There's no doubt that Batman is DC's most profitable and iconic character. It's no coincidence 'Detective Comics' became the company's name and initials. And it's not just comic books; Batman has been a major part of entertainment for decades and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future.
Batman has also been the star of several animated shows, many of which have touched the hearts of multiple generations. By taking a look at them in chronological order, viewers are able to explore his dynamic history in sequential form.
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Updated on February 27, 2022 by Scoot Allan: Batman has a long and rich animated history dating back to the beginning of DC's animated empire, as he helped launch the hugely successful DC Animated Universe in the '90s. With yet another new animated series on the horizon for the Dark Knight, we wanted to take another look at the various series like Batman: The Animated Series and The Batman cartoon that helped build Batman's animated history alongside the rest of the DC Universe over the years.
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15/15 The Adventures Of Batman – 1968-1969
After the 1966 Batman series starring Adam West exploded, cartoons were produced based on the series' popularity. This show was comprised of the Batman segments from The Batman/Superman Hour, with Olan Soule taking on Adam West's role, while Casey Kasem (who voiced Shaggy on Scooby-Doo) replaced Burt Ward as Robin.
It was later retitled, Batman With Robin The Boy Wonder. However, this was only the beginning. It spawned Super Friends (for better or for worse), as well as crossovers with The New Scooby-Doo Movies. It's certainly dated, but many share fond memories of it.
14/15 Super Friends – 1973-1986
93 Episodes, Premiering Under Different Umbrella Names
Following the success of Batman's first animated series (as well as animated appearances of heroes like Superman and Aquaman), the heroes joined together with other members of the Justice League in 1973 for Super Friends. While Batman wasn't the sole star of the series, both he and Robin played crucial roles in the makeup of the team.
While the series was canceled after the first season, it later returned under the new title of Challenge of the Super Friends before moving through other titles like The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians before it was ultimately canceled again.
13/15 The New Adventures Of Batman – 1977
The New Batman Adventures was more or less a continuation of the previous show. However, it featured better animation and some familiar voices: Adam West and Burt Ward reprised their iconic roles years after their own show's cancelation. They continued to excel in the roles, even as the show decided to go in an interesting direction with the introduction of Bat-Mite – their cute but annoying little sidekick. Much like Scrappy-Doo from Scooby-Doo or Kazoo from The Flintstones, it wasn't the best of ideas, and it was a big reason why the show only lasted one season.
12/15 Batman: The Animated Series – 1992-1995
When it comes to Batman, there's only one animated show that instantly enters the minds of fans, and that's 1992's critically acclaimed Batman: The Animated Series. With writing that was as thought-provoking & entertaining for adults as it was for kids with nuance and depth for the villains, this is one of the most revolutionary animated shows ever made.
Batman: TAS spawned a shared universe known as the DCAU with shows like Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League, and even established a now-famous DC character with Harley Quinn. Kevin Conroy's Batman and Mark Hamill's Joker have become iconic and still sometimes voice the characters to this very day.
11/15 The New Batman Adventures – 1997-1999
When Batman: The Animated Series was canceled, it got revived with a new art style to match what Superman: The Animated Series had been doing at the time. This resulted in two solid extra seasons for that version of Batman, even though fans were not fond of every redesign, especially The Joker's new look.
The show provided a ton of fun adventures, explored the history of Harley Quinn, and proved that Batman was still a marketable character despite the most recent . In fact, Batman was so popular that another series about him was greenlit.
10/15 Batman Beyond – 1999-2001
In the cyberpunk future of Gotham City, Bruce Wayne retires due to a heart condition, combined with a mistake that almost made him cross a line. Gotham is without its protector until a troubled teen named Terry McGinnis stumbles upon the Batcave and steals the newest Batsuit for himself. Bruce ends up entrusting Terry with protecting the city as the new Batman.
Batman Beyond took a bold move in retiring Bruce Wayne, but it gained a cult following that helped it last a few seasons before being canceled. Terry went on to be featured in comics and an official 75th anniversary short, as well as getting a final wrap-up in the Justice League Unlimited animated series.
