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Bruce/Clark Beatdown!!

I am – Hercules!!

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Love Peter Weller as Batman. Love Michael Emerson as the Joker.

I gather this is hitting shelves in late February.

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Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 10, 2012, 6:36 p.m. CST

    gotta be better than DARK KNIGHT RISES

    by Stifler's Mom

    goes without saying.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 6:36 p.m. CST

    Looks better than part 1.

    by Detective_Fingerling

    Definitely followed the comic very closely, but I couldn't help but feel bored by it. It didn't feel like it had the best focus for whatever reason.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 6:53 p.m. CST

    the first part was pretty good but ...

    by Chain

    it left out Batman/Bruce's (and Gordon's) internal dialogue. And to me that is essential. A major part of the characters' personalities. Miller used that for narration and the film missed it sorely.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7 p.m. CST

    Part 1 was good

    by Kakii

    But agree the internal dialogue couldve made it that bit better. If they ever did this as a movie or Batman Beyond I always thought Eastwood would be perfect as old Batman, I now think a second good choice would be Neeson. And yeah its better than DKR it kinda made up for it.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:01 p.m. CST

    Left me with a bittersweet aftertaste... :(

    by James Robinson

    The original Graphic Novel was SO fucking brutal, and terribly sad. It had SO little by way of optimism or opportunity, just constantly dealing with the fallout from all the sins of the past.. it was terribly dark. But it had a vicious reality to it, it was almost palpable in its plausibility... it was satisfying on a visceral level that nothing has come close to. Watching these, it just further reminds me of how we have spent the last 10+ years homogenizing and diluting greatness for the simple sake of broadening a demographic.. it saddens me. Don't get me wrong, these are very well done for what they are allowed to reproduce of the source material.... but I can't help but wish it had been just a bit more like the original :(

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:04 p.m. CST

    Part one was good. It was worth buying.

    by mistergreen

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:06 p.m. CST

    Anyone know if these are getting a UK release?


    Would be nice to have the option to buy them I guess.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:11 p.m. CST


    by Kakii

    You can get it region free on amazon, personally Im waiting as Im hoping they will release a version were its all one film, well one can hope.

  • Michael Emerson might be a decent Joker, but I don't understand why they wouldn't just let Mark Hamill do it again.

  • I want a film for The Long Halloween and Knightfall now. Other comics should follow suit with these dark and serious animated films too

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:18 p.m. CST


    by Kakii

    From what ive heard MH quit being Joker after Arkham City and doesnt want to voice him anymore.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:26 p.m. CST

    Part 2?

    by UCFKevin

    Will there be an eventual release with just ONE huge movie?

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:26 p.m. CST

    Django Unchained trailer up at Apple!

    by D o o d

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:29 p.m. CST

    Mark Hamill...

    by Aaron Synn

    He quit because he says doing the Joker voice/laugh was damaging his throat...

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:35 p.m. CST

    Weller doesn't work...

    by DVaderRIP

    Although to be fair I can't really hear anyone but Conroy as The Batman now; forget the ridiculous Bale 'Eastwood on 80 a day' voice - KC nailed the character. The Animated Series, and later the Arkham games, provide in my humble opinion the definitive take on The Dark Knight.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:42 p.m. CST

    Mark Hamill retired from the Joker.

    by Crooooooow

    He's been doing the voice since 1992. I think he's earned the rest.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 7:43 p.m. CST

    I agree that the lack of internal dialog was really lacking

    by Mugato5150

    You can't even tell the story properly without it. But Peter Weller was a great Batman. Then, I never watched much of the animated series.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:02 p.m. CST

    Weller's voce is a little flat

    by atalcot

    Michael Ironside actually did a way better job when he guest starred on the Animated Series for the DKR segment.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:04 p.m. CST

    Not to pile on Weller, but...

    by Scott Sullivan

    Conroy would have elevated Part 1 from a good movie to a great one. Weller read every line the same exact way, like some kind of robot... cop.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:04 p.m. CST

    This takes me back to '86

    by Googam_Son_of_Goom

    When Elektra: Assassin came out. Dark Knight Returns will always go down as the Citizen Kane, but E:A will always be 'The Third Man'. that book affected me much, much more than DKR and had a bigger impact. I hope that story gets told (respectably) in movie form at some point.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:07 p.m. CST

    NOPE, SORRY, the voice acting is fucking horrible!!!

    by notcher

    I can't believe this is getting positive feedback from some people on this site, the voices don't match what's going on at all, fucking horrible voice acting! This is kiddy shit, LAME!!!

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:15 p.m. CST

    Holy crap! Stephen Lang.

    by drewlicious

    That would be a seriously fantastic choice for a live action adaptation. "Behold and despair! Your new Batman!!!"

