Hey folks, Valkor here. And the DC Animated Universe has been kicking ass and taking names! Last round I got to tackle Batman Year One, which was hotly anticipated by yours truly and every other bat fan on the planet. And the film didn't drop the ball for not only sticking to the source, but being an amazing film overall. Well the DC folks along with Warner Home are back with another Justice League pic (last film we got was Crisis on Two Earths). This time around, not only are the JLA back to animated film form, but they're bringing back some familiar voices along for the ride. Check it out, it's Justice League: Doom.
Taken from the pages of Mark Waid's original comic "Justice League: Tower of Babel", Justice League: Doom, has the League facing a new threat that's determined to take them down for good, all in the name of total domination, Vandal Savage (Phil Morris), who has a devised a plan involving the theft of super-secret files kept by Batman (Played by Kevin Conroy, also the voice of Bruce Wayne), that would then be used to take down the JLA so they would not get in his way ogf total domination. These files contain all of the physical and psychology weaknesses of all the League's members, to be used as a contingency should any member decide to go rogue. Savage has put together a top-notch crew of the JLA's past villains such as Cheetah (Claudia Black), Mirror Master (Alexis Denisof), Bane (Carlos Alazraqui), Metallo (Paul Blackthorne), Ma'alefa'ak (Carl Lumbly) and Star Sapphire (Olivia d'Abo).
On the side of the League, we have the core group made up of Superman (Tim Daly), Wonder Woman (Susan Eisenberg), Green Lantern (Nathan Fillion), The Flash (Michael Rosenbaum), Martian Manhunter (Carl Lumbly) and new to the crew – Cyborg (Bumper Robinson).
With this info in play Savage and his newly formed "Legion of Doom" make short work of Batman and his crew. The League is able to recoup thanks to the assist of Cyborg. However when they find out that Batman was responsible for the defeat, they must not only come together to defeat Savage, but also rebuild a level of trust that may be lost.
Jumping ahead of myself, I really love Batman's "stand firm, take no guff, fuck you" attitude in this film. He knows what he's done and if given the choice he'd do it again. When confronted by Superman that "No one would ever do this to you", Batman replies "then you're damn fools!" – I love it!!
I've been eagerly anticipating the release of Justice League: Doom since it was first announced. And now that I've had the chance to go through it multiple times, I'm ready to give my verdict in the TOV Breakdown. But seriously, I think you know how this is gonna play out.
First up the plot for JL: Doom – very simple, very straight-forward and yet very powerful. It's not just about saving the world, but we also have an issue with trust, which I'm guessing no member of the JLA, ever suspected they'd have to deal with. When it's revealed that they're essentially fighting a member of their own squad, I expected things to be a bit more dramatic. But I was pleased with the outcome nonetheless, especially with Batman's response of "If I had to do it all over again, I would". And it's not just the story that earns props, but also the return Justice League/Unlimited voice team of Tim Daly, Kevin Conroy, Susan Eisenberg, Michael Rosenbaum, Nathan Fillion, Phil Morris (who voiced Vandal Savage in the Justice League series), And Carl Lumbly; not only is this an impressive feat of returning these great actors back into the roles of these popular characters, but also seeing how well they work together. The last JLA film, Crisis on Two Earths, left me wanting, as I wasn't too impressed with some of the voice actors. With Doom, I have no complaints, because the original team is back and they've brought their A-game to the table. So not only are you getting a film that deals with the core of JLA, but you also get the original voice team, and that alone warrants the purchase of this film. What about the action? It's a JL film! It hits hard and pulls no punches. Ok maybe a little such as when Wonder Woman is fighting multiple Cheetahs (Wonder Woman has an nano implant in her brain that makes everyone look and sound like Cheetah). We don't see her whip the civilians, but she tears through the cops somethin fierce. Finally the animation should look familiar (again Crisis on Two Earths); its top notch with nice detail and great use of shadows. My hopes were set high for this film and I wasn't let down. Great job!
While I was pleased with the film overall, I wish there was more tension between Batman and the JLA once it was revealed that he has files of all their physical as well as psychological weaknesses. You'd think someone would be UBER pissed that he holds such knowledge that they'd wanna throw a fist. However that didn't happen, but I think it would have made for stronger ending.
Having Bane included as part of a Legion of Doom is a nice touch and a great way to kick off the character, who will make his live-action debut this summer in Dark Knight Rises.
Justice League: Doom gets a release on February 28th on DVD and Blu-Ray Combo pack (includes the BD, DVD, and UltraViolet Digital Copy along with a ton of extras). If your fan of the Justice League animated series, then this is a definite pick-up; a great story, rock solid performances, and loads of action, make Justice League: Doom a "Must Own". And out of TOV 5 stars and there's really no other way I can go with this, I'm giving JL: Doom a perfect 5. Valkor Viewed and Approved? Damn right!