Short Takes: Dec. 21, 1992

TELEVISION

Brooding in Gotham City

BATMAN IS DEPRESSED. FIRST HE READS a headline in the local paper: PENGUIN CONVICTION OVERTURNED. Then, while rounding up some crooks, he nearly causes the death of Commissioner Gordon. BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES, which is joining Fox's Sunday-night schedule after scoring big ratings in daytime, has the same dark hues as the hit movies on which it is based, but probably more entertainment bang for the buck. The animation nicely reproduces the films' shadowy, expressionist look; the action scenes really make sense; and the scripts aspire to more. This brooding superhero even paraphrases Santayana: "A fanatic...

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