Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014)

Our review of the first of this year’s direct-to-video, animated offerings from Warner Bros. Because it’s Batman…except not really. And if you’ll give me a moment, I’ll be happy to explain. For starters, let’s just say I wasn’t surprised to see the WB announce a live-action Suicide Squad movie later on in the year…


6 thoughts on “Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014)”

  1. Good stuff! Though I’m obviously very disappointed that you refused to give me exact guidelines on how to spend my money. Now I have to use mah brain meat.


    OK, I think this is worth a purchase. Because I don’t believe it’s possible for DC to be much more convinced that they need Batman in a movie for it to be a success. Sure, the 2017 film may be called “Wonder Woman” for now, but if Batfleck goes down a storm, it could be retitled “Batman vs. Wonder Woman: Amazon Prime” in a heartbeat. Besides, if it really is confirmation bias, the failure of Assault on Arkham will probably just tell them that it didn’t have ENOUGH Batman in it, or that it sucked overall.

    Voting with your wallet here doesn’t seem like a choice between more Batman movies and more movies lead by Other Heroes (I’m fairly sure DC uses these two categories officially), it seems like a choice between more good Batman movies and more bad Batman movies. In that, the choice is clear.

    On that front, I’d rather see more original stories than comic book story-lines awkwardly crow-barred into a 75-minute animated format. Comic book adaptations just seem so much more natural when the creators have a bit more freedom. … However, if Mark Hamill still wants to be in The Killing Joke, then I’m willing to make an exception.

    1. Good points, all well-reasoned and pretty much unassailable. I’m also positive the WB’s (and DC’s) current leadership places all its DC heroes on a “Batman/Non-Batman” Axis. Viewing it that way makes their recent decisions at least somewhat more…I suppose the best word is “explicable.” Take the names away and Producer Logic always makes a brutal, horribly uncomfortable sort of sense. “Property x makes us a billion dollars. Property y only makes us half that. Add x to y and get a billion and a half, minimum. Maybe if we hype it up enough, we can finally knock Avatar off the top spot!”

      And just as current-DC seems to be the Kingdom of the Bat-fans, their parent company’s currently a house that Harry Potter built, full of people with 7, 8, 9 hundred million dollar movies on their CVs. In their eyes, anything less might as well be a flop…especially now that everyone’s copying them and splitting all their Big Important Movies into 2 Parts.

      And when you put it that way, yes, the choice is clear. Better good Bat film than bad…speaking of which…I have a movie I have to force myself to rewatch.

  2. Well, you just convinced me to own a DC Animated movie, something I’ve not desired since Green Lantern: First Flight. Excellent review. May even get Superman vs. The Elite

    P.S. I’m also eminently glad that the voice acting and characterizations have improved since Son of Batman. Always a plus.

    1. Glad to be service. And yes, please do get Superman vs. The Elite. In fact, you should’ve gotten it already. And instructed all your friends to do the same.

  3. Eh, I don’t care if it is false advertising, this is a great Suicide Squad movie and I appreciate the Arkham Asylum games getting the props they deserve even if the last game was utter crap and managed to **** up ripping off an Emmy Award-winning episode of Batman: The Animated series for DLC. Is this movie to my DC comics canon?

    No, it shamelessly kills way too many characters (and yes, I see the title) and I prefer my Waller less overtly evil but those are minor fanboy complaints. This is a good movie and if we had more of these and less Justice League: War, I’d be one a happy camper.

    BTW, I figured out War was an attempt to do the DC version of the Ultimates which is….too little, too never should happen.

    1. Yeah, but a DC version of the Ultimates pretty much became inevitable once the Ultimates became a thing. I just wish they hadn’t fucked it up. And I know this is a minority opinion, but the Ultimates kinda fucked up in the first place. All of those character were horrible – to each other, to themselves, to the audience. It was jerks all the way down, right from the beginning. Which is consistent, given they were (at the time) the Mark Millar-iest characters Mark Millar’d ever written. That’s why I wasn’t so broken up about Ultimatum.

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