And so, at long last, the Batman: Animated Series feature returns. It only took my two years to review this episode. And that episode is, The Forgotten, BTAS Vol 1, disc 2. Written by Jules Dennis, Richard Mueller and Sean Catherine Derek, and directed by Boyd Kirkland, all of whose names we've either seen before, or will see again later in the series.
The episode starts with Bruce Wayne peeling potatoes at a soup kitchen, the guy who runs the place is telling him that he thinks people are disappearing, transients, regulars he hasn't seen it a while, even volunteers. Of course, being the Great Detective, he investigates, in a different disguise, that of an older homeless guy, Gaff Morgan. He wanders around town, visiting areas frequented by homeless people, until he is assaulted by a couple of guys, after they offer him a job. Of course, being Batman, he makes short work of the two, but a third guy jumps him from the shadows and it's lights out for Gaff Morgan.
This looks just like where I grew up
He awakes in a shoddily built shack in a desert area, filled with bunk beds, several of which have occupants. Two introduce themselves, and of course one turns out to be the missing volunteer from the homeless shelter. They explain he's been shanghaied to work in a gold mine for the fastest character I've ever seen animated, up until I saw the Wonder Woman animated film that came out last year. This guy is massive, and a slob, eating all the time, spilling on himself, and according to the credits, his name is Boss Biggs. But, he's got a gold mine and cheap labor, which he, or rather, his overseers work to death. Disobedience, slacking and causing trouble are punished by a day in The Box, a steel box with a small barred window left out in the sun to cook all day.
That's not chicken he's eating...
It falls to Batman to free himself and the other slaves, without the use of his regular persona or gadgets, and without getting anyone else in trouble. It was a decent episode, not my favorite upon first viewing, but still a good episode, and knowing that I have 16 DVDs of episodes, it's nice to see some that don't revolve around the regular type of escapades.
Some of the highlights that occur are, Amnesia! When his two cell-mates introduce themselves, Bruce says he can't remember his name. Bruce Wayne does an honest day's work for the first time in his life (probably), slaving away mining gold. We start seeing that there's more to Alfred than just an old butler, he's smart and a detective on his own. Bruce has a creepy dream that helps him start to remember who he is.
Once Bruce remembers who he is he escapes the mines, to be found by Alfred, whose having a rough time in the Batwing (on autopilot). Guess who returns to the mining camp later that night? Batman lures the slavers into the mines, kicks the crap out of them one by one, leaving only fatty and one guard. Fatty accidentally blows up the mine, and Batman drags him off to prison.
"Hey, where'd everybody go?"
The episode ends with Bruce's two slave buddies finding out he remembered who he is, and he's freaking loaded, he says good by to them and drives off in a Rolls Royce. "Hit me Riley," one says, "maybe I'll loose my memory and wake up a millionaire, too!"
So, it wasn't an awesome episode, but it was good, and was pretty amusing, and different from the usual super villain fare. Well, that's it for this review. A little shorter than my previous attempts, but one reason I took a break from doing thees is because those reviews would take hours. Hopefully I'll be back next week with the next episode, Be A Clown, featuring everybody's favorite homicidal circus character, the Joker.
Remember kids: Only vampires loath sunlight more than Batman. - Alfred