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Cartoon Review: "The Batman" Season 3 (2005)

Natalie is a writer who works at her local library. She enjoys writing reviews, watching anime and TV shows, and playing video games.

"The Batman" season 3 official DVD artwork.

"The Batman" season 3 official DVD artwork.

Quick Info

Director: Various
Distributor: Warner Brothers Animation
Released: September 12, 2006
Runtime: 338 minutes
Availability: On DVD, available for digital purchase on Amazon, iTunes, and other stores, streaming on HBOMax

Story Summary

Commissioner Gordon now has the police permitting Batman to be active in Gotham City. His daughter Barbara Gordon helps her friend Pamela Isley protest various companies in Gotham trying to make Gotham a better place, for plants. Due to a freak accident, Pamela has transformed into Poison Ivy, but Barbara catches a glimpse of Batman during the confrontation, and inspired, she decides to become “Batwoman” and fight crime, but people keep calling her “Batgirl”.

This season is about her trying to work with Batman while he has no interest in having a crime-fighting partner.

Why They Introduced Batgirl Before Robin

I’ve often mentioned the “Bat Embargo” while reviewing this series, but the embargo has a different effect on this season than just limiting villains used in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy so they couldn’t be used in the cartoon. The Bat Embargo affected The Batman since they were not allowed to use Robin in the show due to his character being one of the main characters of the Teen Titans cartoon that was also airing at the time.

So the writers decided to make Batgirl Batman’s first sidekick and that did make the dynamic very interesting between the two characters.

Seeing other people that are inspired by Batman to fight crime is interesting because people in Gotham are mainly bystanders and aren’t proactive in helping Batman fight crime.

The Ventriloquist in therapy with Joker and Penguin in Arkham Asylum.

The Ventriloquist in therapy with Joker and Penguin in Arkham Asylum.

Batman vs Joker Another Bane Part I

The Animation Looks Great!

I like the animation for this season and it continues to improve in the fight choreography department. I do like that the fights keep improving because it keeps the cartoon entertaining.

I also liked the creative decisions, and despite the Joker being overused in this series, they did have him use the Bane serum and that gave them a unique way to use Joker, in a way that hadn’t been used in the series before. This character design was also the inspiration for the Joker's final boss form in the videogame Batman: Arkham Asylum because this was the first appearance of Joker using the Bane serum, so it was nice to see the videogame give a shoutout to this cartoon!

The Voice Acting Is Great!

The same voice cast reprises their roles and they do a great job. Rino Romano, Kevin Michael Richardson, Tommy Kenny, and Mitch Pileggi are all great in their roles, as Batman, Joker, Penguin, and Commissioner Gordon respectively.

Barabara Gordon/Batgirl

To replace Ellen Yin’s role in the series, we are introduced to Barabara Gordon/Batgirl voiced by Danielle Judovits. She brought a unique aspect to Barbara’s personality and she’s very outgoing and outspoken.

I like how outgoing the character is and Danielle Judovits portrayed her character very well and gave a great vocal performance.

Pamela Isley/ Poison Ivy

Piera Coppola voiced Pamela Isley/Poison Ivy and she did a great job. She does sound different from Diane Pershing the previous voice actress for Poison Ivy in Batman: The Animated Series and it’s nice that Piera Coppola didn’t try to imitate her performance since she did her own take on the character.

I just wish her character would have appeared more in this series but that didn’t happen.

Spellbinder

Michael Massee voiced the character of Spellbinder and he was an interesting villain despite only appearing in one episode. He was a unique villain because Batman had to use his training that he learned when he traveled the world and that usually doesn’t happen often in Batman stories.

Michael Massee did a great job in this role and he was a good choice to voice the character.

Doctor Hugo Strange

Richard Green replaced Frank Gorshin because Frank Gorshin passed away on May 17, 2005, and Richard Green did a great job in this role. He sounds enough like Frank Gorshin that you probably won’t notice much of a difference between the two voice actors.

He is an excellent voice actor and a good choice to replace the late Frank Gorshin.

