SYNOPSIS: Over the last three seasons, the minds behind the version of Gotham that defined a generation have brought you a continuation of their masterwork now that continuation comes to an end. Ra’s al Ghul’s mysterious plot has now been fully revealed, but will Batman be able to stop it in time? Or has the Dark Knight’s luck finally run out? Find out in this series finale over 30 years in the making!
All good things…
It feels bittersweet writing this review. Batman: The Animated Series has been a constant in my Batman fandom since 1992, especially with all the times Kevin Conroy has reprised the role. While I have dipped in and out of the various comics that continued the adventures in the BTAS universe, The Adventures Continue has been something else, being that it is co-written by two of the creatives of the aforementioned show. They brought authenticity and cachet to what started as a digital-first series.
And what a series it was! We got treated to BTAS versions of Deathstroke, Azrael, The Court of Owls, Red Hood, and the Suicide Squad, not to mention new characters like The Muscle and Straight Man and even the fall from grace of Mayor Hill! They packed a lot of continuity into this title!
Yes, but how did they wrap this season up, which also happens to be a culmination of thirty-one years?
As well as could be expected in a twenty-page comic.
“The Offer, part III” opens with our heroes (and anti-heroes?) fighting the Court of Owls’ undead dogs in Gotham’s old, flooded subway system. When you see Batman break out the red batarang, you know it’s serious. Still, Dini and Burnett keep the banter fun as they make their escape out of the frying pan…and into the fire.
It’s an impressive splash page when Batman finds the reason why crime has gone down in Gotham these last few months. Templeton is his usual dependable self, aided by inker Jacob Edgar. Kubina is also back on colors, bringing things to life in beautiful fashion. There’s one panel about midway through that evokes the main title sequence of the cartoon that was fun to see. Overall, everyone looks perfect and true to form, although some characters are a little worse for wear given the events within.
Ra’s involvement in the climax is fitting given his stature and place in the mythos. If you’re going to go big and have things impact the world, Ra’s is the Bat-villain you go to. A small part of me wishes The Joker had some kind of representation, but “Crack-Up!” will have to serve as his final animated misadventure. He would have been relegated to background chaos anyway.
And chaos does ensue during the climax! Without revealing too much, I got vibes of the conclusion of Batman: The Movie as we had a big free-for-all of a fight, spotlighting many beloved characters. It felt big, bombastic, and fun!
Of course, things have to end, and the conclusion felt very satisfying, although I may have to rewatch a certain Batman Beyond episode to see if it still fits in this continuity. Batman’s self-realization felt perfect to me and what is more poetic than Batman & Robin riding off into the Gotham moonlight, on the chase of the Rogue who kicked off the animated series?
My thanks to Burnett, Dini, Templeton, Kubina, and all those who have brought some of that BTAS magic back to life over the last three years of comics. In that time, we have lost Kevin Conroy, David Warner, and Arleen Sorkin, but I heard their voices clearly as I read this issue. I suppose the adventures really do continue… – Javier E. Trujillo