Batman: The Animated Series is the 269th episode of Screen Junkies comedy series Honest Trailers. It was written by Spencer Gilbert, Dan Murrell, Joe Starr and Lon Harris. It was narrated by Jon Bailey as Epic Voice Guy. It parodies the animated American TV series Batman: The Animated Series, specifically, the first season of 65 episodes that aired from 1992- 1993.The video is 7 minutes 14 seconds long. It was published on October 30, 2018, to coincide with the release of the series on Blu-ray. It has been viewed over 2.5 million times.
"Gotham ... a town where the crime is up, the nights are long, and the people are rectangles." ~ Honest Trailers - Batman: The Animated Series
Script[edit | edit source]
Before he was swole [Batfleck], before he was existentially depressed [The Dark Knight trilogy], and before he was a cartoon (George Clooney Batman: [shows Bat credit card] Never leave the cave without it.) he was a swole, existentially depressed, literal cartoon in
Batman: The Animated Series
Return to a time when pop culture wasn't over-saturated with superheroes (Batman: They sell t-shirts of me? I've become a cliche.), animation still ruled after school, and dial-up internet gave us a few precious minutes offline [Batman waits while awkwardly drawn out dial-up sound plays], and spend some time with Kevin Conroy's iconic Bruce Wayne: an industrialist with the money of Tony Stark and the fashion sense of Dwight Schrute [from The Office]. But when night falls, this punch-a-holic will become the Batman: the world's greatest detective, who's also the world's greatest ninja, greatest hacker (Batman: I've accessed Gotham's electrical mainframe. Batman: There's another computer uplink to this one. I'm tracing the link now), greatest magician (Alfred: You've got the makings of a great magician), and the greatest ventriloquist(?) (Batman: When I studied with Zatara the magician, he taught me about ventriloquism.) Wow! This Batman does a lot, but does he dance [Adam West's Batman dances the Batusi]?
But this cape isn't crusading solo. He has a whole cave full of allies like: Alfred Pennyworth, Butler of Batman, but king of sick burns (Batman: Clay Face is losing his integrity. Alfred: I wasn't aware that he had any to begin with.) OHHH!!; Robin, the Boy Wonder, as in "Boy, I wonder what screwed him up between this show and Titans," (Animated Robin: Yahoo! Titans Robin: F*** Batman.); Batgirl, a college kid whose relationship with Bats is super creepy after using The Killing Joke movie (Batman: Barbara, come in! You've grown!) EUGH!; and Commissioner Gordon, a humble civil servant tormented by a billionaire psychopath determined to drive him insane [montage of Batman sneaking up on Commissioner Gordon]. Come on, give him a break, Bats! We all know you're a ninja. You don't have to keep proving it to Grandpa Cop, alright? Jeez!
Together they'll protect Gotham, a city trapped somewhere between 1932 and 1992; a town where the crime is up, the nights are long and the people are rectangles. It's a city under siege from the best rogues gallery in animation history. Featuring character defining portrayals of Two Face (Two Face: You're talking to the wrong Harvey.), Mr. Freeze (Mr Freeze: To never again walk on a summer's day with the hot wind in your face and a warm hand to hold.), Harley Quinn (Harley: Harley Quinn, pleased to meet ya!), the best Joker ever - yeah, I said it! - and a Bat menagerie's worth of animals. Jeez, Batman, maybe you should stick to something less threatening like a penguin. (Boy: Now Roberta! [kids take out the Penguin with some sort of flimsy flying string attack] Boy: Nice shot! [kids high-five] Boy: We did it!).
So light up the bat-signal and revisit the highs (Batman: I am vengeance; I am the night; I am Batman) and the lows (Catwoman pounces around and licks hand. Batman: You've made her a monster! Scientist: I believe she would disagree.) of the darkest adaptation of Batman ever made - literally the darkest, because they drew it on black paper - that wasn't afraid to hit kids with complex philosophy(Woman: Santayana says that those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.), then break it up with a guy kicking a werewolf in the face (Batman: If it's a fight you're looking for, try starting one with me! [Batman flying kicks a werewolf in the face]). See DC! That's all we want: a definitive portrait of a beloved character that balances multiple tones across dozens of hours that can only happen with a perfect creative team and lands at the perfect time in the cultural zeitgeist. Is that so hard?
