REVIEW: AMERICAN DAD – VOLUME 4-6

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MAIN CAST (VOICES)

Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy)
Wendy Schaal (Small Soldiers)
Scott Grimes (Robin Hood)
Rachael MacFarlane (The Batman)
Dee Bradley Baker (Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Curtis Armstrong (New Girl)
Seth Green (Austin Powers)
Ivana Milicevic (Banshee)
Swoosie Kurtz (Mike & Molly)
Jeff Fischer (Happy Feet)
Sandra Bernhard (2 Broke Girls)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)
Eddie Kaye Thomas (American Pie)
Patrick Stewart (X-Men)
Daisuke Suzuki (I Am Gangster)
David Koechner (Anchorman)
Raven-Symone (Dr. Dolittle)
Mike Henry (The Cleveland Show)
Richard Gant (Godzilla)
Ed Helms (The Hangover)
Ari Graynor (Bad Teacher TV)
Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games)
John DiMaggio (Futurama)
J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
Jean Smart (Smanatha Who?)
Lizzy Caplan (Cloverfield)
Josh Gad (Frozen)
Lisa Edelstein (House)
Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men)
Niecy Nash (Scream Queens)
Henry Rollins (Wrong Turn 2)
Forest Whitaker (Panic Room)
Kelli Garner (Horns)
Ken Jeong (The Hangover)
Jon Tenney (Green Lantern)
Megyn Price (Grounded for Life)
Daran Norris (Izombie)
Judd Hirsch (A Beautiful Mind)
Amy Sedaris (Elf)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
Glenn Howerton (That 80s Show)
Bob Odenkirk (How I Met Your Mother)
Suzanne Cryer (Two Guys & a Girl)
Brian Doyle-Murray (Groundhog Day)
Estelle Harris (3rd Rock From The Sun)
Robet Patrick (Terminator 2)
Ricardo Montalban (Star Trek II)
Dan Folger (Fanboys)
Clancy Brown (Highlander)
Harve Presnell (Lois & Clark)
Rob Riggle (21 Jump Street)
Barret Swatek (Power Rangers Turbo)
Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover)
Kat Dennings (2 Broke Girls)
Donald Faison (Scrubs)
Tom Kenny (The Batman)
Andy Samberg (Hot Rod)
Richard Kind (Gotham)
Emmanuelle Chriqui (Wrong Turn)
Bryan Cranston (Argo)
Sandra Oh (Sideways)
Kevin Nealon (Weeds)
Bobby Cannavale (Ant-Man)
Cleo King (Mike & Molly)
Ioan Grufford (Fantastic Four)
Kevin Durand (Dark Angel)
Amanda Seyfried (Ted 2)

American Dad is on fire at the moment. I’ve always enjoyed it, but it has lived in the shadow of it’s bigger brother, ‘Family Guy’, since it began.

This volume has such highlights as…

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TEARJERKER: In this James Bond parody, Stan plays a 007-type secret agent sent to stop the diabolical Tearjerker (played by Roger) from fulfilling his master plan to create a movie so sad that it causes anyone who watches it to cry themselves to death.

WIDOWMAKER: Francine pushes Stan to open up to her emotionally but, after a few psychiatrist sessions with Roger, he is more touchy-feely than she can handle when he tells her he killed her friend’s husband. Meanwhile, Steve vows vengeance when Hayley kills the queen bee from his science project.

OFFICE SPACEMAN: When the CIA initiates an Alien Task Force, a peculiar twist of fate puts Roger in charge of the task force in disguise, who marks Stan as an alien to protect his own identity. Meanwhile, Francine freaks out when she finds Steve with a black girl as his study-buddy, but reveals that she did not freak out because Steve’s study-buddy is black, but because she is left-handed.

STANNY SLICKERS II: THE LEGEND OF OLLIE’S GOLD: After officially dying and coming back to life, Stan decides to leave a legacy on the world and begins to search for legendary buried treasure. As the search for gold goes “North”, life at home heads south as Hayley becomes addicted to body-piercing, Steve turns the vacuum into a robotic girlfriend, and Roger hatches a scam to get sexually harassed at work so he can win an out-of-court settlement.

SPRING BREAK-UP: Stan has a spring break-induced mid-life crisis. With Francine away visiting her parents, Roger (as “Scotch Bingington”) invites Spring Breakers to party at the Smith household. But Stan nearly has a “Spring Breakdown” when he falls prey to a sexy booze-cruiser and Steve tries to lose his virginity to actress Carmen Selectra.

1600 CANDLES: Roger becomes excited when he turns 1600, and he spies on his family as they prepare to throw a birthday party for him. Much to his dismay, Roger is interrupted when Steve runs down the stairs and reveals to the family that he has grown his first pubic hair. Stan and Francine become horrified when they hear of the news, and they begin to take drastic measures to deal with Steve’s puberty after having reoccurring memories of when Hayley began menstruating, which is what turned her aggressive. While Francine desperately goes to the CIA to get some aging retardant, Steve makes plans with Lisa Silver to meet up at a Macy’s. During his sleep, Francine injects the aging retardant, only to wake up to him morphing into a toddler. Steve becomes enraged when he sees this, and Lisa Silver angrily walks out of the store. Steve is given another opportunity as going with Lisa, this time as the school prom. Stan and Francine later inject a different serum into Steve during his sleep. However, much to their dismay, Steve is an elder. Stan and Francine later drops Steve off at his school, and give him the antidote. Some of the school bullies later give Steve a swirly, claiming that the first pubic hair is nothing special, and the hair is blown out the window, drifts across the town, only to finally land onto Roger’s birthday cake

THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY: The Smith family schedule an intervention to tackle down Roger’s rampant alcoholism. When Roger arrives drunk at the house, they also mention his tendency to have an inferiority complex from wearing his various costumes and personas. Ignoring their worries, Roger goes shopping for beer, only to find out that his credit card has maxed out. He later investigates who the culprit is, revealing to be Sidney Hoffman. He vows to make Hoffman’s life a living hell, and he gets Hoffman unemployed, sets his apartment on fire, and breaks up with his fiancée. At his home, Roger discovers that Sidney Hoffman is the same person as he is. Unknown to him, Sidney has hired a hitman to kill him. While at a department store, the Sidney Hoffman persona confronts Roger in a dressing room. Hoffman is later killed from being stabbed by Roger, and Hoffman’s ex is seen holding hands with Roger, revealing to him that she’s a hermaphrodite

ONE LITTLE WORD: Stan becomes envious that he does not get any special treatment after seeing a coworker dine with his boss, Avery Bullock, at the executive lounge. He is finally given the opportunity to become Bullock’s personal assistant after Stan’s coworker refused to stand in line to get Bullock opera tickets due to personal issues. Bullock leaves his son, Avery Jr., in the care of Francine on various occasions, in which she later is on the verge of an mental breakdown. Stan accompanies his boss on various errands, including picking up women for sex and retrieving his wife from being held captive by terrorists in Fallujah. When the ordeal ends, Francine and Stan plan their Valentine’s Day trip to an old honeymoon spot. When they arrive, Francine finds out that Stan has been harboring Bullock’s son, as well as his mistress in a nearby cabin in an attempt to hide her from his wife. Bullock’s wife, infuriated by his betrayal, shoots him in the knee and takes Avery Jr. home with her. In pain, Bullock pleads Stan to call the paramedics, but Stan blatantly refuses. He carries Francine out of the cabin and proceeds to kiss her. Dick is currently Bullock’s number one

CHOOSEY WIVES CHOOSEY SMITH:Stan announces to Francine that he has become a registered pilot, much to her dismay. Francine reveals to Stan that before meeting him, she was once engaged to a pilot who has been presumed dead. When the pilot, named Travis, suddenly is found to be alive, she had already reengaged to Stan. Stan becomes upset and envious that Francine was with another man prior to him, and he tracks Travis down. When Roger and him arrive in Montana, Travis is found to be a wealthy rancher. Stan returns to Langley Falls to reveal to Francine that he has tracked down Travis in order to see his qualities. He struggles to schedule events, even going as far as to plan a dinner. Frustrated, Francine does not settle and tells Stan that she loves him. Stan, reluctant to believe her, sets up a staged crash with Roger and fakes his death. They arrive and relax at a remote island, only to be washed up by a tsunami. After being stranded out at sea for three months, Stan and Roger are saved, and they return home. Francine is ecstatic to see Stan, only to have Travis walk into their reunion. Francine later reveals that she faked having a relationship with Travis in an attempt to make Stan jealous. Angry, Travis leaves the house. Meanwhile, Steve finds a stray cat. He tries on various occasions to befriend the cat, only to be the victim of multiple attacks

ESCAPE FROM PEARL BAILEY: Steve gets back together with his former ex-girlfriend Debbie, much to the jealousy of his friends. His rival, Lisa Silver, organizes a campaign to become the student council president of the school. Debbie devises a plan to run against Lisa, much to her frustration. Lisa warns her that she vows to humiliate her if she makes a successful campaign. A slander post was made by Lisa and her friends in an attempt to humiliate Debbie, enraging Steve. Steve initiates a plot to gain revenge for his girlfriend, which includes infecting one of Lisa’s stuffed animals with herpes. Debbie is horrified when he tells her about this, and she ends their relationship. Steve soon realizes Snot, Toshi and Barry made the slander post and framed Lisa and her friends. As soon as Steve is later found to be the culprit of the plan, and his friends behind the slander post, the whole school chases them down. They stumble upon an empty room, only to find Debbie and her friends. Steve explains to her why he went through with the plan, and Debbie reluctantly accepts his apology. Steve and his friends manage to escape from the school, where Francine is waiting for them. However, the whole school corners them, and they mercilessly attack them.

