Just forget the words and sing along

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Fishing in the Discount Bin - Gotham Girls

Welcome back to Fishing in the Discount Bin, my weekly rant about one of my old DVDs that I just re-watched.  This time out, we get to a forgotten chapter of Batman animation called Gotham Girls.  This is in my notes at August 22, 2014.

Before I put Birds of Prey back on the shelf, I was reminded that the complete run of Gotham Girls was included on the DVDs as a bonus feature.  So before I put it away, I decided to revisit this forgotten chapter of Batman: The Animated Series lore.

It was the late 1990s.  The tech boom was still booming and the dot-com bubble hadn't popped yet.  "Internet content" was becoming the big buzzword in Hollywood, and as streaming video wasn't really viable until high-speed Internet became more widespread, the medium of choice for web series was Flash animation.  In the late 90s/early 2000s, Flash cartoons became big business, and Warner Brothers decided to get in on the action.  They continued the animated world of Batman with a series entitled Gotham Girls.

The gimmick behind Gotham Girls was that it would focus on the female characters of Batman: The Animated Series, specifically Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy, Catwoman, and Batgirl.  They were able to recruit the entire voice cast from Batman: The Animated Series to reprise their characters.  Even the same writers were brought back.  I want to say most, if not all, of the episodes were written by Paul Dini, but I can't find anything online to back that up.  Gotham Girls went online in the summer of 2000, and ran for 3 seasons of 10, 3-minute episodes. 

As you can tell, with such short lengths, most of them are comedic in nature, with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn forming a pretty good comedic duo.  The ones with Catwoman and Batgirl tended to be high adventure, as we followed them on their latest heist or case.

The third and final season was where it started to recapture some of that old Batman: The Animated Series charm, as they had a story arc spread out over all 10 episodes.  When all the men in Gotham City mysteriously disappear, only to be accidentally brought back by Harley, Harley, Poison Ivy and Catwoman are framed for the incident.  And when Commissioner Gordon returns from the episode acting strangely, Batgirl begins to suspect there's a conspiracy afoot.  All four ladies soon form an uneasy alliance to get to the bottom of things. 

In the end though, it was fun, and it was silly, and it was a not-too-bad post-script to the Batman: TAS universe.  I see even though the official Gotham Girls website is no more, the episodes are still buried deep within the Warner Brothers servers, and you can find links to them all on the Wikipedia page.  

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