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Friday, June 13, 2008

Breaking News - Brave and The Bold Animated Stills

Courtesy a link from F.O.A.M. member Brian Heiler, we have some stills from the new Brave and the Bold animated series, including our first shot of what the B&B version of Aquaman will look like!

Classic Aquaman fans can rest easy, as you can see they went for the original look, save the addition of a very stylish, close-cropped beard. Anything that makes me look a little more like Aquaman is something I'm ok with.

The Brave and the Bolo logo also harkens back to the classic Batman logo of the 70s, so I think its safe to say us old-timey comic fans are in for a treat when the show debuts!

Thanks Brian!


Tegan said...

Oh! Thank you Rob and Brian. I'm making little monkey noises (eee eee eee!) now. Squee! Posted on my site with linkback to here.

Anonymous said...

And I take it that's Green Arrow ...

I dunno. I was excited to hear about the series but I'm not not so sure about these character designs. Maybe it's just a bad shot but Aquaman looks like he's fifty and that one @#$%ed up cap on GA's head.

Luke said...

This is really strange -- I'm used to seeing Green Arrow with a beard and Aquaman without one. And they switched it up. I have commenced freaking out.

The model itself looks great though! He really looks like the King Of The Seven Seas, very regal! I guess GA will be a bit younger and roguish (as opposed to older and roguish), while Aquaman will be a bit more seasoned. I would say "salty" but even I have my limits on puns.

Anonymous said...

Man, more of this crappy, Flash looking art a-la the new Transformers abominatio-er, I mean cartoon. I don't know guys, I REALLY want this to be good, and I mean Timmverse good, because Aquaman could really use something like this to boost his status and image, but I have a feeling that it is going to be even worse than "The Batman."

The Irredeemable Shag said...

Interesting. The previous promotional art led me to believe the new cartoon would revolve around the "Super Friends" style of action figure. This looks very different. Hmmmm...

The Irredeemable Shag

rob! said...

vince, benton, what's with all the hatin'? :)

i figure this show could a)not include Aquaman, Green Arrow, or any obscure DC hero and b)do them up in their own "battle tech gear" versions.

but, from what i've seen, they're not doing that. they seem to be going out of their way to make the characters look recognizable to the aging fanboy demo (guilty), but hopefully snagging a younger audience.

i'll take orange and green aquaman with a beard over some coked-up network executive's "re-imagined" version (Aquaman's a teen aged boy! and he carries an ipod, because that's what kids do now!" ****snort*****)

as for The Batman (and, for that matter, Teen Titans Go!)--this was a show that didn't do much for me, but its a kids cartoon and i'm in my 30s, i'm not sure it was supposed to appeal to me (Timm's version did both, but he's a genius).

from what i saw, "The Batman" was very popular with kids, enough to run several seasons and spawn a toy line, thereby getting the character (and ancillary ones like Manhunter, Flash, etc) in front of a whole new generation of kids, something the comics themselves aren't doing that well.

if the kids of today, in 20 years, love Batman or the Teen Titans because they saw the cartoon shows they saw in their youth, then they did their job, just like the silly, poorly animated HB and Filmation shows did for us.

there, i'm getting down off my soapbox now.

Diabolu Frank said...

I'm with Luke-- Seeing Aquaman and Green Arrow side-by-side bothers me a lot. It's like that "Kids In The Hall" skit where a malevolent beard jumps from man to man, ruining their lives in turn. I complain also because the beard ruins an otherwise excellent design and hurts cross-marketing with "Superfriends." It's so close to perfect-- like a fantastically beautiful woman with a gigantic, hairy mole that looks like a rat crawling out of her mouth.

Hatter J said...

I'm really looking forward to this cartoon. That being said, it could disappoint me, but I'm waiting to watch it first and then make a decision.

I like this version of Aquaman with a beard. I have to agree that it makes him look more regal. As for the kids not recognizing him, that might be a possibility-but I don't see it. He's still wearing his traditional garb, and being that I work with kids, I know that they are not that ignorant.

