attacks Bruce in the Batcave, leaving him for dead. Terry defeats the Jokerz, and Dana is taken to the hospital for her injuries. Terry rushes to Wayne Manor, and finds Bruce near-dead from Joker venom. Terry quickly administers an antidote, and tends to Bruce with the help of Barbara Gordon.

After Terry insists on being let in on what really happened to the Joker, Barbara reluctantly tells him that many years back after Nightwing (Dick Grayson) moved to a new city to fight crime on his own, the Joker and Harley Quinn kidnapped Tim Drake, the second Robin, and disfigured him to look like the Joker, and tortured him to the point of insanity over a period of three weeks. In the process, Tim revealed Batman's secret identity—and the secret of what drives him to be Batman. When Batman and the Joker fought their final battle, the Joker got the upper hand and subdued him. The Joker then tried to persuade Tim to kill Batman. Instead, the boy, due to a trace of Robin still active, turned on the Joker and killed him,(whether he shot him or electrocuted him, is ambiguous in the comic book, due to hasty last-minute revision) and suffers a mental breakdown in the process. Batman and Barbara buried the Joker's body deep beneath Arkham Asylum, while Harley fell into a pit after she was fighting Batgirl and was presumed dead as her body was never found. The only other person who knew about what happened that night was Barbara's father, Commissioner James Gordon, who promised to keep that night a secret. One year after the incident, Tim was rehabilitated, but Bruce forbade him from being Robin again, blaming himself for what happened and vowing to never again endanger another young partner. Barbara retired as Batgirl to join Gotham City Police Department and in time follow her father's footsteps as police commissioner, and Tim eventually settled down with a wife and family, and a career as a communications engineer.

Terry decides to question Tim, who denies any involvement and bitterly says he had grown sick of his past life as Robin. Terry then suspects Jordan Price, who would have taken control of the company were it not for Bruce's return. Jordan Price, thinking he will become CEO, plans to hold a private party on his yacht with his girlfriend Amy. However he finds Dee-Dee in her place, Amy having been tied to a pole and gagged at the port. Terry finds the Jokerz on Price's yacht, who reveal that Price had hired them and given them access codes. However, the Joker has sent them to kill Price, as he is no longer needed. Terry rescues Price before a satellite laser destroys the boat, and then turns him in to the police with a recording of Price's conversation with the Jokerz.

Back in the Batcave, Terry deduces that Tim must be working with the Joker when he discovers that the high-tech equipment the Jokerz have been stealing can be combined to form a machine that takes control of any satellite, even an orbiting military satellite with an automated defense system and fire it at will, thus explaining what happened on the yacht—and it can only be built by an engineer of Tim's caliber. Bruce is skeptical about this claim, but nonetheless sends Terry to question Tim again. Terry tries to confront Tim, but is lured into a trap by the Joker, who confirms that he and Tim are indeed working together. Escaping in the Batmobile, he is then chased through Gotham by the laser-armed satellite. Terry tracks the Joker to the abandoned Jolly Jack candy factory. After fighting off the Jokerz, he finds Tim, who transforms into the Joker before his eyes. The Joker explains that when he kidnapped Tim and during the three weeks of his torture, he secretly implanted a microchip (revealed later to have been stolen from Project Cadmus) into the boy's brain that carries the Joker's consciousness and personality, allowing him to physically and mentally transform Tim into a clone of himself at will, eventually becoming strong enough to permanently control his body. The Joker prepares to fire the satellite again to kill Dana, Terry's family and Bruce, but before he can fire the laser, Terry sets Bruce's dog, Ace, on him. Terry knocks the Joker's joy buzzer into the controls, destroying the beam's guidance system, causing it to head to the factory.

The Joker attempts to escape, but Terry seals the factory. A fight ensues between the two, but the Joker is easily able to overcome Terry since he knows all of the original Batman's moves and tricks. Terry then decides to improvise by using his expertise in dirty street fighting moves and mocking his obsession with Batman and his inability to make him laugh. An agitated Joker throws a handful of grenades at Terry, sending him crashing to the floor. The Joker then pins him to the ground and begins to strangle him. Terry, having covertly retrieved the Joker's joy buzzer, delivers a shock to the Joker's neck, destroying the chip, reverting Tim to his old self, and destroying the Joker forever. Terry escapes with Tim and Ace before the satellite destroys the factory and the satellite jamming device. The satellite gets deactivated and floats into outer space.

In the city jail, two of the female Jokerz, Deidre and Delia Dennis, are bailed out by their grandmother, an elderly Harley Quinn, who laments what disappointments they are. Meanwhile, Terry and Barbara meet Tim in the hospital. Bruce arrives just as Terry leaves, telling him that it is not being Batman that makes him a worthwhile person, but the other way around. Bruce then joins Barbara and Tim in the hospital room. The film ends with Terry donning the Batsuit and flying off into the heart of the city.


