Batman – The Brave & The Bold

If you want to have a whole lot of fun packed into 30 minutes or less, watch an episode of the new Batman: The Brave & the Bold TV series on Cartoon Network in the US and on Teletoon in Canada. You also might find it – ahem – on the web while we await a DVD package.

The Brave & the Bold started off as a Showcase-like tryout comic from DC, before becoming the Batman team-up book in the Silver Age. Scripted almost exclusively by Bob Haney, it was there that Neal Adams began redefining the visual look of Batman before Jim Aparo took over and drew the book until its cancellation in the mid 1980s.

The Brave and the Bold Animated

Haney gleefully ignored the larger continuity of the DC universe. Characters sometimes appeared wildly out of character, but it was all in service of telling some of the most engaging stories of the period. (How else could you tell a story with Batman and Sgt. Rock appearing together?)

The new cartoon series draws upon that legacy and delivers it with every episode. Ignore the schmucks that might not like the slightly lighter tone, mistakenly comparing it to the Adam West series. You can have your Dark Knight rasping his way to a shredded throat, and this as well. It’s the dessert.

DC is currently reissuing The Brave & the Bold as Showcase collections (three volumes taking us well into Jim Aparo’s run available so far). And they’ve started up a direct tie-in book to the cartoon, aimed at younger readers.


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