"Batman and Harley Quinn" Animated Release Talkback (Spoilers)

Discussion in 'The DC Comics Animation Forum' started by James Harvey, Aug 15, 2017.

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Discuss "Batman and Harley Quinn" and leave a rating!

  1. *****

    21.4%
  2. ****1/2

    7.1%
  3. ****

    21.4%
  4. ***1/2

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  5. ***

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  6. **1/2

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  7. **

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  8. *1/2

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  9. *

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  10. I've Got a Batman in my Basement

    7.1%
  1. Pfeiffer-Pfan

    Pfeiffer-Pfan Makin' Whoopee!

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    Bruce Timm has been getting a significant bit of bashing on the internet for the last year. Someone who was once revered across the board has been seemingly kicked off his pedestal. I'll never know how one little miscalculation (from a team of people) can make individuals suddenly dismiss a man who has brought us excellent work for the past 25 years.

    That all being said, Batman and Harley Quinn will not help alleviate any of that bashing.

    This is certainly an odd little movie. It's clearly designed to be as lightweight as possible and bring a great deal of fun to these (often) morose DTV's. After Killing Joke and the last two outings (one literally titled DARK) this is just what I needed and evidently just what Timm needed. I know this movie won't be for everyone: The animation is wonky, the plot is wafer-thin, the ending anti-climatic and none of the characters are developed or dramatically explored in any significant way. Perhaps the most infuriating for most, is the fact that it uses the DCAU designs, is most likely set in that continuity, and does not do a thing with it.

    All of the above are valid criticisms, but they didn't bother me one bit. It was like a nostalgic sugar-rush seeing the Bruce Timm designs again, all the characters felt true to who they are and the story moved along at a brisk pace for the most part. I laughed and was even slightly moved by a few heart-warming moments. The scene with Nightwing and Harley in the ambulance was genuinely touching and so what if they had sex? It completely fits in with Harley's character (in this PG-13 world) and was mostly playful. Who's to say what was going on off-screen with Catwoman, Talia and Wonder Woman?

    The voice cast were exemplary, with Conroy delivering as always. It was a joy to hear his voice bouncing off Loren Lester once more (hopefully it won't be the last time). Melissa Rauch was excellent as Harley (no Arleen Sorkin, but honestly more enjoyable than Strong). I would be happy to hear her reprise the role in the future. Paget Brewster, while not exactly sultry, was a very cute Poison Ivy.

    I will agree with others than the animation is not what it should've been. DR Movie have animated tons of Timm designed work before and never had a problem, unless they have new crews now. JLU looked better than this, despite being a good 10-12 years older. A shame, as it will be another reason for some to dismiss the movie. I can already hear the critics (''These designs don't work in today's modern animation landscape'', blah, blah).

    Special shout-out for the great music. I always get chills when I hear that classic Batman theme.

    So yeah, I loved it. It's not without its flaws, but it's a fun romp - it weirdly took me back to my childhood and then dragged that world into my adulthood. It has Conroy, Lester and Timm back at the helm. That's good enough for me. My favourite DCAU DTV of the year. Keep an open mind, and you might just be pleasantly surprised.
     
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  2. SweetShop209

    SweetShop209 Well-Known Member

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    I feel the movie should've incorporated a stronger backstory for those who couldn't or didn't read the prequel comic. The backstory we have in the movie is fine and helps set up the plot, but a littler extra oomph could've helped out big time.
     
  3. Mostezli

    Mostezli Corroborating with EVIL

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    Gonna go out on a limb and say that's probably in-line with giving Timm the scraps just like last year. This was most certainly a better made film than TKJ. It was quite enthralling how they infused '60s & even The Batman sensibilities. It certainly feels more like something James Tucker would have spearheaded.
     
  4. BigFatHairyDeal

    BigFatHairyDeal Defender of the Universe

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    There's almost no aspect of tie-ins that I'm particularly fond of, so I don't think it's ever excusable for a storyteller to say, "Well, we explained it in tie-in numbers 1 and 4..." I suppose they shouldn't be differentiated from things like sequels where you need those facts from a prior episode or movie, but I simply don't like the practice. I understand why a lot of people do, though, so I won't harp on it too much.

    As for backstory... I honestly didn't pause to wonder how did Harley get to where she was. I don't expect these movies to be highly biographical for the characters. It explains enough, and it's fairly easy to get invested into the characters, which I think accomplishes the most important objectives. Harley's circumstances are very easy to infer.
     
  5. Peter Paltridge

    Peter Paltridge Knows about rock people
    Staff Member Moderator

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  6. Otaku-sempai

    Otaku-sempai Well-Known Member

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    I would not let Beth Elderkin's review be the sole criteria for watching Batman and Harley Quinn. There is truth in her observations, but this is the worst possible interpretation of the movie and I don't think it is entirely fair. Yes, there is some irony when Harley complains about how she is underestimated and then immediately turns around to seduce Nightwing (and, yes, that can be seen as a sexual assault on the restrained hero). Yes, the plot is thin; however, this is an action/comedy and can get by on a slight story. I found it to be a fun movie and my wife thought it was one of the best of the DC Universe animated films--and she's hard to please.

    Look at some other responses to the film and form your own opinion.
     
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  7. Bestmand902

    Bestmand902 Active Member

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  8. GWOtaku

    GWOtaku Moderator
    Staff Member Moderator Reporter

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    Won't be able to see this until next week but on a general topic, does anyone who's seen this already feel like they pushed too hard on objectifying Harley in this? Seen some screenshots come up on social media that aren't flattering.

    My short position is that there's doing a sexy character (Black Canary, DCAU) and then there's cheap cheesecake, and something like Harley bending over in her underwear pretty obviously qualifies. I'm fine with the first thing, while with the other thing my thought is that it's pandering that, for me, falls totally flat. I'm a 30-something guy that grew up with DCAU stuff, and they think I want that for some reason. Eh, not really? Nah.
     