Voice Cast[]

Character Voice Actor
Terry McGinnis / Batman Will Friedle
Bruce Wayne / Batman (Original) Kevin Conroy
Joker Mark Hamill
Commissioner Barbara Gordon Angie Harmon
Batgirl / Barbara Gordon (Young) Tara Strong
Tim Drake Dean Stockwell
Robin / Tim Drake (Young) Mathew Valencia
Harleen Quinzel / Harley Quinn Arleen Sorkin
Delia and Deidre Dennis / Dee-Dee Melissa Joan Hart
Stewart Carter Winthrop III / Ghoul Michael Rosenbaum
Charles Buntz / Chucko Don Patrick Harvey
Benjamin Knox / Bonk Henry Rollins
Woof the Hyena-Man Frank Welker
Ace the Bat-Hound Frank Welker
Dana Tan Lauren Tom
Chelsea Cunningham Rachael Leigh Cook
Mary McGinnis Teri Garr
Matt McGinnis Ryan O'Donohue
Jordan Pryce Mark Hamill
Ms. Joyce Carr Vernee Watson-Johnson
Joker, Jr. Andrea Romano
Mrs. Drake Mary Scheer
Gangster Jason Stanford


Toonami Broadcast History[]

  • August 9, 2002[1] at 4:00 PM
  • March 19, 2004 at 5:00 PM
  • July 26, 2008[2] at 5:30 PM

External Links[]


Toonami Movies & Specials
Cartoon Network (1997-2008)
Batman MOTP Ring Batman Mr Freeze SubZero Ring Jonny Quest VTCI Ring DBZ Tree of Might Ring DBZ Worlds Strongest Ring DBZ Dead Zone Ring Gundam Wing EW Ring Worlds Finest Ring Sailor Moon R Ring
Sailor Moon S Ring Sailor Moon Super S Ring Batman Beyond ROTJ Ring He-Man The Beginning Ring Transformers Armada Premiere Movie Ring Iron Giant Ring Lowbrow Ring DBZ Bardock TFOG Ring DBZ History of Trunks Ring
DBZ Coolers Revenge Ring DBZ Return of Cooler Ring Hot Wheels World Race Ring GI Joe Spy Troops Ring Duel Masters Good Bad Bolshack Ring PPG Movie Ring Justice League Savage Time Ring Pokemon 1st Movie Ring Pokemon Movie 2000 Ring
Pokemon 3 Spell of Unknown Ring Bionicle Mask of Light Ring DBZ Lord Slug Ring Batman MOTB Ring Justice League Starcrossed Ring GI Joe Valor VS Venom Ring2 Bionicle 2 Ring Hot Wheels Acceleracers Ring Yugioh Pyramid of Light Ring
Zatch and Kiyos Odyssey Ring Batman VS Dracula Ring Batman 1989 Ring Spirited Away Ring Princess Mononoke Ring Castle in the Sky Ring Nausicaa Ring Ultimate Avengers Ring Zatch Bell Friends Getting Stronger Ring
Superman Brainiac Attacks Ring Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Ring Teen Titans TIT Ring link=:Naruto: The Adventures of Naruto!…Oh, And Everyone Else Too! / One on One: Every Genin For Themselves! Ultimate Avengers 2 Ring Hellboy Sword of Storms Ring DBZ Fusion Reborn Ring Toky Hawk Boom Boom Sabotage Ring DBZ Wrath of the Dragon Ring
Invincible Iron Man Ring Mosaic Ring Hellboy Blood and Iron Ring Condor Ring Spider Man 2002 Ring Naruto Mission PTWV Ring Ben 10 SOTO Ring Naruto NCITLOS Ring Lego Indiana Jones Ring
Superman Doomsday Ring Naruto LOTSOG Ring
Adult Swim (2012-Present)
Evangelion 1 Ring Evangelion 2 Ring Kick-Heart Ring Akira Ring Summer Wars Ring Fullmetal Alchemist COS Ring Trigun Badlands Rumble Ring Batman Strange Days Ring DBZ Coolers Revenge Ring
Batman Beyond 75th Anniversary Ring Captain Murphy Ring Zurtrun Ring Fullmetal Alchemist SSOM Ring DBZ Broly Ring Children Who Chase Lost Voices Ring Scavengers Ring Shelter Ring Mind Game Ring
Pacalien Ring Is Lupin Still Burning Ring Samurai & Shogun Ring Rick Morty VS Genocider Ring Batman Year One Ring Batman The Dark Knight Returns Part 1 Ring Batman Gotham Knight Ring Batman The Dark Knight Returns Part 2 Ring Wonder Woman Bloodlines Ring
Justice League New Frontier Ring Batman Ninja Ring Under the Red Hood Ring Rick and Morty Great Yokai Battle Ring Batman Long Halloween 1 Ring Batman Long Halloween 2 Ring Black Lotus Benefit or Hazard Ring Rick and Morty Summer Meets God Ring Blade Runner Black Out 2022 Ring
Blade Runner 2049 Ring Animatrix Ring Samurai & Shogun Part 2 Ring Batman Hush Ring Injustice Ring Ballmastrz Rubicon Ring JL vs F5 Ring Summers Sleepover Ring