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A Batman for Kids Battles Super-Sized Supervillains

16 Aug, 2016 By: Stephanie Prange

At the same time fans are mulling the dark turn of the caped crusader in the animated feature Batman: The Killing Joke, the franchise is expanding the hero’s family friendly franchise from DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Animation.

Batman Unlimited: Mechs vs. Mutants follows Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts and Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem as the third release in an animated series of films rooted in Mattel’s “Batman Unlimited” merchandise line. The films feature characters, vehicles, designs and color schemes from the toy collection.

“I love the fact that at Comic-Con in the same weekend we’ve got a rated ‘G’ movie premiering right with The Killing Joke,” said Will Friedle (voice of Nightwing in Mechs vs. Mutants) during an appearance at San Diego Comic-Con International July 24. “That’s just the brilliance of Batman. I mean the character is so well written; it really is for everybody.”

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release the title on DVD Sept. 13 ($19.98) and on Digital HD Aug. 30.

In Mechs vs. Mutants, evil scientist Mr. Freeze activates his latest invention on two of Gotham City’s most formidable criminals — Killer Croc and Bane — turning them into giant mutant monsters. Batman and pals Green Arrow, Nightwing, The Flash and Robin combine to take down the super-sized supervillains.

“Doing Croc for this was a lot of fun, especially being 30 stories tall, ” said John DiMaggio (voice of Killer Croc), who noted the lighter tone.

“It’s definitely a different version of Killer Croc then you’ll see in Suicide Squad,” he said. “It’s a kid-friendly version.”

DiMaggio has voiced many DC characters in his career, including the Joker in Batman: Under the Red Hood.

“You’re talking about these great characters in the DC world,” he said. “There’ re so many, and I have gotten to play a bunch of them, all across the board from different age levels — the mature stuff, the ‘G’-rated stuff — and its all fun. It’s all great. It’s great to play the bad guy. If you have a comedic background, it’s awesome to play the bad guy.”

Roger Craig Smith (voice of Batman) noted the differing tone in the “Unlimited” series as well.

“This to me is a much more classic-style Batman,” he said. “Obviously, we’re doing a more family friendly version of Batman with the ‘Unlimited’ series, so I think it was just a more established, confident, classic-style Batman.”

Friedle, who once voiced a version of Batman in “Batman Beyond,” said he enjoys all the different interpretations of the classic DC characters. The character of Batman can span the campy comedy of Adam West to the darker interpretations of Christian Bale and Ben Affleck, he noted.

“There should always be a Batman for everybody,” he said.

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