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:26 p.m. CST

    Hamill didn't actually retire. He quickly retracted that quote.

    by Tomarru Think it was just a snap judgement thing, kinda like nimoy did when he retired. After sleeping on it for a day I think both decisions were massively regretted and quickly reneged upon. Maybe he wont do the character as often, but he will do it again.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:35 p.m. CST

    Michael Nouri

    by DrAnubis

    Call me crazy, but every time I see this guy pop up on a show I think he'd make a good Older Bruce Wayne. He has the look, the size, and the voice to pull it off

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:37 p.m. CST

    About Nouri

    by DrAnubis

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Let's try this again

    by DrAnubis

    Wanted to post a better youtube link...

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Looks Super-BLAH. The best parts of the book...

    by wierdo27

    ...are when they do the voice over, internal dialogue bit, especially when he's kicking Superman's ass ( NOT call him "Supes"). just another cash grab to make it look and sound like everything else. Just like they are trying to do with their other movies (copying Avengers, Marvel, etc.). If it wasn't for Nolan, WB's current vision would be in the shitter as far as DC is concerned. I have zero...ZERO interest in seeing this, like ever. Michael Ironside FTW.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:46 p.m. CST

    Why doesn't Kevin Conroy do it????

    by Mennen

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 8:58 p.m. CST

    There's no internal dialogue???

    by 3D-Man

    That's a deal breaker for me.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:07 p.m. CST

    Kevin Smith couldn't even defend the lack of the internal dialog.

    by Mugato5150

    He said the movie was awesome and then he spent the rest of the review saying how much it sucked because of the lack of internal dialog. Actually, similar to his The Dark Knight Rises review where he said it was awesome but then spent his whole review pointing out all the plot holes. Sums up Batman fanboys I guess.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:16 p.m. CST

    QUESTION: is this animated at 24 FPS?

    by The Marquis de Side 3

    I feel 2-D animations from the 80s and 90s were superior to anything released in the last decade or so. Bruce Timm outsourced his Batman shows to studios like Sunrise, who did kickass work. There's a fluidity and intensity to the drawings that seem missing from some of the stuff that's out today... Some Rankin-Bass cartoons of the 80s, like early Thundercats, had some scenes animated at 32 FPS (think notably that opening sequence). Something is missing though from the DC animated movies... Is it the number of frames per second? I don't know...

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:33 p.m. CST


    by Pablo

    I agree with our sentiments about this recent spate of DC animated movies. In avoiding being "edgy" in order to appeal to a broader audience, these films lose the vitality that made these stories so great in their original comic book form.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:37 p.m. CST

    Is that George Clooney as Superman?

    by Royston Lodge

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:39 p.m. CST

    weller is not batman

    by william

    even an older one. I just did not feel i was listening to batman. I thought bale was the worst batman, though he did ok, but weller just does not cut it.

  • Remember what made 300 cool...the narration, MIllers actions is okay but it always comes second to the internal dialogue. It makes his work have an extra punch to it. These guys botched the death of superman story, and now they are butchering the Dark Knight Returns. Peter Weller is terrible. Totally phoned in. He has NO range as a vocal talent. Give me the dude from the cartoon over that schmo any day. What did these guys think that Petter Weller would sell more DVDs. He is as stiff as robocop and comes of very two dimensional. Just the buts I heard of Joker suck so far. Seriously, whoever was the voice coach on part one, never give him work again...HE SUCKS THE DICK OF ALL DICKS. Finally the animation is well draw. It does not match Millers style all that well BUt get close. The problem here is that there is not frame frame rate speed change to make the animation more punchy... Play with your frame rates! If you want a slow windup then zip it into overdrive for a real punch. Watch Braveheart, or gladiator, 300, or Apocolypto to understand this because your animation is too fucking even!

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 9:54 p.m. CST

    Needs a fan edit

    by OQuaTanginWann

    Leaving out the internal dialog is insane. All of the greatest quotes come from the internal dialog. Stuff that I read as a kid and never forgot. Fans need to edit a better version. The hard part is the animation, but its done. I would think the comic book community can come up with some voice and foley people. Just use some music from the movies and edit it together on a computer. Not exactly hard these days. I would help!

