Since it has been rumored that HBO Max is interested in possibly reviving the acclaimed 90’s cartoon Batman The Animated Series, there is a question of when or how they would move forward to bring this iconic version of the Dark Knight back to the small screen while also doing the series justice. For this brief list, we will be explore a few of the ways HBO Max and Warner Media can introduce Batman to younger audiences while at the same time remain faithful to the original series. Let’s just hope Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill still have it in them to reprise their roles as Batman and The Joker.
Continue Making Original Content
When series creators Paul Dini and Bruce Timm were asked why Batman The Animated Series didn’t continue after its final season, they stated it was because they “ran out of ideas for stories”. Well, comic have changed and evolved since then, new characters have been introduced to the realm of the Dark Knight and there is plenty of new content the creators can use to bring back Batman. Now the question stands “In what style do they continue the series?” while many appreciate the style used in The New Batman Adventures, the original look from the first season is iconic and beloved by many. We hope they would continue the original design, or perhaps a completely new look for the cast of characters but with a modern twist. Either way, we would just love to see exciting new adventures of Batman and his sidekicks fighting off against some of the many rouges in Gotham. Possibly even giving creative control back to Timm and Dini to create new iconic Batman villains, just as they did with Harley Quinn. Or even recreating some of Batman’s lesser known villains in a new form, similar to how they did with The Mad Hatter and Mr. Freeze.
Adapt the Current Comic Book
Currently Paul Dini and Alan Burnett have already revived the animated series in the form of a comic book, titled Batman: The Adventure Continues. Picking up where The New Batman Adventures left off, but exploring aspects of Batman’s world that has become relevant in comic books but never looked at in the series. The Adventure Continues manages to add on the fan favorite armored suit from The Dark Knight Returns, while also bringing in characters from the comics. The overall premise focuses on Jason Todd and his place in the DCAU, since it was never explored throughout any of the series run. While also incorporating other elements from the comic books including Deathstroke and Azrael. While the comic is receiving success in its own right, it still could easily be adapted into multiple episodes for one large cohesive story. Perhaps even include other side stories focused around Robin (Tim Drake), Nightwing and Batgirl. Taking the opportunity to flesh out those characters more than they already have with the original series. Even if they decide to not create a direct adaptation of the comic, they could still tell a similar story that dives into the Jason’s arc as he becomes the Red Hood.
Explore Post-Justice League
Justice League and Justice League Unlimited managed to run for a total of four seasons, years after its release an animated film was created titled Justice League vs. The Fatale Five. However, both series have become memorable and beloved classics. We would have no problem with an animated series that brings Batman back with the Justice League, but with individual missions of his own. Since the show was given a “Bat-embargo” which cut back the amount of Batman we wish we had. The idea of the embargo was to lessen how much Batman there was, and instead give more screen time to the other DC characters. However, the jokes on them because… You could never had too much Batman. Leading us to the idea of an animated series set after the events of Justice League vs. The Fatal Five, where Batman is out on his own missions, while also helping Superman and Wonder Woman train the future members of the Justice League. Perhaps allowing closure for some of the villains that never reappeared in Batman Beyond. Which brings us to the next entry of this article.
Explore Pre-Batman Beyond
Perhaps a concept that could be explored in a final season, the opportunity to explore further into Bruce Wayne’s old age and downfall as the Caped Crusader. Batman Beyond picks up with an older Bruce Wayne using his newly advanced Batsuit used in the series. After a brawl with some thugs, Batman suffers a heart attack and is forced to threaten one of them with a gun in order to save his life. Going against all he stands for, he decides it is time to retire as the Dark Knight. While there are some parts of Wayne’s past that is answered throughout the series including his relationship with Barbra Gordon, the meeting of his dog Ace, the fall of Tim Drake and the happenings a few of Batman’s villains. We are still wondering what happened to some of the other villains, as well as some of Bruce Wayne’s associates such as Dick Grayson and Lucius Fox. However, one major aspect that has never been explored in the series is what provoked Bruce to create the Beyond suit, what was the moment Bruce realized he needed something else to help him with his crime fighting? Furthermore, how was the suit or his new Batmobile created? We can assume it was with the assistance of Lucius Fox, but we would love to see that unravel.
Whichever way DC and Warner Brothers decide to go with Batman The Animated Series, the biggest thing we hope for is the return of the original cast. Since so many of us grew up listening to Conroy and Hamill as our favorite hero and villain, the show wouldn’t be the same without them. Regardless, instead of yet another new animated Batman series. We are excited at the opportunity to see this show come back and tell more epic Batman adventures. And with a platform like HBO Max, there is not a better time to bring back this beloved series than now.