“Justice League Action” Delivers Hard on the Action
DC Comic’s new animated series ‘Justice League Action’ premiered in the U.S. this Friday, December 16th on Cartoon Network. This is the newest successor to the Justice League TV franchise, the last one being 2006’s ‘Justice League Unlimited’.
The first episode, an hour long special, featured a plethora of DC heroes and villains, including, Superman, Wonder Woman, Constantine, Swamp Thing, Plastic Man, Martian Man Hunter, Black Adam, The Parasite, Shazam (voiced by Sean Astin) and Batman, voiced by the one and only Kevin Conroy. That’s right, Kevin Conroy the man who voiced Batman in ‘Batman: The Animated Series’, and the ‘Batman: Arkham’ series has returned to reprise his iconic role as the Dark Knight himself. This review won’t go into specifics about the episode as to best avoid spoilers, just my overall impression of the show.
Now, from the previous promos leading to the premiere, we could tell the new series was going to be aimed towards the younger audience. It seems the dramatic story arcs that span multiple episodes like those of it’s predecessor, have been replaced with quick, action packed fun vignettes, and they definitely deliver hard on the comedy and even harder on the action. From the time the episode starts, we are thrown into a quick paced action sequence paired with an amazing backtrack that is incredibly reminiscent of the ‘Batman: The Animated Series’ theme.
The hour long special premiere is obviously structured as four 11-minute episodes, which is typical for Cartoon Network animated programs like Adventure Time, Regular Show, Steven Universe, etc. The episodes were part of an ongoing narrative, but you can tell when each segment ends and begins. Many people were worried how the new Justice League series was going to turn out. In the wake of ‘Teen Titans Go’, fans were afraid the powers that be at Cartoon Network and WB Animation HQ (respectively) were going to turn their favorite heroes into goofy, watered down parodies of their former selves. Although the series is obviously made for younger viewers, the integrity, nature, and personality of each hero and villain is for the most part, left intact. I was surprised and delighted to find that the new series is more akin to the current Marvel ‘Spiderman’ and ‘Avengers’ series’ that air on Disney XD, than Teen Titans Go.
So no, Justice League Action probably won’t be garnering any acclaim for its writing, or even its animation, and it is a long way off from being as good as predecessors like ‘Justice League/Unlimited’, or ‘Batman: The Animated Series’; but, it is a fun, easy going show that is thoroughly enjoyable to watch and to experience your favorite DC characters. Plus I mean, they brought Kevin Conroy back, that gives them more than a few brownie points in my book. I’d easily give Justice League Action 3.8 out of 5 stars, and its definitely worth a watch! Justice League Action will move to Saturday mornings starting December 24th.