PULLING DOUBLE BOOTY: Hayley goes on a rampage shortly after Jeff breaks up with her. Francine and Stan try to help their daughter get through the grief, as the police have informed them that she will go to jail if she has another rampage. Francine later peeps into Hayley’s room one night, only to find her making out with a person that closely resembles Stan. Disturbed and horrified, she confronts Stan only for the look-alike to come out with Hayley. The look-alike, named Bill, is later caught by Stan after an attempt to have sex with Francine. They kick him out of the house, and Stan vows to act as Bill to prevent Hayley from going on another rampage. Meanwhile, Roger and Steve get summer jobs of determining the gender of baby chicks.Image result for american dad most adequate christmasIf you’re new to American Dad, this is where the best material lies (so far).

American Dad! is one of those shows that just keeps getting better. The show got off to a rocky start in its first series, definitely being born into its older brother Family Guy’s shadow, but since then it has slowly turned into its own show, with its own style of comedy. This sets highlights are ..Image result for american dad phantom of the telethonPHANTOM OF THE TELETHON: Stan learns that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) can no longer afford torture devices as the Democrats are shifting money to teaching inner city children to read. While Stan tries to come up with ideas for revenue-raising inventions, Roger suggests that the CIA hold a telethon, which Stan says is a stupid idea. The next day however, Stan then suggests a telethon and takes all the credit and does not admit that it was Roger’s idea, despite his protests that it was.

STAN TIME: Feeling exhausted all the time, Stan begins taking pills that allow him to stay up all night and feel like he had a full night’s sleep. He tries to use his newfound energy and time on hobbies, only to ultimately discover he would rather spend more time with his wife. Meanwhile, Roger and Steve are asked to make a screenplay for a pornographic film.

FAMILY AFFAIR: Roger has been making excuses about prior commitments, prompting the Smiths to realize that he has been “cheating” on them with other families. The Smiths take action to teach Roger a lesson about monogamy until Roger discovers for himself why he is not a one-family kind of guy

LIVE AND LET FRY: When Langley Falls implements a ban on trans fats, Stan finds himself legally separated from his favorite foods. He sets a poor example for the rest of the family when he blatantly disregards the law by crossing county lines and using Steve as a trans-fatty food mule to satisfy his own gluttonous desires

JACK’S BACK: Steve signs Stan up for a father-son bike tournament, but the plan veers off-track when Stan admits that his father never taught him how to ride a bike. Determined to make things better, Steve helps reconcile Stan with his convict father. Meanwhile, Hayley needs internship credit for school, so Roger hires her to bar tend at his makeshift bar in the attic

WIFE INSURANCE: When Stan gets kidnapped in Colombia, Francine fears he is gone for good. Stan finally reappears unharmed, but the real trouble erupts in the Smith household when he admits that he has a plan to marry his dentist if Francine dies before him. Meanwhile, Steve and Roger play detective duo “Wheels and the Legman.”

WEINER OF OUR DISCONTENT: Stan has had enough of Roger’s antics! When he calls Roger out, Roger claims he has been sent to Earth to determine the fate of mankind. Stan challenges him to prove it, and is tickled pink when he learns Roger’s real purpose for being on Earth. Roger struggles to get a grip on reality until a fateful turn of events helps put things in perspective.

e show is hilarious, every episode makes you laugh. American dad is amazing, watch it. Roger is so funny its unbelievable.

It’s a show that continues to fly under the radar of many, and as those who have enjoyed the exploits of American Dad! will happily tell you, that’s very much their loss. For this is a golden animated series, aimed firmly at grown ups, and bursting with quotable lines. Episode Highlights are ….

IN COUNTRY..CLUB: Stan teaches Steve that the only way he can truly appreciate the national anthem is by participating in a war re-enactment, but the experience leaves Steve looking and acting like a traumatized Vietnam War veteran. Meanwhile, Roger gets a pet bird and badgers Stan into giving him a cable code so he can watch a Barbra Streisand pay-per-view special. And an amputee mental patient who has psychic powers, named John Q. Mind (Randy Spears), escapes from a mental hospital on a motorcycle.

MOON OVER ISLA ISLAND: In order to get a promotion at work, Stan has to convince the dictator of Isla Island to sign a treaty. Stan meets the general and accidentally kills him and has Roger pose as the leader of the small island nation. Meanwhile, Steve and Snot compete for the sexual advances of each other’s mothers.

HOME ADRONE: Steve is left home alone when the family takes a trip to look at a potential college for Hayley. When his friends arrive and realize he has the run of the house, they persuade Steve to break the rules. They’re soon in over their heads when they discover that what they thought was a video game is actually a military controlled drone. As Hayley’s flight is about to leave, the pilot sees the drone, and delays the flight for safety of the passengers. As Steve and his friends attempt to cover their tracks, Roger has a meltdown that keeps the family from making their trip by dressing as Stan instead of a little girl to get alcohol. The Air Marshall threatens to kill everyone unless the little girl (Roger) is found. Stan returns to find that Steve has betrayed his trust and thrust them into a high-level security situation.

MAN IN THE MOONBOUNCE: Steve must become the “man of the house” when Stan relives his childhood after an emotional breakdown on a moonbounce – and ends up in Chimdale Minimum Security prison for vandalizing a house. Meanwhile, Hayley gives Klaus a wig so he can have his first haircut in years.

SHALLOW VOWS: When Stan lets it slip that he only married Francine for her looks days before they renew their wedding vows, Francine purposely lets herself go so she can see if Stan really does love her. Meanwhile, Steve and Hayley go on the run when one of Roger’s personalities threatens to kill them.

G-STRING CIRCUS: Stan opens up a dry-cleaning shop with 20-year-old strippers as the workers to prove Hayley should take his advice, but when Stan’s business goes south, Stan decides to take off his own clothes for money. Meanwhile, Steve and his friends go to space camp (which turns out to be boring) and try to escape when he sees a webcam shot of Roger housing Stan’s stripper dry-cleaning workers in Steve’s room.

RAPTURE’S DELIGHT: Stan is upset when he cannot find his family a good seat for a Christmas Day church service, but that proves to be the least of his worries when Stan discovers that he, Roger, and Francine are the last people left on Earth and everyone else has ascended into Heaven as part of the Biblical end of days.

A JONES FOR A SMITH:  Stan gives Francine a hard time when she is sentenced to work in a soup kitchen following a drunk driving arrest (since Stan does not believe social programs that help the homeless and impoverished are of any value to American society), but when Stan gets hooked on crack cocaine, he refuses to get help (and costs Steve a chance to hook up with a beautiful high school girl who’s attracted to nerds), but later he discovers that asking others for help does not hurt.

MAY THE BEST STAN WIN: Stan gives Francine “love coupons” for Valentine’s Day, but refuses to honor them once he becomes preoccupied with his very own CIA cyborg. Meanwhile, Roger helps Steve and his friends remake a classic ’80s movie.

RETURN OF THE BLING: Roger reveals that he played on the gold-medal-winning Miracle on Ice 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team as a steroid-abuser. Stan is able to convince Roger to return his Olympic gold medal, but Roger has a difficult time dealing with the loss. Meanwhile, Hayley reevaluates her relationship status with Reginald the Koala.

COPS AND ROGER: Roger joins the police force after he and Francine are mugged, but he turns into a dirty cop, and Hayley gets a new friend.

MERLOT DOWN DIRTY SHAME: Roger winds up kissing Francine when the two go wine-tasting, leading Francine having to tell Stan so it’s not bad if they told soon, but Roger tries everything to keep Francine from telling Stan. Meanwhile, Klaus and Hayley screw with Steve’s head by making him think his reality is a lucid dream, but he goes too far when he tries to fly out the window.

GREAT SPACE ROASTER: It is Roger’s birthday, and he begs to be roasted, but Roger takes the cruel jokes to heart and goes on a rampage against the Smith family.Image result for american dad great space roaster

American Dad is very firmly in its stride here, with the maturity of the show working in its favor. It’s a little American-centric at times, as you might expect from the show’s title and origin, but it’s still always accessible. In fact, it’s more than that. American Dad! is arguably one of the most underappreciated television shows of the modern era. And if you’re in any doubt of that, there’s an abundance of evidence in this box set waiting to be uncovered.

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REVIEW: DC SHOWCASE: GREEN ARROW

CAST

Neal McDonough (Arrow)
Malcolm McDowell (Heroes)
Steven Blum (Wolverine and The X-Men)
Grey DeLisle (The Zeta Project)
John DiMaggio (Futurama)
Ariel Winter (Excision)

Green Arrow waits outside an airport for the arrival of his girlfriend, Dinah. He was delayed in traffic due to the arrival of Princess Perdita.

Count Vertigo has hired Merlyn to assassinate Perdita, who is Vertigo’s niece. Perdita will soon become queen of Vlatava following her father’s assassination by her uncle. As Merlyn attacks his target, Green Arrow discovers the plan and is forced to intervene. He dispatches several of Merlyn’s henchmen before getting Perdita to a place of safety. He is forced to duel Merlyn himself, and defeats him.

Count Vertigo arrives and attempts to kill both the hero and Perdita, incapacitating them. Dinah, revealed to be Black Canary, arrives at that moment and knocks Count Vertigo unconscious with her “Canary Cry”. Afterwards, Green Arrow proposes marriage to Black Canary. Canary accepts Green Arrow’s proposal and they share a passionate kiss.

The action is top notch without going overboard with grotesque violence, this is one short that kids can watch. This is one of my favorite DC short so far, I loved The Spectre, but I think this is the best one.

