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Monday, January 11, 2010

Brave and The Bold: "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure!"

Last week's episode of Brave and The Bold was the one all us Aquaman fans were waiting for, "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure!" Like Aquaman, let's be bold and decisive, and get right to the action!

After a great opening with Batman and one of his most unlikely guest-stars, Enemy Ace(!), this episode starts with another one of Aquaman's arch-villains, making his Brave and the Bold debut: The Fisherman!

The Fisherman, using his high-tech equipment, is keeping some undersea scientists hostage. When their governments won't pay his ransom, The Fisherman prepares to drop the scientists' ship into a reef!

Luckily for them, Aquaman has arrived!:

He quickly dispatches The Fisherman, and then saves the scientists by calling in some of his giant whale friends, who grab the ship and bring it to safety.

Aquaman is happy it all ended well, and is prepared to call this adventure "The Rescue At Rainbow Reef!"

Then it seems that one of his dolphin pals has learned how to speak English! But that's not quite it: we find that this tangle with The Fisherman is a daydream of Aquaman's, and the voice we hear coming from the dolphin is actually his wife Mera, trying to snap him out of his revelry:

Mera is insistent that they spend this vacation like real Surface Dwellers (which Arthur Jr. is doing, focused as is he is on his hand-held gaming device)--no adventures, no crime-fighting.

Aquaman says he agrees, but he's obviously bored. After they stop at a diner for some food, he steps outside and calls his pal Batman, asking to be rescued from "This blasted vacation!"

But Batman is a little busy: he's fighting off a gang of henchmen under the employ of that fowl felon, The Penguin!

Aquaman offers Batman help, but Bats insists Aquaman should stay on vacation.

He reluctantly agrees, but perks up when in the sky he sees The Arrow Signal, which means...danger!

Aquaman helps Green Arrow apprehend The Clock King and his gang of henchmen. The Clock King runs away, leaving his men behind, and Aquaman handles them with glee:
They then catch up to the Clock King, and even though he takes a hostage, that's no problem for our heroes: Aquaman commands some lobsters in a nearby fish tank to crawl all over their foe.

In one of my favorite visual gags of the show, as they talk, the lobsters continue to make Clock King's life miserable:

Aquaman makes it back to his family just in time to taste the apple pie Mera ordered for desert, with no one the wiser.

Next, they stop an Old West-style town ("Is that Jonah Hex? Ha! Ha! Ha!"), and Aquaman stops in a nearby saloon to get a Sasparilla. He calls Batman again, but Bats is still busy with The Penguin.

Aquaman sees a local TV report about the Blue Beetle squaring off against the villainous Planet Master, which of course means a call to action!:

Blue Beetle tries to stop the Planet Master (who, despite the name, has some pretty impressive powers), but has a hard time of it. He's thrilled when Aquaman shows up to help, and together they, as Aquaman puts it, "Silence this cosmic crook!"

Unlike the other, more jaded heroes, Blue Beetle is overjoyed to meet Aquaman:

Aquaman and his family check into a motel, where Mera gets wind of a news report detailing the Aquaman/Blue Beetle fight against Planet Master. The jig is up!

Mera is frustrated, but Aquaman begs forgiveness: "We're heroes, it's what we do!" Nevertheless, he promises, no more heroics from now on. He declares his next adventure is the one with his family!:

Aquaman sticks to his word, and during their drive around the country, his promise is tested when he seems to see heroes, heroes everywhere:

They visit the World's Largest Ball of Sod, among other natural wonders. He thinks he's stumbled upon the supervillain The Sportsmaster, but it turns out he's on a boring vacation with his family, too:
Aquaman then gets a call from Batman, and overhears that Batman is now in the clutches of The Penguin, and was calling for help!

Aquaman convinces Mera that they should visit Gotham City, talking it up as a "A center of world art, commerce, and culture", while also suggesting they keep the RV's windows up. When Mera points out this is where Batman lives, Aquaman plays dumb.

While his family waits back in the RV, Aquaman tries to rescue Batman, but is also zapped by The Penguin and placed in the same death trap. Mera and Arthur Jr. follow, and soon they are in the same pickle. Meanwhile, The Penguin plans to launch a series of Umbrella Rockets straight into Gotham City! (Though Aquaman and Mera are barely listening)

Mera finally admits that maybe vacations aren't right for people like them, and in the face of true danger, she advises her husband to "Show him why you're King of the Sea!"

Aquaman then commands some finny friends to help free them all from Penguin's ropes, and once they do Mera wants to join the fight:


Batman chases after The Penguin while Aquaman and Mera take on his henchmen. Why, even Arthur Jr. gets in a few licks, showing he's mighty strong just like his old man:
Batman follows The Penguin to his armored sub, but is quickly outnumbered by even more of The Penguin's gang. Aquaman dives into the water, and makes a beeline for the sub, landing on top and evening the odds:
Batman gets close enough to The Penguin to paste him one, which is all it takes. Case closed!

Batman thanks Aquaman for his help, especially since it was during his vacation. Aquaman promises--again--to quit all the adventuring go back on the real vacation, suggesting they visit "The Stonehenge made from old refrigerators!"

