by Ryan Rigley
Frank Miller’s masterpiece, “The Dark Knight Returns,” has been a huge inspiration for a number of Batman stories and films throughout the years. It’s no wonder that DC Comics and Warner Home Video have finally decided to turn this critically-acclaimed graphic novel into not one, but two epic animated feature films. The second half doesn’t hit until next year, but “Part One” hits shelves today (September 25), and it gets our wholehearted endorsement.
“The Dark Knight Returns” takes place in a Gotham we’ve never seen before; crime runs rampant throughout the city as the Batman remains on the side-lines, old and retired. But when a gang of “Mutants” threaten to take over the city, Bruce Wayne is finally compelled to take action and end their reign of terror once and for all. Read on for our list of five reason to watch “The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1.”
1. The Return
Taking place ten years after Batman has retired, the people of Gotham have long since forgotten what it’s like to live in a city protected by the Caped Crusader. Although he’s often talked about on the news, the newest generation of Gothamites believes the Dark Knight to be nothing but a myth. So when Bruce Wayne ultimately puts the cowl back on, it’s very interesting to see the wide spectrum of reactions from the different generations of Gotham’s citizens.
2. The Humor
Based on the original graphic novel by Frank Miller, “The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1” is not without its fair share of wisecracks. In fact, there are a number of hilarious jokes and one-liners sprinkled throughout the film that really makes the story feel unique and interesting. Alfred, for example, is just as sarcastic and dry as he is during his prime; berating Bruce for putting his life on the line time and time again.
3. The Villains
“The Mutants” are truly a force to be reckoned with. Not only do they have power in numbers, but they’re also extremely sadistic and extremely well-armed. Their hobbies include robbing banks, calling people “spud,” slicing/dicing, and rape. However, the Mutants aren’t the only thing that Batman has to worry about; a newly-reformed Harvey Dent also manages to stir up some trouble for Gotham City.
4. The New Robin
Not only is Carrie Kelley one of the only successful females Robins to date, she also somehow manages to take on the role completely on her own. While all of the other Robins so far have had to train with Bruce to become his equal, being Robin seems almost second nature to Kelley. On her first night out, she stops a mugging, jumps across several rooftops, and even manages to come to Batman’s aid when he needs it the most.
5. The Set-up
As we mentioned earlier, “The Dark Knight Returns” is being split up into two animated movies. With that said, “Part One” ends on a very exciting note; hinting at the dangers to come in the sequel. (SPOILERS AHEAD.) The Mutants have been defeated, Commissioner Gordon has been replaced, Kelley is officially the new Robin, and an old adversary declares war on Gotham. Looks like Batman is in for quite a fight with the return of You Know Who! (No, we’re not talking about Voldemort.)
Will you be purchasing “Dark Knight Returns” on Blu-ray or DVD today? Let us know in the comments section below or hit us up on Twitter!