REVIEW: JLA ADVENTURES: TRAPPED IN TIME

CAST
Diedrich Bader (Batman: The Brave and The Bold)
Laura Bailey (Ultimate Spider-Man)
Dante Basco (Hook)
Grey Griffin (Batman vs Robin)
Jack De Sena (Melissa & Joey)
Michael Donovan (Reboot)
Tony Gibis (Beautiful Girls)
Peter Jessop (Batman: Assault on Arkham)
Erica Luttrell (Izombie)
Liam O’Brien (Planet Hulk)
Jason Spisak (Time lapse)
Fred Tatasciore (9)
In the present day, Lex Luthor and his Legion of Doom try to use cryogenic rays from orbital satellites to expand the Earth’s polar ice caps in the Arctic Ocean, causing a massive drop in sea levels and creating new islands they intend to rule. Superman and the Justice League confront the Legion, dividing their forces to fight the Legion and destroy the satellites. In the ensuing space battle, Robin purposely crashes his spacecraft into the satellite array. Refusing to accept defeat, Captain Cold overloads the remaining satellite, which falls back to Earth and entombs Luthor in an ice sheet shortly before the satellite explodes. The League is triumphant and believes Luthor to be dead. In the utopian future of the 31st century, teenage superheroes-in-training Dawnstar and Karate Kid are visiting a museum dedicated to the exploits of the Justice League. They find that Luthor has been in suspended animation for nearly a millennium after being discovered and excavated in the 29th century and placed on display. Karate Kid accidentally releases Luthor from the ice. Luthor awakes nearly 1,000 years into the future; he explores the museum, discovers Superman’s secret identity and locates an ancient item called the Eternity Glass, which allows its user to manipulate the fabric of time and space. Taking Captain Cold’s weapon, he freezes Dawnstar and Karate Kid. He then uses the Eternity Glass to unleash Time Trapper as his servant, allowing him to travel to the point when he last fought the League. Vengeful, Luthor plans to return and destroy Superman. The young heroes break free and follow.
 Resuming control of the Legion, Luthor instructs Time Trapper to send his forces back in time to prevent the Kent family from adopting Kal-El in Smallville. The young heroes enlist the Justice League’s aid to stop them, and travel to the Hall of Justice in Washington, D.C. After a misunderstanding, they explain their story and verify its validity through Wonder Woman’s Lasso of Truth. The Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg travel into the past to prevent Bizarro, Toyman, Cheetah and Solomon Grundy from sending the baby Kal-El back into space, while Superman and the rest of the League attempt to stall Luthor’s Legion in the present.
Despite the Justice League’s efforts, the Legion sends Kal-El’s ship away from Earth. Without Superman, there is nobody left in the past to inspire individuals with extraordinary abilities to become superheroes. This causes a temporal paradox, enabling Time Trapper to erase the Justice League in the present. Unwilling to risk being erased from existence, Dawnstar and Karate Kid retreat. In the absence of the Justice League, the Legion pillages the world, robbing banks and depositories, and leaving Washington D.C. in ruins. The young heroes realize that they can induce their own paradox by ensuring Lex Luthor’s past counterpart never traveled to the 31st century so he could not steal the Eternity Glass and return to the past. The young heroes discover Luthor’s tomb with Dawnstar’s tracking ability, where Karate Kid breaks the ice and frees Luthor’s earlier self. However, the Time Trapper is immune to the paradox because he exists outside the timeline, and with Luthor’s counterpart freed, Time Trapper is free to do as he pleases because Luthor is no longer his master.
The Time Trapper banishes the future Luthor from existence and tries to remake the current world in his image. Superman and the Justice League, who exist again because of the latter’s absence, confront the villain. Time Trapper is too powerful for the League to fight. Karate Kid discovers that Time Trapper is composed entirely of dark matter. Karate Kid realizes that only Dawnstar’s light-based powers can defeat Time Trapper. Dawnstar charges Time Trapper and the League defeat him, reverting the Eternity Glass, which imprisons Time Trapper once more. The Justice League thanks the young heroes and offers them the opportunity to stay. Karate Kid and Dawnstar decline, stating they must return to their time. They use the Eternity Glass to return to the 31st century. Superman recovers Luthor and sends him to Blackgate Prison. Gorilla Grodd assumes control of the Legion of Doom. Returning to their own time, Karate Kid and Dawnstar discover that a statue of Luthor has replaced a statue of Superman. Believing they have altered history in some unforeseen fashion, they immediately return to the 21st century to help the Justice League once more.
At 52 minutes this is a tad on the short side, but it didn’t feel rushed, and the animation is on par with many DC animated TV series. In fact, the tone is somewhat similar to the lighter 3rd season of Justice League Unlimited, but much more grounded than the 80’s Super Friends. This is definitely aimed at a younger crowd than something like Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox, but is does not deserve to be dismissed as even adults could find something to enjoy.

 

 

REVIEW: ULTIMATE AVENGERS 1 & 2

 CAST (VOICES)

Justin Gross (Texhnolyze)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
Michael Massee (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Olivia d’Abo (Conan The Destroyer)
Marc Worden (Batman Beyond)
Nan McNamara (7 Films, 7 Weeks)
Nolan North (Star Trek Into Darkness)
Andre Ware (The Banger Sisters)
David Boat (Frozen)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Jim Ward (Wall-E)
Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad)
Steven Blum (Wolverine and The X-Men)

In the North Atlantic in 1945 a squadron of B-24 Liberators transport the 101st Airborne Division. The radio announces that Berlin has been taken and Nazi Germany is expected to surrender. However, there are also claims of a Nazi superweapon that is aimed at Washington, D.C.Steve Rogers, better known as Captain America, leads the mission on an island near Norway where the superweapon is believed to be held. Rogers storms through the fortress and is confronted by his nemesis Herr Kleiser, who is revealed to be an extraterrestrial shape-shifter. The superweapon is launched, leaving Rogers the choice to throw himself onto the rocket and harmlessly cause it to self destruct, while having a final confrontation with Kleiser. The missile is destroyed, but Rogers falls into the ocean and the world believes he is dead.Sixty years later, Rogers’ body is recovered by S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury and thawed out into modern day. Gamma scientist Bruce Banner is working on a super soldier serum for S.H.I.E.L.D., while on medications that keep him from transforming into the Hulk. S.H.I.E.L.D. sends a sattelite into space to track the three ramaining alien ships, but is ultimately destroyed by the invaders, forcing Nick Fury to reluctantly initiate Project: Avenger.Fury and Rogers try to recruit the Norse god Thor, who rejects the offer to continue environmentalist protests. The resulting recruits are Captain America, Bruce Banner, Iron Man, Giant Man, Wasp, Natalia Romanov and Betty Ross. Fury briefs the team about the aliens, named the Chitauri, and the use of the metal vibranium, while Banner struggles to repress the Hulk persona and Rogers is hesitant of leading the Avengers.

The team’s first mission is to capture a Chitauri spy which has breached a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility. The Avengers disregard Rogers’ orders and follow their own egos, resulting in failure which allows the alien to escape with all sufficient information about S.H.I.E.L.D.. Fury fires an arrogant Hank Pym, who is followed by his wife Wasp. Iron Man, now revealed to be Tony Stark, resigns immediately. Rogers also chooses to leave Fury, feeling unready to fight the Chitauri.Desperate for soldiers to combat the coming assault on S.H.I.E.L.D.’s New York facility, Fury demands that Banner applies his super soldier serum to all of his candidates, only for Betty Ross to learn that Banner was only using the serum as a diversion to find a way to control the Hulk. Banner steps into a “rebirth chamber”, which transforms him into the Hulk, while still maintaining his own mind. Fury and the Black Widow lead a failing attack against the alien invaders, but each Avenger shows up, now joined by Thor, to send the three ships crashing into the ocean.Banner loses control of his thoughts and the Hulk retains his own childlike and violent personality, brutally killing every last Chitauri and then lashing out against the Avengers. The Hulk proves strong enough to knock out a full-size Giant Man, damage Iron Man’s suit and even, with effort, to lift Thor’s hammer Mjollnir. The Avengers manage to inject the Hulk with a high dose of Banner’s medication, and Betty Ross calms the Hulk long enough to let the drug render him human again. Banner is kept in a glass cell for breaking Fury’s trust, and the Avengers celebrate their success against the Chitauri and praise a wounded Captain America for leading them as a team.The action is spectacular and the storyline keeps you riveted from start to finish. This movie grabs with its cinematic lead in and flashback to World War Two. (Complete with throwback radio broadcast) From there, it’s one big roller coaster ride to the pulse pounding finish. The battle sequences are some of the best ever animated. I think the PG-13 rating really helps. Soldiers die and heroes bleed, that completely draws the viewer in to the feature. I think movie fans of all ages will be stunned at how many levels this movie delivers upon. This is a smart and surprisingly interesting film that really delivers.

CAST (VOICES)

Justin Gross (Texhnolyze)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
Michael Massee (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Olivia d’Abo (Conan The Destroyer)
Marc Worden (Batman Beyond)
Nan McNamara (7 Films, 7 Weeks)
Nolan North (Star Trek Into Darkness)
Andre Ware (The Banger Sisters)
David Boat (Frozen)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Jim Ward (Wall-E)
Dwight Schultz (The A-Team)
Mark Hamill (Star Wars)
Jeffrey D. Sams (Soul Food)

In the fortified African nation of Wakanda, the inhabitants of the small city-nation welcome home T’Challa, the son of king T’Chaka. Members of the extraterrestrial Chitauri race attract the attention of T’Chaka’s alter-ego, the Black Panther. T’Chaka is murdered by Herr Kleiser, their commander who continues to adapt the form of a Nazi commandant. T’Challa inherits the throne and Black Panther technology, swearing vengeance against Kleiser.In the United States, Captain America has become reckless in his missions due to the trauma of his 60-year deep freeze. Bruce Banner remains locked up in his cell after his Hulk incident, tormented and frequently drugged by a disgruntled ex-employee of his who acts as his interrogator. Betty Ross discovers that the wreckage of Chitauri ships has become mysteriously brittle. Hank Pym begins developing sickness for his overuse of his Giant-Man formula, leading to tension in his relationship with the Wasp. Thor sees a possible future where the Avengers are dead and seeks to consult Odin. Finding out that a Chitauri mothership is speeding towards Earth, Thor refuses to return to Asgard. When T’Challa meets Nick Fury and Captain America and reveals that Cap’s wartime nemesis kleiser still lives, he finds that Captain America tried to kill him numerous times and failed. T’Challa turns down an offer of alliance and Fury assembles the Avengers once again.