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 10:14 p.m. CST

    Adding the internal dialogue.

    by MCVamp

    I'm torn. I suppose since it's animated, the melodrama can be forgiven, but you can definitely overdo it. SIN CITY almost pulled it off, but it was still pretty silly and overdone. Because SIN CITY was not a great classic story, I didn't think there was any "reverence" to ruin. On the other hand, I will go to my grave thinking overuse of Internal Dialogue ruined WATCHMEN. Internal Dialogue in a live action movie bogs down what's on screen. A good director can tell the story with his actors' facial expressions and body language. Snyder didn't trust it or wasn't capable of doing it, so he had to have the characters' emotions and motivations spoon-fed to the audience. What's wrong with leaving something vague? Kubrick left more thoughts dangling in a single scene than most modern hacks can manage in a trilogy. Same with DUNE, but that's even more introspective than WATCHMEN. Yet a good director could pull it off. PJ kept internalized exposition to a minimum in LotR, and that was a fucking miracle.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 10:17 p.m. CST

    There's so much bitching on this site

    by eightstrings

    It's worse than Blabbermouth. After years of perusing AICN and occasionally checking out a talk back, I had to sign in and point out the obvious.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 10:23 p.m. CST

    Emerson as The Joker is brilliant casting

    by Wyldstaar

    Mark Hamil will always be my quinticential Joker, but I can't wait for Emerson's take on the role.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 10:52 p.m. CST

    Why hasn't part 1 been reviewed yet?

    by Crimson Dynamo

    I agree with everyone else here - the movie suffers from the lack of the internal dialogue. Probably everyone here has read TDKR, so we know what's going on, but someone going in cold might not pick up on certain things. Also, I think the animation looks too clean and sterile - it lacks that scratchy, ragged style that Miller used to effect. I also think the voice casting could have been better. Weller comes off as flat and monotone. Conroy or Keaton would have owned it. I'm also not thrilled about Emerson as the Joker. Hamill or David Patrick Kelly would be at the top of my wish list.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 11:07 p.m. CST

    Love Weller's work but he doesn't fit the role

    by georgecauldron

    He doesn't even sound different as Bruce/Batman. Just reminds me of his role on Dexter.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 11:29 p.m. CST

    freebeer, it was not faithful to the comic.

    by leroyspoboys

    With the exception of the general plot and recreating a few still panels, it was a poor representation. About 20% of the quotes here that pertain to part one actually appeared in the cartoon. And there's no excuse for that, or an excuse for the lack of internal dialogue. Basically, this was Millars TDKR for 8 year olds. One example: That great full page of the general dead in Batman's arms with a smoking gun and covered in the American flag has been replaced by a scene where Batman just confronts him and leaves saying 'Nice way to end your career General'. Watered down bullshit. If part two doesn't have a pissed off one armed Ollie and a prostitute Selina Kyle in Wonder Woman underoos having been tortured by the Joker... and for Christ sake least SOME of the internal dialogue during the Batman/Superman fight scene....someone needs to find who's responsible for this fuck up and shove a hardcover copy of Millars work right up his ass. Sideways.

  • Oct. 10, 2012, 11:58 p.m. CST

    Maybe someone read Miller's TDKR and thought, "Holy shit--!"

    by Baked

    In hindsight, this was an overrated pile of crap. God, we should probably make this palatable for people who have taste in cinema.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 12:19 a.m. CST

    TDKR wasn't a "Graphic Novel" captain_spalding

    by Star Hump

    It was a comic book, a mini-series. Originally came out in 4 issues.

  • That's including Frank Miller, whose All-Star Batman and Dark Knight Strikes Again are just steaming turds. Miller's Year One: much more truer to Batman as a character.

  • I mean, they couldn't even show Manchester Black smoking in "Superman vs. The Elite", instead he was just chewing a match. I thought that having bad guys smoking was acceptable in PG-13.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 1:21 a.m. CST

    Emerson should voice the Riddler.

    by Pablo

    ....Or play him in a live-action movie? Just a thought...

  • And I heard more Emmerson-Joker here, which I really love (huge Lost Geek and I watch Person of Interest almost exclusively for Michael Emmerson) so I'm totally pumped for that. I heard on Fatman on Batman podcast that DC-animation is shutting down their direct-to-DVD flicks, which this is a noble death to end on. But I was starting to finally get used to listening to different Batman / Joker's. But I think Emmerson is great and I'm kind of enjoying hearing different Joker's. .... unless the DC-animated keeps going and they do Killing Joke, then for God's sake, bring back Conroy & Hamill for that one. But yeah, Emmerson seems to rock it so hard even though I think I've only heard, liked, 10 seconds total.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 2:49 a.m. CST

