19 August 2014

Crisis of Infinite Episodes - Batman: Mask of the Phantasm

And so we have come to the very first of what would become many animated features and the only one to be released theatrically. This truly is a masterful film which captures the tragedy of Bruce Wayne. It's not just that he lost his parent at such a tender age, becoming Batman and forgetting his own personal happiness was a destiny he was never able to escape.

The movie came out midway through the run of the animated series and really is one of the highlights of the series. Some of my favorite parts of this movie are the flashbacks to Bruce's beginnings as Batman, in particular the pre-costume days. Even without the cape and cowl Bruce was a force to be reckoned with. The escape from police was also thrilling with plenty of Year One feel.

The mystery of the Phantasm is also superbly played out and gratifying. Surprisingly, my least favorite part of the movie is the Joker. I just feel the movie was plenty strong without him and I am not a huge fan of him being less than the center of the story when he does appear. Then again, his presence makes this movie all the more iconic. After all, shouldn't the best Batman movies have the Joker in them (see The Dark Knight, Under the Red Hood, The Dark Knight Returns)?

Episode Count: 0614
Series Count: (80 of 81)

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