The Avengers illegally enter Wakanda. Black Panther allows only Captain America into the city, where he reveals that the Chitauri are searching for the “Heart of Wakanda”. The Avengers and Wakandan warriors find themselves fighting each other, with the Wakandans emerging victorious. The Avengers are commanded to return to their ship and T’Challa is stripped of his kinghood for allowing foreigners into the country. Captain America drags an injured Chitauri onto the Avengers’ jet, followed by Herr Kleiser taking T’Challa’s form. He steals Captain America’s shield and destroys the ship. Iron Man’s battered suit protects the Avengers in a force field and Thor teleports the team back to the Triskellion.

The Wasp is left in a coma from her injuries and is kept in the Triskellion. A mothership hovers above Wakanda and etraps the entire planet in a sickly-green bubble. Extraterrestrial invaders attack every major city on Earth and begin a massacre of the human population. Iron Man suits up in the War Machine armour and joins the Avengers as they teleport to Wakanda to battle the invaders. It is revealed they are seeking a gigantic meteorite of vibranium deep under Wakanda, from which the Wakandans develop their advanced technology. Bruce Banner works out that the gamma radiated from the Hulk is what caused the vibranium in the Chitauri ships to become brittle, and lets Betty use a gamma generator to attack the aliens close range. The Chitauri gas Banner’s cell and he promptly dies. Betty and the revived Wasp take a jet to Wakanda and give Iron Man the gamma generator to attack the inside of the mothership. Giant-Man, despite his condition getting worse from his use of his powers, shrinks down to aid Iron Man. Bruce Banner’s lifeless body becomes the Hulk and wakes up to fight the aliens invaders.Captain America and Black panther find themselves in a bloody fight with Kleiser, who appears to be immortal due to his rapid healing factor. The two trick Kleiser into falling into a pool of liquid vibranium and leave him trapped as it solidifies. Iron man and Giant-Man enter the mothership and destroy its core with the gamma generator. However, Giant-Man’s injuries lead him to pass out and he has to be carried back to the ground. Giant-Man makes up with the Wasp before dying. Iron Man travels alone to divert the crashing mothership away from the city, draining his life support. Thor returns and summons the power of the heavens to give life back to Tony Stark, proving his claims to be the God of Thunder to be genuine.With the Chitauri attack ended, the Avengers mourn Giant-Man’s death and T’Challa’s kinghood is restored. The Hulk sees Betty one last time before leaping away. Captain America and Black Widow begin a romantic relationship and the world celebrates victory over the Chitauri. The film ends with Thor and Nick Fury setting aside their differences and becoming friends.

The animation is superb! This movie is a sequel to the first Ultimate Avengers movie and maybe even a better one! They paid more attention to developing characters,but it could have been much more.Because that is what makes these superheroes special! There were nice little surprises in this movie and I don’t know if this is based on actual story lines in the marvel comics. It is nice to see a mature approach of things,just like in the comics. For me the movie is an example of what can be achieved if they take the myths created by Marvel Comics seriously.

REVIEW: THAT 70’S SHOW – SEASON 1-8

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MAIN CAST

Topher Grace (Spider-Man 3)
Mila Kunis (Ted)
Ashton Kutcher (Two and a Half Men)
Danny Masterson (Yes Man)
Laura Prepon (Karla)
Wilmer Valderrama (Minority Report TV)
Debra Jo Rupp (Death Becomes Her)
Kurtwood Smith (Robocop)
Tanya Roberts (Charlies Angels)
Don Stark (John Carter)
Lisa Robin Kelly (Payback)
Josh Meyers (Date Movie)
Tommy Chong (Evil Bong)

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RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Wayne Pere (Galaxy Quest)
Mark Bramhall (Alias)
Danny Bonaduce (The Partridge Family)
Marion Ross (Happy Days)
Nick Bakay (Sabrina: TTW)
Dwayne Johnson (The Scorpion King)
Gary Owens (Batman 60s)
Joseph Gordon-Levitt (The Dark Knight Rises)
Katey Sagal (8 Simple Rules)
Jennifer Lyons (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
Mitch Pileggi (The X-Files)
Lynsey Bartilson (Grounded for Life)
Lyle Waggonr (Wonder Woman)
Neil Flynn (Scrubs)
Stephen Tobolowsky (Heroes)
Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina: TTW)
Lindsay sloane (Bring It On)
Amy Adams (Batman V Superman)
Kevin McDonald (Lilo & Stitch)
Bob Clendenin (Cougar Town)
Shirley Jones (The Partridge Family)
Charo (Don’t Trust B— In Apartment. 23)
Robert Hays (Airplane)
Marnette Patterson (American Sniper)
Matt Battaglia (Mike & Molly)
Allison Munn (What I Like About You)
Howard Hesseman (Lie to Me0
Alice Cooper (Dark Shadows)
Curtis Armstrong (New Girl)
Keri Lynn Pratt (Veronica Mars)
John Ratzenberger (Cheers)
Ileen Getz (3rd Rock From The Sun)
Dave Thomas (King of The Hill)
Wayne Knight (3rd Rock From The Sun)
Cynthia LaMontagne (Austin Powers)
Tom Kenny (The Batman)
French Stewart (Mom)
Regan Gomez-Preston (The Celveland Show)
Alice Frank (The Secret Craft)
Mo Gaffney (2 Broke Girls)
Erika Christensen (Flightplan)
Nicholas Gonzalez (Sleepy Hollow)
Brittany Daniel (That 80s Show)
Michael Milhoan (Crimson Tide)
Luke Wilson (Old School)
Christopher Masterson (Malcolm In The Middle)
Roger Daltrey (Highlander: The Series)
Jessica Simpson (Employee of The Month)
Betty White (The Golden Girls)
Tom Poston (Newhart
Joanna Canton (The Convent)
Sarah Lancaster (Chuck)
Jim Rash (Community)
Jack Osbourne (New York Minute)
Seth Green (Family Guy)
Fred Willard (Wall-E)
Bobcat Goldthwait (Blow)
Jim Gaffigan (17 Again)
Leigh-Allyn Baker (Good Luck Charlie)
Nancy Lenehan (Two Guys and a Girl)
Garrett M. Brown (Kick-Ass)
Christina Moore (Without A Paddle)
Estella Warren (Planet of The Apes)
Shannon Elizabeth (Scary Movie)
Dan Castellaneta (The Simpsons)
Shonda Farr (Crossroads)
James Avery (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
Eric Allan Kramer (The Incredible Hulk Returns)
Alyson Hannigan (How I Met Your Mother)
Billy Dee Williams (Star Wars)
Brooke Shields (The Blue Lagoon)
Rachel Bilson (Chuck)
Morgan Fairchild (Roswell)
Tim Reid (IT)
Richard Kind (Gotham)
Winston Story (Masked Rider)
Lindsay Lohan (Mean Girls)
Megalyn Echikunwoke (Arrow)
Jenna Fischer (The Office)
Ron Rogge (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue)
Eliza Dushku (Tru Calling)
Chris Elliott (How I Met Your Mother)
Bret Harrison (V)
Jud Tyler (Andromeda)
Yvette Nicole Brown (Two and a Half Men)
Bruce Willis (Red)
Don Knotts (Pleasantville)
Carol Ann Susi (The Big Bang Theory)
Dick Van Patten (Eight Is Enough)
Gavin MacLeod (The Love Boat)
Mary Tyler Moore (Lipstick Jungle)
Isaac Hayes (South Park)
Lara Everly (Playing It Cool)
Barry Williams (The Brady Bunch)
Christopher Knight (The Brady Bunch)
Justin Long (New Girl)

In 1998 the creators of 3rd Rock from the Sun introduced That ’70s Show. It’s a very hilarious sitcom that takes place in, believe it or not, the 70s. Located in a fictional suburb of Green Bay, Wisconsin known as Point Place, the series revolves around the comical daily interactions of the Forman family and their friends and neighbors. Through twenty-five great episodes, the first season tackles many familiar issues like sex, drugs, dating, friendships, and family values. These issues turn into a few sticky situations that should leave you rolling over with laughter. The first season has some really great episodes, which is mostly due to the great cast and some outright great stories. That ’70s Show is without a doubt, a great sitcom.

The first season cast of That ’70s Show is fairly large, with eleven different characters. This series does well handling this large cast, in presenting their neurotic behaviors and quirks and their overall character development, as well as outlining their interactions. The cast is also presented in a manner that is attractive, which makes them all very likeable. It’s really hard not to love this cast.

