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REVIEWS


Episode #37 - Thunder
Original Airdate - February 18th, 2006

When Mayor Grange defeats eccentric billionaire Maximillian Zeus for re-election, Zeus takes his obsession with Greek mythology to another level; taking control of Gotham from a ship hovering above the city.

Reviews by The Penguin
Media by Bird Boy
Credits
Written by Paul Giacoppo
Directed by Christopher Berkeley
Music by Thomas Chase Jones
Animation by Dongwoo Animation Co., LTD.

Voices
Rino Romano as The Batman/Bruce Wayne
Alastair Duncan as Alfred
Danielle Judovits as Batgirl/Barbara Gordon
Mitch Pileggi as Commissioner Gordon
Adam West as Mayor Grange
Phil LaMarr as Maximillian Zeus
Michael Bell as Reporter/Guard

Video

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Pans


Review

"You're right, Alfred, I think Batgirl's earned some wings of her own."

Another villain debut, which brings our 'season three new villain total' to four so far. The second voiced by a previous DC voice actor. Phil LaMarr did a great job as he always does, in bringing Maximillian Zeus to life. He was strong and forceful, as someone the people of Gotham could first see as their mayor and at the same time brought the man's obvious delusions to a place where he didn't seem crazy, but rather just firm in his beliefs. I loved the previous incarnation of the character, but LaMarr manages to keep the obviously insane Zeus from sounding like it.

I couldn't help but notice that outside of the ship being New Olympus, Zeus seemed to draw more from Roman mythology rather than Greek, the uniforms, the helmets and gladiator references, seemed more Roman to me. I wouldn't expect to see the man in a toga, but his name isn't Maximillian Jupiter (Google it, you'll learn something). The mythology of the two cultures is quite similar and I liked the look, but it just didn't feel quite right. On the subject of the costumes, I liked Zeus's helmet, but it prevented him from being very expressive. There was a good balance of helmet on/helmet off so it wasn't as much of an issue as it could have been. Zeus seemed to wear the helmet more when he was addressing his would-be subjects which is really rather appropriate from his warped perspective.

Nice debut for the Batwing as Batman took to the skies to knock Zeus from his throne high above Gotham. Overall I like the design; it's something different and at the same time compliments the design of the Batmobile and the Batcycle. At first I wasn't sure about the flight suit, but it grew on me as the episode went on. The parachute was probably good call.

Batgirl had a very strong role in this episode—it's questionable whether The Batman would have been able to stop Zeus without her, but she also got really annoying. It was a fun annoying when she was messing with "Maxie" and his gladiator goons, but I got real tired of how she felt like Batman wasn't 'keeping her in the loop' about his plans. Barbara Gordon is a teenage girl who took it upon herself to start following Batman around and "help" him fight the villains of Gotham City and while she has been helpful, she has also gotten in the way. Batgirl deserves some credit for the help, but this is The Batman's mission and she is just along for the ride. He doesn't owe her anything—he already didn't end her little game of dress-up when he decided not to tell her father (who seemed content to obey the 'mighty' Zeus and allow The Batman to do all the work).

It was nice moment when The Batman decided to include Batgirl at the end of the episode; however her constant whining up to that point about "the loop" and her need to be in it made the payoff significantly less satisfying and almost made me wish she didn't get what she wanted.

 

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