For millions of fans, the quintessential version of DC Comics’ Dark Knight is the one from Batman: The Animated Series. Produced by Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, and Alan Burnett, the show ran for over 100 episodes in the ’90s. It spun off Batman Beyond, Superman: The Animated Series, and Justice League Unlimited. And it famously introduced the world to one Harley Quinn. Now, DC Comics is bringing back the world of B:TAS for a new comic book series from two of the show’s original creators, as announced by Entertainment Weekly.
Return to the world of BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES in BATMAN: THE ADVENTURES CONTINUE — a new digital-first series beginning this April ? @EW shares a first look: https://t.co/bsDnivDoBQ pic.twitter.com/GqZq2YenF4
— Batman (@DCBatman) February 13, 2020
This new six-issue miniseries will be called Batman: The Adventures Continue, and will be written by the returning TV duo of Paul Dini and Alan Burnett. Illustrating this series will be artist Ty Templeton, who drew many issues of the original Batman Adventures tie-in comic series back in the day. His art style perfectly evokes the look and designs of B:TAS producer Bruce Timm maybe more than any other artist, so this creative team is very much a dream team to fans of the classic cartoon series.
DC Comics/ Dan Mora
Perhaps the coolest thing about this new series for longtime fans is that it will be introducing some classic comic book elements to the B:TAS world, elements that they never got around to in the original show. Most notably, the character of Jason Todd. Comic book fans know Jason as the second Robin, who famously died at the hands of the Joker. He was later resurrected, and became the vigilante called the Red Hood. But on B:TAS, they went straight from the Dick Grayson version of Robin to the third Boy Wonder, Tim Drake. Not only that, they gave Tim a lot of Jason’s personality traits and backstory. How they will retcon Jason Todd to fit into this universe certainly has this old-school fan intrigued.
DC Comics/Ty Templeton and Monica Kubina
Another Batman comic book character that B:TAS never got around to was the mercenary Deathstroke. Although he appeared as “Slade” in the Teen Titans animated show, he never faced off against Batman or Nightwing, two of his biggest adversaries from the comics. He’ll be introduced into this series as well. And another popular Gotham hero from the world of the comics will be debuting in the B:TAS world, as Azrael will show up too. He’ll be on a deadly mission for the Order of St. Dumas, and will have a confrontation with the Bat-family. And Dini explained that there will be another mystery villain with a deep hatred of the Caped Crusaders, watching Batman and his partners from a distance.
The first issue of this six part mini-series will deal with the fallout of the beloved Batman/Superman crossover episode “World’s Finest,” which sees Lex Luthor return to Gotham City. And as for when this series is said to take place in the canon, it looks like it will happen right after we last saw the Gotham Knights in the ’90s Batman: The New Adventures iteration of the series. So before the flashbacks that saw Tim Drake’s Robin get put through the ringer by the Joker, as seen in the Batman Beyond animated film Return of the Joker.
The purpose for this new series is as a tie-in to several new B:TAS products coming from DC over the next year, including an action figure line done in the style of the classic show. But here’s hoping these new stories are so well received that DC and Warner Brothers adapt them for animation for the DC Universe streaming service. How cool would it be in there were simply new episodes added to the series after twenty years?
Batman: The Adventure Continues hits your local comic book shop on May 6, 2020. Digital-first chapters will be released in April. It will feature covers by Dave Johnson with variant covers by Dan Mora.
Featured Image: DC Comics/Dave Johnson