The series’ main character is a teenage boy, Eric Forman (Topher Grace). He’s your average kid, although a bit geeky. It’s his life that the series revolves around. His parents Red (Kurtwood Smith) and Kitty (Debra Jo Rupp) join him in every episode. There relationship is comical, but a little unhealthy at times. Red doesn’t like to show his feelings towards his son, so he typically treats him like an idiot and quite frankly, sometimes Eric can be an idiot. While this may sound “bad” or “mean”, it comes off in a manner that’s comical and not cynical. It’s one of my favorite aspects of the series. I simply love the relationship that Eric and Red have. Between the two is Kitty, she typically tries her best to promote a healthy father/son relationship. In the episode “That Wresting Show” (guest starring The Rock) she’s mildly successful, when she gets them to go to an amateur wrestling match together. Eric’s sister, Laurie (Lisa Robin Kelly), while not officially on cast until season two, makes a few appearances that leave Eric’s friends drooling.One house down the street lives the Pinciotti family. Donna (Laura Prepon) is one of Eric’s childhood friends and his current love interest. In the first season their relationship evolves into something beyond friendship. It’s fun to watch them haphazardly venture into the issues of love, as two inexperienced teenagers. There are more than a couple of episodes that show just how comical love can be. For instance, in the episode “First Date”, Eric and Donna’s first date doesn’t go as well as planned when somebody’s ice tea turns out to be a long island ice tea! Donna’s parents, Bob (Don Stark) and Midge (Tanya Roberts) are the type of characters that are oblivious to the obvious. Bob gets put at the butt of a few jokes, with the best coming from Red. Midge is a stereotypical blonde trying to find herself as a Feminist. These two add quite a bit to the season, especially in episodes like “The Pill”. Bob doesn’t handle it well when he finds out his daughter is taking birth control pills.The rest of Eric’s friends are made up of Michael Kelso (Ashton Kutcher), a clueless dumbstruck pretty boy, Jackie Beulah Burkhart (Mila Kunis), a rich stuck-up snob with no shame, Steven Hyde (Danny Masterson), an average I hate everything kind of guy, and Fez (Wilmer Valderrama), a foreign exchange student who is learning the American way of life. Their interactions add a lot to the series. Hyde is a great character, because he’s so cynical and he’s constantly cracking jokes on his friends. Fez is always making you laugh, because his translation of English is sketchy. More frequently than not he misses a few things in translation, which results in a few funny statements. Jackie isn’t well liked by the gang. Her personality tends to drive people away, except for Kelso. He seems to be captivated by her beauty. For this reason, they’re behind a lot of Hyde’s jokes. Furthermore, Kelso just says and does some pretty stupid things that make you laugh. Together the cast provides some great characters that are both funny and likeable. Their interactions with each other are amazing, in just how they can turn boring daily situations into a laugh fest.I thought that this was a very good season. It’s all of the little things about the cast and their interactions that really make this a great comedy series. In addition, there are some outright great episodes. One of my favorite episodes of the season is “Streaking”. When President Ford decides to stop in Point Place, Eric and the gang see the opportunity to do something wild and crazy, streaking. I really enjoyed this episode because running around naked is funny. There’s no question about it. Another great episode is “Eric’s Buddy”, where Eric befriends one of the cool kids at school, 3rd Rock from the Sun’s Joseph Gordon-Levitt. However, friendship isn’t everything the new guy’s got in mind, as Eric soon finds out! For the fans of Star Wars, there’s a great parody episode, “A New Hope”. After Eric and the gang see Star Wars, a couple of them get a little too into it. So naturally, when Eric and Donna run into problems with their relationship, he dreams about them in a Star Wars setting. This is a great episode, because Eric really blows things out of proportion, which of course isn’t anything new. These are only a few examples of the great episodes that season one has to offer.Another great aspect about this series is its alternative look on life. In many of the episodes, we get a view of Eric and company’s lives while high. This aspect isn’t really about the drug use, but rather the funny aftermath. When Eric and his friends are high, they say some pretty stupid things. Of course, even when they’re not high they still say and do some pretty stupid things. In general, the dialogue is very good, which is another reason that the cast’s interactions are so funny. Some of the things they say and the jokes they make seem like pure genius. It’s also presented in manner that isn’t corny or cliched, but is bluntly put, comical.As for the stories in season two, there is more emphasis on story arcs than in season one. However, the focus is not really big. While they can play an important role in creating sticky situations for Eric and company, they aren’t so important that watching the episodes out of sequence could ruin your experience. Some of the story arcs build upon small life changing events from the first season and others are just themed from the common sitcom daily interactions.Firstly, Red being in and out of work becomes the backbone of several episodes. One of the funniest situations to come from season two brews from a soon to be jobless Red. In “Garage Sale”, my favorite episode of the season, the Formans have a garage sale. Kitty eagerly tries to get Eric and Hyde to participate in the sale. But, they both have their own agendas and aren’t too excited to help out. Eventually, Kitty convinces Hyde to sell brownies. Hyde being Hyde decides to make “special” brownies, and the special ingredient is marijuana. What really makes this a strong episode is who ends up eating the special brownies. This crazy situation allows the cast to experience a role reversal. It’s not everyday you get to see Red go from a hard ass to a stoned fool. Later into the season, Red gets another job as a manager at Pricemart. In “Red Gets Fired Up” something pretty rare in the world of That ’70s Show happens, Eric and Red bond.There are also some stories about love and relationships. One of the funniest long running stories with Kelso’s love triangle. In season one, Eric’s older sister Laurie put the moves on Kelso and in season two, the relationship gets taken up another notch. But where there’s Kelso, there’s Jackie and both girls have their eyes on him. The relationship theme continues with Eric and Donna exploring young love. “I Love Cake” is a good example, where Donna expresses her feelings of love for Eric. Like a fool, he tells her how much he loves cake. There is also some focus on the Pinciotti’s. Bob and Midge’s relationship starts go south. The best episode with this underling story is “Red’s Birthday”. Bob and Midge bring dates to Red’s birthday party. The catch is they still live together.Overall, this season does well playing off of reoccurring stories. As earlier mentioned, the story arcs play a role in setting up the situations, but they aren’t so significant you need to be familiar with them to enjoy the season. The episodes are good on their own merit. One very good example is “Halloween”. The episode takes a look into Red and Kitty’s past, before they had kids and Eric and the gang get into odds with each other when they start revealing very personal secrets. Another solid episode is “Holy Crap”. It marks the first appearance of guest star Kevin McDonald (Kid in the Hall) as Pastor Dave.

