Thursday, May 10, 2018

ANI-MOVIES, *Batman: Gotham By Gaslight

The second DC Universe animated movie based on an Elseworlds story, Gotham By Gaslight takes elements from the original graphic novel and its sequal, Batman: Master Of The Future, and combines them into a slightly original tale. This is the first time they've taken Batman and put him in a steampunk environment, years before it became the popular genre among the fan community, although Gotham By Gaslight is considered to be more under the label of "gaslamp fantasy".

Set in late 19th Century Gotham City, a mysterious killer known as Jack the Ripper is stalking the loose women in the seedier parts of town. Oddly enough, this "Jack" has no connection to the British one, nor is there any reference to the one across the pond either, meaning this is the only "Jack" existing in this universe. Bruce Wayne disguised as Batman is trying to crack the case, all while keeping his identity secret. His friend Harvey Dent has his eye set on Selina Kyle, who on her own has plans to capture Jack the Ripper. Batman discovers that Jack is his equal as far as in fighting and physical prowess(remember, this Batman wasn't trained by ninjas for years!), and just as elusive. Jack murders Sister Leslie, a nun that runs the local orphanage, which leads to a great zeppelin chase between Batman and the Ripper. Jack also goes to kill Hugo Strange, head of Arkham Asylum, partially to point the blame towards Bruce Wayne being suspected as the killer. Bruce is taken to jail, but gets out when Selina threatens to reveal his identity to Commissioner Gordon to clear his name, climaxing in your traditional Batman showdown in an abandoned amusement park.

In alot of ways, the story in Gotham By Gaslight is similar to Mask Of The Phantasm, at least in it has the Dark Knight pursuing a masked killer, while dodging the police thinking that he himself is the suspect. The story only dips somewhat into full-fledged steampunk, mostly just the Bat-Velocipede and a random airship, so not as much was brought up from Master Of The Future making this more of a gothic detective story. The animation up to the above average specs, although nothing too spectacular you wouldn't see outside of your standard TV quality. The film also doesn't totally commit to the original conclusion as the original source material, which may cheese some die-hard fans off, but still a watershed standout in the DC Universe lineup.

Niiiiiiice Pimpmobile!

If "cosplay is not consent," does that mean that non-cosplayers are consent?


Tuesday, May 1, 2018

ANI-MOVIES, *Suicide Squad: Hell To Pay

Set in the same universe of animated films as part of DC Universe's post-Flashpoint franchise, this is the first movie to introduce the Suicide Squad to that continuity. There was one of them set in the Batman: Arkham video game timeline, but Hell To Pay features the first time alot of these characters have been part of the "New 52" reboot, which works as alot of the characters from Assault On Arkjam were killed off in that storyline. One thing that separates this from the other films, it's the first "villains only" comic book movie!

Amanda Waller collects Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Copperhead, Captain Boomerang, Bronze Tiger, and Killer Frost as Task Force X(super villains forced to do covert-ops for the U.S. government)to find a special card. Sent out incognito in a Winnebago, they track down the last known owner of the card, Steel Maxium, a male stripper who previously held the title of Dr. Fate, but was fired by letting a pair of bad girls make off with the card. The card itself is a "get out of Hell" card that allows its bearer a free pass to Heaven when they die, which was stolen by ex-Female Fury Knockout, and Scandal Savage working for her immortal father Vandal. The deadly duo then abducts Professor Pig to surgically implant the card inside Vandal's chest. Meanwhile, another baddie brigade made of Professor Zoom, Silver Banshee, and Blockbuster are also after the card, Zoom especially because he's still aching from the massive migraine that Flashpoint Batman gave him when he shot him in the head. The final clash has alot of villains biting the dust, and only one of them actually getting to use the card in the end.

This film seriously cleared the decks of DC villains, even more than Batman: Bad Blood did! Even though there's still numerous other bad guys to fill the quote for future DC Universe entries, but a good portion of who normally make up the Secret Society/Legion of Doom got flatlined in this. The animation is up the normal specs of quality, but considering this entry was Rated-R, the gore factor was jacked up to about 9.1, plus a bunch more swearing. Hell To Pay was said to have more of a Grindhouse vibe to it, which DC did a way better job with DC Showcase: The Spectre. The dub is passable with Christian Slater doing a bang-up job as Deadshot, and Tara Strong returning as Harley Quinn. Batman: Assault On Arkham was a better adaptation of Suicide Squad if your looking for something of them in animation, but this one is still worth a watch.

Cosplay is not consent. WELL, NOT WITH THAT ATTITUDE!