Cartoon Network is doing more to cripple their own DC Nation than Mongul or Darkseid ever could. It’s indeed a blackest night. Green Lantern: The Animated Series and Young Justice have sung their swan song. The two shows, both wildly entertaining and appealing to both younger and mature viewers (something that’s never easy), make up Cartoon Network’s “DC Nation” lineup on Saturday mornings.
Both shows are being prematurely replaced with two new ones.
Teen Titans Go!, a sort of sitcom version of the 2003 “Teen Titans” series that focuses on life in between saving the world. Not a continuation of any lingering story lines that were left when the original series was scrapped — which judging by fan reaction at last years San Diego Comic Con, is what the fans want. In fact, there was an audible sigh of disappointment in the room when the Con attendees found out the hard way. This Deacon of Dweeb never watched the original, so don’t ask me how good it was.. but if you are going to bring a show back, at least give your loyal fans more of what they want and not a show that — aside from the characters and voice actors –has nothing to do with the original.
After all, it’s the fans that make a show a success. Duh.
The second show that will make up the new DC Nation hour, is Beware The Batman, a CG animated show in the style of “Green Lantern” and “The Clone Wars” (My current addiction – Editor Moody). The show follows Batman in the early stages of his crime fighting career. It’ll likely showcase Bruce’s detective skills more than his physical abilities, and aside from having help from former British spy turned butler, Alfred, it was stated at the same Comic Con panel that none of the traditional “Bat Family” will appear on the show.
No resurrected by Ra’as Damien Robin Boy Wonder, either.
Nope, just an announcement that also irritated every bit of existence in attendance. Oh! I almost forgot, none of his traditional Rogues Gallery will be featured either.
No Mr. Freeze, or Riddler.
(What! No Clock King! – Moody)
Instead of the mainstays of Batman villains, we’ll see the lesser known Anarky, Magpie, Professor Pyg, and Mr. Toad. From what I’ve seen and heard, aside from the cape and cowl — and villains that look like farm animals — this sounds like more of a Law & Order/CSI spin-off rather than a Batman show.
But, hey, then maybe Mr. Moody at least has a shot landing a gig as an extra on it.
Oh, it’s a cartoon! Never.. Point is, DC doesn’t even need another Batman ‘toon. Everybody knows who Batman is. People already love Batman. Besides, nothing will likely ever top Bruce Timm’s “Batman: The Animated Series”, the show that redefined how many of us viewed The Caped Crusader… and superhero cartoons in general.
Let’s talk about the shows they’re replacing…
“Green Lantern: The Animated Series” was great for many reasons, most of which have to do with the character and story development over its short 26-episode run. But, the show is important for another reason, keeping people interested in Green Lantern. You know, DC fans, who don’t necessarily read a lot of comics but still enjoy the characters, do need something besides that.. thing.. with Mr. Reynolds. The more casual fans make up a larger portion of any characters’ fan base. Like it or not, us die-hard worshipers are outnumbered.
Despite the rousing success of writer Geoff Johns’ run on Green Lantern that gave the hero the capability of such off-shoots, the heroes (lest we not forget Guy Garden, Kyle Rayner, or pro running back/political satirist/game show stage director dad of Kristen/planet-killing… John Stewart) are still lesser-known commodities.. in the big DCU picture.
With this lack of exposure, the casual DC fan or child may likely forget about good ol’ Hal and The Corps in this show’s absence. So, if DC wants to keep pushing on with the ever on-again/off-again Justice League movie, they need people to be interested in GL before you reintroduce him into the cinematic universe. The cartoon was the perfect way to do that (…and nearly made up for the bad flick, sorta like “The Clone Wars” makes up for Ep’s I, II, & III, I swears! – Moody).
Obviously, Batman & Superman don’t need help selling movie tickets. Green Lantern? Actually, I’ve been waiting patiently for a cartoon since the 1999 episode of Superman: The Animated Series, “In Brightest Day…”. That’s twelve years of waiting.
I waited twelve years for 26 episodes.
Now for Young Justice. This happens to be my favorite animated show since the 90’s when the cancelled Batman and Superman. Again, driven by strong characters as well as ongoing story lines, some that have lasted from the very first episode. The show is about the action and interactions of “The (Young Justice) Team.” The show stars the sidekicks of the DCU.
But don’t ever call them that!
They hate that.
It also featured their Justice League mentors as supporting characters, another reason to keep the show around. It serves as a jumping off point for a new JL series in the same continuity; also, it keeps people invested in the team concept within the realm of the DCU. That’s something that’s needed to move forward to compete with Marvel and its Avengers.
And if you can’t beat them at the silver-screen, at least keep your momentum in the living rooms.
It takes a lot for this Deacon to wake up before noon on a Saturday when there’s no early call for work, but, hell, I do it for Young Justice. These dedicated fans want more. The show was just beginning to pick up some serious momentum! Cartoon Network decides to yank away something that their viewers love and want to continue. Makes sense. The only logical reason for this result are their logically stupid programmers.
At least I’ll have the decency to leave the CN with a cliffhanger: “Is it time to say goodbye!?”