For season three, there are a lot of fun episodes and stories. The first bunch we’ll talk about have to do with relationships. In the first two seasons Kelso and Jackie have been an item. In season two Jackie found out Kelso cheated on her with Laurie and they broke up. In this season Jackie sets her eyes on Hyde. Despite Hyde’s expressed dislike of Jackie, she continually pursues him and he finally asks her out on date in “Jackie Bags Hyde”. They find out the chemistry isn’t quite there. Meanwhile, Kelso is trying to make things work with Laurie, but also still has feelings for Jackie. As for Fez, this season marks his first girlfriend. Midway into the season, he meets a girl named Caroline. Unfortunately for him, she turns out to be a bit crazy in the head. This eventually turns into the fun episode “Fez Dates Donna”, where Fez pretends to date Donna to get away from his crazy girlfriend.The other young lovebirds, Donna and Eric, are still together in this season. Many of the episodes are about their cozy little relationship. “Romantic Weekend” is a perfect episode about the couple. In it, Eric takes Donna away for a few days of romance. Unfortunately for Eric, he left the brochure for the bed and breakfast they are staying at on the counter and Red whisks Kitty away to the same place. When Eric and Red find out they’re staying in the same place, they try their best to pretend the other isn’t there, as not to disturb their romantic weekends. Of course nothing goes their way and when things get messed up, you’ll laugh. “Baby Fever” is another solid episode, where Eric and Donna image what their future will be like together. The reflection segments are an absolute riot.“Dine & Dash” is a fun episode, where Kelso treats his friends to an expensive lobster dinner. When the meal is over, he informs everyone they are going to leave without paying. One by one they trickle out of the restaurant, leaving poor Eric alone. “Holy Craps” sees the return of Pastor Dave (Kevin McDonald, Kids in the Hall) and it is a blast. Kitty gets Red, Eric, Kelso, and Hyde to help at a church fundraiser. To Kitty’s dismay, they abuse their posts. The episode also includes a hilarious performance from Cheers’ John Ratzenberger. Pastor Dave also shows up in “Eric’s Drunken Tattoo”. The episode has some great segments with Kitty, Red, and Dave.This season also has two episodes with the word panties in the title and they are unequivocally funny. In “Donna’s Panties”, Eric pulls down Donna’s pants in front of Fez, Hyde, and Kelso. She’s wearing big white cotton briefs and they start poking fun at her by calling her granny panties. It’s a Valentine’s Day Eric will never forget! The other episode “Eric’s Panties” has Eric afraid that Donna might be jealous of him because he is spending a lot of time with his attractive female lab partner. But she laughs at him and won’t believe an attractive girl like her would be interested, until she finds a pair of panties in the Vista CruiserSaving the best for last, “Canadian Road Trip” is the funniest episode this season has to offer. Eric, Fez, Kelso, and Hyde join Leo on a road trip into our northern neighbor, Canada. There the drinking age is lower and the boys can legally purchase beer. Unfortunately, Fez doesn’t have his green card and the Mounties working border patrol are less than willing to let them return to the states. They’re convinced they are smuggling illegal aliens. How this episode builds and the way it concludes is pretty damn funny. It’s a fun episode you’ll want to over and over again.Overall I was quite happy with season three. If you couldn’t tell from my reviews of season one or season two, I really love this show. The episodes in this season were just as rich, if not more, than what you find in past seasons. If you are looking to laugh over and over again, then season three of That ’70s Show has more than enough fun packed in its episodes.In the closing of season three, Eric and Donna broke up. Eric gave Donna a promise ring, which she couldn’t bring herself to wear because of its symbolism. As such, Eric reacted badly and ended their relationship. Season four picks up with Eric dealing with the breakup. Wayne Knight (Seinfeld, 3rd Rock From the Sun) guest stars in the season premiere episode “It’s a Wonderful Life” as a holy angel who shows Eric what life would like if Eric never dated Donna. The angel wants Eric to realize it is better to have loved and lost than it is to have never loved at all. Eric’s cynical attitude and Newton’s common antic performance make this a fun episode.In the next episode “Eric’s Depression” everybody tries to cheer Eric up and out of bed. The gang invites Eric to Fun Land, but he isn’t up for it. They end up going with him. Just how well Kelso fits into the consumer base of the park is a riot. Red also tries to repair Eric’s broken heart by giving him chores. They even share a touching heart-to-heart moment at the end. In “Pinciotti v. Forman”, Eric’s depression is better and he is up and about once again. Life is somewhat back to normal, except that Eric kicks Donna out of the basement while hanging out. This leads to Eric and Donna treating their friends like recently divorced couples do with their kids. They spoil everyone and try to make spending to with them better than the other.Another big story for the series takes place in “The Relapse”. The story is about Midge divorcing Bob. Midge left Bob and Donna to go to California because she was not happy with her life as a housewife. This sad and tragic event turns out to be fun. Hard ass Red is put in an uncomfortable position (being nice to Bob) several times over. The breakup also allows for a new recurring character to join the cast. Joanne Steupeck (Mo Gaffney) is a modern woman with a backbone. She makes for a fun character because she is more than willing to butt heads with Red.“Donna’s Story” is an episode where Donna writes a fictional story that is far too close to reality. It is about her relationship with Eric and after publishing it in the school paper everyone thinks he is a pig. In “Red & Stacey”, Red tries to fix Eric up with the new cashier at Pricemart. Unfortunately, she only has eyes for Red. What really makes this fun is how awkward Red gets and acts after he finds out about her feelings. Not to mention, how Eric and Kitty both react when they find out. Hilarious.“Jackie Says Cheese” is a fun episode because Jackie joins working America. Her father found out she is still dating Kelso and mandates if she continues to date him, he will cut her off financially. Torn between the most important things in her life, she chooses love and finds herself as the cheese girl at the Cheese Palace. In the later episode “Jackie’s Cheese Squeeze” she cheats on Kelso with her geeky manager. Despite Kelso having cheated on Jackie several other girls, he freaks out and breaks it off. They spend the rest of the season trying to repair their relationship.Fez starts dating big Rhonda in “Hyde Gets The Girl”, which is more or less a side story that didn’t have a huge impact on the season. There were some fun parts surrounding it, but it wasn’t Fez’s best moments. “Donna Dates a Kelso” is a pretty big episode for the season. Jackie convinces Donna she should get over Eric by dating other guys. She fixes him up with Kelso’s older brother Casey (Luke Wilson, Old School). Wilson gives a great performance throughout the season as Casey, a cool suave, egocentric lady’s man.This season continues to be an absolute blast with the characters working well together to produce some fun episodes. I especially enjoyed the various reoccurring and guest characters that appeared this season such as Luke Wilson, Richard Karn, Mo Gaffney, Kevin McDonald, and Wayne Knight. Fans of the series should really appreciate getting to sit through the entire fourth season and relive the Eric/Donna breakup, as well as the departure of Midge.In season five, the multi-season story arc continues to deal with Eric and Donna’s relationship. It hit a roadblock in season four, which was Donna’s new romantic love interest Casey (Luke Wilson). Casey and Donna were on and off, and it ended on a bad (but funny) note. Kelso and Jackie’s relationship was also at the fore and towards the end of the fourth season, they broke up. In the season four finale, Donna and Kelso hopped in Kelso’s van and drove to Malibu, California to get away from all of the drama in Point Place.In the opening of season five, summer is coming to an end and senior year is about to start. Eric considers what to do about Donna and decides to go after her, despite Red and Kitty forbidding him to do so. In the aftermath, Eric and Donna renew their romantic relationship and when they get back to Point Place, they are in for a world of trouble. Red takes the vista cruiser away from Eric and Bob puts Donna in private school. Throughout the remainder of the season, Eric and Donna’s love story remains a key development. It follows them into minor bouts of jealousy, an engagement, and college at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.The other leading season story is a love triangle with Kelso, Jackie, and Hyde. While Kelso was off in California spending time with his new girlfriend Annette (Jessica Simpson), Hyde and Jackie hooked up. It is an odd pairing, as the two have hated each other from day one. But over the summer, more or less from boredom, they found comfort in each other’s arms. The background story about how they got together is a riot, see episode “I Can’t Quit You Baby”. At first, Hyde and Jackie were just fooling around, but they both develop strong feelings for each other. Hyde does, especially, when Kelso comes back into the picture. Soon the three find themselves locked in a love triangle, as Jackie cares about both guys and she is not sure who she should be with.Complicating Jackie’s life even more are her parents, or rather the predicament they left her in. Jackie’s dad, Point Place City Councilman, is caught accepting a bribe and goes to prison. And Jackie’s mother is off partying in Mexico and has no desire to come home to care for her daughter. Jackie is left without a home and looks to her friends, Red, Kitty, and Bob for help. Besides the love triangle dealing with Jackie, Hyde and Kelso both get jobs at a hotel working in the kitchen. Kelso decides to become a police officer because he thinks it is the best way to stay pretty forever. He quits modeling and takes a job at the hotel. Hyde deals with the fact that Leo left Point Place without saying good. At the hotel, a new reoccurring character is introduced, Roy (Jim Gaffigan). Roy runs the kitchen and he offers a stupid-than-Kelso-character. Good for a quick cheap laugh.Fez joins the working force at the Department of Motor Vehicles. While at the DMV with Kelso, Fez is exposed to the kind of people who work there. He sees it as the “belle of the ball,” being able to boss people around and treat them like crap no matter their social-economical status or ethnic background. He gets a job there and pursues a relationship with his boss Nina (Joanna Canton). Nina is an overly neurotic character who loves her job at the DMV a little too much. There are some silly stories with Fez and Nina. The best is “Whole Lotta Love”, where Fez loses his virginity to Nina and his recounts of the event are a riot.The entire Foreman family goes through some troubling situations. First of all, Kitty announces she is pregnant in “What Is And What Should Never Be”. The idea of another kid puts Red into fret, and gives Eric a chance to be the man and set Red straight. Fun change of pace. But the newborn news becomes a sad story when Kitty finds out it is menopause. Throughout the season, Kitty struggles with her mood swings and the various situations that arise from Eric and Donna’s engagement. There are also some traumatic events for Kitty, Red, and Eric to deal with concerning Kitty’s parents Bea (Betty White) and Burt (Tom Poston). Laurie (Lisa Robin Kelly) also returns to the show for a couple of episodes. Notably in the season finale, she and Fez do the Unthinkable.

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Overall, season five presents some strong episodes and story arcs about the cast, their relationships with each other, and the all around goofy situations the get into. I particularly loved the dynamic between Eric and Red. The two were at odd ends for a portion of the season, and it made for some hilarious stories with the entire cast caught in the middle of it all. How both Grace and Smith act together is fantastic. The rest of the season’s events were done nicely as well. In the end, fans of the series and sitcom-goers should check out this season set.

Season six has a lot of different things going on for the gang (and a few new faces). The notable storylines include Red’s heart-attack, Donna and Eric’s relationship, Kelso as a police cadet, Fez getting his green card, and more. The season six stories continue to give That ’70s Show the edge that made it hilarious throughout the first five seasons.In the close of season five, Red had a heart-attack. After learning that his precious daughter Laurie (played by Christina Moore in season six) married Fez to help him become a United States citizen, his heart gave. This storyline is revisited in the season six premiere. Red comes home and he is under strict orders from the doctor to take it easy. For Red, it means no work, beer, tasty foods, or fun! Eric, who is preparing to leave for college with Donna, feels guilty as he sees his mother working herself silly trying to care for Red and pay the bills. Eric postpones college to stay at home until Red is in better health. At first, Donna is intent on going to college without Eric, but decides love is more important and stays in Point Place.Tying into Red’s heart-attack, the entire family has to deal with the post-marriage blues. Fez and Laurie’s marriage is far from happy. It is purely a favor on Laurie’s part, as she sleeps around to Fez’s dismay. Their uncanny romance becomes an issue when an INS Agent comes to investigate the validity of their marriage. Red, who opposes the marriage, poses Fez’s biggest threat. He wants to see them divorced. The humor comes from the situation and Red buckling to help Fez out. Later, he even tutors Fez in U.S. history to prepare for the test to get a green card. The two have a great chemistry together and carry the storylines about the marriage well.Eric and Donna’s relationship is, once again, at the center of everybody’s attention. This season they go through some major ups and downs as they prepare to tie the knot. The fun storylines include the couple lying to Pastor Dan (Billy Dee Williams) about being virgins, a fun venture in choosing gifts for the wedding registry, Donna giving up her dream to be Eric’s wife, moving into a trailer, and Eric ruining Donna’s wedding dress. The events that happen associated with their holy matrimony is a riot and part of what makes this season so much fun.Kelso is at the center of a couple big season changes. In season five, he decided the best way to stay pretty was to become a cop. This season Kelso is a police cadet and there are some hilarious stories with him, the police academy, and the rest of the gang. In addition to being a police cadet, Kelso has to face other life responsibilities when a new reoccurring character Brooke (Shannon Elizabeth) is introduced. She is a hot girl who works at the library. A few months ago, she and Kelso had a fling and now she’s pregnant with his baby. He has to woe her by showing her that he is capable of being a responsible individual.Another fun change this season is the addition of Brooke Shields. Shields plays Pamela, Jackie’s ditzy, sexy mother. When Jackie’s dad went to jail last season, Pamela went to Mexico. She returns to Point Place after her rich boyfriend ran out of money. She quickly latches on to Bob, who is rich, and it drives Jackie and Donna up the wall. Then there is Mitch Miller (Seth Green), who first appeared in season five, joins the cast for a few episodes. Mitch is Eric’s arch-nemesis and annoying as all hell. The catch is that everyone else seems to like him. He makes for a fun opponent to Eric, especially how much their geeky tendencies clash.The seventh season of That ’70s Show is the second to the last. It also marks the last season with actors Topher Grace and Ashton Kutcher as full season cast members. Both return in season eight as guest stars. Regardless, season seven is still just as f funny as the earlier seasons.In the beginning of season seven, there are two major focuses. The first major development is Eric and Donna coming to terms with their breakup and decision to not get married. They decide that they can still be together and date on less than serious terms. Eric also decides what he wants to do with his life. For the time being, absolutely nothing. He sells Donna’s engagement ring and plans to use the money to support his “year off”.The second early development and perhaps the biggest change for the season is Hyde’s new family. In the season six finale, Kitty found out that Hyde’s father was not his biological father. In “Let’s Spend The Night Together”, she arranges for Hyde to meet his real father, William Barnett (Tim Reid). Everyone is surprised when they first meet William, because he is black. Hyde also finds out he has a half-sister named Angie (Megalyn Echikunwoke).Both William and Angie play a role in the season, although Angie more so than William. Hyde gets to know his new family and even works in the family business, a chain of record stores. As the season continues, there are additional developments. Red buys the local muffler shop that went out of business. Fez gets a job at the local hair salon in “Beast Of Burden”. It is a little creepy, as Fez apparently has a fetish with touching hair. This job gives him an acceptable avenue to live out those desires. He also lands a date with a girl played by Lindsay Lohan. Kelso’s baby Samantha is born and he starts to re-think the way he treats women. Eric has to go back to school and take gym with Casey Kelso.In the latter half of the season, the focus moves to the Jackie-Hyde relationship and Eric’s future. Jackie starts to realize that Hyde may not want more out of their relationship. She is offered a job in Chicago and gives Hyde an ultimatum: marriage or else. Eric comes to realize in “Down The Road Apiece” what is in store for him if he does nothing with his life after meeting a thirty-something Star Wars geek. He decides to become a teacher. In order to get money for school, he signs up to teach in Africa for a year, which is hard for everyone to deal with, especially Donna.Overall, That ’70s Show’s seventh season makes for a decent collection of episodes. It’s sad to see Topher depart, but it was nice to see the show come back for on last season.

