The Batman Adventures

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Cover of The Batman Adventures Vol. 1. Art by Ty Templeton.

The Batman Adventures was a DC Comics comic book series featuring Batman. It is different from other Batman titles in that it is set in the continuity (and style) of Batman: The Animated Series as opposed to the regular DC Universe.

Overview[edit]

The Batman Adventures was created to tie-in with the Batman: The Animated Series. As the animated series changed with each successive re-branding and relaunch, so too did The Batman Adventures.

The success of The Batman Adventures has also led to a set of "Adventures" titles mirroring the animated series that followed Batman: The Animated Series, including Superman Adventures (based on Superman: The Animated Series) and Justice League Adventures (based on Justice League).

The Batman Adventures (vol. 1, 1992–1995)[edit]

Based on Batman: The Animated Series, the first series ran for 36 issues, 2 annuals, and 3 specials (Mad Love and Holiday Special, which were both adapted into episodes for The New Batman Adventures, plus an adaptation of the Batman: Mask of the Phantasm movie). The first annual introduces Roxy Rocket, who would later appear in The New Batman Adventures episode "The Ultimate Thrill" and the Superman: The Animated Series episode "Knight Time". Most of the issues were written by Kelley Puckett, and illustrated by Mike Parobeck and Rick Burchett, though Ty Templeton did the writing and art on a few issues. Mad Love was written by Paul Dini and illustrated by Bruce Timm, while the holiday special was written and illustrated by a number of creative people who had worked on the animated series, including Paul Dini, Bruce Timm, Glen Murakami, Dan Riba, and Kevin Altieri.

The Batman and Robin Adventures (1995–1997)[edit]

Following the re-branding of the animated series as The Adventures of Batman and Robin, the comic series was relaunched. It ran for 25 issues and 2 annuals, as well as 2 specials (an adaptation of Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero; and Dark Claw Adventures, a non-canon Amalgam comic featuring the Batman-Wolverine hybrid). Ty Templeton was the regular writer, with Rick Burchett as the artist.

The Batman Adventures: The Lost Years (1998)[edit]

Shortly after The New Batman Adventures began airing on Kids WB!, DC Comics published a five issue miniseries titled The Batman Adventures: The Lost Years. This series bridged the gap between the end of Batman: The Animated Series and the start of the new show. Additionally, the first two issues were later adapted into the "Old Wounds" episode, and issue #4 is an adaptation of the episode "Sins of the Father".

Book One: Robin (Dick Grayson) voices his disapproval regarding Batman's tolerance of the crime-fighting activities of the relatively untrained Batgirl and takes it upon himself to stop her. Subsequently, Batman deduces that Batgirl is actually Barbara Gordon while watching her play tennis against Dick – he realizes that she moves just like Batgirl. Batman decides to take Batgirl under his wing and give her the training she needs. Robin is upset by this decision and argues with Batman, but fails to change his mind.

Book Two: Bruce and Dick continue their argument up through Dick's college graduation ceremony. When the Joker unleashes a radar jammer that can cause aircraft to crash, Batman and Batgirl battle him and his gang before Dick, as Robin, intervenes. The Joker is defeated, but Dick is so enraged at Batman that he punches him and storms away. He decides to leave Gotham City, despite the protests of Alfred and Barbara.

Book Three: Dick breaks up a smuggling operation by Two-Face and discovers an ancient African tribe, where he learns combat techniques from them, finally taking the first steps out of Batman's shadow. In Africa, Dick develops a new persona for himself: Nightwing.

Book Four: Batman becomes angrier and more driven because of Dick's departure – his new partner, Batgirl, is concerned over his change in personality. One night, while on the trail of Two-Face, Batman saves young Tim Drake, son of petty criminal "Shifty" Drake. Shifty was murdered by Two-Face and Tim swore revenge. Batman trained Tim into Robin to save him from a life of crime. Two-Face was captured and Batman took in Tim as his second ward.

Book Five: Dick joins an expedition to find a group of Tibetan monks who have lost an artifact, agreeing to recover the artifact in exchange for their secret of flight (the winged costume). He succeeds in gaining the artifact back from Ra's al Ghul. Succeeding, he visits Batman and reveals his new identity of Nightwing to him, Alfred, Batgirl, and Robin.

Batman: Gotham Adventures (1998–2003)[edit]

A new series based on The New Batman Adventures titled Batman: Gotham Adventures ran for 60 issues. This was the longest-running series in the Batman Adventures line. Early issues were written by Ty Templeton and illustrated by Rick Burchett, while the team of Scott Peterson, Tim Levins, and Terry Beatty did most of the later issues. Batgirl and Nightwing appeared in most of the later issues. This series received a lot of positive reviews and was praised for its level of characterization.

