So, I am a comic geek. I have been since I was a little kid. I honestly can’t remember what my first comic was. It was either a thing with Batman and Green arrow, a Captain America comic or a Rom the Spaceknight. Since then, I have collected comics off an on for decades. I can tell you about most characters in the long and storied history of both DC and Marvel. I have my favorite stories, characters and writers in the form just like any fan.
As a fan, I can’t help myself. I will watch anything comic book related. Even if I know it will be bad, I will at least check it out. I may wait for video, but I will check it out.
Here, I also have my favorites. The so called “Timverse” which starts with Batman: The Animated Series, and went through Superman, and Justice League, is about as perfect a set of cartoons based on superheroes as you will ever find. Bruce Timm was the primary creative force behind those cartoons, hense the name and they were really brilliant. To this day, I prefer that continuity to any other version of the DC universe, including the comics themselves. They ended that run a few years ago and it will be missed.
This brings me to Brave and the Bold. I have many friends and acquaintances who share my love for comics. When Brave and the Bold was announced to run on Cartoon Network, I and many of folks I spoke was dubious of it’s quality. Where the Timmverse shows were handled seriously and with weight, Brave and the Bold went a more campy and silly route.
Despite this I watched and was surprised to find I liked it. The show is silly, but it also is clearly made with love and affection. Batman is less the grim and broken avenger and mroe the ultimate hero. His guest stars are a long cavalcade of the second tier heroes found in the DC universe. From Green Arrow and Aquaman, to the obscure Kamandi or Enemy Ace, they present these characters with a tremendous amount of thought and affection. They have fun with some of the sillier characters, but without making fun of the world or the people who are fans of it.
The problem comes in, that a number of people completely disapprove of this show. I am guessing the complaint is that, the show is too silly with characters that could be handled with deep pathos. The Timmverse version of Batman was a grim and brooding hero. Even Superman, who was obviously more hopeful character went to darker places. There was weight to their narrative and a sense of the dramatic.
Not everything in comics was always serious. Batman for more years than not, was a kind of a funny character. You can look on those days as the “bad old days,” but honestly a lot of people grew up loving those stories for a reason. Not everything in comics has to be continuity and have deep meaning. There only so many stories you can tell with these characters, after all. There is a place for one off stories and humor. Being silly is not insulting all that came before. They can still respect the characters as they are and show them as they once were.
So I guess my point is, give the show a break. It is simple fun and made with some obvious love if they are going to bring up characters like the 10 Eyed Man or the Sportmaster. Stop trying to force it into a mold of a show that no longer is and enjoy the show for what it actually is, a loving homage to the comics of yesteryear.
My two cents.