"Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One" Animated Release Talkback (Spoilers)

Rate this movie

  • *****

    Votes: 2 22.2%
  • ****1/2

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • ****

    Votes: 3 33.3%
  • ***1/2

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • ***

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • **1/2

    Votes: 1 11.1%
  • **

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • *1/2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • *

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    9

Stu

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Troy Baker's Joker is obviously very evocative of Mark Hamill but I feel like, on a performance level, his Joker comes off far better than, say, Tara Strong riffing on Arlene Sorkin's Harley. Like, it still sounds like Joker and it's not like it's grating or anything, so I don't really have a problem with it.
Tara Strong’s Harley is a another example of the same problem I had here… it’s a clear inferior copy. Strong’s Quinn is also deliberately irritating, Sorkin’s never was.

It’s a shame, I genuinely liked the majorly of the rest of the cast here. No one else seemed out of place in the slightest.
 

Yojimbo

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Tara Strong’s Harley is a another example of the same problem I had here… it’s a clear inferior copy. Strong’s Quinn is also deliberately irritating, Sorkin’s never was.

It’s a shame, I genuinely liked the majorly of the rest of the cast here. No one else seemed out of place in the slightest.
Who are you thinking would have been a suitable voice for Joker in this 2 parter?
 

Pfeiffer-Pfan

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I feel this was an opportunity to find a fresh voice for The Joker to play opposite Ackles's new Batman. Especially if we'll be seeing more of the latter as the line continues.

The hiring of Baker felt lazy and uninspired. He's never been anything more than a pale imitation and one that has only gotten worse as the years have gone by. Perhaps Ackles and Duhamel blew the cast budget and they had to find a few (cheap) old faithfuls to stand in, but I still think Baker was the wrong choice.
 

Yojimbo

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Come to think of it, wonder if they considered having David Dastmalchian double up as Joker and Calendar Man.
 

Frontier

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Tara Strong’s Harley is a another example of the same problem I had here… it’s a clear inferior copy. Strong’s Quinn is also deliberately irritating, Sorkin’s never was.

It’s a shame, I genuinely liked the majorly of the rest of the cast here. No one else seemed out of place in the slightest.
Well, I think as a performance it's not grating and is generally fine, so I think it works even if it's emulating another Joker.

For all we know whoever else they got probably would have tried to sound like Hamill's Joker. If they wanted Joker to come off like Hamill's in the actual story, then there probably isn't much more we could have expected.
I feel this was an opportunity to find a fresh voice for The Joker to play opposite Ackles's new Batman. Especially if we'll be seeing more of the latter as the line continues.

The hiring of Baker felt lazy and uninspired. He's never been anything more than a pale imitation and one that has only gotten worse as the years have gone by. Perhaps Ackles and Duhamel blew the cast budget and they had to find a few (cheap) old faithfuls to stand in, but I still think Baker was the wrong choice.
This is, what, Baker's fourth Batman after Roger Craig Smith, Kevin Conroy, and himself in the Batman vs TMNT movie :p?

I think it's probably more like why they got Jason Spisak or Hynden Walch for the DC Animated Movies since they could reliably do Joker and Harley voices. I mean, Baker's a legitimate and high-profile VA so I feel it's unfair to knock his casting just because his Joker sounds so much like Hamill and he's not an instance of stunt casting. These movies have always mixed traditional VA's, reprisals, and more higher-profile names in the cast.
 

Mostezli

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Well, I think as a performance it's not grating and is generally fine, so I think it works even if it's emulating another Joker.

For all we know whoever else they got probably would have tried to sound like Hamill's Joker. If they wanted Joker to come off like Hamill's in the actual story, then there probably isn't much more we could have expected.

This is, what, Baker's fourth Batman after Roger Craig Smith, Kevin Conroy, and himself in the Batman vs TMNT movie :p?

I think it's probably more like why they got Jason Spisak or Hynden Walch for the DC Animated Movies since they could reliably do Joker and Harley voices. I mean, Baker's a legitimate and high-profile VA so I feel it's unfair to knock his casting just because his Joker sounds so much like Hamill and he's not an instance of stunt casting. These movies have always mixed traditional VA's, reprisals, and more higher-profile names in the cast.
Plus, I don't think Joker has really played that prominent of a role for them to choose someone else in these movies since TDKR. The couple times he has, it was Killing Joke or those Adam West movies playing opposite other VA reprisals.
 

