Most underrated DCAU episodes EVER!

Latest News & Videos

John Cage

Mystery Man, 666+ Posts Strong
Sep 8, 2004
1,368
0
38
38
Canada
Hi there

GMahler said:
Man...I really like "Animal Act." Maybe its just because I'm a Nightwing fan.
I happened to be in Sarasota, Florida when I first saw "Animal Act" and thought it was cool if only because of the reference to my vacation destination. I should add that this was a repeat from, like, 1999, but since I'm from Canada where Batman and Superman didn't air unless you had satellite they were new to me.

I saw "Love is a Croc" then and thought it was pretty good too. I mean, Croc was on trial for murder. In a children's cartoon!

Have a good day then.
John Cage
 

Mynd Hed

Holy blue on a popo!
Aug 5, 2002
20,489
0
36
38
Tucson, AZ
I never understood where all the "Prophecy of Doom" flak is coming from-- sure, it wasn't the greatest episode ever, but I still enjoy it. Sort of a cautionary tale for all the kids out there who might somebody be taken in by a David Blaine or a John Edward (the phony psychic, not the vice-prez candidate).

I also recall liking Tyger Tyger-- good use of my man Blake, and an interesting character in Tigris. I suppose my memory could be failing, though, I'll have to wait on the DVD release to know for sure.

Loved the Clock King, there's something about anal-retentive obsessive villains that gets to me. Dunno why-- maybe they remind me of my dad. (-:
 

Fone Bone

Matt Zimmer
Jan 19, 2004
29,150
-5
113
44
Framingham, MA
I thought of another underrated goodie: Static Shock's Hard As Nails. This episode got a LOT of flack for not being like a Batman episode even though it was set in Gotham. Guess what? IT WAS A STATIC SHOCK EPISODE. And it was a good one too. My personal favorite of Static's DC crossovers. When Bruce Wayne let Virgil see Alfred and told him he had earned his trust, I was like Aaaw!
 

Harlequinade

Harley's Biggest Fan
Sep 13, 2004
100
0
16
28
Originally posted by Fone Bone
I thought of another underrated goodie: Static Shock's Hard As Nails. This episode got a LOT of flack for not being like a Batman episode even though it was set in Gotham. Guess what? IT WAS A STATIC SHOCK EPISODE. And it was a good one too. My personal favorite of Static's DC crossovers. When Bruce Wayne let Virgil see Alfred and told him he had earned his trust, I was like Aaaw!
I enjoyed this episode as well. It was nice to see Harley and Ivy again and I found it shocking after only working with Static twice that Batman trusted but the episode was cool:cool:
 

Wizard

Member
Dec 1, 2003
376
0
16
36
Visit site
John Cage said:
I happened to be in Sarasota, Florida when I first saw "Animal Act" and thought it was cool if only because of the reference to my vacation destination. I should add that this was a repeat from, like, 1999, but since I'm from Canada where Batman and Superman didn't air unless you had satellite they were new to me.
Where do you live? I live in B.C., I don't have satellite, and I saw both shows just fine through cable (Batman on Fox and KidsWB, Superman on the KidsWB).
 

OmegaPaladin

WereWampa of Zeal
Apr 6, 2004
184
0
16
38
Chicago
Animal Act: I did not see the villain coming. It's a great Nightwing episode, definately shows that he can still work with Batman.

Love is a Croc: The final plot was pretty disturibing. I mean, Ms. Dahl is basically suicidal, and nearly kills off Gotham City out of spite and depression. I really felt sorry for her. In essence, she retreats into her little girl persona to hide from a painfl world.

Mean Seasons: Age catches up to everyone. I really think Calender Girl was one of Batman's most challenging villains. The final twist is very poignant too.

TC&CC: Talk about a twist... I NEVER saw that coming. The villain pretty much seems to have won, and then WHAM! I almost felt sorry for him. The riddles were also pretty good.

Clock King and Time Out of Joint: Maybe it's because my stepmother could play the henchwoman for the Clock King, but these episodes are some of my favorites. The Clock King is almost a match for Batman, and is quite similar to him. Both are obsessive, driven men who derive all of their power from training.
 

JLfan4life

Member
Oct 7, 2004
490
0
16
i noticed that alot of people also didn't like the greatest story never told. i thought it was a good episode and a good spotlight on Booster Gold.
 

JusticeLeagueLegion

Samantha is a hottie!!
Oct 14, 2001
5,248
0
38
Happy Harbor
Visit site
A lot of these episodes everybody seems to hate but I love. I love "Tyger, Tyger." It was so cool. I don't think there's an episode of Batman the Animated Series that I couldn't stand.

