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Releases - DVD - Batman Beyond: The Complete First Season


Announce Date: 12/7/05
Street Date: 3/21/06
Closed Captioning: Yes
MSRP: $26.99
Packaging Type: Digi-Pack
Subformat: Multi Disc
Media Quantity: 2
Disc Configuration: 1) 9-Dual Layer 2) 9-Dual Layer
Sound Track Language: English
Run Time: 280
Francais, Espanol

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio - 1.33, Standard [4:3 Transfer]

Sound Quality:
English (Stereo, Dolby 2.0)
Disc 1
Rebirth Part 1, Rebirth Part 2, Black Out, Golem, Meltdown, Heroes, Shriek, Dead Man's Hand
Disc 2
The Winning Edge, Spellbound, Disappearing Inque, A Touch of Curare, Ascension

DVD Features
Audio Commentary:
Rebirth, Pt.1 Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary with Bruce Timm- Producer, Alan Burnett- Producer, Paul Dini- Producer, Glenn Murakami- Producer, and Curt Geda- Director.

Shriek Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary with Bruce Timm- Producer, Alan Burnett- Producer, Glenn Murakami- Producer, Curt Geda- Director, and Stan Berkowitz- Writer.

Interviews: Inside Batman Beyond: Every Batman fan wishes they could sit at a table with it's creators of the series. Well, now here's a chance for that to take place with a few surprises.

Music Only Track: Music of The Knight: Bruce Timm intro's the music from five key scenes of Batman Beyond as you choose which one you would like to hear with dramatic music only.

Synopsis: Terry McGinnis was just an ordinary teenager...until his father was mysteriously murdered. Suspecting foul play at his father's company Wayne/Powers Corporation, Terry meets Bruce Wayne and learns a secret identity hidden for decades. Now too old to battle injustice, Wayne refuses to help. So Terry does what any brash young kid would do: steal the Batsuit and take matters into his own hands! Vowing to avenge his father's death, Terry dons the high-tech suit: tricked out with jetpacks, a supersensitive microphone and even camouflage capabilities in search of his father's assassin. Get in on the action from the beginning of a new partnership between an ex-crimefighter and his apprentice.

Review: A strange occurrence happened around Batman Beyond. Back when WB released the single disc releases, either by accident or choice, they ended up all of season one, sans the final episode (“Ascension”). Those who purchased those releases will no doubt already feel familiar with this set, but that final episode will be a welcome sight for those that haven’t since Batman Beyond stopped airing on Cartoon Network.

Batman Beyond arrived on Kids WB! at a time when they wanted younger shows. Instead of simply making a younger Batman show (hello The Batman!), the crew of The New Batman / Superman Adventures decided to take it all in a new direction: Bruce Wayne’s retired and a new Batman, Terry McGinnis, takes over the mantle to fight crime in the future Gotham. Fans were just about as angry with this series as they were when Teen Titans first showed up, saying that it’s not what they wanted and that they didn’t want to see an old-man Wayne. Years later Batman Beyond still has a few naysayer's, but most have quieted down, especially after the direct ties that future Justice League and Justice League Unlimited episodes referred to.

Comprised of two discs, this entire first season of Batman Beyond is rock solid. There’s not a single episode in it that I didn’t enjoy, both as a kid and now as an adult. The episodes are all top notch in writing and animation, with the premiere two-part “Rebirth” and the Inque episodes being particularly beautiful to look at. Batman Beyond is certainly a fun show to watch and experience.

The packaging for Batman Beyond: Season 1 is very, very small. A single digi-pak, double layer tray and cardboard wrapping makes up the packaging. Those wanting to compare it to any existing packaging on the market may have a hard time, as I can’t think of any current releases that look like this. You could compare it to a Thin-Pak (the style of case that Futurama and Family Guy are in), as one easily slides into Batman Beyond’s cardboard slip.

Menus are spectacular looking. I assume since the show was originally intended to be “kiddie” and the fact this release is under the “DC Comics Classics Collection” banner that they made the show a lot darker in tone for menus and packaging than I would have thought. Dark reds and blacks make up the animated menus. You can tell they seemed to have a lack of model images to use, however, as models for an April Moon Gang member (Krul) and Zander (Kobra leader from “Curse of the Kobra”) were used.

Video is as good as you can get for cel-based animation. It’s all a pretty clean transfer, very little interlacing and popping colors. The audio is strong and the loud rock music really comes out crystal clear and sounds great when you have the speakers turned up.

Special features are surprisingly good for such a small release. Only two commentaries, but the “Inside Batman Beyond” and “Music Only” featurettes are simply awesome. While the features aren’t too lengthy, they’re satisfactory for such a small release.

Lots of cool information in the “Inside Batman Beyond” featurette is to be had from the roundtable discussion moderated by Jason Hillhouse. The “Music Only” track, featuring all music that wasn’t on the Rhino Batman Beyond soundtrack release from years back, was great fun to watch as well. It’s a shame we can’t get more of the Batman Beyond score released on discs, but I guess that’s too niche of a market for Warner to tackle.

The commentary for “Rebirth Part 1” is very informative and those doubtful of “Shriek”’s ability to sustain a full commentary will be pleasantly surprised. There’s some great commentary in this one and we even get to hear from Stan Berkowitz this time around.

With the future of Batman Beyond’s DVD releases looking bright, we should have the entire series by winter of 2007/2008. As long as they keep up the content, but maybe throw in a few more commentaries, I’ll be incredibly happy with these releases. After all, it’s really just the show I want on DVD and this release more than adequately delivers one of my favorite shows as a kid.

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