I just love The Batman TV Series. Got a boxed set of Series IV a few days back. I've been watching some episodes the past few nights and I'm now down to the last CD. The animated series is just as good as Batman: Arkham Asylum, the video game - or is it the other way around? After all, the video game is based on the series.
Gotham City and its inhabitants are so surreal. Batman deals with criminals that have turned insane, people just like you and me, but with unique conditions which have made them extremely perverted. Some become cured in the end (in the case of The Ventriloquist). When Carlo played Arkham Asylum, he showed me the patient bios of the patients locked up in the Arkham Asylum. The personalities are so intriguing. In the cartoon series, the bios were fleshed out. My favorite female villains have always been: Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn.
Of these three, I feel the most sorry for Harley. Her only fault was that she fell in love with the wrong guy. She became crazy at the process (just like her man: The Joker).
But the character I love the most in the series is not Batman: it has to be a girl, none other than Barbara Gordon, the Batgirl.
In the latter series, Batgirl becomes crippled because of the Joker and will be left to using a wheel chair. Of course, I haven't watched this latter series and will be brokenhearted if I do. Barbara is the daughter of Gotham City's Police Commissioner James "Jim" Gordon. She works as a Systems and Data Analyst for the Police Headquarters. At night, she patrols Gotham City streets with Batman, fighting crime side-by-side with him. She also has a soft spot in her heart for Night Hawk, a.k.a. Richard "Dick" Grayson, who used to fill the role of Robin, Batman's sidekick. In the Arkham Asylum game, Batgirl becomes "Oracle", a wheel-chair borne computer expert, who helps out Batman with her superb tech skills.
Another intriguing character in Series 4 is Tim Drake, a.k.a. the new Robin. Unfortunately, its kind of hard to picture Robin without associating him with Dick Grayson, the original Robin whom Bruce Wayne met in the circus. Timothy Drake is the son of one of Two-Face's henchman. When his dad died, Tim sort of put himself under Bruce Wayne's wing, so to speak, when Batman saved him from being killed by Two-Face:
Gotham's villains are just as intriguing and mysterious as the Caped Crusader himself. One cannot mention Batman without mentioning his arch-nemesis, The Joker:
Genius or insane? The Joker is incurably out of his mind but with the vast intellectual powers of a mad genius. I haven't watched The Dark Knight with Heath Ledger's Joker, but will do so, very soon, out of my curiosity of Gotham City's madmen. It also helps that talented Mark Hamil, who played Luke Skywalker, provided The Joker's voice in the Arkham Asylum game and the animated series.
The one villain that scares me the most, however, is the man of fear himself - Dr. Jonathan Crane, The Scarecrow:
Able to manipulate fear in people with his gas formula, Dr. Crane can make you completely fearless, and can bring your worst fears to life. He also dims the line between reality and unreality, as I've seen in the Arkham Asylum game. As an added bonus, The Scarecrow also has a horribly disfigured appearance. What scares me the most is not his ability to bring out one's worst fears, but his ability to dispel all of one's fears. Imagine living completely fearless of anything. It will kill you in the end.
There is more to say about the characters of Gotham City. Unfortunately, I still know little about them. Now, I have become a fan! I can only wonder how Gotham City will become in the next few years.
Pictures have been taken from various sources off the net.