Starring: Hygiene-Related Insults (Batman: Listen up scum wad. Batman: Here's how it works slimeball. Batman: Alright scum bucket. Batman: Too late, dirtbag.); Breaking and Entering [montage of Batman illegally entering various premises]; Just Terrible Marksmanship [montage of goons firing guns with embarrassingly poor aim]; Maniacal Laughter; Batman's 'Oh' Face [montage of Batman gasping], Gas Attacks; Gotham City exploding (montage of explosions. Batman: Stop shooting you lunatic! We're sitting on a powder keg!; More explosions!); and Batman thumbs up dot gif [Batman Forever thumbs up .gif]. Nope, the other one [cartoon thumbs up .gif]. That's the one!
This Batman Forever
Okay we need to talk about the intro for a sec. Has anyone else noticed that the "crooks" are just two guys who happen to be walking past the bank at night, then, when the entrance explodes, they run away like any sane person would do. They don't even have any loot on him! Sure, fine, they pull guns on Batman, but for all they know he's the psycho going around blowing up banks. And Batman doesn't know who did it either - he had to drive there - but does that stop him from beating the crap out of them and leaving them for the cops - without any evidence to convict them on? This is why vigilantes are a bad idea, you guys.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- All the writers watched the show as kids.
- The writing team chose to focus their critique solely on season 1, which they consider the definitive episodes of the show. Season 2 consists of an additional 20 episodes, which were aired from 1994-1995 with a different title: The Adventures of Batman & Robin.
- Honest Trailers have been produced for virtually every other Batman movie, including Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman (1989), Batman Returns, Batman Forever, Batman & Robin, The Killing Joke, Suicide Squad, Batman v Superman, Justice League and even Batman (1966). See list of Honest Trailers for more.
- Screen Junkies also produced an Honest Trailer for the 1990s X-Men: The Animated Series. See list of Honest Trailers for more.
Reception[edit | edit source]
Honest Trailers - Batman: The Animated Series has a 98.3% approval rating from YouTube viewers. Heroic Hollywood said the Honest Trailer was "absolutely hilarious." Egotastic wrote that the Honest Trailer was "a great trip down memory lane" and that it "reminds us of how great the show was." ComicBook.com noted that "the trailer is amusing, but remains pretty reverent." The site highlight the Honest Trailer for praising the characters, while also having "some fun with the way the show’s setting seems unstuck in time, and at some of the plots of the weakest episodes of the series."
Screen Rant wrote that "the Honest Trailer highlights everything masterful and laughable about Batman: The Animated Series, including under-appreciated heroes and villains, seldom pointed-out continuity errors, and stark (often preferential) contrasts to the other Caped Crusader on-screen adaptations." Screen Rant also pointed out:
The trailer contextualizes the series by showing that while Joel Schumacher's Batman Forever (1995) and Batman and Robin (1997) were cartoon-like and stylistically retro, DC seems to have settled on focusing on grimmer incarnations of the vigilante. The jab at how emphatically darker Dick Grayson has become in Titans, juxtaposed with Adam West's famous Batusi dance demonstrates how much the creative direction of the franchise has changed.
Fansided also highlighted the the Honest Trailer for putting the show in the context of other Batman adaptations, writing, "the Honest Trailer for Batman: The Animated Series reminds you why it remains a hallmark of superhero shows animated or otherwise but also might remind you it’s so darn hard to get Batman right in the movies these days"
Production credits[edit | edit source]
Voiceover Narration by Jon Bailey
Title Design: Robert Holtby
Edited by Kevin Williamsen and TJ Nordaker
Assistant Editor: Emin Bassavand
[edit | edit source]
- 'Batman: The Animated Series' Gets an Honest Trailer - ComicBook.com article
- ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ Honest Trailer Reminds Us It’s the Best Batman Adaptation Ever (VIDEO) - Egotastic article
- Batman: The Animated Series Honest Trailer Tackles Classic 90s Cartoon - ScreenRant article
- Batman: The Animated Series Honest Trailer Tackles the Classic - CBR.com article
- BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES Honest Trailer Pretty Much Highlights Everything We Love About The Show - Geek Tyrant article
- ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ Gets The Honest Trailers Treatment - Heroic Hollywood article
- Batman: The Animated Series Honest Trailer asks why Gordon hasn’t had a heart attack - Fansided article
- Batman: The Animated Series Gets Hilarious Honest Trailer - We Got This Covered article
- Batman: The Animated Series Gets Honored With An Honest Trailer - LRM article
- ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ Honest Trailer: So Dark It Had to Be Drawn on Black Paper - SlashFilm article
- Honest Trailer Gets Why Batman: The Animated Series Will Always Be Our Batman - The Mary Sue article