DCAU #73: Avatar

IN THIS ONE... Batman and Talia try to prevent Ra's al Ghul from learning an immortal Egyptian queen's secrets.

CREDITS: Written by Michael Reaves; directed by Kevin Altieri.

REVIEW: Ra's al Ghul returns and with him an international flavor that turns the show less into a James Bond flick this time than an Indiana Jones adventure. And perhaps that's why the lighting in the mummy's tomb gives Batman's costume sepia tones (I like it), though otherwise, I'm left wondering if this was the best use of Ra's. His grand plans about regenerating the Earth and finding an heir are reduced to him looking for a death ray or something, and... the secret of immortality? I thought he already had that. And given that the nasty Egyptian queen he finds comes out of a Lazarus Pit, well... She does have other magics, and almost sucks him dry, but he's still playing an Indy villain, and a stupid one at that, destroying ancient artifacts he believes he needs by flailing about sarcophagi and such.

And it had started so well too. The opening sequence, set in 1898, sells the flashback as a musical interlude with no sound effects. Beautifully clear action. Once we get to the present day, there are still some cool moments, like Batman surviving a snake bite by the skin of his teeth, but the story teeters on the edge of being the "bad matinée serial" Bruce Wayne mentions (oops, don't!). Ra's magical recovery doesn't even make use of cool animation, and it's just one trap after another. Still, there's a good bit with Batman saving Ubu's life and getting his saved in return. Well, sort of. I'm sure he'll make it out of the desert safely with that one waterskin.

IN THE COMICS: I'm sure those ectoplasmic manifestations looking like Glop the Mop from the '60s "Mod" Teen Titans series is just a coincidence.

SOUNDS LIKE: Thoth Khepera is voiced by Nichelle Nichols, Lt. Uhura herself.

REWATCHABILITY: Medium - There are some very good moments (like the opener), but Ra's is essentially wasted and lobotomized in this dumb matinée serial.

4 comments:

American Hawkman said...

This has "Hawkman story" written all over it.

LiamKav said...

Considering your name, are you saying that that's a good or a bad thing? :)

American Hawkman said...

Yes. :) Seriously, it would have worked better for a hero with a connection to the era. (And let us never forget Hawkman killed what had to be Ras Al Ghul in Flash Comics #4 in the 40s.)

LiamKav said...

You'd think Talia would at least have dumped Batman the supplies off of the mule. Also, I spent this entire episode convinced Talia was in on the plan. I guess I'm not a very trusting person.

 

Blog Archive

Category

5 Things to Like Activities Advice Alien Nation Aliens Say the Darndest Things Alpha Flight Amalgam Ambush Bug Animal Man anime Aquaman Archetypes Archie Heroes Arrowed Asterix Atom Avengers Awards Babylon 5 Batman Battle Shovel Battlestar Galactica Black Canary BnB 2-in1 Books Booster Gold Buffy Canada Captain America Captain Marvel Cat CCGs Charlton Circles of Hell Comics Comics Code Approved Conan Contest Cooking Crisis Daredevil Dating Kara Zor-El Dating Lois Lane Dating Lucy Lane Dating Princess Diana DCAU Deadman Dial H Dice Dinosaur Island Dinosaurs Director Profiles Doctor Who Doom Patrol Down the Rabbit Hole Dr. Strange Encyclopedia Fantastic Four Fashion Nightmares Fiasco Films Within Films Flash Flushpoint Foldees French Friday Night Fights Fun with Covers Galleries Game design Gaming Geekly roundup Geeks Anonymous Geekwear Gimme That Star Trek Godzilla Golden Age Grant Morrison Great Match-Ups of Science Fiction Green Arrow Green Lantern Hawkman Hero Points Podcast Holidays House of Mystery Hulk Human Target Improv Inspiration Intersect Invasion Invasion Podcast Iron Man Jack Kirby Jimmy Olsen JLA JSA Judge Dredd K9 the Series Kirby Motivationals Krypto Kung Fu Learning to Fly Legion Letters pages Liveblog Lonely Hearts Podcast Lord of the Rings Machine Man Motivationals Man-Thing Marquee Masters of the Universe Memes Memorable Moments Metal Men Metamorpho Micronauts Millennium Mini-Comics Monday Morning Macking Movies Mr. Terrific Music Nelvana of the Northern Lights Nightmare Fuel Number Ones Obituaries oHOTmu OR NOT? Old52 One Panel Outsiders Panels from Sheena Paper Dolls Play Podcast Polls Questionable Fridays Radio Rants Reaganocomics Recollected Red Bee Red Tornado Reign Retro-Comics Reviews Rom RPGs Sandman Sapphire & Steel Sarah Jane Adventures Saturday Morning Cartoons SBG for Girls Seasons of DWAITAS Secret Origins Podcast Secret Wars SF Silver Age Siskoid as Editor Siskoid's Mailbox Space 1999 Spectre Spider-Man Spring Cleaning ST non-fiction ST novels: DS9 ST novels: S.C.E. ST novels: The Shat ST novels: TNG ST novels: TOS Star Trek Suicide Squad Supergirl Superman Supershill Swamp Thing Tales from Earth-Prime Team Horrible Teen Titans That Franchise I Never Talk About The Prisoner The Thing Then and Now Theory Thor Thursdays of Two Worlds Time Capsule Timeslip Tintin Torchwood Tourist Traps of the Forgotten Realms Toys Turnarounds TV V Waking Life Warehouse 13 Websites What If? Who's This? Whoniverse-B Wikileaked Wonder Woman X-Files X-Men Zine