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Who are you thinking would have been a suitable voice for Joker in this 2 parter?
I know you didn't ask me , but I wanted to reply : I've no idea! But I liked unexpected and "different" Joker castings that ended up working real well, like Kevin Michael Richardson, John DiMaggio and Michael Emerson. I'd like for them to find more of these instead of just going for Hamill sound-alikes.
 

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I know you didn't ask me , but I wanted to reply : I've no idea! But I liked unexpected and "different" Joker castings that ended up working real well, like Kevin Michael Richardson, John DiMaggio and Michael Emerson. I'd like for them to find more of these instead of just going for Hamill sound-alikes.
I think I remember back in the day people complaining about KMR trying to sound too much like Hamill when The Batman was first airing. I guess like a lot about that show it's aged better over time, but I remember his Joker being kind of controversial.

Like, if they wanted to have a traditional Joker within the frame of the story they're trying to tell, wouldn't it make sense that Baker would deliver that? It would probably have been the same whoever they cast in my opinion.
 

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Batman: The Long Halloween: Part One

I've never read The Long Halloween, so I'm coming to this fresh. But what I do recall is that Bruce Timm once claimed this story would be better off staying a comic rather than being made into a movie. Well, what I just saw was a pretty darn good movie. And let me be blunt. Me liking these movies has been a rarity over the years. I've given some positive initial grades to some films, but my opinion usually cools over time because I forget the movie, and that's not a good sign. I remember liking Superman: Man Of Tomorrow, loving Batman: Soul Of The Dragon, and being super disappointed in Justice Society World War II. This one is back up to snuff.

What I liked best about it was the same thing I like about Soul Of The Dragon. And I like it because it's unusual for animated stuff, but seeing similar stuff here tells me it might not be unusual for too much longer. My biggest complaint about these adult oriented DC films is how stupid and childish the plots and animation are. I recall giving Deathstroke: Knights & Dragons a big stinky zero stars, and I fully stand by that grade, even though I got a lot of "Matt is going overboard again," shade from people who read my reviews. The scene in that movie that made me find it absolutely, repulsively stupid is when a little kid loses their ball, Slade Wilson picks it all and hands it back, to him and the kid gives him an amazed, stunned, soppy smile as if he just handed him the latest PlayStation instead of a dime store rubber ball that is actually his. And that specific moment rankled me so much because it shows that these movies can have heads gorily exploding, bare-assed people falling in and out of bed with each other, f-bombs, it doesn't matter. They'll still put in a cliche and stupid scene like a child getting excited like a kid at Disneyworld over a 2 for a dollar rubber ball they already own. And it's all of these types of movies. Until now.

The scene where Gordon is getting his kids ready to go trick or treating and the family is goofing off amazes the pants off of me. Because it did a VERY adult thing, because it was allowed to stand without being further explained to death like we are morons, and instead we are simply smart enough to understand why the scene is being portrayed that way. The phone rings. Simple, simple thing for any other family. There is dread in the room once that happens. Jim hopes it's a wrong number. The family doesn't even care about a potential murder, and aren't dreading that kind of bad news. The thing that has stopped the clock and has put everyone's hearts in their throats is the realization that Jim is gonna have to bail on trick-or-treating after all. That is a real-world adult concern, in a franchise not known for having the adults in the franchise worry about realistic things. And Barbara is justifiably upset, but the dread in the scene isn't overexplained, and yet the audience completely understands it is the trick-or-treating that's important, not the murder. So, I'm giving this movie four and a half stars for treating my cynical ass like a grown adult, while the dumb kid from Knights And Dragons can choke on his beloved and cherished Dollar Store rubber ball and zero grade.

I like that we realize Bruce and Selina know who each other are, and that they've never really discussed it openly, which is interesting.

I think Alberto is a very interesting red herring. I doubted it was him, but I knew he was going somewhere because he wasn't put up on the big board, and he seemed a pretty likely candidate just based on how he and his father treated each other. Batman describes his likely guilt as being Occam's Razor: Simplest explanation. I wouldn't go that far. I don't think him being Holiday is actually simple. What it does do is check off all the applicable boxes. That's not simple. It's more like it fits better than most. That's a different thing.

Occam's Razor is Harvey Dent and always was. Especially after seeing Holiday's eyes, I'm wondering how it could possibly be anyone else.

As far as Alberto's guilt went, the second Selina lazily accidentally spilled Bruce's identity, you know he's not Holiday. He's Holiday's next victim.