9/15 Justice League – 2001-2004
The success of DC Animated Universe shows like Batman: The Animated Series and Superman: The Animated Series led to the first official formation of the animated Justice League on the small screen in 2001.
Batman was again voiced by Kevin Conroy as he joined heroes like Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, and Hawkgirl for the first 2 seasons. The show was expanded in 2004 to include more heroes alongside the main team in Justice League Unlimited, although Batman still featured heavily in the series while also appearing on other DCAU shows like Static Shock.
8/15 The Batman – 2004–2008
As one of the more divisive shows to star the Caped Crusader, The Batman focuses on tons of action and thrills rather than character drama or intrigue. This time, Batman was voiced by Rino Romano and sported a flashy and high-tech arsenal of weapons, including a Batcave that would make a Bond villain jealous.
While it wasn't for everyone, The Batman lasted several seasons and continued to embrace its own style for every villain and hero. It introduced new versions of Robin, Batgirl, and even the likes of Martian Manhunter.
7/15 Batman: The Brave And The Bold – 2008-2011
Imagine if the Adam West series was modernized, action-packed, and featured a vast array of DC heroes – that's Batman: The Brave And The Bold. Each episode focuses on Batman (voiced by Diedrich Bader) as he teams up with a famous or obscure hero in a Silver Age-esque adventure.
It was a fun show that lasted a few seasons on Cartoon Network. It included unique animation, well-written humor, and action galore, and most of the stories and characters were given justice. The show is likely how modern kids were introduced to characters like Blue Beetle.
6/15 Young Justice – 2010-Ongoing
98 Episodes (Currently)
Cartoon Network first aired Young Justice in 2010, which focused on a new team of DC sidekicks who joined together to strike out on their own away from their superhero mentors. Dick Grayson/Robin was one of the founding members of the team, and his mentor Batman played a large role in the series – as both a member of the Justice League and the Team's mission organizer.
He was voiced by Bruce Greenwood, who reprised the role of the Dark Knight from 2010's feature-length movie Batman: Under The Red Hood. Young Justice spanned a few years and featured more than one Robin, highlighting the ever-growing team that Batman works with to keep Gotham City and the rest of the world safe.
5/15 Beware The Batman – 2013-2014
Swapping from a colorful and action-filled atmosphere to a darker, detective thriller angle, Beware The Batman stars Anthony Ruivivar as the titular hero. This series should be commended for trying to differentiate itself from any other Batman series: it never copied a previous show's story arcs and even brought more obscure villains like Magpie & Professor Pyg into the spotlight for a change.
The series also introduced Katana as Batman's partner and chauffeur, and the two shared a dynamic similar to The Green Hornet. However, it made the show divisive among fans, combined with the 3D animation similar to Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which was still popular for many back in 2013. As a result, the show only lasted one season.
4/15 Batman Unlimited – 2015-2016
Remember this series? More than likely not, since it was a series of short episodes that went straight to the DC Kids' YouTube channel. It and a few animated movies were based on the toyline of the same name and were essentially a way to market those toys to kids. Roger Craig Smith returned to the voice of Batman after providing it for Batman: Arkham Origins.
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As a whole, it's obvious that the show was an afterthought toy commercial, evidenced by both the confused writing and animation. Batman Unlimited struggled to adopt an identity other than pretty colors and gadgets. It tried so hard to appeal to everyone yet appealed to no one by throwing everything at the wall in the hopes it would stick.
3/15 Justice League Action – 2016-2018
2016 saw the debut of Justice League Action on Cartoon Network, which featured the return of Kevin Conroy in the role of Batman as he joined DC's Trinity in leading a new era of Justice League members.
The series featured short episodes that focused on a member of the Trinity as they worked alongside less popular DC heroes like Blue Beetle, Firestorm and Stargirl. The series was geared towards a younger audience than previous entries in the DCAU, but it still retained the heart of the original Justice League animated series, which included a fun take on the Dark Knight.
2/15 Harley Quinn – 2019-Ongoing
30 Episodes (Currently)
Gotham City villain and former flam of the Joker, Harley Quinn, starred in her own self-titled series that launched in 2019. It followed her attempt to make a name for herself while also earning her spot with the Legion of Doom.