Batman Adventures (vol. 2, 2003–2004)[edit]

In 2003, DC Comics launched Batman Adventures, shortly after the cancellation of Batman: Gotham Adventures. The first issue was made available through regular purchases and Free Comic Book Day (May 3, 2003). It ran for 17 issues before being canceled to make way for The Batman Strikes!, a new title based on the new, unrelated, animated series The Batman. Every issue had two stories, one by Dan Slott and Ty Templeton, while the other was by Ty Templeton and Rick Burchett.

Issue #15, written by Jason Hall, bridges the gap between Mr. Freeze's appearances in Batman: The Animated Series and Batman Beyond. Issue #17 ends the series with Batman confronting Joe Chill, the man who murdered his parents, although he is unaware of Chill's true identity.

Original plan for Batman Adventures #15[edit]

In Batman Adventures vol. 2, #15, a character named Warren Powers originally appeared as head of Powers Technology. As a sort of prequel to the Batman Beyond episode "Meltdown", Warren would have been shown acquiring the head of Mr. Freeze and locking it away in his vault, believing it holds the secrets of immortality. It has been confirmed that Warren is the father of Derek.

The issue would also have shown the Mr. Freeze robot killing Ferris Boyle (from the Batman: The Animated Series episode "Heart of Ice") and Grant Walker (from the episode "Deep Freeze", and from Batman: Gotham Adventures #5). Other differences include Nora's visit with Koonak (from Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero) happening earlier in the issue, as well as focus on the deterioration of Nightwing and Batgirl's relationship.[1]

The Red Hood[edit]

The Red Hood appears at the end of Batman Adventures vol. 2, #8. It was meant to be a subplot to be resolved later, but the cancellation of the ongoing series prevented that. Though the creative team behind the story (Dan Slott and Ty Templeton) are hoping for a chance to resolve it, they have yet to do so. It has been stated that this Red Hood is someone crucial to the DC animated universe.

Dan Slott mentioned that the background of the character would tie into subplots concerning Lucius Fox, the Valestra crime family (from Batman: Mask of the Phantasm), and the Powers family (including an infant Derek Powers from Batman Beyond).

Additional characters[edit]

While there were many characters who never appeared in Batman: The Animated Series, the Batman Adventures series would occasionally introduce and feature characters who never made it to the screen.

Heroes and others[edit]

  • Julie Madison
    • Batman Adventures #1-2, 5 (June–July, October 2003)

Villains[edit]

Anarky, a character from DC continuity that never appeared in Batman: The Animated Series, was depicted in The Batman Adventures #31. Cover art by Dev Madan.
  • Anarky
    • The Batman Adventures #31 (April 1995)
  • Black Mask
    • Batman Adventures #5–8 (October 2003 – January 2004)
  • Black Spider
    • Batman Adventures #5–8 (October 2003 – January 2004)
  • Bronze Tiger
    • Batman Adventures #5–8 (October 2003 – January 2004)
  • Cavalier
    • Batman Adventures #1 (June 2003)
  • Gorilla Boss
    • Batman Adventures #5–8 (October 2003 – January 2004)
  • Joe Chill (his only full appearance outside the various flashbacks)
    • Batman Adventures #17 (October 2004)
  • Red Hood
    • Batman Adventures #8 (January 2004)
  • Sportsmaster
    • Batman Adventures #5–8 (October 2003 – January 2004)

Reprints[edit]

Title Material collected Publication date ISBN
The Batman Adventures The Batman Adventures #1–6 December 1993 978-1563890987
Batman: The Dark Knight Adventures The Batman Adventures #7–12 June 1994 978-1563891243
The Batman Adventures: The Lost Years The Batman Adventures: The Lost Years #1–5 February 1999 978-1563894831
Batman: Gotham Adventures Batman: Gotham Adventures #1–6 June 2000 978-1563896163
The Batman Adventures: Dangerous Dames and Demons The Batman Adventures Annual #1–2
The Batman Adventures: Mad Love
Adventures of the DC Universe #3 (back-up story)
June 2003 978-1563899737
Batman: Harley and Ivy Batman: Gotham Knights #14
Harley and Ivy: Love on the Lam
Batman: Harley and Ivy #1–3
July 2007 978-1401213336
Batman Adventures (Digest-sized)
Vol. 1: Rogues Gallery Batman: Gotham Adventures #50
Batman Adventures #1–4
July 2004 978-1401203290
Vol. 2: Shadows and Masks Batman Adventures #5–9 July 2004 978-1401203306
Batman Adventures Revised Collected Edition
The Batman Adventures Volume 1 The Batman Adventures #1–10 November 2014 978-1401252298

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Backstage – Batman Adventures #15". World's Finest Online. Retrieved 2010-12-30. 

External links[edit]