The Joker is also a good red herring because even though the murders are perhaps too sneaky and not flashy enough to be him, the truth is the fact that nobody knows what's going on is flipping Gotham right the frak out, and chaos and fear is definitely a Joker specialty. As far as the Joker fitting, it was already likely it wasn't him. But he's a good red herring because it pretty easily COULD have been him if he wanted to do it.

Another adult moment at the very beginning I like. Alfred cannily described that the Manor Gate has NEVER been adequate protection for the Batcave, so chill, Bruce, and let me put out the candy. Nothing that can get into the Batcave from that unlocked entry point can't also get into it if it's locked.

I like Harvey's wife Gilda, for obvious and personal reasons. Sort of totally outside of my Gilda which is also fun.

The scenes with Jim and his family and Harvey and Gilda show the selling point of splitting this story into two parts: We have time to breathe. To give us the little moments to make us care about the characters. I suspect I might not have liked this movie if is was a truncated and rushed single part.

Calendar Man's scene was probably the best in the movie and his actor was great. They weren't just feeling him out. He was feeling them out. And Harvey wasn't there because they didn't tell him. Because he's a suspect. Calendar Man is a fine detective himself because he has the ability to notice what ISN'T there, besides what is, and extrapolate the reasons it isn't. I really wish we had more scenes of him.

I also like Jim showing Batman the ropes in detective work very much. This is obviously very early in Batman's career. Carrots sometimes work, Bats. Pay attention.

I enjoyed Alfred pulling the Batman trick on Bruce. Is that where he got it?

I wonder if the next movie will delve into this or not (and I also wonder if the comic did). Will Holiday be skipping some Holidays? He missed Chanukah entirely. Also Kwanza. Does he only go for Federal Holidays? Because I can't picture him skipping Valentine's Day. Independence Day seems like a natural murder point for the guy, but Memorial Day doesn't. If it isn't based on federal Holidays, what constitutes as big enough of a Holiday to strike? Does it need a recognizable gimmick? That's describes Saint Patrick's Day although that's barely a Holiday. Arbor Day? Flag Day? President's Day? MLK Day? Rosh Hashanah? Passover? Ramadan? What is the cut-off for importance for when he strikes? These are all fascinating questions that I think the detectives might need to ask Calendar Man about. He probably has a better feel for this stuff than I do.

I like the idea that before the movie Batman seems to have come to some sort of uneasy truce with Solomon Grundy that we never saw. Batman and Gotham leaves Grundy alone, Grundy leaves Batman and Gotham alone. I like that Batman has developed enough affection for the big lug to bring him a Thanksgiving plate. Another cool moment.

Big question for fans: Is this movie in continuity with Man Of Tomorrow and Justice Society? Easy answer: Yes! It's early in Batman's career which makes the timeline line up very well with Man Of Tomorrow, and more importantly, it contradicts nothing. There's not a new version of a character coming back from the dead which seemed to happen every other movie during Bruce Timm's tenure. It's part of a connected Butch Lukic-verse for the simple reason than there is no reason it shouldn't be.

People have complained this animation just isn't the same as the Tim Sale art from the book. Personally, I like the streamlined animation, because the action animates really well, and it doesn't seemed as flailing as the animation from the Tucker projects and Young Justice. It was Justice League Unlimited's simple designs that made pretty basic animation look so mind-blowing. You can do a lot more in an action scene on a budget if you aren't really beholden to so much detail. And it shows. The punches land harder here, and it's also easier to tell what's going on if the pace speeds up. I never lost who was who in the Chinatown scene, which is good, and also pleasantly surprised me a little. One reason I am resistant to action scenes compared to other genre fans is that my mind usually can't keep up with my eyes and I get easily confused. This stuff is easy to grok, it weirdly looks good too. Just like JLU. Except it's a decade and a half further along in animation techniques, so it actually looks even better and more polished! Isn't that great?

I'll be honest. I didn't like the tag, and I'm subtracting half a star for that fact. I have never approved of Poison's Ivy love whammy bit REMOTELY before this, so that was an annoying place to leave things off. But I think a simpler explanation as to why the tag annoyed me is that it's gotten so that outside of the Marvel Studios stuff, I am totally over cliffhanger tags in genre projects. All of them outside of Marvel Studios. Even if the movie IS a cliffhanger, if it had ended on the good stopping place it did before the end credits started, I would have liked it more. I guess I don't like non-MCU tags anymore, but the truth is I probably never did.