Season eight of That ’70s Show is the show’s final episodes. two lead actors Topher Grace and Ashton Kutcher left the show. There are still some fun moments, the goofy, slapstick comedy we have come to know and love feels forced at times.The season begins with a lot of changes for the cast. At the close of season seven, Hyde walked in on Jackie and Kelso in a comprising situation. Hyde disappeared and returns to Point Place a married man. While in a drunken stupor, he married Samantha, a stripper. She comes to Point Place to as new reoccurring character who helps introduce some awkward situations that tend not to be funny. Despite Hyde finding love, everything goes back to normal.About the same time Hyde returns to Point Place, he hires Randy (Josh Meyers) to work at the record store. Randy quickly integrates into the Point Place bunch and replaces Eric/Kelso. (Eric left at the end of season seven to go to Africa.) In the first few episodes, Kelso is still present. He continues to offer laughs with his dumb as bricks personality. However, he departs from the show after losing his job as a cop and deciding to move to Chicago to be closer to his daughter.After the initial episodes and the new changes settle, it is business as usual for the Point Place crew. Hyde explores married life with his sultry wife. Fez obsesses over the opposite sex and even gets a couple girlfriends — one of which is an older woman. Donna deals with her long distance relationship with Eric — which goes does not work out. Randy quickly fits into the group and starts a relationship with Donna. Jackie has a short-lived career in television with an annoying talk show host and realizes she is in love with Fez. Red retires and sells his muffler shop. Kitty continues to be overly neurotic and supportive to everyone. Leo does lots of drugs and says weird things that make everyone laugh. Overall, the season’s events continue to offer a similar goofiness as past seasons. Topher and Ashton come back for the finale which leads the cast into the 80’s as the decade comes to an end

REVIEW: JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED – SEASON 1-2

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CAST (VOICES)

Kevin Conroy (Batman: The Killing Joke)
George Newbern (Superman/Shazam)
Susan Eisenberg (Justice League: Doom)
Phil LaMarr (Futurama)
Michael Rosenbaum (Smallville)
Carl Lumbly (Alias)
Maria Canals Barrera (Camp Rock)

Image result for justice league unlimitedRECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Kin Shriner (Manhunter)
Nicholle Tom (Gotham)
Dana Delaney (Desperate Housewives)
Mike Farrell (Vanishing Act)
Josh Hutcherson (The Hunger Games)
Christopher McDonald (Fanboys)
Dakota Fanning (Taken)
Olivia d’Abo (Conan The Destroyer)
Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad)
Edward Asner (Elf)
Patrick Bauchau (Panic Room)
Michael York (Logans Run)
Charles Napier (The Silence of The Lambs)
Robert Foxworth (Syriana)
Cree Summer (Batman Beyond)
Billy West (Futurama)
Jeremy Piven (Mr. Selfridge)
Lori Loughlin (Full House)
Robert Picardo (Stargate: Atlantis)
Clancy Brown (Highlander)
John C. McGinley (Highlander II)
Will Friedle (Batman Beyond)
Oded Fehr (The Mummy)
CCH Pounder (Avatar)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
Michael Beach (The Abyss)
Gina Torres (Firefly)
Ben Browder (Farscape)
Peter MacNicol (Ghostbusters 2)
Adam Baldwin (Chuck)
Nestor Carbonell (The Dark Knight)
Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina: TTW)
Denis Farina (Get Shorty)
Virginia Maden (Sideways)
Morena Baccarin (Gotham)
Ioan Grufford (Ringer)
Farrah Forke (Lois & Clark)
Michael Dorn (Star Trek: DS9)
Dick Miller (Gremlins)
Michael Jai White (Arrow)
Armin Shimerman (Star Trek: DS9)
Juliet Landau (Buffy)
Alan Rachins (Showgirls)
Robert Englund (A Nightmare On Elm Street)
Jason Bateman (The Ex)
Glenn Shadix (Beetlejuice)
Jerry O’Connell (Sliders)
Nathan Fillion (Slither)
Elizabeth Pena (The Incredibles)
Hector Elizondo (The Princess Diaries)
Jeffrey Combs (Gotham)
Amy Acker (The Cabin In The Woods)
Robert Forster (Dragon Wars)
Lauren Tom (Futurama)
Powers Boothe (Agents of SHIELD)
Seymour Cassel (Rushmore)
James Remar (Flashforward)
John DiMaggio (Futurama)
Malcolm McDowell (Heroes)
Ron Perlman (Hellboy)
Alexis Denisof (Dollhouse)
Mark Hamill (Star Wars)
David Ogden Stiers (Two Guys and a Girl)
Sab Shimono (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3)
Ted Levine (The Silence of The Lambs)
Michael Ironside (Total Recall)
Daniel Dae Kim (Lost)

The first two seasons of Justice League were fantastic. Packed with action, humor and great storytelling the world of DC’s heroes came to life thanks to the collaborative efforts of the folks behind the rest of Warner Brothers’ successful cartoons. The show focused on the adventures of Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Flash, Hawkgirl and J’onn (the Martian Manhunter). They spent most of their time fighting established villains and trying to save the world from impending doom as you’d expect. When Justice League Unlimited (the show’s sequel series) was released it shook up the formula a bit and quite frankly, really felt like a new show.


The reason behind this different atmosphere was the change in the cast. The main seven characters were still kicking around but their ranks had swelled since the end of the original series. The basic premise was that the Justice League felt they could do better with more members. Many hands make light work and all that. Therefore anyone with superpowers that could do some good was offered a spot on the team.

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Not every character gets their chance in the spotlight but it certainly fleshed out the show with some of DC’s more obscure characters. Most of these episodes focus on the original characters though many of the rookies become involved in the storytelling. Being a longtime comic book fan, seeing more of these characters was definitely a thrill. Getting Green Arrow added to the ranks was probably the best addition to the show in my opinion, but Supergirl, Booster Gold, Captain Atom, Black Canary and The Question definitely helped round things out. In all more characters were added to the series than the show actually featured so you can imagine the insanity that ensues. Many of these characters do get washed out thanks to the lack of coverage, but it’s not handled to the point that they become obscure or disrupt the quality of the show.

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There  are several episodes that made an impression on me. “Fearful Symmetry” was a very solid story that told a tale about Supergirl and really fleshed out her character. In it she is basically cloned and begins to have dreams that mirror the actions of her sinister clone. Green Arrow and Question get involved in order to help her out and we got to see some interesting facets of the DC Universe.


For my money “The Greatest Story Never Told” was probably my favorite episode. It doesn’t have a lot to do with anything and it’s a fairly weak story but it features Booster Gold as its main character. In case you are unfamiliar with Booster he’s basically a smartass guy from the 25th century who travels back in time for fame and fortune. He’s accompanied by a wisecracking robot named Skeets and finds himself not feeling the love from his other JLU teammates. In this episode he’s given the noble duty of crowd control while the League fights to save the world. There’s nothing particularly great about the story it’s just that I love Booster’s character and quite honestly, this episode was hilarious all around.
“Kid Stuff” was another fun episode that featured Morgan la Fey’s son getting his prissy little hands on a powerful amulet. The item makes him more powerful than his mother and he casts a spell that sends all adults to another dimension. In order to set things right Morgan turns Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and Green Lantern into kids so they can once again enter the world. As their younger selves the heroes start to let their juvenile side out and it’s funny to see Batman and Wonder Woman banter as if they were childhood sweethearts.

Overall Justice League Unlimited was a great show.  Any comic book fan, or viewer who enjoyed Timm’s other series, definitely owes it to themselves to check this set out. This release offers 26 episodes.


Unfortunately, as with all good things, Justice League Unlimited came to end. The show was cancelled before its time but luckily the crew was able to eek out another thirteen episodes before it went off the air. This season’s collection of superhero antics follows an episodic pattern but keeps an ongoing plot bubbling beneath the surface. The two-part adventures from the earlier sessions of Justice League went away with this season but the fact that characters reference previous episodes helps to keep everything connected.