While Batman doesn't play a large role in the series, he frequently appears in scenes that re-examine the Dark Knight and his relationships with other characters in new and hilarious ways. Harley Quinn's Batman was voiced by Diedrich Bader, who reprised his role as the Dark Knight from Batman: The Brave and the Bold.
1/15 Batman: Caped Crusader – 2022 Premiere
No Episodes Have Been Announced Yet
Fans of Bruce Timm's iconic take on the Dark Knight from Batman: The Animated Series were excited by the news that he'll be teaming with producers J. J. Abrams and Matt Reeves for a new animated series called Batman: Caped Crusader.
The first image revealed a new take on the character that homaged his earliest Batman costume, which seems to reflect how the series will examine the noir beginnings of the Dark Knight. Batman: Caped Crusader will air on Cartoon Network and stream on HBO Max in 2022, further adding to the Dark Knight's long animated history.
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How to watch Batman Animated Series in chronological order? ›
- Batman: The Animated Series Season 1.
- Batman: Mask of the Phantasm.
- Batman: The Animated Series Seasons 2-3.
- Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero.
- Superman: The Animated Series.
- The New Batman Adventures.
- Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman.
- Justice League.
- Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox.
- Justice League: War.
- Son of Batman.
- Justice League: Throne of Atlantis.
- Batman vs. Robin.
- Batman: Bad Blood.
- Justice League vs. Teen Titans.
- Justice League Dark.
It's best to start from the beginning with the Emmy-winning Batman: The Animated Series, which marked the debut of Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill's iconic turns as Batman and the Joker, respectively.How do I start watching Batman animated series? ›
- Batman: Year One. ...
- Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1. ...
- Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2. ...
- Batman: Under the Red Hood. ...
- Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. ...
- Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker. ...
- Batman: Assault on Arkham. ...
- Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
- Batman (1989)
- Batman Returns (1992)
- Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)
- Batman Forever (1995)
- Batman & Robin (1997)
- Batman Begins (2005)
- The Dark Knight (2008)
- The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Animation to remain faithful to the original story -- regardless of the eventual MPAA rating," Sam Register, president of Warner Bros. Animation & Warner Digital Series, said in a statement. "'The Killing Joke' is revered by the fans, particularly for its blunt, often-shocking adult themes and situations.Who is the best animated Batman? ›
Of course Kevin Conroy's Batman is the best animated Batman thanks in large part to the iconic Batman: The Animated Series. This show was a major influence when it came to the Bat character and his characterization, style, and tone can be felt in almost every animated Batman that came after him.Which Batman animated series are connected? ›
The DC Animated Universe, or DCAU, is the name given to the shared continuity existing between the DC Comics-based animated series Batman: The Animated Series, Superman: The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures, Batman Beyond, The Zeta Project, Static Shock, Gotham Girls, Lobo: Webseries, Justice League, and ...How tall is Batman? ›
Ironically, data collected by Moviepilot suggest that since Batman first appeared in feature-length films 50 years ago, Mr West has been the closest in physique to the Gotham crusader as specified in the comic books: 6'2" (1.88m) tall, and weighing 210 pounds (95kg).Is Batman and Harley Quinn canon? ›
|First comic appearance||The Batman Adventures #12 (September 1993, non-canon) Batman: Harley Quinn #1 (October 1999, canon)|
Should I watch Batman: The Animated Series before Batman Beyond? ›
And even though it is a sequel to the famous Batman: The Animated Series, you don't need to watch the series before watching Batman Beyond, which makes it even more awesome.What is the best Batman timeline? ›
- DETECTIVE COMICS #27 (1939) ...
- DETECTIVE COMICS #38 (1940) ...
- BATMAN #1 (1940) ...
- THE BATMAN (1943) ...
- BATMAN (1966-1968) ...
- BATMAN #217/”One Bullet Too Many” (1969) ...
- THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS (1986) ...