But really, that's the only real complaint I had. We'll see if Part 2 sticks the landing (I liked Batman: The Dark Returns Part 1 very much, and detested Part 2) but I think Bruce Timm was wrong about this not making a good movie. ****1/2.
 
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khuddle

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I thought it was terrific, probably the best Batman animated since Batman: Under the Red Hood. The animation and artwork were really gorgeous, and the voice acting was great. I really liked how they handled the minor characters: Harvey Dent was the brilliant District Attorney, but his personal life was starting to crumble; Jim Gordon was portrayed here as the super sharp and super competent Captain of the GPD, every bit the detective as Bruce Wayne himself. And Carmine Falcone is the ruthless crime boss, a man who won't tolerate any weakness within is own family or among his associates.

I give it a solid 4 stars. It would have ranked even higher, except for one glaring flaw: the Joker. His campy presence felt really, really jarring in this one. I suppose he was included as comic relief, but a hard boiled detective movie such as this just didn't need any comic relief.

A more serious and competent villain would have been far more appropriate, R'as Al-Ghul perhaps, he's the only one that comes to mind.

Hopefully the Joker's presence is kept to a minimum in Part 2.
 

Stu

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Who are you thinking would have been a suitable voice for Joker in this 2 parter?

Preferably, someone brand new. No one springs to mind specifically, but even if a previously cast actor needed to be cast, I think for this version of The Joker, John DiMaggio would’ve worked better.

I don’t mean to knock the guy personally, but I think Baker is massively overexposed in the VO field, and of all the characters I’ve heard him play (Batman, Joker, Hawkeye, Banner, Two-Face, Robin, Loki, someone else normally does it better.

That came across as far harsher than it meant to be, but yeah. There’s usually nothing really wrong with his performances, but I don’t think he ever quite nails it…
 

Yojimbo

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Preferably, someone brand new. No one springs to mind specifically, but even if a previously cast actor needed to be cast, I think for this version of The Joker, John DiMaggio would’ve worked better.

I don’t mean to knock the guy personally, but I think Baker is massively overexposed in the VO field, and of all the characters I’ve heard him play (Batman, Joker, Hawkeye, Banner, Two-Face, Robin, Loki, someone else normally does it better.

That came across as far harsher than it meant to be, but yeah. There’s usually nothing really wrong with his performances, but I don’t think he ever quite nails it…
Upon seeing everyone's thoughts and further contemplation, it wasn't Baker and his Hamillan voice - good or bad depending on who you talk to. It was that it was like a B:TAS touchstone that got kind of distracting. Catwoman's B:TAS catsuit even. Joker's loony tone and TLH's were fighting each other. Idk, maybe someone more along the lines of Bill Skarsgard would have worked.
 

Otaku-sempai

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I give it a solid 4 stars. It would have ranked even higher, except for one glaring flaw: the Joker. His campy presence felt really, really jarring in this one. I suppose he was included as comic relief, but a hard boiled detective movie such as this just didn't need any comic relief.

A more serious and competent villain would have been far more appropriate, R'as Al-Ghul perhaps, he's the only one that comes to mind.

Hopefully the Joker's presence is kept to a minimum in Part 2.
There's at least two reasons that Joker is in this: 1) He's in the comic; and 2) it's technically too early in Batman's career to have Ra's al Ghul show up.
 

ShadowStar

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I finally watched Part One the other day and I have to wonder... could Gilda Dent be Alberto Falcone's ex?

I present the evidence henceforth.

Firstly, the scene in which Alberto's flowers are delivered features a very awkward exchange between the nurse and Gilda. I think we're meant to take this moment at face value -- Gilda and Harvey are incensed that the Falcone family would have the audacity to send them flowers, given the attack on their home -- but it may be significant that the nurse draws attention to the fact that a man has sent flowers addressed to Mrs. Dent. The nurse gives Gilda a look and talks about how the matter is none of her business -- she may suspect that the flowers are from an admirer or lover. Gilda dismisses the subject.

Secondly, when Harvey and Gilda argue on New Year's Eve, she says to him, "Why can't you be more like...", and he says, "More like who?", but she doesn't answer him. This leads me to my third point...