Hey Bruce, you mean to tell me that you didn't like "Cat Scratch Fever" and "Animal Act"? I thought those episodes were great! I can't remember who wrote "Animal Act," but did they get the idea from an issue of DC COMICS PRESENTS in which Superman and Robin team up to fight some circus freaks who are mind controlled? I can't remember the issue number, it's been YEARS since I read it. But I clearly remember the title of the story: "The Deadliest Show On Earth!" Anyway, Just wondering.
 

Harlequinade

Harley's Biggest Fan
Sep 13, 2004
100
0
16
28
Originally posted by JLfan4life
i noticed that alot of people also didn't like the greatest story never told. i thought it was a good episode and a good spotlight on Booster Gold.
I thought this episode was pretty good too, it gave us a good introduction for Booster Gold and it wasn't all that bad even though the black hole man was kinda cheesy. Anyways another one I thought of that lots of people don't like is "Sins of the Father". It's not the best but it's not the worst either.
 

n8twing

Member
Mar 26, 2002
444
0
16
Connecticut
www.titanstower.com
b.t. said:
fascinating thread! i'm especially delighted to see "critters" getting some luvvin'.

keeping in mind that EVERYONE has a right to their own opinion -- "one man's trash, etc" -- here's my own thoughts on some of the eps mentioned here:

EPISODES I LOVE UNRESERVEDLY:
*************************
maid of honor
kid stuff
this little piggy
baby doll
comfort and joy
earth mover
eggbaby

NOT GREAT, PERHAPS, BUT PRETTY DAMN GOOD:
************************************
cold comfort
the prometheon
critters

I TOTALLY GET WHY PEOPLE DON'T LIKE THESE, BUT I KINDA DO:
************************************************
tyger tyger
fury
hawk and dove

NOT REALLY VERY GOOD, BUT NOT NEARLY AS BAD AS EVERYONE SAYS:
******************************************************
war world
the forgotten

NOT REALLY HORRIBLE, I GUESS, BUT I DON'T MUCH CARE FOR IT AT ALL
******************************************************
cape and cowl conspiracy

PLEASE FORGIVE ME FOR HAVING ANY PART IN ITS CREATION:
***********************************************
prophecy of doom


i've long noticed the general tendency for fans not liking the more overtly comedic episodes,(which is too bad, really). this seems always to be the case: i remember reading somewhere that "the trouble with tribbles" was initially pooh-poohed by the first generation of trekkies back in the day (kinda hard to imagine). and, of course, you see it in modern "buffyverse" fandom, which is REALLY odd, considering BTVS has ALWAYS had a built-in spoofiness from day one. i wasn't surprised by the outright fan-hatred for the "angel and spike's italian adventure" ep from ANGEL'S last season, but man, i thought it was absolute GENIUS ("gypsies -- PTUI! we will speak of them -- no more!"), even better than the actual series finale.

(but i have to agree that "beer bad" IS truly awful, in almost every respect. ok, enough buffy off-topic-ness...)

personally i get bored with non-stop sturm und drang; i think an occasional yuk-fest breaks the monotony. and some of our comedies have been VERY funny, in my humble opinion....

anyhow....speaking of baby doll, what did you all think of "love is a croc"? that's another one that, while i'm not really surprised that people hate it (with a passion!), but i always kinda liked it...

also, i seem to recall a lot of "ultimate thrill"-bashing, but it's always been one of my favorites.
Sorry-- I came late to the party. I can pretty much agree with 90% of what b.t. has said. It's so interesting to see his point of view from the inside! Thanks for participating in these topics, man!

I am TOTALLY open to the comedy eps... and I think in general, fans are. Look at "The Man Who Killed Batman" and "Harley and Ivy" and "Harlequinade" and "Myxpixelated"-- those have mucho comedy. Myself, I enjoyed "Kids Stuff" and "This Little Piggy" -- but I think some of the comedy was in holding up the characters to ridicule... that's where some fans get persnickity. I think when the comedy is inserted into regular universe, fans are more accepting.

The one shocker I see on your list is Critters... that was one of the worst in my opinion. There wasn't overt OR ironic humor... it didn't come across as self-conscious if that was the intent. It was just... goofy. Hard to take serious, yet not very funny. That makes it a clunker for me.