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  9. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    I was interested in the film when I saw that it might be within the DCAU (even if it meant for ugly designs), but it's looking like it's not much of a winner.

    I've also seen the picture of Harley's butt floating around. Ugh.

    He was banned for being a nut job/troll. These movies are closer to three regular television episodes thrown together, so about $900,000 USD.
     
    #29 KYO'NYUU IMOUTO, Aug 17, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 18, 2017
  10. Yojimbo

    Yojimbo Yes, have some.
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    That second paragraph is a too explicit and overshare in general, @KYO'NYUU IMOUTO. I'm editing the second paragraph down to "Ugh" but you may rewrite the paragraph to be more tasteful in your assessment. It is okay to critique a professional's work but in a respectful manner and it is not allowed here to talk about turn-ons in an explicit manner. Consider this post an in-thread warning.
     
    #30 Yojimbo, Aug 18, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2017
  11. iammattie

    iammattie Member

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    I think a lot of what Harley was from the get go was about sex appeal. I get what you're saying, but hear me out. This character was co-created by Timm, so in all actuality if he wants to do something different with that character, can it really be wrong? That's how he envisions his creation.

    They did turn up the sexuality of Harley in this film past portrayals I've seen before, burn also make a solid point to point out she isn't a "whooooore" (sorry for the extra o's, Rauch's delivery of the word remind so me of Frank from IASIP)

    I feel like this movies portrayal of Harley was actually the most well rounded I've ever seen. It explores her sexuality without making that who she is, it shows her lack of needing a man like many movies tend to misstep and write their female leads to, it explores her quirky side, it touches on her intelligence, she very much holds her own in fights. It's honestly fantastic how well she's done in my opinion.
     
  12. Otaku-sempai

    Otaku-sempai Well-Known Member

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    Well, the budgets are higher than that. The average lengths of the DC Universe movies is about that of three half-hours of commercial programming, but they are a little more expensive to produce. The figure that was cited several years ago was an average cost of $3.5 million USD. I don't imagine that the budgets have been reduced; however, I don't know that they have kept up with inflation either. How do production costs for direct-to-video animation today compare to the costs in 2007?
     
  13. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    That's funny. I specifically referenced a line from The New Batman Adventures. which is good enough for children's programming, but not for a discussion of a PG-13 rated film? Although, thinking about it, it's very funny that a PG-13 movie can still include things to [attempt to] activate sexuality when 13-17 year old viewers are still considered minors. That's some dark humor for you!

    (It's even darker how we let kids watch works where the 'heroes' still first-and-foremost attempt to resolve their conflicts through violence, but when you live in a society of adults who praise violence both in fiction and real life it's no surprise).

    While I'm at it, it's not like I called somebody ugly. I questioned a creator's artistry and taste in eroticism, but you don't serve a dish, ask for an honest opinion and then blanch when you get said honest opinion. It's extraordinarily important that we bring candor and open-mindedness to discussing such a hot-button issue like sexuality, especially in the arts. I can't believe it's still something art critics frowns upon even acknowledging. If we're ever going to move forward as a society we have to learn that forms of sexuality exist beyond the institutionalized heterosexuality that certain organized religions have forced upon our societies. That screen shot is the ugliest thing I've ever looked at, but it's still important that we accept that key animator's sexual attractiveness to the two dimensional.
     
  14. Otaku-sempai

    Otaku-sempai Well-Known Member

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    If any screenshot from Batman and Harley Quinn is really "the ugliest thing [you've] ever looked at" then you have truly led either a very charmed or very sheltered life. ;)
     
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  15. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    Let me tell you the story of my people, the story of the retail worker who spends forty-plus hours a week living the American Nightmare of working with the public for a third of what they deserve in pay. I have seen people bully and emotionally attack and abuse workers. I have seen people yell and weep so loudly you can hear them from the other side of the store because you won't return a broken grass edger that still has gasoline in it.

    So when I say "that's the ugliest butt I have ever seen in my life" perhaps it is best to understand that, dang, it just really is that ugly.

    Or that it's just a figure of speech.
     
    #35 KYO'NYUU IMOUTO, Aug 18, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 18, 2017
  16. Bestmand902

    Bestmand902 Active Member

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    Hold up, hoooooold up.

    Isn't Harley more a creation of Paul Dini than Bruce Timm?
     
  17. KYO'NYUU IMOUTO

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    Hold up, hoooold up.

    Are you insinuating the only lines on paper that matter are letters, not the lines that form an illustration?
     
  18. SweetShop209

    SweetShop209 Well-Known Member

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    That does seem to be the case. Paul Dini has been involves with Harley outside the DCAU more than Bruce. Paul did her origin episode on "The Batman" and a few episodes with her on Justice League Action and Batman: The Brave And The Bold. Plus, I heard he wrote her more recent comics. Plus, outside of the DCAU, Bruce Timm's only involvement with Harley outside of this movie was that Justice League: Gods And Monsters short.
     
  19. Otaku-sempai

    Otaku-sempai Well-Known Member

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    The latter is what I was trying (perhaps over-subtly) to suggest. :p
     
    #39 Otaku-sempai, Aug 18, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2017
  20. BigFatHairyDeal

    BigFatHairyDeal Defender of the Universe

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    In comedy, you have to expect exaggeration or out of character behavior here and there. I mean, why don't people complain that Batman is out of character in this movie? All of the negative focus is on Harley's butt and boobs, it seems, and the humor around Harley is hardly limited to sex and fart jokes (though there are plenty of them). I'm not a huge fan of this movie, but the criticism seems limited in scope.
     

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