Dorothy’s Superheroes

Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Batman: The Brave & The Bold, Justice League, and Justice League Unlimited are all currently on streaming Netflix. My granddaughter Dorothy and I have sat through all of them.

Green Lantern

 

Green Lantern: The Animated Series (2011) – Rated TV-PG

In deep space, Earth’s Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, patrols the Guardian Frontier, where he must face invasions from the evil Red Lantern Corps.”

Dorothy’s chant: “No man escapes the manhunters!”

In the age old question of Marvel vs. DC, you have to give movies to Marvel. Sure, Christopher Nolan’s Batman series was great but then you have drivel such as Man of Steel, Jonah Hex, and, of course, Green Lantern.

Green Lantern: The Animated Series was made at the same time as the movie but is actually quite engaging, even though it didn’t find enough of an audience to last more than a season. The writers did a great job of having individual stories while at the same time having multi-episode arcs as well as a steady progression to the series finale.

Batman: The Brave and the Bold

 

Batman: The Brave and the Bold (2008-11) – Rated TV-Y7

Batman travels both time and space to fight crime in this animated series, which finds the Caped Crusader teaming up with his fellow superheroes.

This is definitely a very kiddie oriented version of Batman. Rather than the dour Kevin Conroy Batman, this one has Diedrich Bader doing the growly yet much lighter in tone Batman. As befits The Brave and The Bold moniker, each episode features at least one guest hero, sometimes many.

Dorothy likes this version best because it is very light, often reminiscent of Adam West’s Batman. I enjoyed it for the never-ending roster of DC guest heroes and villains. Aquaman is an absolute hoot in this series and appears many times. Bat Mite I could do without but thankfully he doesn’t infest too many episodes.

Justice League

 

Justice League (2001-3) – Rated TV-Y7

Anything’s possible in this animated series when world-famous superheroes band together to fight crime as the Justice League of America.”

Justice League relates the story of the core Justice Leaguers: Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Wonder Woman, J’onn J’onzz, and Hawk Girl. I enjoyed the series more than Dorothy. There wasn’t enough humor to hold her interest I expect and that facet was not improved upon with Unlimited.

Kevin Conroy returns as Batman and the rest of the voice cast is quite good. The guest villains are also quite well-voiced with Lex Luthor (Clancy Brown) dominating though Mark Hamill steals scenes as Solomon Grundy.

Justice League Unlimited (2004-5) – Rated TV-Y7

As humanity faces new villains, Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and dozens of other animated superheroes create a league to combat each menace.”

Justice League Unlimited picks up right where Justice League left off, including the relationship between Green Lantern and Hawkgirl. The difference is that our core members are joined by a cavalcade of other DC heroes. The best of the bunch is The Question (expertly voiced by Jeffrey Combs) who appears in five episodes.

I expect that we will be trying Young Justice next before moving on to the Marvel animated canon.

Amazon Prime has four volumes of Kevin Conroy’s Batman: The Animated Series as well as three volumes of Superman: The Animated Series streaming.

Man of Cartoon Steel

Sadly, none of the five Superman movies (six if you count Supergirl) are available on instant Netflix or Amazon Prime. Neither are Smallville or Lois & Clark. Instant Netflix does have a number of animated adventures with our caped superhero.

All-Star Superman

All-Star Superman (2011) – Rated PG

“After Lex Luthor tricks Superman into prolonged exposure to radiation, the Man of Steel is left with only weeks to live, and his powers are waning. As he prepares for his demise, Superman has scores to settle and must stop Luthor’s diabolical scheme.”

Superman Cartoons (1942) – Rated TV-PG

“This collection of early Superman cartoons from the 1940s follows the iconic Man of Steel — and his bespectacled alter ego, Clark Kent — through an array of classic adventures and romantic run-ins with his lady love, Lois Lane. From his extraordinary boyhood in Smallville to his adult life as a seemingly ordinary newsman to his battles with a variety of villains, it’s animated escapism at its best.”

A sampling of the Fleischer classics.

Superman vs. The Elite

Superman vs. The Elite (2012) – Rated PG-13

Tensions between Superman and the Elite, a team of superpowered antiheros, finally culminate in a mass showdown on Jupiter’s moons, when Superman is forced to prove that violence is never the answer.”

Justice League (2001-3) – Rated TV-Y7

“Anything’s possible in this animated series when world-famous superheroes — including Superman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, and Batman and Robin — band together to fight crime as the Justice League of America.”

Justice League Unlimited (2004-5) – Rated TV-Y7

“As humanity faces threats from all kinds of new and vile villains, Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and a dozens of other animated superheroes create a league from which they form small, specialized teams to combat each new menace.”