Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Post Game: Batman: The Brave and the Bold -- Inisde the Outsiders

Batman: The Brave and The Bold -- "Inside the Outsiders"

"Yeah! What are Batman's happiest thoughts??" -- Black Lightning

"Inside the Outsiders" opens up with Green Arrow and Batman tied up to be lowered into a pit of wild cats by Catwoman. Now, I have to admit, I love the old-school Catwoman purple dress get-up and was pleased as punch when the creators of the show went with this costume choice. She has robbed a museum, of course to steal some golden cat statue. There is some banter between Batman and Catwoman, though GA thinks Bats and Catwoman are flirting (they might as well be), but Batman was distracting her and he cuts his and Arrow's bonds. The writers really displayed their chemistry well here, invoking the relationship between Batman and Catwoman from the 1960s live-action show. Batman and Catwoman spar for a bit and eventually he manages to tie up Catwoman using her own whip. Catwoman escapes but leaves her number with Batman. Ahh, true love...

After the theme song, we see Batman running and dodging a gauntlet set up inside Psycho Pirate's lair where he has the Outsiders in captivity. Pirate has some sort of device that is feeding off of their emotions, and giving him strength. Cunning and disciplined as always, Batman uses this same device on himself to enter a sort of dreamworld to find the young team and rescue them. First up we see Katana's origin. As a young girl in her native Japan, she had revealed the whereabouts of a prized sword to her master's enemy and is ordered to hide while her master, Takahiro, deals with the foe. She witnesses her sensei's death at the hands of his attacker, and Batman is trying to snap her out of the dream and make her realize this was not her fault. She is seeking revenge in the dream and that is, of course, making Psycho Pirate stronger since her rage is so intense. Batman stops her from killing the foe and they begin fighting each other. It's a brief sparring between the two with Batman coming up on top, and Katana comes to her senses. With that, Batman and Katana are able to move on to the next Outsider in need, Black Lightning. Mindful of Lightning's rough background with an impoverished upbringing, Batman prepares young Katana for a potentially bleak dreamworld, only...

The two enter BL's mind and find that he is outraged by the most mundane everyday things. Sprinkles on coffee, white after Labor Day, dogs using fire hydrants to do their business (apparently that last trauma cost Lightning a choice pair of sneakers), anything earns his electric scorn. Batman tries to calm him down, but nothing is helping. He's even angered by Batman's cape. While saving a bystander, Katana runs into Pirate and lowers her weapon. To further enrage Lightning, Pirate brings to life an annoying TV kid's show character to life to attack the heroes, a sort of Barney the Dinosaur creation in the form of unicorn. Batman convinces his teenaged charge (no pun intended) to refocus his rage and he conforms to Batman's lesson on calmness. Batman and the Outsiders succeeding now two out of three, Metamorpho is next and he doesn't look happy.

The dreamworld city they enter is destroyed and Metamorpho, taking various elemental shapes is continuously wrecking havoc. He becomes Godzilla-sized and his teammates are trying to figure out why. Turns out Psycho Pirate is taunting him and spreading lies in his ears about how Black Lightning and Katana call him names. Is this elementary school?? They try to subdue him and reason with him, reminding him that he isn't an outcast. BL is the first to talk, but Pirate keeps at it and Metamorpho becomes even bigger and continues to attack his friends while Batman goes after Pirate. When Pirate thinks he can drain Batman, he punches him trying to take him down. Katana actually speaks up and she talks to Morpho about why they formed the Outsiders and that he is not alone. Finally convinced by his friends, Metamorpho eventually withdraws and they share a hug. Back at Psycho Pirate's laboratory, Batman escapes from his "dream pod." He sees Pirate doing the same and flips a switch that appears to have killed them. Turns out they weren't in the real lab at all! Pirate was in Batman's mind all along! In order to physically take down the Pirate once and for all, Batman uncharacteristically channels his outwardly happy thoughts, issuing a series of blows that eventually defeats him. Refreshed since they're now out of their respective dream states, Black Lightning and the rest are ready to go at Psycho Pirate some more. But seeing that Batman is ready to take the high road with their defeated foe, the Outsiders wisely relent and decide that it's best to let the police deal with him.

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