I don't understand the hate directed at "Ultimate Thrill" or "Superman's Pal" and even "Cape and Cowl". They arent among my FAVORITES, but I don't hate 'em. People are especially "grr'' towards "Superman's Pal"... what's with the hate towards that one? It's sorta like how a group of people hate Max from Batman Beyond with the white hot intensity of one thousand suns ::shrugs:: I thought she was fine.

Some of the first season's JL episodes I neither hate nor love. Episodes like "Warworld" just seemed sorta dragged out. A handful of first season's JL's woulda been fine as one episode. The two-part format sorta hurt the first season.

Garsh, I could ramble on and on...
 
R

Robin

Guest
GMahler said:
Actually, I just watched "Critters" recently and one thing that stood out was the score. I thought it was absolutely hilarious. Definitely a highlight in an episode I never took much of a liking towards. "Critters" is still miles better than the abomination that is "I've Got Batman in My Basement" though.
Don't forget Moon of the Wolf. Critters to me always seemed like a farce. To think that it should be taken seriously in anyway is just inane. It opens with a giant sheep rampage at a Farmer's Expo, for which Bruce is attending for some reason. It ends with Batgirl saying "That's purdy." It's all tongue in cheek. Sure, that won't make anyone change their mind but, it's just a ridiculous episode and an adequate stab at B-movies from the past.

But it's nowhere near as horrible as garbage like "I've Got Batman in my Basement," "Moon of the Wolf," "Cat Scratch Fever," and "The Terrible Trio." Not even close.
 

Jade_GL

An Aperture Science Original
Apr 15, 2002
5,446
0
36
37
Maine
www.happypineapple.com
One JL episode that I remember getting a lot of flak on the forums (and perhaps for some good reasons) was Metamorphosis. But I loved it.

I just think Metamorpho is a great character, and I liked GL in it. I mean, I am having a hard time remembering everything in it, but I remember being one of a few people who actually gave it a good review. Oh well. Underrated at least among some fandom. :)

Can I just say one thing, though? As a *fangirl* and someone who avidly reads comics (I have a pull list a mile long, no joke) I must confess that I don't think it's necessarily comic fans calling for DCAU toons to be less funny or have a serious tone. In fact, as a fan of the recent Formerly Known as the Justice League miniseries, I must say that I love comedy in my superhero books, or superheroes in my comedy books.

And my favorite issue of the somewhat recent (and now ended) Martian Manhunter series was a throwback issue where he hulks out when he can't get his favorite cookies.

So don't blame comic geeks for calling for serious toons. I certainly am not, and I know a lot of comic book fans that love DCAU. You should see the uber positive reviews the show gets on Comic Book Resources forums, and they are comic book readers from before I was born. ;)

Personally, I blame it all on Batman fans. As a Green Lantern and Captain Marvel fangirl, I have no part in this. :D:D:D
 

Maxie Zeus

Upside Down
Moderator
May 1, 2001
6,583
0
38
50
Norman, Oklahoma
anbat.toonzone.net
GMahler said:
Actually, I just watched "Critters" recently and one thing that stood out was the score. I thought it was absolutely hilarious. Definitely a highlight in an episode I never took much of a liking towards. "Critters" is still miles better than the abomination that is "I've Got Batman in My Basement" though.
Yeah, the score was one of the things that really leaped out at me when I gave it a second viewing a couple of years back. It's also one reason why (contra Robin, above) I think "Critters" is not a comedy. Or, if it's a comedy, it's a po-faced Coen brothers comedy like Fargo.
 
R

Robin

Guest
Maxie Zeus said:
Yeah, the score was one of the things that really leaped out at me when I gave it a second viewing a couple of years back. It's also one reason why (contra Robin, above) I think "Critters" is not a comedy. Or, if it's a comedy, it's a po-faced Coen brothers comedy like Fargo.
Not a straight-forward comedy, no. Some more along the lines of Fargo, as you mentioned, or even something akin to the Evil Dead movies. If you want, we can take this to the right thread to discuss it. Personally, I'd be glad to. Conversations here, for the most part, tend to just be "OH MI GOD!!! That's so kewl!..!!!," making any types of discussion really hard to do. It'd be nice to really interract and share ideas.
 

Maxie Zeus

Upside Down
Moderator
May 1, 2001
6,583
0
38
50
Norman, Oklahoma
anbat.toonzone.net
Well, FWIW, here's the full review from my website:

"Critters" is one of those episodes that no one will give a second glance to, so universally is it despised. And it’s not hard to see why. A goofy premise, a truly bizarre pair of villains, some unfunny "comic" dialogue: The thing looks like an Adam West–style escapade without the charm or a B-movie without the conviction.

