Despite Warner Brothers attempting to make a Bat-Embargo on future DCAU projects, Batman still manages to have some of the most badass and memorable moments from the animated series Justice League and Justice League Unlimited. Warner Brothers wanted to create more content that featured Batman, but not so much Batman. Especially since Batman The Animated Series and Batman Beyond were already big hits, the studio wanted to expand past just Batman and give more of the spotlight to some of the other heroes on their roster. But what they ended up doing is just making Batmans moments and lines that much more impressive. So lets take a look at some of the best moments by the Dark Knight throughout the run of Justice League and Justice League Unlimited.
In the episode The Enemy Below, the show travels to the depths of Atlantis to introduce the character Aquaman. In the series, Aquaman is being hunted down by assassins so they can complete their contract and remove him from the throne. One of which happens to be the notorious leader of the Suicide Squad, Deadshot. After another assassination attempt is foiled, the League manage to capture Deadshot before he can escape. As Superman tries flexing his muscles to intimidate Lawton, he doesn’t budge. It’s at this moment Batman decides to take things into his own hands. Grabbing Deadshot and pulling him to the side, away from the team to share only one word of advice. We see Batman whisper something to Deadshot before he finally caves and reveals all the information he has. Knowing Superman has Super-Hearing, Wonder Woman asks the Man of Steel “What did he say?” with Superman’s response being simply “You don’t want to know”. To this day we still have no idea what Batman said to him, but knowing Batman, it wasn’t pleasant.
Foiling Jokers Fun… Again.
During the episode Injustice for All, we are given the iconic reunion of Batman and the Joker since The New Batman Adventures. This time Joker has teamed up with the Injustice Gang, led by Lex Luthor. However, Batman gets captured and placed in a special reinforced lock that keeps him from mentally calling the Martian Manhunter. But of course, Batman manages to manipulate Solomon Grundy and ruins the device blocking the telepathy. As the Justice League show up to bring down the Injustice Gang, Joker still has hope for one last laugh. But when he goes to find Batman, Batman is gone. That’s when we hear the iconic Batman theme from the Animated Series. As Joker turns around he meets Batman, just to have the gun in his hand knocked out with a single swipe by Batman. Batman then catches Jokers punch and delivers a counter attack. Once again, the Dark Knight stops the Clown Prince of Crime with the Jokers final words being “You’re despicable” and finally leaving a smile on Batman’s face.
Batman v. Batman
In the episode A Better World, The Justice League responds to a distress from another dimension. Only to realize it’s a trap by an evil Justice League. Our Batman decides to find their worlds Batcave, with their Batman waiting. Both engage in a battle between ninjas. As they share some dialogue, they both attempt to find the logic within the others choices. As they trades a couple blows, its finally when Evil Batman makes his point that his choice to be a dictator is so no 8-year old boy has to lose his parents to some punk with a gun. At which point our Batman yields and attempts to further understand the Evil Batman’s ideology. Not only is this scene fun to watch two Batman’s battle each other, but it also shows the moral challenge our Batman faces. As he maintains behind a line he cannot cross, however for a moment he sees the irony in what he does as Batman. The kind of world he could create, if he did just cross that line.
The League face off against their very own version of Freddy Kruger in the episodes Only a Dream. A new enemy emerges with the ability to enter others dreams and put them through terrifying nightmares. As Dr. Destiny twists the dreams of the League, there is still one member he hasn’t yet gained control of… The Dark Knight. Dr. Destiny attempts to lull Batman into a deep sleep, but Batman’s mind is too strong for their foe. From breaking his Batmobiles windshield to ordering a triple from a coffee shop, Batman does everything he can to stay awake. When he finally makes his way to Destiny’s lair, the Doctor thinks he might finally have the drop on Batman. But once again, Batman creates his own way of battling the master manipulator by humming Frere Jacques. Dr. Destiny continues to try and take over the mind of the bat, as Batman warns him that his mind is not a place he wants to be. Batman manages to defeat the villain and save his partners. The episode concludes with Dr. Destiny in a catatonic state with Frere Jacques still humming in his mind, proving just how mentally powerful Batman is.
