The Batman

 
(i)

 

Revamped take on classic offers tweens thrills.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The Batman is, as always, a brooding, dark character, but less so here than in previous incarnations. He never kills his adversaries, opting instead to leave them trussed up and ready for the jail cell. He does, however, beat them pretty soundly before that. On the positive side, persons of color and people of both genders are given equal representation, both as villains and as good guys.

Violence & scariness

Intense stuff for younger viewers: giant crocodiles, evil bats (scary enough to make a grown-up flinch), and pretty serious fight scenes.

Sexy stuff

Curvaceous characters like Poison Ivy are flirty, but their costumes never reveal a thing, and The Batman seems pretty impervious to their comments.

Language

Villains sling growled threats around quite a bit, but basically the language is tame.

Consumerism

The Batman has lots of cool gadgets, but none that are actually available at your local toy outlet. There are, however, hundreds of product tie-ins to tempt young fans.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Batman is ultimately an antihero, operating outside the law. Although committed to fighting crime, he does so in a way that wouldn't work for real people. Parents should also be aware of the never-ending stream of Batman clothes, games, toys, and other cultural detritus on the market. The fact remains, though, that unless you're raising your kids in a monastery at the bottom of a deep well, they're going to be aware of -- and fascinated by -- The Batman.

What's the story?

Crossing the campiness of Adam West's classic Batman performance with the dark formalism of Tim Burton's big-screen vision of the Caped Crusader, THE BATMAN also tosses in a good dose of the shadowy, film noir-inspired animation of Warner Bros' mid-'90s Batman: The Animated Series (to which, visually, this is quite similar). Last but not least, the word "The" is added to the title as a way to differentiate this show from the prior series and, perhaps, as a nod to the original '40s comic, in which the nascent hero was known as "The Bat-Man."

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The Batman is a remarkably coherent, fun show, with lots of action, great moody sets, and exciting pacing. The dialogue is more natural than that of many cartoons featuring adult characters, and the plots are similarly well-crafted. Environmental and societal concerns are raised within the program's boundaries, and solutions are offered. Those solutions aren't always cut-and-dried -- there are loose ends and unanswered questions, such as what constitutes real power, or what happens when the natural order of things is upset -- which keeps The Batman ensconced in real-world issues and provides excellent jumping-off points for larger discussions.

Pop culture-savvy parents will certainly notice that when the mask is off, Bruce Wayne looks a little younger than they remember, and that the whole parents-getting-murdered/midnight-vigilante-justice thing is largely glossed over. But for action-starved preteens, this cartoon will be a welcome addition to the rotation, and one that parents can get into as well (offering them the chance to fill their kids in on the absent back story). The beloved Dark Knight somehow seems to create a generational connection between parents and kids, and we're lucky to have this incarnation that promotes positive values and provides strong role models.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what it means to be a hero. Why does Batman want to be a hero, if he does at all? What real life-heroes you can think of? What makes a hero? Parents can also discuss characters like detectives Bennett and Yin, an African-American man and an Asian-American woman, respectively, and the importance of racial and gender equality in society.

TV details

Cast:Kevin Michael Richardson, Rino Romano, Tara Strong
Networks:Boomerang, WB
Genre:Kids' Animation
Topics:Superheroes
TV rating:TV-Y7-FV
Available on:DVD

This review of The Batman was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall 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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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byrobinrunner May 1, 2011
 

well-made, but charecters look more different than usual.

Some may say it's not as good as Batman's previous series, but the two might be evenly loved by all fans of Gothem's hero. This show is definatley better made. Some villains look strange more, like the Joker looks like he has red eyes and dread loks. Violence is the only problem. Parents must keep in mind though that the fights were cut down so that kids could handle them.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Kid, 11 years old April 4, 2010
 
the batman is a great show but the batman movie is dark
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great role models
Teen, 15 years old Written byMitchell Charleston May 25, 2013
 

A treat for the whole Batman fanbase.

I LOVE this cartoon. I watch it on Boomerang a lot. It has great animation, lots of laugh, decent action, and everything.

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