Alberto talks to Selina about his former life: his upbringing and the woman whom he loved. Selina seizes on this subject and asks Alberto what happened to this woman. She doesn't really get a straight answer. I wonder if the woman was Gilda and they still miss one another. Alberto even says that he would "happily be married to and have a child with"... someone whose name remains undisclosed, because Alberto is shot right at that moment, before he can state the person's name. What odd timing...

It'll be interesting to see whether this theory is proven to be correct when Part Two is released. Perhaps Gilda has an ax to grind with the Falcone family because of what they did to her and Alberto, and also because of how their presence in Gotham has been the cause of significant strain -- both on Harvey and on their marriage. I could see this as the reason why
Gilda may have started the Holiday Killings.
 

Yojimbo

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In Part One's screenplay, in the Gordon home scene during Halloween, Babs is Jim Gordon's niece, not his daughter or adopted daughter yet. Her scripted response to Barbara Sr. in the scene was "He's not my father."

Julie Nathanson voiced both James Jr. and Babs.

In Part One's screenplay, Tim Sheridan named the couple that emerges from Carmine's elevator "The Marzillis" after his Godmother's family as an identifier for the other filmmakers and artists.

Sheridan confirms the Batman '66 nod with 66th and West/Ward Bridge.

Originally, Mickey Chen was Mickey Sun as a nod to Mickey Sullivan in the comic but it didn't clear legal.

In Part One, Tim Sheridan originally wrote the Chen interrogation ending with Gordon expecting Batman to have vanished and turning around to find him still standing there. Then they just walk out the office door together.

In Part One, Tim Sheridan meant for the yacht break up to be when Bruce realized Selina was Catwoman but she figured out his secret long before.

Tim Sheridan wrote four variants to Joker's line and "Crappy New Year!" was chosen.

Tim Sheridan thought the line "Like the corn kernel always says…I won't be number two!" would be cut.

Tim Sheridan wanted Selina to whisper "Bruce" and Alberto barely hears it, but the staging would have made no sense since they needed Alberto to know Batman's identity to sell the scene.
 

Frontier

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In Part One's screenplay, in the Gordon home scene during Halloween, Babs is Jim Gordon's niece, not his daughter or adopted daughter yet. Her scripted response to Barbara Sr. in the scene was "He's not my father."
I don't think anyone's complaining about the lack of that continuity bit, although I guess it's amusing that they were planning to keep it...
She's a versatile voice actress :).
In Part One, Tim Sheridan originally wrote the Chen interrogation ending with Gordon expecting Batman to have vanished and turning around to find him still standing there. Then they just walk out the office door together.
That would have been funny :p.
 

Hanshotfirst1138

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I have watched Supernatural for far too long to hear Jensen Ackles as anything other than Dean Winchester . I know I’m hung up on him, but hear Conroy do this classic Batman story would be nothing short of epic. Still, Ackles gives it his all, and hats off to him for a good performance. I always thought the comics this was based on dated back to the early 00s considering how influential it was on the Nolan movies; I had no idea it was from the late 90s. Weird that Leob wrote this, which is so well-regarded, then went to write things that were decidedly less so. What happened to Bruce Timm? What’s he been doing lately? Has he taken time off from the DTVs again? God, I feel so old, I don’t know any of the names in the credits anymore. Anyway, adapting a 13-issues comic with a huge sprawl like this was probably never going to go 100% smoothly, but I have to say, splitting it in two was smart. Gives them a lot more room to breathe. Interesting animation style too.


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Otaku-sempai

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I have watched Supernatural for far too long to hear Jensen Ackles as anything other than Dean Winchester . I know I’m hung up on him, but hear Conroy do this classic Batman story would be nothing short of epic. Still, Ackles gives it his all, and hats off to him for a good performance. I always thought the comics this was based on dated back to the early 00s considering how influential it was on the Nolan movies; I had no idea it was from the late 90s. Weird that Leob wrote this, which is so well-regarded, then went to write things that were decidedly less so. What happened to Bruce Timm? What’s he been doing lately? Has he taken time off from the DTVs again? God, I feel so old, I don’t know any of the names in the credits anymore. Anyway, adapting a 13-issues comic with a huge sprawl like this was probably never going to go 100% smoothly, but I have to say, splitting it in two was smart. Gives them a lot more room to breathe. Interesting animation style too.


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Bruce Timm is busy now with Batman: Caped Crusader, the new Batman series being produced for Cartoon Network and HBO Max. Timm, J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves are the executive producers.

1629124402112.png
 

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