Batman: The Brave and The Bold Producer James Tucker spent a few moments answering questions for The World’s Finest concerning the latest DVD collection of his acclaimed animated series. Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two arrives March 20th, 2012 on two-disc DVD from Warner Home Video. The two-disc DVD collection includes fourteen episodes from the second season of the acclaimed animated series. Continue below for more from Producer James Tucker.
The World’s Finest: Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two hits home video on March 20th, 2012 from Warner Home Video. These episodes see the inclusion of some more A-list heroes like The Flash and Superman. What was your thought-process when bringing in these more recognizable heroes was it easier or harder to adapt them to the Batman: The Brave and The Bold-style?
James Tucker: Im really glad that in our first season we adhered very closely to our plan to only use the lesser known heroes because had we used the A-listers in season one we wouldnt have had as much fun with them. By the time season two and three came around, we knew the tone of show we were making, and we were able to find the fun in these more well-known characters.
With the The Flash episode “Requiem for a Starlet Speedster!,” I wanted to focus more on the Flash family aspects of that character. The idea that theres an older original Flash, the adult 30-something Flash and a younger Kid Flash. Theres something about the legacy/lineages of DC characters that Ive always liked, but that we were never able delve into in past series Ive worked on because it seemed to complicated to convey. With Batman: The Brave and The Bold, just kind of did the stories we wanted to do and didnt worry about them being too comic book-specific. I hope one of the legacies of this show is that it exposed little kids to superheroes in a way that made them curious to explore and learn more about those characters and actually read comic books.
With Superman, we knew we didnt want to just do a regular Superman episode since we only had two shots at using him. I think the episode “Battle of Superheroes!” managed to show the fun side of the Superman mythos that most long-time fans know but mesh it with a pretty solid story showing Batmans friendship with Superman. I had grown tired of Batman always sneering at Superman in the last few animated versions of their friendship. Basically, I didnt want Batman to be such a jerk to him. Michael Jelenic had the idea of using the Super-dickery aspect of the 50s Superman covers and we kind of built the episode around that. I really loved how that episode turned out and gave me ideas about doing a Superman show based on the Batman: The Brave and The Bold template.
WF: This collection also happens to contain the fan-favorite episode Knights of Tomorrow. While you worked on that episode a few years ago at this point, any chance you can quickly run-through the inspiration behind it? Is it safe to say you were inspired by the recent works of Grant Morrison on Batman?
JT: It wasnt lost on us by the time we got to the end of our first season that we were pulling from the same source material, the silver age Batman stories, that Grant Morrison was. I think Grant was aware of it too because he mentioned our show in a positive light in a few interviews given at the time (which was a huge compliment!). Knights of Tomorrow was mostly inspired by a story a 50s Batman story called The Son of the Joker where Bruce Wayne gets married and passes the cowl to Dick Grayson and Bruce Jr. becomes the new Robin. We used that as a jumping off point and built our own story around that premise. As an homage to Grant, we changed the name of Bruce Jr to Damian Wayne (the coolest Robin ever!) and we had a few scenes that included some of the Batman villains hed created in his run on the comic.
WF: Another notable episode is the ambitious Bat-mite Presents: Batmans Strangest Cases. How difficult was this episode to pull together, given the different animation styles, models, and…basically everything. Save for the Bat-mite wraparounds, not much in this episode was really tried before on Batman: The Brave and The Bold. Can you run us through the production on this episode?
JT: This episode was a huge undertaking! Luckily everyone brought their A-game! For one thing, all the characters except for the Hanna-Barbera Scooby-Doo section, had to be designed from scratch. All the backgrounds and color had to be specific to each segment. For the shots of Bat-Mite in his studio, we had to use photo reference and actually stage a real life set that was photographed to include all of the actual stuff Bat- Mite had in his study. The ‘Bat-boy and Rubin’ teaser was probably the most labor intensive since it had the actual CGI opening on the cover and the transitions between the panels. Folks should refer to Bill Dunns background painting blog on the show to get more detailed info on this episode, or check out Ben Joness blog for insider tidbits on this episode because Im surely forgetting some things!
WF: For those who may be new to the series, or havent caught a single episode, are there any episodes youd point out from this collection that they should give a shot? Why?
JT: Its hard to single out any one episode because theyre all so different from each other. We always tried to ring the bell as much as we could and challenged ourselves not to make the same type of episode twice so I think theres something for everyone on this disc. For those blood-thirsty types who like more straight serious storytelling, Id recommend “The Last Patrol” or “Knights of Tomorrow!” For high adventure and superhero action, the “The Siege of Starro!” two-parter and “Darkseid Descending!” is fantastic. One of my personal favorites is “The Criss-Cross Conspiracy!,” which is basically a mash up of Turnabout Intruder, Mildred Pierce and Some Like It Hot. I doubt many superhero cartoons can make that claim to fame! “Plague of the Prototypes!” features the return of Adam West voicing a character on the show. “Cry Freedom Fighters!,” “The Malicious Mr. Mind!” and “Menace of the Madniks!” are both funny but have a lot of heart. Both “Emperor Joker” and “Bat-Mite Presents” are just off the wall wacky with tons of easter eggs for long-time Batman fans. “Battle of the Superheroes!” is just full of great super dickery bits and is really an homage to Supermans 50s Eisenhower-era version. Thats probably my favorite episode on this disc.
WF: Any last thoughts on the episodes included on and the DVD release of Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two? Why should we rush out and pick up this DVD release come Tuesday?
JT: I personally think this is our best run of episodes and has the most variety of the sets that have been released! But I say that about all the season sets! Why should you run out and buy this set next Tuesday? Well, I want to do a Batman: The Brave and The Bold direct-to-video movie, dang it! So buy as many copies of this as possible and prove theres a demand for more Batman: The Brave and The Bold goodness! Help the economy! Give them as gifts to friends. If you hate the show, give them to enemies. Just by the darn thing!
WF: Just one last question – Warner Home Video has just announced Batman: The Brave and The Bold: The Complete Third Season for June 2012. Is it a relief knowing the entire series will be on DVD by summer? Given how the home video market has been changing, it actually seems like a genuine accomplishment that not many shows are getting anymore.
JT: Its nice to get all the episodes officially out on DVD. While iTunes and downloads are nice and convenient, theres nothing like having an actual DVD set in your hands and on your shelf. I really hope the series will make it to Blu-ray with a complete series set. What would really make me even happier is getting the second season of Legion of Superheroes out on DVD! I think we really did a good job with that second season and its a shame its not out on DVD for more people to discover. Okay! Hoping off my soapbox now…
Further details on the Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two DVD collection can be found at the The World’s Finest Batman: The Brave and The Bold subsite. Released by Warner Home Video, Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two will be available at all retail and online outlets on March 20th, 2012. Click here to read the The World’s Finest review for this release.
Additionally, Warner Home Video has announced a June 19th, 2012 release for Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Complete Season Three, a two-disc set collecting the remaining episodes from the acclaimed animated series. Full details on this upcoming DVD title can be found here.
Batman: The Brave and The Bold – Season Two, Part Two will be available at all retail and online outlets on March 20th, 2012. Stay tuned for further Batman: The Brave and The Bold updates here soon at The World’s Finest.
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