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The New Batman Adventures – Cold Comfort (Review)

This September marks the twentieth anniversary of Batman: The Animated Series, and the birth of the shared DC animated universe that would eventually expand to present one of the most comprehensive and thorough explorations of a comic book mythology in any medium. To celebrate, we’re going back into the past and looking at some classic episodes.

As wonderful as Heart of Ice was, offering a classic origin to a bad guy who would have otherwise been a footnote, there is a sense that the reimagining of Victor Fries hemmed the character in a bit. By giving him a moving origin story based around his wife, it meant that the character’s arc would be dictated by Nora. As such, it limits the story-telling opportunities, because there are really only so many stories you can tell. Fries can be seeking revenge (Heart of Ice) or striking a deal to preserve here (Deep Freeze) or responding to her loss (as here), but that’s pretty much it.

Cold Comfort is the first episode featuring the character without the direct involvement of writer Paul Dini. It certainly shows, as it feels like a fairly wasted chapter in the character’s arc.

Has Freeze flipped his lid?

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Batman: The Animated Series – Feat of Clay, Parts I & II (Review)

To celebrate the release of The Dark Knight Rises, July is “Batman month” here at the m0vie blog. Check back daily for comics, movies and television reviews and discussion of the Caped Crusader.

One thing that always impressed me about Batman: The Animated Series was the way that it didn’t just restrict itself to the truly iconic members of Batman’s impressive pool of villains. Batman’s first-stringers are all iconic and brilliant characters in their own right. It would be easy enough to build a television how around characters like the Joker, Two-Face, the Penguin, Catwoman, Ra’s Al Ghul, the Scarecrow, Poison and the Riddler. However, the show didn’t do that. It didn’t restrict its airtime to those major-league bad guys. In fact, many second-tier villains actually received more compelling origins and development. Heart of Ice is regarded as one the show’s best episodes, despite featuring an almost forgotten nobody villain by the name of Mr. Freeze. So it shouldn’t be that much of a surprise that the creative crew were able to build a tragic and moving back story for Clayface.

It’s Clayface’s time to shine!

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