Celebrate 75 Years of Batman With Badass Short Animations

Bat Man of Shanghai

If you’re a regular reader of Movie Bastards, you’ll be aware that I’m already in the process of charting Bat’s modern cinematic history. However that doesn’t mean that the rest of the world haven’t been releasing their own cool Batman shit too.

A few exceptional shorts have been doing the rounds recently, and we’ve packed them all together below for your enjoyment. Because I’m nice like that.

First up we’ve got an awesome, fan made short mashing up two of my favourite franchises – Batman and Terminator.

While both Batman and Terminator have featured in their own weird crossovers before (such as this and this), they’ve never officially met. Enter intrepid amateur animator, Mitchell Hammond. After quitting college to pursue animation on his own, it took him nearly a full year to write, animate, and dub his own short film.

However the results are fantastic. With a dark and hopeless atmosphere (exactly like T1 – something that has never been replicated since), the appearance of Batman is both suprising and badass. My only complaint is that the film finishes before it starts getting really good. Get it watched below:

If you’re interested in more from Hammond, I’d highly recommend his blog, If it blogs, we can kill it. It offers a fascinating insight into the epic undertaking such a solo-film requires. Plus, I’m a huge supporter for anyone ballsy enough to jack in their standard life, and go for gold. I wish him all the best.

Batman vs. Terminator

Secondly we’ve got an interesting new animation from Bruce Timm. You know, Bruce Timm…the guy who made the awesome Batman: The Animated Series. Yeah, that guy. Timm is responsible for the great art Deco stylistic of the series, and his co-creation of Harley Quinn (with Paul Dini). So, all you perverts can thank him for all those epic Harley cosplays out there too.

Anyway, for Batman’s 75th anniversary, Timm decided to produce a new animation, melding the  clean style of the Animated Series, with a more retro black & white look. Using new digital techniques, it aimed to capture the year one Batman, and pays homage to Hugo Strange’s first appearance in the comics.

As ever the animation is slick, the art-style distinctive, Batman brooding, and the broads beautiful. It makes me yearn for another series, or at least a digital remake. We can but hope. Watch Batman: Strange Days below.

Finally, we’re going back two years, to a brilliant short brought to us by DC Nations. They are responsible for over one hundred animated short films which air on Cartoon Network. Each short runs the gamut of the the entire DC lineup, including the likes of Green Lantern, Superman, and of course Batman.

But the best of the bunch has to be the Bat Man of Shanghai. Brought to us by Wolf Smoke Studios, we delve into the past to bring us another retro Batman adaptation. However this time he’s in 1930’s Shanghai.

Cat Woman Batman of Shanghai

He’s also now a mystical wushu dark knight, and has all kind of crazy Chinese Black Magic at his disposal. He battles a wonderfully realised Bane and Catwoman for a “Scroll of Destiny”, and only appears towards the end to kick ass and put things right.

Every element of the animation is fantastic and runs so contrary to the usually technological-reliant hero. The music is perfect, the animation style is equally modern and vintage in appearance, and it’s a huge shame that nothing more came of this.

Get it in your eyes below:

So that’s it for now. I’m in the process of writing up my thoughts on Batman Returns, and I’ll also be back with a full review of Guardians of the Galaxy. Same Bat-time, same Bat-channel.

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