Even a second look will probably fail to impress; it’s too easy to leave in place the prejudices aroused by a first viewing. But search it receptively, actively, watchfully, and something else begins to come into focus.

You might start by turning down the sound, or at least plugging your ears whenever a character opens his or her mouth. Then you might notice that, visually, this is one of the darkest TNBA episodes, full of apocalyptic reds and blacks. And not just in the skyline. The same color scheme dominates the mutant animals: a bull the color of a dried scab and carnivorous "chickens" whose feathers hang like black funeral crepe. (Everyone remembers the "bugs" without remembering that they barely have any screentime.) Darkness frames many of the scenes.

As I say, watch the episode without listening to the characters—though you should let the dissonant, wailing score wash over you—and it would hardly occur that it is meant to be a bit of pop kitsch. Well then, if it's not "Adam West," is it supposed to be a "monster" movie? It has none of the scale of one. Some big animals get loose and do some damage, at the instigation of a criminal who just wants a truck full of money. Then there are the jokes and puns—both visual and verbal—that undercut the sense of serious danger. Of course, there is a sense that people could get hurt, but it's only the danger that comes from facing a wild animal, not a malevolent intelligence.

The result is an odd sense of displaced but undispelled menace. Something is wrong or out of control, and yet nothing specifically stands out as a locus of danger. The threats are both familiar and unfamiliar, so that the viewer is unsure whether to take it seriously or not. The same indecision afflicts the characters, who react with a kind of wary incredulity; they can neither believe nor disbelieve what they are seeing. (That is also why they make uneasy jokes; what else are you going to say when you've just been run over by a cow except "We've just been run over by a cow"?) It’s the horror of watching the world, while still looking exactly as it did before, begin to behave in very strange ways. The situation is, to use a special word, "uncanny."

It is uncanny in the way that dreams are uncanny, in the way they mimic the look of the real world while abandoning its substance. And "Critters," it slowly dawns on you, has the feel of a lucid nightmare, a vision from which one struggles unsuccessfully to awake. It mimics the kind of dream that terrifies by merging the real world with the dream world and which, except for a certain hellish gleam to the landscape, might as easily inspire laughter as terror. The dream-like mix of incongruities and incredulities reach their apotheosis when Farmer Brown's "messenger" arrives at police headquarters. The sight of a monster might shock everyone back into consciousness. But the sight of a billygoat, of a billygoat that talks, of a billygoat that demands millions in ransom while standing quietly in the middle of a dark office—this is a nightmare that stands with one foot planted firmly in reality while still vomiting forth unexpected horror.

So too with the villains. The inane Farmer Brown and his hormone-stuffed daughter have no glint of the daemonic, as do Dr. Cuvier or his minions in the similar, genetically-inclined "Splicers." And yet the very banality of their motives (loot and revenge) and personality ("Always check your shoes and count the money") make them the more unnerving villains. The banal is by definition more common than the outre. This man could be your neighbor, which should not be a comforting thought. Your neighbor might not be in the business of manufacturing giant animals. Still, what might he be in the business of manufacturing?

(It's only a cartoon. Still, we're talking about a grudge-nursing lunatic who causes high-tech havoc in a major metropolis: The frightening disparity between the savage but puerile mind and the awesome destruction it can unleash should have more resonance post-9/11 than it did in 1998.)

"Critters" does to the viewer what its critters do to the characters—it purposefully confounds expectations and defies easy categorization. It works—if you will accept my late and belated claim that it does work—by deploying those clashing tones and inconsistent styles that its detractors complain about, and it does so with the aim of unsettling the mind and spirit. After all, in aesthetics and entertainment as in life, we like the world to come in nice, neat, dependable, predictable packages, and it upsets us when our expectations are thwarted. In doing so, the episode takes a daring line and challenges us to accept the uncomfortable premise that the world, both in fact and art, has no duty to conform to our prejudices.
 

Spotlight

Staff online

Who's on Discord?

Latest profile posts

For some reason I keep being reminded of this post I made on a Black Clover talkback thread: C&C - Black Clover - "The One With No Magic" [9/8]

It seems like the inspiration for Maya comes from his wife, mother, and sister.
The good news is I'm not scared anymore. The bad news is, as I have absorbed things, I am now freaking infuriated.
For nick@nite, and I thought full house was the only one skipped.., now George lopez is doing the same thing.. early Mon Jun 1 3:30am was No Free Launch, then skipped episodes to A Kiss is Just Kiss episode aired early Jun 2 at 4am. Very weird for nick@nite, obvi a sign that show won't last long