Almost Got 'Im
|"Almost Got 'im"|
|Batman: The Animated Series episode|
|Episode no.||Season 2
|Directed by||Eric Radomski|
|Written by||Paul Dini|
|Original air date||November 10, 1992|
"Almost Got 'im" is the forty-sixth episode of the Warner Bros. television program Batman: The Animated Series, which first aired on November 11, 1992, and was written by Paul Dini and directed by Eric Radomski. This episode features seven villains of Batman's rogues gallery, with five of them telling the stories of their "best" attempts at killing the Dark Knight (via a frame story), and the ending leading to a singular plot twist.
While hiding out from the police, the Joker, the Penguin, Two-Face, and Killer Croc gather at the criminals-only Stacked Deck Club, where they play cards and share theories about their mutual foe, Batman. Two-Face doubts that Batman is one person, speculating that Gordon has several "stashed away like a SWAT team." The Penguin correctly theorizes that Batman suffered some crime-related trauma in the past. Killer Croc claims that Batman is a robot, much to the skepticism of the other villains. Poison Ivy then arrives and joins the game. Soon after, all five of the crooks begin to argue over who has come closest to killing Batman, and each tells their own story about how they "almost got 'im."
Poison Ivy's story
Poison Ivy placed poisonous gas inside thousands of pumpkins on Halloween, causing the vegetables to go off when lit. When Gotham's residents started to feel the effects of the gas, Batman went to the city pumpkin patch to investigate just as Ivy hoped he would. Upon his arrival, she dropped one pumpkin at his feet, exposing him to the gas while (due to her immunity to toxins) remaining unharmed herself, and weakened him to the point where he was nearly unmasked. Nevertheless, Batman remotely controlled the Batmobile to run down Ivy and later retrieved a gas mask from the vehicle, before subsequently capturing Ivy.
Two-Face staged a robbery at a mint, stealing "$2,000,000 in two dollar bills." When Batman attempted to stop the heist, Two-Face's henchmen overpowered him. Two-Face flipped his coin to see whether he would kill Batman or let him live, with a negative "bad heads" result. Two-Face took Batman's utility belt, strapped him to a giant penny, and placed it on a catapult in order to have the heavy coin smash his body on impact. In midair, Batman cut himself free of his bonds, using Two-Face's own coin. In return for apprehending Two-Face and his gang, the mint let Batman keep the giant penny.
Killer Croc's story
In the framing story, when the Joker asks if anyone else wanted to tell their anecdote, Killer Croc slams his fist on the table, demanding his turn. He states that he threw a rock at Batman during a battle in a quarry. He turns his head, waiting for some sort of appreciation, but the other villains stare at him for a moment and continue telling their stories, while Croc mutters, "It was a big rock."
The Penguin's story
The Penguin turned a zoo aviary into a home for dangerous birds in his own plot to kill Batman. After luring Batman to the aviary the Penguin sprayed him with a vaporous nectar and released several poison-beaked hummingbirds to attack the Dark Knight. After being pecked several times, Batman threw a batarang at a sprinkler; the resulting water spray soaked the hummingbirds, makes their wings too heavy for them to fly. Before Batman could inject himself with an antidote, he was injured by a cassowary. In desperation, Batman stabbed the flightless bird with one of the hummingbirds, incapacitating it. Batman chased after the Penguin, but the villain escaped via his flying umbrella.
The Joker's story
The Joker makes it a point to note "there's more than one way to get someone." After capturing Batman, the Joker commandeered the set of a late-night talk show and held the studio audience hostage, intending to execute the Dark Knight on live television. Batman was strapped to a "laugh-powered electric chair" which rose in voltage the more the audience laughed. With the audience being forced to laugh at gunpoint, the Joker decided to ellicit more "honest" laughter by pumping the studio with laughing gas. However, Catwoman broke into the studio; in the ensuing fight, the Joker became too distracted to notice Batman escaping from the chair before it exploded from too much power. Batman fled, but Harley Quinn knocked Catwoman out at the last minute. The Joker instructed Harley to take Catwoman to a cat food factory while he laid low at the Stacked-Deck Club.
Frame story - Conclusion
The Joker explains to the other villains that he will soon meet Harley at the factory to kill Catwoman and chop her body into cat food, and personally deliver a can of it to Batman to taunt him about Catwoman's demise. At this point, Killer Croc attacks the Joker and throws him across the room, revealing himself to be Batman in disguise; it is also revealed that the other bar patrons are Gotham police officers, led by Commissioner Gordon and Detective Bullock. The whole thing was a sting operation to lure the Joker into revealing Catwoman's whereabouts. As the villains are arrested, Batman goes to the cat food factory to rescue Catwoman from Harley. Harley starts the conveyor belt, where Catwoman has been bound and gagged, taunting Batman that he can either capture her or save Catwoman. Batman manages to accomplish both, holding on to Harley with one hand while turning off the main power switch with the other.