As for the aforementioned "The Batman," I guess that I am one of those rare adult fans that actually liked it. I think that the last season went out of its way to attract the "aging adult" fan. Case in point: The episode featuring both Nightwing and Oracle, the episode featuring the Wraith (who first appeared in a Batman Special from the 80s), and the fact that their Watchtower looked like the Hall of Justice.

Rob is right when he mentions that these cartoons are the driving force behind the exposure of these characters. I may not be a fan of the Transformers Animated (which someone compared the art in B&B to), but if the kids aren't attracted to it, the product lines (which we love to collect)might disappear. If you expect it to be somewhat mindless fun and stop expecting what it is not going to deliver, you might find it somewhat enjoyable.

Anonymous said...

You know, these are the arguments that are always made in the defense of mediocrity, namely, "you are not the target audience." I am well aware that I am not a child, not filled with the wide-eyed wonder that can allow one to overlook the glaring plot holes and teeth-grinding writing that filled the likes of "The Batman" (one can argue that it did improve over the course of its life, but I would in turn argue that it was, for the most part, too little too late). The problem with that line of thinking is that, as Rob unwittingly pointed out, it does not have to be this way.

The Timmverse has become my litmus test for all new DC animation projects, because it did things right. It proved that children's entertainment does not HAVE to be mind numbingly insipid, nor lacking all subtlety and depth. In fact, if we create shows that challenge kids, even a little, they will RISE to that challenge instead of sinking to the lowest common denominator along with the rest of the entertainment industry. Bruce Timm managed to create a show that had the complexity and depth to mark it as "adult" in the true sense of the word, while still making it a safe environment for kids to join their favorite heroes on galaxy spanning adventures. Along the way they might just learn to care about the characters, not just because they look "cool," but because they are compelling creations of fiction. When I was a kid I LOVED Batman: TAS way more than any other show on at the time, and it wasn't just because it was Batman being his awesome self, it was because it was so much more INTERESTING than anything else on. I mean, what other show actually made you SAD when the villain was captured and put in a cell (I still remember Mr. Freeze sitting in his frozen cell, staring at the little music box that reminded him of his wife).

To move away from the Timmverse, and to prove that someone other than Bruce Timm is capable of something extraordinary, take a look at the new Spider-Man cartoon. Say what you will about the art, the character designs, or what have you, but the stories are more than just slam-bang action. They don't have the complexity of JLU, but the characters are well drawn, and there is something MORE there than what would likely be considered necessary for a "kid's show."

Yes, we could all just turn our brains off and enjoy shows like "Transformers Animated", or "The Batman" (possibly existant "good" episodes aside), but why settle for mediocrity when we CAN have something actually excellent. Mindless fun is all well and good from time to time, but I imagine that most of us are bothering to visit a site dedicated to the Sea King because we feel that comics are something more than just mindless action and entertainment, that they have something to say about heroism and sacrifice, something worth saying in more than monosyllables. What's more, I imagine our kids would agree with us, even if they weren't able to parse it in precisely those terms.

Anonymous said...

More to the point at hand, I suppose I should add that I rather like the design for Aquaman, although I agree that it does age him quite a bit. I'm thrilled to see him in the orange and green, and although I have a sense of dread about it, I am certainly hoping that the first episode proves me wildly wrong.

Whatever else, I'm still hoping for a Bruce Timm direct to DVD Aquaman movie........

rob! said...


interesting arguments, and generally i too find the "its just a kid's show, its ok if its lame" excuse to be, well, inexcusable.

but i don't know if something being lame and cherished is necessarily bad. i mean, the Challenge of the Superfriends shows are terribly animated, little or no characterization, and plots that hinge on events happening because the writers needed to end the show in next two minutes.

but i LOVED THEM as a kid, and i LOVE THEM as an adult. i don't them being empirically lame hurt me as a kid.

i agree, Bruce Timm's work is the template by which all other superhero cartoons should be judged. by like i said above, he's a genius, we can't expect everyone else to be as good as he and his team were/are (I remember many years ago, someone saying how great comic books would be if someone like Alan Moore was just an average writer of the medium, not the towering genius he is).

maybe the plots of the show will be lame, i dunno. all i know is, considering the bastardizations of my childhood heroes i've seen over the years, seeing a cartoon called The Brave and The Bold, and featuring (relatively) obscure members of the DCU, looking pretty close to the form that's served them well over the decades, gives me a reason to feel optimistic about the show.

rob! said...

and yes, a Bruce Timm animated Aquaman movie would be all kinds of awesome.