- BATMAN (1989)
Every Batman live-action series. There is no "right order" here, as they're all disconnected and not chronological. So, we recommend watching them in order of release.What is the best Batman animated season? ›
With other classic episodes like "Almost Got 'Im," "Two-Face," "Beware the Grey Ghost," "Robin's Reckoning," and "Perchance to Dream" (Batman voice-actor Kevin Conroy's personal favorite episode), the first season of Batman: The Animated Series emerges as the unquestioned best season of the show.What is the oldest Batman cartoon? ›
The Adventures of Batman (1968)
The Adventures of Batman is an animated TV series directed by Hal Sutherland and produced by Lou Scheimer, and it was the first animated Batman series. It consisted of one season with 17 episodes.
Batman: Gotham Knight (Japanese: バットマン ゴッサムナイト, Hepburn: Battoman Gossamu Naito) is a 2008 animated superhero anthology film based on the DC Comics superhero of the same name.Who was the first Batman? ›
Lewis Wilson ('Batman,' 1943)
Lewis Wilson was the first actor to star as Batman in the 1943, 15-chapter serial Batman.
Here's a quote straight from the mouth of director Christopher Nolan: Bane is someone ravaged by pain from a trauma suffered long ago, and the mask dispenses a type of anesthetic that keeps his pain just below the threshold so he can function.Why is Batman Begins a 12? ›
MPAA explanation: intense action violence, disturbing images and some thematic elements.Which Batman has Bane? ›
Bane appears in the 1997 film Batman & Robin, played by Jeep Swenson. A new version of Bane later appeared in The Dark Knight Rises, played by Tom Hardy. The two films exist in separate "worlds" and so there's no relation between the stories or characters.
Is there a rated R version of The Batman? ›
Reeves stressed that no R-rated version of “The Batman” exists. If anything, Reeves worried that pushing the limits of the PG-13 rating would tip “The Batman” over into R territory and he would then have to make cuts.Is The Batman ok for 12 year olds? ›
So in the end, I'd recommend this film for anyone 12 and over. It does have some violence and very mature themes but if your child knows that it's fake and not real then they'll be fine.Is The Batman ok for 13 year old? ›
What is The Batman Rated? The Batman is rated PG-13, which means that some material is not suitable for children under the age of 13. For example, movies rated PG-13 might contain violence, nudity, sensuality, and/or brief language. Here, the movie contains some sexual content, language, and violence.Who is Batman's number 1 villain? ›
1. Joker. To no one's surprise, The Joker is the best of Batman's villains.What is the darkest animated Batman? ›
Batman: The Killing Joke has been animated for the screen in an adaption of the classic 1988 graphic novel of the same name.What was Batman Number 1? ›
Batman #1 is the first issue of the Batman comic book series. The issue saw the publication of four stories, including "The Joker", "The Giants of Dr. Hugo Strange", "The Cat" and "The Joker Returns". The stories were presumably written by Bill Finger, and drawn by Bob Kane and Jerry Robinson.Are Batman: The Animated Series episodes connected? ›
Timm stated that, “actually every episode was a standalone, the only ones that were connected were episodes that had a recurring villain. And even then, a lot of those were standalone, a lot of those didn't like, directly connect.Are all Batman animated series connected? ›
Yes. Batman the Animated Series, Superman the Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures, Batman Beyond, Static Shock, Justice League, and Justice League Unlimited are all part of the DC Animated Universe.Why are there only 3 seasons of Batman: The Animated Series? ›
The show ended in 1995, but was revived in 1997 as The New Batman Adventures and aired in an hour-long block with Superman: The Animated Series, but the show still wasn't getting great ratings, and when it was canceled again in 1999, it stayed canceled.Why is season 1 of Batman: The Animated Series so long? ›
65 episodes were produced for Season One, due to it being the minimum number of episodes necessary for a TV series to be successfully syndicated. 60 of these episodes were initially aired during the 1992–1993 television season, which ran from September 1992 to May 1993.
Is Superman ever in Batman animated series? ›
The first DCAU project is 1992's Batman: The Animated Series, easily one of the best animated TV shows of all time. But Superman doesn't appear until late in the show.Which Robin is in Teen Titans? ›
Richard John "Dick" Grayson, mostly known as Robin, is one of main protagonists of the 2003 animated series Teen Titans. He is the leader and one of the five founding members of the Teen Titans. Before that, he was trained by, and served as a sidekick to Batman.