    *Emerson, I mean

    by Al

    Just excited. Christ, the film could be paper cut-out drawings and if Emerson was voicing him I'd probably still love it. Mad props to Hamill, I'm actually just playing Arkham Asylum for the first time right now, and I really enjoy hearing him do it, but, to me, his true swan song was most likely "Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker". Hell, that flick is so goddamn good they could have closed up the DCAU at that point and I'd be fine with it. Not to say Hamill's subsequent performances have been BS but I just love his work in Return of the Joker so damn much it feels like a complete ending to me. Which is I guess why I'm fine with the Batman: TAS crew not being used for this. Return of the Joker is their own, I guess kinda, version of Dark Knight Returns and that's where the story wraps up. I like endings and closure, I'm just big on that.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 4:09 a.m. CST



    Was the first part a perfect adaptation? No. But I am not sure it could be. DKR is, in my opinion, a really GREAT use of the comic book format to tell a story. It takes advantage of the unique things you can do when you tell a story on the printed page, combining images and writing, in a way few other comic books do. And as a result, as "cinematic" as it was, it was always going to be very tough to adapt to "movie" format, and to score a 10 out of 10. But for me, it was at least an 8, which ain't bad! I agree that Peter Weller's voice just wasn't the voice I "heard" when I read DKR. It is hard for me to place. It was good in places, but in others, it just lacked ...something. And I completely agree that the loss of the internal monologue portions - for Batman, for Gordon, etc - was a shame, as those contributed a LOT to what made the story special. They gave you insights that you just can't get by being outside the characters. That being said - found Part One hugely entertaining, and looking forward to Part Two.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 5:54 a.m. CST

    Not to pile on...

    by B Arnold Quizzling

    I really like Peter Weller but this is simply bad casting. And yes, I am a Kevin Conroy fan and I know any actor following him has a tough row to hoe, but Weller simply just doesn't cut it as evidenced by the clips above. Conroy > Ironsides > anyone else. You may return to your basements and porn now as I have done.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 6:25 a.m. CST

    Even a watered down version of Miller's Dark Knight Returns

    by brobdingnag

    is better than anything Nolan has done, if for no other reason than half of the Nolan storylines are stolen from Miller's works. I would give Part 1 a B-. It needed the internal dialog others mentioned AND they misused or left out some of the best dialog in the books. Weller doesn't bring much to the table as Batman. I will say the Animation is actually pretty good though. I'm hoping part 2 is better but so far I'm not impressed with the little voice work I've heard for the joker.

  • One, it loses much of its power because its not drawn by Miller and colored by Varley. The book does not look like a normal comic so there's no reason why this has to look like a generic animated movie. Secondly, I hear that there's no internal monologue. Another thing that's unique to the book that's homogenized away. Why bother at that point?

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 6:51 a.m. CST

    I think Herc said Weller makes Conroy sound like a girl.


    Or something to that effect. But unfortunately, Weller still thinks he's Robocop in this. He really adds no emotion to the character at all. I didn't mind the the missing internal dialogue. I just wish that the animation wasn't so clean. Miller's art was very gritty, and this animation is too clean and borderline Anime looking. Overall, I enjoyed it, but it could've been better.

  • And it's one of my top 3 favorites .. so don't get all disgruntled nerdrage on me.. >_< Just sayin'

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 7:22 a.m. CST

    I can think of 3 stories that should be adapted to film...

    by James Robinson

    1: Matt Wagner's 'Mage' (Comico) - Currently optioned but no progress. Was fantastic, but Comico tanked and Matt spent years and virtually every penny trying to save his work & continue with it, but failed. 2: Dan Vado & Norman Felchle's 'The Griffin' 3: Robert Lynn Asprin's 'Myth Adventures' >_< I'm just sayin'

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 7:48 a.m. CST

    Emerson should PLAY The Riddler. As in, live-action.

    by Royston Lodge

    So say we all.

  • I think he seriously does want to be done with the role, just because it has become physically painful for him to reproduce these days, but then he gets offered a big chunk of change and a quality project he figures, okay, just one last time then. And I think it'll always be 'just one last time' until the money well runs dry, and the phone stops ringing. Personally I still want to see a live action Dark Knight Returns with Michael Keaton back behind the cowl. Never happen though.

  • Therefore your brain doesn't tell you that you are listening to Batman, it tells you that you are listening to Peter Weller as Batman, and the whole thing just doesn't meld together properly. And it is hard to get lost in the character and story with distractions like that. Peter Weller is a great actor, and technically he did fine in the first part, delivering what was asked of him, but for the reasons above, this is just out and out bad casting. They really should have gotten Michael Ironside, if they wanted a 'name'. Or, you know, Conroy again.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 8:37 a.m. CST

    one question:

    by Handiana Jolo

    Does the adaptation use the internal monologue from the comic? Because I haven't seen anyone mention it, amirite? Seriously though, i have a legit question: It's not like internal monologues happen infrequently in comics, so why such an uproar over this particular one not including the monologue? I read DKR, thought it was good, thought some of the best moments were his monologue when Supes shows up for the first time, but in the end, was it really that different from what other authors do?

