movie coverI'd rather be watching TV![IMDB link] [Netflix link] A new Batman/Superman animated movie? Awesome!

PEOPLE: A lot of the same people who have been involved in all animated depictions of Batman & Superman since 1990, such as producer Bruce Timm. Kevin Conroy voices Batman for the 19th year or so, and Tim Daly from Wings picks up the Superman role he’s been playing for a good 15 yrs. This is the so called “Timm-verse”, which is really the “verse” that has been putting out the best DC-based superhero animation for the past 20 years. Including recent movies we’ve watched, like Green Lantern:First Flight, Superman:Doomsday, etc.

Clancy Brown is Lex Luthor — just like he’s been for quite some time in the animated Batman/Superman universe. We also have LeVar Burton (Giordi from Star Trek:TNG), Xander Berkeley (George Mason from 24 Season 1-2, and a minor role in Gargoyles), Michael Dorn (Worf from Star Trek:TNG), Jennifer Hale (well-known voice actor from 200+ endeavors), Allison Mack (Chloe from Smallville), John C. McGinley (Office Space, Puff Puff Pass, Se7en, Platoon), Robert Patrick (the T-1000 in Terminator 2, Bridge To Terabithia, Last Action Hero, Die Hard 2), Hector Elizondo (Beverly Hills Cop 3, and a ton of cartoons), Grey DeLisle (Mandy from The Grim Adventures Of Billy & Mandy, Azula from Avatar:The Last Airbender, Spiral from Wolverine & The X-Men, Sally from The Spectacular Spider-Man, Debbie from Harvey Birdman:Attorney At Law, Asajj from Star Wars:Clone Wars, and tons of other cartoons. Also she has an orgasm in the videogame Vampires Bloodline.)

QUIRKS: Based on a graphic novel.

No holds barred. They say bitch. They say hell. They imply shit but cut it off. As the superhero based cartoons on television seem to become more and more juvenile (such as Batman The Brave And The Bold, Legion Of Superheroes, Superhero Squad, Iron Man: Armored Adventures), it seems the comic companies are starting to aim their higher-caliber adult-oriented superhero animation (such as the 1990s Batman & Superman cartoons, and the 2000s Justice League) to direct-to-DVD releases. This means fewer episodes, but higher quality — as well as no need to go through a specific channel’s standards and practices censorship.

This takes place in the present. They open up with a news barrage talking about the bad economy, and an obvious Jon Stewart making politically-relevant comedic remarks about various current events. Lex Luthor is president now — and everybody hero-worships him, even when he does something wrong. (Kind of like Obama.)

Oh, and an asteroid made of kryptonite is going to hit the earth in 7 days, like in the movie Armageddon.

Oh, and also: There’s a $1 billion bounty on Superman and Batman, for being non-government-sanctioned vigilantes.

With this combination of factors, you know things are going to get interesting.

VISUALS: Great animation! The characters look somewhat like they do in the Timm-verse, but more buff and ragged.

BAD STUFF: Very short. Precisely 3 22-minute TV episodes in length: 66 minutes.

And surely they could have [highlight for spoilers] used the wormhole to simply move the asteroid, rather than using it to move nukes to the asteroid? One explanation is that maybe we couldn’t make wormholes big enough.

A lot of people say this was lacking on story. Personally, I think superhero action works with or without a great story. Good action without a good story still makes for good visual entertainment. But of course a better story makes everything better! Some people like this better than the graphic novel, due to a change in how the public is turned against Superman.

CONCLUSION: Despite what some people feel are a few plot flaws, we absolutely loved this. This is one of the most superior animated incarnations of both Batman AND Superman, and the style seemed to be edgier, more modern, and more “realistic” (which is admittedly kind of an oxymoron with Superhero sci-fi).

RATINGS: Netflix: 5/5 stars. IMDB: 8/10.

RECOMMENDATION: Didja like Justice League? Then you better go check this out.

SIMILAR MOVIES: Superman & Batman last teamed up in the Timm-verse in the “World’s Finest” movie, which also had them both independently figuring out the other’s secret identity: One of my favorite Timm-verse moments EVER.

MOVIE QUOTE: “God bless America. God bless me!” -President Lex Luthor

Mood: annoyed
Music: KMFDM – No Meat – No Man