Following the arrest of Harley, Catwoman thanks Batman for saving her life, to which Batman states that he owed her one for saving him from the Joker's act at the studio. The episode ends on a humorous note, as Catwoman makes a pass at Batman, suggesting of a possibility of building up their relationship outside Gotham, to which Batman is considering, before instantly pulling one of his trademark disappearing acts. Seeing this, Catwoman smiles, shakes her head and mutters to herself, "Hmm. Almost got 'im."
|Mark Hamill||The Joker|
|Aron Kincaid||Killer Croc|
|Diane Pershing||Poison Ivy|
|Arleen Sorkin||Harley Quinn|
|Paul Williams||The Penguin|
Sandra Dozier calls the episode "charming" and praises it for showing "the origin story for the Bat Cave's giant penny." Internet critic Doug Walker considers the episode to be the best of the entire series, praising the interaction between the villains and citing it as a direct influence on his writing style.
The episode features a commentary on the DVD release.
- The story itself appears to be influenced by a four-issue story arc in Batman (1977) #291-294, entitled "Where Were You on the Night Batman Was Killed?" In each of the four issues, one of Catwoman, Lex Luthor, Riddler, and Joker all recount their claims to have killed the Batman.
- An edited audiobook version was released on audio cassette, omitting the character of Poison Ivy from the story completely for time reasons.
- Every time the viewer gets to see Two-Face's hand, he always has 2 deuces (twos), and two face cards, a play on his name. In one shot he also has a four (two times two) and is seen pouring "half and half" cream in his coffee. He also has two guns (.22s) pointed at Batman.
- The Joker's hand at the end is four aces and a Joker. Every time we see his hand he always has at least one ace (due to cheating). He also cheats by looking at Harvey's (Two-Face's) hand.
- The Penguin's and the Joker's stories all happened recently, with the Penguin having freshly escaped from his crime a few weeks before and the Joker's being just the night before. Poison Ivy's story is set the previous Halloween, and Two-Face's story is set between his introduction and the first appearance of the Batcave's giant penny.
- Two-Face's story is based on an original Two-Face deathtrap from the comics where both Batman and Robin were tied to the penny that was catapulted onto spikes. However this time they used the radios to create a "negative magnetic field" to repel the spikes and cause them to land "good side up", snapping the ropes and defeating Two-Face.
- Two-Face tells Ivy that the mint let Batman keep the giant penny, thus providing a new origin for the piece of memorabilia he keeps in the Batcave.
- Ivy makes a reference to the group that she and Two-Face used to date (while Harvey Dent was still the District Attorney), an event that occurred in the episode "Pretty Poison". Two-Face remarks to Ivy that half of him wants to strangle her and the other half wants him to run her over with a truck. Apparently killing Ivy is the only thing both halves agree on.
- The Joker makes a joke regarding Ivy's use of exploding pumpkins. Mark Hamill, the Joker's voice actor, would later voice the Hobgoblin in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, a villain who uses exploding pumpkins as a weapon.
- The Penguin's affectations are more pronounced than usual – he drinks tea at the table, and refers to the location of his trap as an "aviary of doom!" When this provokes laughter, he remarks, "Just because you mundane miscreants have no drama in your souls!" Joker reminds him that using big words would only confuse Croc (actually Batman in disguise), so he corrects himself to "big birdhouse".
- Teen Titans Go, a spin-off comic of the Teen Titans show featuring Robin, had an issue similar to this one. #40 "Nearly Nabbed Me" is where villains of the Titans recall when they were nearly caught by the heroes.
- The Batman Beyond season two episode "Once Burned" alludes to this episode, with Bruce noting that the high-stakes poker game run by Gotham's villains has been going on since before his time.
- Slight error occurred between scenes, in the 6;52min Batman is without his belt, 6;55 we can see him with his belt despite Two-Face removing it, in 7;08 he is without his belt again.
In 2017 Cryptozoic Entertainment released a card game based on this episode. The game is a mafia/werewolf-style party game where players take the roles of the villains playing poker and trying to determine which player is secretly Batman in disguise.
- Sandra Dozier, "Review of Batman: The Animated Series (Volume 2)," DVD Verdict (February 10, 2005).
- Batman TAS Commentary - ThatGuyWithTheGlasses
- Steve Butts, "Batman: The Animated Series, Volume Two: The Dark Knight swings into action once again," IGN (February 8, 2005).
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