Doug said...

That Aquaman in the classic costume with a beard just doesn't click for me. Yet.

I am REALLY looking forward to this show. Seeing Creeper, Blue Beetle, Aquaman, Plastic Man and more out to be a true joy.

Even cooler still that I can share it with my kids!.

Anonymous said...

Have to go with Benton, here...

The Dini/Timm work proved SO conclusively that you don't have to dumb down or juvenalize, to work for BOTH kids & adults.

I have hopes for this show (though I think THE BATMAN pretty much stinks) but I'm too spoiled by the good stuff to feel it's O.K. to step back from the Timm/Dini standard to the Filmation/HB one.

-Craig W.

rob! said...

i remember asking Bruce Timm at a panel he was at at the SDCC why doesn't Warner Bros. just hand the live action Batman franchise over to him.

i got a round of applause. :)

Diabolu Frank said...

I don't think I made this clear earlier, but I am looking forward to this show. I always had trouble with Timm's designs, whereas this aesthetic is more to my liking. It's leaner, more angular, and more detailed, while still allowing it fluidity (Timm's argument when B:TAS was compared to X-Men.)

I'll also defend big dumb cartoons. I stopped watching television years ago, but I used to follow B:TAS and S:TAS when they were endlessly repeated. I found I prefered Superman, even though there were far fewer episodes to cycle through, because they were so much more action oriented. The more cerebral Batman made me more aware of the repetition because the story was such a primary concern, whereas I could allow myself to get lost in Supes slugfests.

I enjoy Super Friends repeats more than either, because the Timmverse pretense and pacing cannot compare to the fast pace and adorable cheese of the 70's show. I'm hoping I'll get the same goofy blast from TB&TB, with the added "Justice League" thrill of regular guest-appearances from obscure, unusual characters.

Luke said...

I don't get this either-or stuff, myself. I liked B:TAS and The Batman. Did I watch more B:TAS than The Batman? Yeah, but I was in the 5th grade when B:TAS started, and I was out of college when The Batman started. Was B:TAS better? Yeah, but it's not a boolean operation: both were good shows, though one was better.

When Teen Titans was first announced, all the fanboys got into a nerd-uproar about how terrible the show was going to be because it failed to match up with Justice League. And lo, Teen Titans is a great show, on par with B:TAS insofar as an animated superhero show.

I have high hopes TB&TB. So let's all wait and see, hmm, and not damn it before we even see a second of animation?

Anonymous said...

It's not the beard.

A couple of years ago Steve Lightle had an Aquaman redesign on his web-site that featured an updating of the classic orange and green. His Aquaman had a close-cropped beard like this one and I kinda liked it. Wish he still had it posted 'cause it was really sweet. Apparently, Steve is a big Aqua-fan.

Anyway, like I said, maybe it's a bad image - it seems to be at an angle there - but the angular design of Aquaman's face makes him look way too old. And, as for Green Arrow, I'll just come right out and say it, that cap looks ridiculous. Hey, animators! Neal Adams designed the costume most associated with Green Arrow. If you're trying to outdo Mr. Adams you'll have to do WAY better than that.

The Brave and the Bold was pretty much my favorite comic book growing up ... well, my favorite comic that was published on a reg'lar basis . :-) I really want to like the animated series, I do. I'm just not feeling it yet.

Anonymous said...

And, yes, I realize that the GA costume seems to hark back to the Golden Age / early Silver Age version of the character.

Cap still looks stupid.