Crashing the Watchtower
In the three part story Starcrossed, we watch the sacrifice a man is willing to make for the greater good of the world. After the planet is overthrown by the Thanagarians armada, a massive weapon is created so they maintain control of the planet. The League decides the best course of action is to crash the Watchtower into the weapon, except it has to be guided manually to prevent it burning up on re-entry. After Martian Manhunter, The Flash and Batman take back their headquarters, Batman locks his teammates in an escape pod and fires them out of the tower. He continues to express the honor it has been serving alongside him, understanding the risks of the mission. As he communicates the parameters of the plan to Superman, the Man of Steel won’t allow that to happen. Superman comes flying into the Watchtower to successfully rescue Batman. A representation of Batman’s will to do whatever it takes for the mission, along with Superman’s care and concern for his friend.
Am I Blue?
In a Batman/Wonder Woman adventure titled This Little Piggy, Batman has to save Wonder Woman after the sorceress Circe turns into a piglet. Batman recruits the help of Zatanna and Wanna Beast to locate Wonder Woman and Circe so they can make her change Wonder Woman back to her heroic self. When Batman and Zatanna finally find Circe, the Dark Knight makes a bargain with her. Circe asks for something intimate and personal, something Batman can never go back from. We bare witness to the Caped Crusader himself, preforming a rendition of the song Am I Blue?. As we watch Circe and Zatanna share a moment of awe, Circe keeps to her word and returns Wonder Woman to her normal form. This episode not only shows just how far Batman is willing to go for someone he cares about, but also a softer and intimate side to the Dark Knight.
Batman, meet Batman
The DCAU finally connects the entirety of it universe in the episodes The Once and Future Thing. As Batman, Wonder Woman and Green Lantern follow a time traveler named Kronos, we get a glimpse of the past with heroes like Jonah Hex and then a trip into the future where we run into Batman Beyond’s Terry McGinnis, along with Static Shock and Warhawk. Even though it is a Justice League Unlimited episode, what makes this a Batman moment is when the present version of Batman meets Terry McGinnis and an old Bruce Wayne, Bringing the DCAU to a circle. The episode gets better when Batman tries to interrogate one of the Jokerz, only for old Bruce Wayne to take him and really show them how to interrogate someone. As the present and future Justice League join forces, they are able to finally capture Kronos and place things back into their normal state.
Mine Are Bigger than Yours
The rivalry between Amanda Waller and Batman begins in the episode Ultimatum. When the villain Maxwell Lord creates a new group of heroes named the Ultimen, the League dig deeper into the potential threat the Ultimen might be. As the Ultimen turn out to be a cog used in Lord’s evil plans, the hero Long Shadow decides to work with the Justice League and try to save his friends. The League manage to defeat the Ultimen but as they are being locked up, Amanda Waller shows up to take them herself. As the soldiers try to take Long Shadow, Superman, Aquaman, Wonder Woman and Batman step between Waller and Long Shadow. Batman stares down Waller and simply says “Mine are bigger than yours.” A line to show Waller that she cant have everything she wants, and beginning the long feud between the Justice League and Amanda Waller.
Staying with Ace
In another crossover episode between Justice League Unlimited and Batman Beyond, we get Epilogue. As Terry McGinnis breaks into Amanda Wallers home, he attempts to find out his true identity. It is revealed that McGinnis is actually the son of Bruce Wayne. As Waller explains why, she tells a story of Batman attempting to stop the mental manipulator Ace. Ace begins to change reality into a new world, Waller explains the only way to stop her is to kill her. She gives Batman the weapon to go in and end her. Batman makes the decision to go in alone. Instead of killing Ace, he sits with her she passes away. Making the choice not to kill her, but instead take away her fears. A Batman moment that shows us a softer side of Batman, his care for others. While many people might think Batman is cruel and unjust, this episode proves otherwise. It also explains to us, the world needs a Batman.
Dodging Omega Beams
In the series finale Destroyer, we watch Batman’s will to never stop until the mission is complete. As Darkseid makes his final attempt to overthrow the planet, Superman and Batman are forced to team up with Lex Luthor to try and stop Darkseid. Despite Darkseid’s forces seeming to have an upper hand on our heroes, Batman doesn’t stop. Facing off against a New God, Batman lunges at Darkseid and manages to land a blow to the Dark God. Darkseid then fires his Omega Beams at Batman, putting the Dark Knight on his toes to avoid the deathly rays. Batman manages to impress the Lord of Apokolips as he states that no one has been able to avoid his Omega Beams. Even after the fact, Batman continues to fight Darkseid toe-to-toe, showing Batman’s lack of fear and willingness to never give up.