“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”
The newest entry in the DC Direct franchise of straight to video animated superhero movies hits an all-time low with “Batman and Harley Quinn.”
After a string of subpar releases in the once stellar DC Direct Universe, “Batman and Harley Quinn” ranks at the bottom. The script by Jim Krieg and Bruce Timm is a complete mess filled with overt sexuality and over the top use of swear words. These elements make the film too mature for kids and too ridiculous for adults. To be honest I have no idea who this film was created for or why it even exists.
The film starts out on the right track but quickly turns into a loopy comedic sex romp that is cringe worthy to say the least. Do we really need Harley Quinn to reference Nightwing’s ever expanding manhood after she herself strips down to her underwear? It’s just gratuitous. Then add in the jokes about sex toys running out of batteries and Harley farting in the Batmobile and this feels like a script a bunch of drunken fratboys dreamed up after a Friday night bender.
The animation style is reminiscent of 1997’s “The New Batman Adventures” which was a spin-off of “Batman: The Animated Series.” The production value on an artistic level is high and director Sam Liu does a fine job and keeps the action and story moving along at a brisk pace. Unfortunately his great work is lost because of the poor script.
This time out the role of Harley Quinn is voiced by Melissa Rauch, best known for her work on the small screen as Bernadette in the “Big Bang Theory.” Rauch is okay in the role but she is no Arleen Sorkin! Why would you bring back Kevin Conroy as Batman and Loren Lester as Nightwing but not Sorkin who originated the role of Harley in 1992!
Normally I would award this dreck a zero but I am giving it a couple of stars for voice actors Kevin Conroy (who, in my opinion, is still the best person to ever portray Batman in either animated or live action features) and Loren Lester for his portrayal of Nightwing. The rest of “Batman and Harley Quinn” is absolutely unwatchable and I am crossing my fingers tightly that the DC Direct animation team can get things back on track for the upcoming “Batman: Gotham By Gaslight.”
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Pat Francis currently hosts the popular comedy/music podcast “Rock Solid,” called 1 of the 8 great music podcasts to put in your ears by USA Today and featuring artists such as Melissa Etheridge, Sammy Hagar and Susanna Hoffs. His frequent appearances on Jimmy Pardo’s top rated podcast “Never Not Funny” are fan favorites. Pat began his entertainment career as a stand-up comic in Chicago, IL. After touring the country and performing in 42 states at comedy clubs and colleges, he relocated to Los Angeles, CA. There he appeared as a comedian on Comedy Central, AMC, the UCB and is a yearly regular at the San Francisco Sketchfest. For the past 5 years he has also served as Co-Host of the yearly event Pardcast-A-Thon which to date has raised over 700,000 for Smile Train. When not entertaining people in person he also makes his living as a Story Producer for reality television programs. It is also important to know that Pat is a monkey in a human mask.