But this time, Mera and Arthur Jr. are on the same page as Aquaman, and want more adventure. Arthur Jr. declares this trip be called "The Time My Dad Saved The World Again!"

Aquaman, beaming, embraces his family and says, "That's my boy!"

...the end!

This episode is probably Aquaman's finest half-hour on TV, full stop. "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure!" is a big valentine to the character, retaining most of Aquaman's most beloved elements while still keeping him consistent with the version we've seen in previous episodes of the series.

It had adventure, laughs, tons of guest stars...Great Neptune, even the blue camouflage suit!

Be here tomorrow, when we'll have another talk with Brave and the Bold Producer James Tucker about this episode! It'll be...dare I say it? Outrageous!


Andy Luckett said...

"Hello, danger, we meet again!"

"Hale fellow, that brash bowman..."

"Greetings from Neptune!"

"Mmmm, apples...yes..."

I completely agree, this is Aquaman's finest half-hour on TV.

Now there must be an Aquaman spin-off show and figures of Mera, Arthur Jr., the Fisherman, and the Penguin. And, they must all be OUTRAGEOUS!

By the by, I totally dig that Aquaman has his own catchphrase now.

Randy said...

Awesome episode, for sure.

My favorite was the road map containing every single fictitious city DC has ever created in its 75 years of publishing.

Quite cool indeed!

David J. Cutler said...

I sort of felt this might be Aquaman's finest halfhour anywhere in the last 10 years. 20?

I laughed again and again, smiled so much my eyes teared up. I don't think I could have loved this more. I'll buy the season 2 DVD for certain now.

Josh Hill said...

this was as, dare I say it, outrageous as one could have hoped for it to be! absolutely cool as heck. I loved the title cards that popped up every time Aquaman teamed with someone new. I loved the DCU map. I loved seeing The Fisherman, the camo costume, and Mera and Arthur Jr. themselves.

as Andy pointed out above, there were some great bits of dialogue in this one. my favorite, though, was "I eat cheese for breakfast!"

and I agree with all, this was definitely Aquaman's finest moment on TV to date. my wife even watched with me and got a real kick out of it. I think the interplay between Aquaman and his family reminded her a lot of The Incredibles. After watching the documentary on the 60's animated Aquaman series DVD set, I've been doing some thinking about how to make Aquaman more appealing to a wider audience today. On that doc, they pointed out how Aquaman was one of the first super-heroes to get married and have a child. And after watching this episode of B:TB&TB, I'm more convinced than ever that the answer is to put a large focus on his family. Instead of trying to keep him a brooding loner, as DC has seemed to do in recent times, I think it would be better to have him with Mera and give them a family again. And while I don't think it should be quite as comical as it is on this show when it's done in the comics, it should still definitely be a little more lighthearted than, again, it's been of late.

Earth 2 Chris said...

What a great episode. It took a while to get acclimated to B&B's take on Aquaman, but now I love it. Certainly no less valid than the brooding, hook-handed version that dominated everything for years.

The animated B&B Universe is like the Angst-Free DCU. Here's Arthur Jr. alive and well as a teenager. His death may have been the first real tinge of darkness creeping into the DCU.


Wings1295 said...

To paraphrase my daughter: OMG!

And I missed it! DOH! Sounds freaking awesome!!!

Gonna fire up the DVR and hope it is reairing this week!

R Duncan said...

I can't wait to read (and comment on) the Tucker interview.

Aaron said...

I loved the Superfriends style title cards!

Russell said...

My ONLY complaint was Mera didn't have a chance to show off her hard-water powers.

Greatest thing: NO mention of any "away from water we weaken until we die" crap!!!

rob! said...

Yeah, a Fisherman figure would RULE!

Its probably on CN's site right now!

I didn't even think of the whole "away from the water" thing--yes, I am so glad this version of Aquaman ditches all that.

I never minded the idea of Aquaman weakening if he's away from water a long time, but the whole "every hour" thing is silly and arbitrary, and should've been dropped years ago.

Joe Huber said...

It's usually on CN pretty soon, and they even link it up on hulu.

I went ahead and downloaded the episode on my iPod so that I can view it anywhere. I felt compelled to do so because this had to be one of my favorite episodes of the whole series.

Can't wait for the interview tomorrow.

Wings1295 said...

Not on CN or Hulu, as of right now. But it is airing on Saturday, January 16th at 1:30PM. Already set my DVR!

Luke said...

I loved the bit with Blue Beetle trying to name the adventure and Aquaman talking over him. "The Battle--" "Yes! THE PLAGUE OF THE PLANET MASTER!"


Joe Slab said...

This episode was priceless!

Arthur Jr. wearing the old camo blue (and ALIVE) takes the cake.

Let's hope this treatment of Aquaman spills over into the DCU.

Unknown said...

Great, great episode. Just wondering if I was the only one who was reminded of Leonidas in "300" with Aquaman? (and that was a fine thing in my opinion)

Orin's dad said...

What an awesome episode! Loved every minute of it! DC and the WB are just getting stronger and stronger with this show. I wasn't sure on their take of Aquaman at first, but have really come to enjoy it. Let's hope they do Mera and the Fisherman action figures soon!

Rev. O.J. Flow said...

No ifs, ands or buts about it: THE GREATEST single program featuring Aquaman EVER. An instant classic.