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 9:18 a.m. CST


    by eric haislar

    This has none of the internal monologue that the novel has. Which is really what makes it so good. Don't know why they dropped it. Also as far as voice acting goes. No idea why they didn't ask Conroy or Hamill. It's like they think fans won't accept it unless it's the DCU character models. Hopefully if they ever do the Killing joke they cast both of them. Id not it would be a travesty. Hamill wants to do it so bad.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 9:38 a.m. CST

    I disagree...

    by Jose Armenta

    At first, I did miss the internal dialogue in the animation. In the comic, the internal dialogue was essential to the tale, it portrayed Batman in a new light, a man who is just as fucked in the head as the villains he fights, it showed the essence of who batman is, the tragedy of a young boy who lost his parents through violence, and it was seminal work. Plus, it added to the dark noir feel of Frank Millers art. Perfect Graphic novel in my opinion, where writing and art fit seamlessly. Plus, their was a lot of Gallows humor that worked. But, if their is one thing, I never thought Frank Millers story to be, it was an action packed story. But, as I kept watching the animation, and the genius direction of Jay Oliva, i realized the obvious. Animation is a different medium, so Jay treated it as such, he must have realized that the voice over work would have slowed down the animation, made it boring. He kept the pace brisk, moved it forward and trusted that the story itself would shine through. You miss the internal dialogue? READ THE COMIC! As for me, i have read this comic so many times, that while I was watching the animation, I was able to hear the internal dialogue in my head. I knew what batman was thinking, I didn't need to hear it. Nah, Jay Oliva did this perfectly, and still people bitch and complaing. Seriously, you can't win, no matter what you do.


  • Oct. 11, 2012, 9:50 a.m. CST

    So-Crates yeah the internal monologue was pretty unique for it's time

    by Monolith_Jones

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 9:55 a.m. CST

    What a fucking SPOILER at the end!!!

    by D.Vader

    What the fuck, trailer making people, did you have to go through every bit of the story, step by step?

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 10:05 a.m. CST

    I noticed that also d. vader

    by Monolith_Jones

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 11:27 a.m. CST

    what was ironic to me

    by Eddie_Dane

    Is that the book was so cinematic it transcended the medium and felt like you were watching a movie, but the video somehow misses all of that. The slow reveal when Batman comes back, the shadow dropping down to block the mutant leader etc... All these amazing visuals ignored. Why they would let you fully see Batman on top of the cab is beyond me.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 12:09 p.m. CST

    I guess we won't get to see this then...

    by Han Cholo

    December 20 would be the last day to see anything, I reckon....

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 1:11 p.m. CST

    mcvamp - internal dialogue

    by Smartacus

    I think you're almost entirely right but there are pieces in there that have to be in the finished movie. Things like "The scream alone is worth it" and "Something tells me to stop with the leg. I don't listen to it" are so important and without them it doesn't work the same way. I think you're right about a large amount of that internal dialogue but some of the key pieces have to be in there. Without it we are not watching TDKR. Also Peter Weller didn't get it done. I'm not going to say he phoned it in. I don't know that. For all I know he just doesn't have the vocal chops to do this right. Kevin Conroy should have been brought in for this.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 2:40 p.m. CST

    part 1 stunk.

    by nametaken

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 2:43 p.m. CST

    part 1 stunk (the sequel)

    by nametaken

    unless you read the original comic its just another batman cartoon made for tv. and if thats the case, something is obviously wrong. animation budget was low as well so you get stilted movements, only time its fluid is with fast action smearing.

  • What a waste of voice talent.

  • Oct. 11, 2012, 9:56 p.m. CST

    DC Peaked at Justice League: New Frontier

    by puto tenax

    It's been downhill since. Disappointed in Year One and Dark Knight Returns. The narrative is what sells the comic and still would make a great feature, and one can see it's missing from these two. As for a Dark Knight v/o actor find Michael Ironside and give him the money. He nailed it in the short he did with The New Adventures of Batman.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 2:55 p.m. CST

    Too clean...

    by Darth_Inedible

    It's fantastic that they're even trying to adapt this, but the look is WAY to clean-anime. It doesn't fit with the vibe of this story. Even the audio seems too clean for some reason.

  • I love the way TDKR defenders declare that Nolan referenced material from the comics. Yeah his name is Bruce Wayne, he lives in gotham.... At no point was he a badass this cartoon version show more menace and screen presence for Batman than in the entire trilogy I hope this shines a light on how crap TDKR was as a Batman movie