The Adventures of Batman and Robin: The Penguin

 
Action-packed and true to the source.
  • Review Date: August 2, 2005
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 1992
  • Running Time: 44 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The Penguin offers a "cappucino" to Batman that's really a can of rat poison.

Violence & scariness

Car crashes, fights, and gunfire throughout. The Penguin threatens Cooper's daughter with a razor-sharp umbrella. Socialite Veronica Vreeland nearly dies when the opera-house chandelier she is tied to starts to fall. The Penguin puts one man into a whirlpool in a giant rubber duck; this victim, is never heard from again.

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Tie-in to vast quantities of related merchandise.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that these episodes provide lots of action, plus a surprisingly mature swipe at the snobbery of high society, and a heroic portrait of a corporate whistle-blower. But because of its cartoonish violence and mayhem, this video is questionable for children under 8. Older children will better comprehend the stories, and will be better able to deal with the sometimes nasty violence. Teens and adults will appreciate the clever dialogue and in-jokes.

What's the story?

Two episodes comprise THE ADVENTURES OF BATMAN AND ROBIN: THE PENGUIN. \"Birds of a Feather\" follows Oswald Cobblepot, aka the Penguin (voiced by Paul Williams), as he vows to go straight. Cobblepot is invited to a high society party by status-conscious Veronica Vreeland (Marilu Henner). At the party he discovers that she invited him merely for publicity's sake. He abducts her and holds her in an opera house. Batman liberates her, and captures the Penguin. In \"The Mechanic,\" the Penguin discovers the identity of Batman's mechanic. Earl Cooper (Paul Winfield) was helped by Batman after he was kicked out of the corporate world for exposing faulty engineering on a best-selling line of cars. The Penguin forces Earl to sabotage the Batmobile, but certain fail-safe devices that Earl has installed enable the Caped Crusader to emerge victorious.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Blessed with uncommonly intelligent scripting for a superhero cartoon, the Adventures series continues with this double-dose of the Penguin. Unlike most TV series based on comic books, the 1990s animated incarnation of Batman stuck close to its source material, harkening back to Bob Kane's original depiction of Batman's supervillains as absurd-yet-lethal. In the first episode the Penguin remains his psychotic self throughout, but Veronica's cruelty causes the viewer to sympathize with him. He may be an inveterate thief but his lapses in taste and virtue pale beside Veronica's snobby friend who declares that the supervillain is a must-have guest but "NOKD." ("Not our kind, dear.")

Both shows benefit by their superb voice cast. Singer-songwriter Paul Williams does a terrific job as the Penguin. Paul Winfield lends a dignified tone to Earl, making the character far more than a mere consort to a superhero. The animators include several in-jokes in these episodes, including a "cameo" by a character from the cult indie comic "Love and Rockets," and Batman's license plate, which bears the inscription "the Dark Deco State" ("Dark Deco" being the name given to the show's distinctive noirish animation).

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how children deal with bullies -- their own version of The Penguin -- in real life.

Movie details

Theatrical release date:April 5, 1992
DVD release date:May 20, 1997
Cast:Bob Hoskins, Efrem Zimbalist Jr, Kevin Conroy
Director:Benjamin Melniker
Studio:Warner Bros.
Genre:Family and Kids
Topics:Superheroes
Run time:44 minutes
MPAA rating:NR

This review of The Adventures of Batman and Robin: The Penguin was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byMovieLover4Lyfe July 1, 2010
age 7+
 
Young boys will love this movie! Girls too, but Batman is a hero that boys can look up to! The Penguin is a great villain to be opposite the caped crusader. Some violence that might scare the youngest children.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Kid, 10 years old May 30, 2010
age 10+
 
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

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