This week was the 20th anniversary of Batman: The Animated series. Which is cool, because I spent a good chunk of my summer watching both Batman and Superman. I’m still working on Batman Beyond, which is awesome in it’s own way, but that’s not the awesomeness that I’m talking about today.
I’m talking about when Batman: The Animated Series and Superman: The Animated Series crossed over, and wonderful, wonderful things happened.
“Girls Nite Out” – The New Batman Adventures
“Girls Nite Out” is something that I should really not like at all. Mostly because well, it’s like really misogynistic. In a big way. The episode’s plot is that Livewire comes to Gotham City from Metropolis and for some reason both Batman and Superman are busy. She teams up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn and then Supergirl and Batgirl have to fight them. So where’s the misogyny, you ask? Well, you’ve got three fairly awesome supervillains, and the heroes that normally fight them are out of commission. You would think they would do some world conquering heavy duty stuff. But no, these ladies decide that with Livewire’s awesome energy manipulation, Ivy’s plant powers, and Harley’s super ability to be adorable and kick ass, they’re going to go on a shopping spree.
Because I guess that’s what girls do, or something. Then when they’re done beating up the bad guys, Kara and Barbara go back to Barbara’s apartment and give each other pedicures while getting excited because Bullock gave them a modicum of credit on the news…Yay! The thing is though, this episode is really good, I remember loving it when I was a kid. And in a season 1 episode of The OC watching it is part of what inspires Anna Stern to break up with Seth Cohen so that Seth can finally get it together and date Summer Roberts.
“Knight Time” – Superman: The Animated Series
Brainiac kidnaps Bruce and then Robin has to teach Superman how to be Batman while they figure out how to find him.
Seriously. I don’t need to explain why everything about that sentence is the greatest thing ever right? OK, moving on.
“World’s Finest” aka “The Batman Superman Movie”
In this wonderful three parter, The Joker steals a dragon statue made out of Kryptonite from a random pawn shop in Gotham. (Sure) Batman figures out that it’s made of kryptonite (duh), then goes to Metropolis under the guise of a business deal with Lex Luthor (logic) and learns that The Joker has made a deal with Lex to kill Superman for a billion dollars. (Duh, again.) The Joker fails at killing Superman, mostly because Batman stops him, and Lex gets fairly pissy, but does very little about it.
But that’s not really what’s most important here. What’s most important is that while he’s in Metropolis, Bruce seduces Lois Lane, because in case people watching forgot, this is Bruce Wayne’s world and all the other characters are just living in it. Lois even figures out that Bruce is Batman, and she decides not to write a story about it even though that would win her so many Pulitzers. This action is so uncharacteristic of Lois it can only be explained by the fact that sex with Bruce is so good she forgot that she’s Lois Lane.
Also, I don’t understand how one goes back to crushing on Superman after that. “Hm, I could go to Gotham City and be with a billionaire, totally damaged genius vigilante, and help raise his adorable pseudo son, or I could stay here and lust hopelessly after a boringly perfect alien.” Her decision makes no sense to me. Because as Chrissy puts it, “Once you go Bat, you never go back.”
Meanwhile, Clark makes lots of concerned faces, while Bruce smirks at him a lot. And they figure out each other’s secret identities. Superman by looking through Batman’s mask with his X-Ray vision and Batman by placing a tracking device on Superman and following him back to his apartment. (I cannot decide which of these actions is more disturbing.) Anyway, they part ways as wary allies who don’t really like each other much at all.
Also, Mercy and Harley beat each other up a lot, and it’s very funny.
Sadly, there is no crossover episode where Dick Grayson and Jimmy Olsen compare mullets. Which if you ask me was a totally missed opportunity.