Overall, the voice cast is great and sounds fantastic. It’s also a unique cast with great voice actors in unique roles when it comes to the characters. I really enjoyed the voice acting in this cartoon.

The Batman Season 3 Theme & Credits

The Soundtrack Is Great but I Don’t Like the New Theme Song!

While the soundtrack is great, The Batman got a second theme song composed by Andy Strumer that was reminiscent of the 160s Batman theme because parents thought the first theme by The Edge was too scary.

And while I like the first theme far more than the second one, it’s just weird to hear the new theme song for the rest of the cartoon’s run because the first theme is still used for the menu music!

Thomas Chase’s soundtrack is still enjoyable but it’s not the most amazing music I’ve heard but it’s still a good soundtrack.

The inspiration for the final boss of "Batman: Arkham Asylum" videogame.

The inspiration for the final boss of "Batman: Arkham Asylum" videogame.

Reader Poll

Episodes 9 and 10 Are Both Labeled as 9 on HBOMax

Season 3, Episode 9 “Cash for Toys” was missing from HBOMax for some reason. All the other seasons have all their episodes up on the streaming service but for some reason, this episode is missing.

Warner Brothers did upload the episode, but unfortunately, both “Cash for Toys” and the next episode “Thunder” which is episode 41 are both labeled “Episode 9”. Hopefully, they will fix the episode number typo because the season has 13 episodes.

The Stories Are Good, but the Joker Is Overused

I’ve enjoyed The Batman a lot, but I’ve noticed how much this series relies on Joker as its main villain. I know they weren’t allowed to use some of the more famous villains because they weren’t allowed to use characters in more than one work, but Joker was used in both Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight (2005) film and this series.

But relying on him so much gets predictable and they could have used fewer Joker episodes and used another villain like, say, Poison Ivy for some variety.

Because there isn’t as much variety when it comes to the villains, seeing Joker gets cliché, despite the fun episode with the Bane serum episode, seeing him will make some fans roll their eyes because he appears so often in The Batman.

It’s a Fun Cartoon With Great Setup for My Favorite Season!

The Batman is a great cartoon that became a cult classic because it was a unique take on Batman, while some fans were disappointed that it wasn’t like Batman: The Animated Series (1992) but it was unique and stands on its own to be a fun and interesting take on the Dark Knight.

The Batman Season 4 is my favorite season but this series built on what they did in season 2 so they could be set up to write the amazing episodes that are in season 4. While the writing in season 3 is good, it wasn’t as good as the next season.

The episodes are still entertaining and fun, even if Joker does start to wear out his welcome when it comes to how many appearances he has throughout this series.

Cash Tankinson tries to protect Alfred and Bruce from Krank's deadly toys.

Cash Tankinson tries to protect Alfred and Bruce from Krank's deadly toys.

Quick Summary

What Works:What Doesn't Work:

Great story, characters, and world-building

The Joker is overused

Great animation

The episodes aren't as good as season 2

Great voice acting

HBOMax has mislabeled episodes

Good soundtrack

My Grade: B-

While I did enjoy the third season of The Batman, it wasn’t as good as season 2, but it did have great cast additions of Batgirl and has some fantastic episodes like “Thunder” and “Brawn”.

The character interactions are still entertaining and the show is still good, but when you come off season 2, the series just can’t meet that high bar of great writing for this series until season 4, where all the episodes were fantastic.

It’s still fun to see Batgirl and her development throughout the series from rookie to veteran. She had great character development that I enjoyed a lot.

Overall, the season is good, but not the best season of the cartoon. It’s still a fun and enjoyable watch. I recommend watching it on HBOMax if you have a subscription because this season does have fun episodes that I enjoyed a lot.

I bought this series a long time ago and it’s a great addition to my collection and while not everyone will want to own this particular Batman series, it’s still a lot of fun to watch.

It’s not perfect but the series continues to improve as it goes on, it’s the reason The Batman is a cult classic among Batman fans. It might not be Batman: The Animated Series (1992), but it’s a great Batman series if you’re willing to give it a try.

My Rating

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