Batman: Bad Blood is a fine entry in DC’s Animated Universe and although it’s not as strong as some others, it’s still entertaining, a lot of fun to watch and at less than 80-minutes, a breeze to get through yet still feel satisfied by the end.
Batman: Bad Blood
Genre(s): Animated, Action, Adventure
Warner Home Video | PG13 – 73 min. – $24.98 | February 2, 2016
Date Published: 01/29/2015 | Author: The Movieman
THE MOVIE – 3.5/5
Batman: Bad Blood is the fifth in the connected DC Animated Universe series following Justice League: War, Son of Batman, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis and Batman vs. Robin and can be considered the third in the League of Shadows trilogy.
Note: This portion contains major plot spoilers so readers beware!
This edition opens with Batman (JASON O’MARA) fighting, alongside new vigilante Batwoman (YVONNE STRAHOVSKI), against a new foe named The Heretic. During the fight, Batwoman barely escapes while Batman is caught in a massive explosion and goes missing. Alfred calls in Dick Grayson/Nightwing (SEAN MAHER) to patrol the streets while Damian Wayne (STUART ALLAN) leaves his retreat at a monastery upon finding out his father is gone.
They team up, in a way, with Batwoman to find out the location of Batman and in the process go up against The Heretic who seems to have intimate knowledge of Batman’s identity, breaking into Wayne Enterprises and threaten Lucius Fox (ERNIE HUDSON) to find the secret factory where all of Bat’s toys are manufactured and stored; very much like Bane in The Dark Knight Rises really. And the comparison doesn’t stop there as we learn the true villain behind The Heretic is… Talia al Ghul (MORENA BACCARIN) who of course is also Damian’s mother and there’s more secrets behind the Heretic’s origins as well.
This entry into DC’s Animated Universe (distinctive from their TV and movie lines) is probably above par though hardly perfect and I can name a few others I enjoyed more (such as Under the Red Hood and Justice League: Gods and Monsters) but this one was well laid out with some fun moments and characters but, and I know it was the central theme of family, but it felt a bit crowded and rushed in places, particularly the introduction of Luke Fox who, quite quickly, takes on the persona of Batwing who definitely seemed to emulate Marvel’s Iron Man.
The other issue, and its one I’ve had since his introduction in Justice League: War, was the casting of Jason O’Mara as Bruce Wayne/Batman. Although I kind of can tolerate his voice, and due to Batman’s being absent for the majority of this film he’s a non-factor, it just hasn’t grown on me enough. And this isn’t a comparison to Kevin Conroy, though bar none he is the definitive Batman voice, but others who have tackled the voice were better but for some reason those behind these animated movies have stuck with O’Mara.
The rest of the voice casting was fine however. Stuart Allan returns as Damian and he is far less bratty compared with his first two films and Morena Baccarin continues to impress and would’ve made for a better Talia in The Dark Knight Rises versus Marion Cotillard and she makes for a formidable foe even if her plans for world domination were laughable even by animated movie standards.
Batman: Bad Blood might not be the strongest of the DC Animated Universe but it’s still a solid outing for the studio and worthwhile for fans of the series, even those who don’t much care for Jason O’Mara’s voice as he’s a sidelined player compared with the others in the Bat Family.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 2.25/5
Matching previous releases, this one comes with a glossy embossed slip cover. Inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.
From the DC Comics Vault are two episodes from “Batman: The Brave and the Bold” for the episodes ‘The Knights of Tomorrow’ and ‘The Criss Cross Conspiracy’
Putting the Fight in Gotham (26:26; HD) is a featurette on the fight scenes, styles and chorography of Batman.
Expanding the Batman Family (13:46; HD) looks at the supporting cast featured in Bad Blood.
A Sneak Peek at Justice League vs. Teen Titans (11:31; HD) gives a glimpse at the next movie in the DC Universe line with interviews by the filmmakers and voice actors.
Previews – There are trailers for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (the original teaser) and Suicide Squad.
VIDEO – 4.25/5
|Batman: Bad Blood swings onto Blu-ray presented with a 1080p high-definition transfer and 1.78 widescreen aspect ratio. The transfer basically matches up with the previous animated releases with bright colors and although there are a couple instances of banding, it’s generally a pleasing looking picture.
AUDIO – 4.5/5
|The disc comes with the standard yet effective DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track which not only has crisp and clear dialogue levels but goes into full effect with the various action sequences from the opening sequence to the enthralling finale. For an animated title, it’s a fairly depth-filled lossless track.
OVERALL – 3.25/5
|Overall, Batman: Bad Blood is a fine entry in DC’s Animated Universe and although it’s not as strong as some others, it’s still entertaining, a lot of fun to watch and at less than 80-minutes, a breeze to get through yet still feel satisfied by the end. The Blu-ray released by Warner offers good video and audio transfers and even though the features are adequate enough.