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In the first episode of the final season of Unlimited Lex Luthor is on the run from the law after breaking out of jail. The affects of being joined with Brainiac are still being felt by him and throughout the episode you’ll often see Luthor talk to himself because he sees Brainiac standing next to him. When Gorilla Grodd offers Luthor a piece of Brainiac old baldy finds it hard to resist. He agrees to join Grodd’s Legion of Doom and work together with fellow supervillains to take down the Justice League. This set up continues throughout the season and you’ll find bits and pieces of it in each of the thirteen episodes.

In the second episode of this season the shadow of the Thanagarian conflict lingers as an archaeologist discovers something an Egypt. Shayera (Hawkgirl) is lured there by Carter Hall who tries to convince her that he is Hawkman. This was a nice throwback to the prior season and early Hawkman comic books but was certainly not the best episode in the set.

One of my favorite episodes from his collection easily has to be “Flash and Substance”. Four villains from Flash’s past team up to take down the red blur and they plan on doing it on the opening night of his new museum. Batman and Orion tag along with Flash in order to ensure that he’s ok. The writing in this particular episode was easily the funniest that Justice League ever produced. I particularly enjoyed the villains all sitting around the table at a dive bar talking about making their mortgage payments and whatnot.


Anyone who has ever considered themselves to be a comic book fan at some point in their lives will find something to love about Justice League Unlimited. From the very first season through the last of Unlimited the series offered quality unlike any other. This is a definitive comic book cartoon and stands shoulder to shoulder with WB’s Superman and Batman animated adventures. If you have been collecting the show to date then you’ll be pleased to know that the thirteen episodes featured here are as good, if not better in some cases, as what came before it.

REVIEW: BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD – SEASON 1-3

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MAIN CAST

Diedrich Bader (Vampires Suck)
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RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST STARS

Dee Bradley Baker (American Dad)
Will Friedle (Batman Beyond)
Jason Marsden (Full House)
James Arnold Taylor (Star Wars: The Clone Wars)
Marc Worden (Ultimate Avengers)
Grey DeLisle (The Replacements)
John Dimaggio (Futurama)
Tom Kenny (Super hero Squad)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)
Corey Burton (Critters)
R. Lee Ermey (Full Metal Jacket)
Scott Menville (Teen Titans)
Vyvan Pham (Generator Rex)
Bumper Robinson (Sabrina: TTW)
Mikey Kelley (TMNT)
Michael Rosenbaum (Smallville)
Will Wheaton (Powers)
Xander Berkeley (Kick-Ass)
Loren Lester (Batman: TAS)
Phil Morris (Smallville)
Jeff Bennett (James Bond Jr.)
Oded Fehr (The Mummy)
Ellen Greene (Pushing Daisies)
Armin Shimmerman (Star Trek: DS9)
Tara Strong (Batman: The Killing Joke)
Tom Everett Scott (Scream: The Series)
Billy West (Futurama)
Jeffrey Tambor (The Hangover)
Paul Reubens (Gotham)
Diane Delano (Jeepers Creepers II)
Peter Woodward (Crusade)
Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother)
James Remar (Flashforward)
Jeffrey Combs (Gothman)
Ioan Grufford (Ringer)
J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
William Katt (Carrie)
Clancy Brown (Highlander)
Tress MacNeille (Futurama)
Hynden Walch (The Batman)
Kevin Conroy (Batman: TAS)
Mark Hamill (Batman: The Killing Joke)
Adam West (BAtman 60s)
Julie Newmar (Batman 60s)
Dana Delany (Body of Proof)
Tony Todd (Chuck)
Peter Scolari (Gotham)
Cree Summer (Batman Beyond)
Steve Blum (Wolverine and Thje X-Men)
John Wesley Shipp (The Flash)
Alan Tudyk (Firefly)
Olivia D’Abo (Conan The Destroyer)
Mae Whitman (Independence Day)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Vanessa Marshall (Star Wars: Revels)
John Michael Higgins (Still Waiting)
Michael Jai White (Arrow)
Morena Baccarin (Gotham)
Tippi Hedren (The Birds)
Gary Owens (That 70s Show)
Ted McGinley (Highlander 2)
Henry Winkler (Happy Days)

There’s a gloriously meta moment in the back half of this season of Batman: The Brave and the Bold where the show’s producers are raked over the coals at Comic-Con. One of the twentysomethings in the crowd grouses and groans about how the Caped Crusader in the cartoon isn’t his Batman, and…well, he’s not wrong. DC’s comics anymore are joylessly grim and gritty…22 monthly pages of misery and scowling and torture and dismemberment and death and high collars and way too much crosshatching. Batman: The Brave and the Bold, meanwhile, is defined by its vivid colors and clean, thick linework. It’s a series whose boundless imagination and thirst for high adventure make you feel like a six year old again, all wide-eyed and grinning ear to ear.


You know all about The Dark Knight’s war on crime, and in The Brave and the Bold , he’ll duke it out against any badnik, anywhere. He doesn’t go it alone, either, with every episode pairing Batman up with at least one other DC superhero. Heck, to keep it interesting, The Brave and the Bold shies away from the obvious choices like Superman and Wonder Woman. Instead, you get more interesting team-ups like Blue Beetle (more than one, even!), Elongated Man, Wildcat, Mister Miracle, Kamandi, and B’wana Beast.
Other animated incarnations of Batman have been rooted in something close enough to reality. Sure, you might have androids and the occasional Man-Bat, but they tried to veer away from anything too fantastic. The Brave and tbe Bold has free reign to do just about whatever it wants. One week, maybe you’ll get an adventure in the far-flung reaches of space with a bunch of blobby alien amoebas who mistake Batman for Blue Beetle’s sidekick. The next might offer up Tolkien-esque high fantasy with dragons and dark sorcery. Later on, Aquaman and The Atom could play Fantastic Voyage inside Batman’s bloodstream, all while the Caped Crusader is swimming around in a thirty-story walking pile of toxic waste. He could be in a Western or a post-apocalyptic wasteland or a capes-and-cowls musical or even investigate a series of grisly something-or-anothers alongside Sherlock Holmes in Victorian England.

Batman has markedly different relationships with every one of those masked heroes. There’s the gadget geekery with an earlier incarnation of the Blue Beetle. With the younger, greener-but-still-blue Beetle, Batman takes on more of a mentor role.

More of a stern paternal figure for Plastic Man, and a rival for Green Arrow. Sometime it might not even be the most pleasant dynamic, such as a decidedly adult Robin who doesn’t feel like he can fully step outside the long shadow that Batman casts.

There are some really unique takes on iconic (and not so iconic!) DC superheroes here, and far and away the standout is Aquaman. This barrel-chested, adventure-loving braggart is my favorite incarnation of the king of the seven seas, and if Aquaman ever scores a cartoon of his own, I hope he looks and acts a lot like this. Oh, and The Brave and the Bold does a spectacular job mining DC’s longboxes for villains too, and along with some of the familiar favorites, you get a chance to boo and hiss at the likes of Kanjar Ro, The Sportsmaster, Kite Man, Gentleman Ghost, Chemo, Calendar ManKing, Crazy Quilt, and Shrapnel. The Brave and the Bold delivers its own versions of Toyman, Vandal Savage, and Libra while it’s at it, the latter of whom has the closest thing to a season arc that the series inches towards.

Batman: The Brave and the Bold is every bit as fun and thrilling as you’d expect from a series where every episode’s title ends with an exclamation point. Each installment is fat-packed with action, and the series has a knack for piling it on in ways I never saw coming. Even with as imaginative and off-the-walls as The Brave and the Bold can get, it still sticks to its own internal logic, so the numerous twists, turns, and surprises are all very much earned.

The majority of the episodes have a cold open not related to the remainder of the episode. Despite its episodic nature, if you’re expecting a big storyline in these 26 episodes, you’re going to be pretty disappointed as the extent of an overarching story in the season is the occasional villain that appears more than once, like Starro, but that’s really the only connecting bridge between episodes.

Season 2 contains one of my favorite episodes of not only this particular season, but probably in the entire series, “Chill of the Night!”, which goes back to Batman’s origins as Bruce Wayne learns more about the man who murdered his parents, turning him into the crime-fighter he would become, it’s one of the most well known origin stories in media, ever, but it’s done so well here. Another reason I love this episode is my blinding nostalgia for the voice cast.

The original 1960’s Batman, Adam West, guest stars as Batman’s father, Thomas Wayne, while Julie Newmar, who starred opposite of West as Catwoman from the original Batman TV show, plays Batman’s mother, Martha Wayne. My favorite Batman of all time, theatrical or not, Kevin Conroy, the voice of Batman from Batman: The Animated Series and various other series/movies/games, voices the Phantom Stranger. Lastly, the baddie of the episode, The Spectre, is voiced by none other than Mark Hamill, the definitive voice of the Joker.

The Episodes in season 3 are wildly imaginative; so much so that purists will probably be put off, at least initially. They range from “Night of the Batmen”, where batman is incapacitated and it is up to Aquaman, Green Arrow, Captain Marvel, and Plastic Man to don the cowl, and keep gotham safe. As weird as that may sound, this episode is pure fun, and a joy to watch. Other stand outs are the never before seen in the states “The Mask of Matches Malone”, “Shadow of the Bat”, “Scorn of the Star Sapphire”, and “Powerless”.

Special mention has to be made of the final episode of the series however, “Mitefall”. In this meta episode, Batmite does a fantastic job breaking down why the series is ending, and the disconnect of the so-called “purists”, whose baseless, closed minded, ignorance eventually doomed this excellent series.

When all is said and done, we received three outstanding, and criminally underrated, seasons and it is a joy to see.