Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 – Review Jan31

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 – Review...

After months of waiting, it’s finally here, the conclusion to the animated adaptation of Frank Miller’s epic, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.  Like Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1, the folks at DC’s animated division have once again created a movie worthy of the source material. When I first heard that DC was dividing The Dark Knight Returns into two movies, the cynic in me saw this as a cash grab. But now that I’ve seen both movies, I’m glad the decision was made to divide the story into two movies. Nothing feels rushed, nothing feels left out. Michael Emerson did a great job voicing the Joker. His Joker is not Mark Hamill’s Joker, but it is terrific in its own way. While I love Batman: The Animated Series, and hear Mark Hamill’s Joker and Kevin Conroy’s Batman when I read those characters, I like that Andrea Romano was tasked with finding all-new voice talent for the two Dark Knight Returns movies. The climatic fight scene between Superman and Batman was awesome, as was the scene where Superman is hit by the nuclear bomb. Both scenes were like seeing what my mind’s eye sees in the gutters of the comic brought to life. The producers did an amazing job with both. My only complaints about the movie are minor. The lighting seemed too bright for some of the street level action. I would have expected more shadows and murkier colors. The comic is full of a lot of blacks and  grays, but the animated movie has a more colorful overall palette. There were two character designs that stood out for me that seemed very off from their comic book counterparts. In The Dark Knight Returns comic, Bruno, the Joker’s swastika-adorned, Neo-Nazi goon always...

Andrea Romano Interview at NYCC 2012 Nov13

Andrea Romano Interview at NYCC 2012...

I was able to sit down with both Bruce Timm and Andrea Romano at New York Comic Con this year to talk about Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Parts 1 and 2 and Batman: The Animated Series. You can read my Bruce Timm interview here. Andrea Romano has been casting Batman for the past 20 years. “Somebody told me that I’ve cast Batman 13 or 14 times over the various different projects,” said Romano. She is one of the people responsible for the incredibly good casting of  Kevin Conroy as the voice of Batman for Batman: The Animated Series. When Kevin Conroy came in for this audition int he early 90s, Andrea had already listened to 500 auditions for the role of Batman, and had auditioned 150 people in person herself. After Kevin’s audition,  Bruce Timm and Andrea looked at each other and said “We have found Batman.” In the two decades since Kevin Conroy began being the voice of Batman, people have come up to Andrea and told her that “For my entire life, I’ve heard Kevin Conroy as Batman.” Andrea knows the feeling. According to Andrea, “When I prep a script, regardless of what incarnation of Batman it is, when I’m preparing for recording, I hear Kevin’s voice. Even though it may be somebody else I’ve cast to play Batman, I hear Kevin’s voice. That sets the bar.” Andrea described the casting of Batman as “incredibly hard.” But the benefit, according to her, is that “it’s a character you don’t have to pitch. You don’t have to go, “There’s a guy named Bruce Wayne, and he’s got this problem because his parents were murdered.” Everyone knows who he is.” She also pointed out that these actors may never get the chance to...