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Recap / Batman Beyond S 1 E 10 Shriek

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Derek Powers hires sound designer Walter Shreeve to kill Bruce Wayne.


Tropes

  • Annoying Patient: In the hospital after Shriek's initial attack, Bruce is utterly obnoxious, yelling at the nurse to leave and throwing a bedpan. He gets even worse after he starts hearing voices....
  • Autobots, Rock Out!: The producers inverted this trope, where the villain of the title kills all the sound except Batman's footsteps. It is very effective.
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  • Big "NO!": Shriek's reaction to losing his hearing.
  • Buffy Speak: When Terry tells the Batcomputer to analyze one of Shreeve's sound generators.
    Terry: Computer, analyze the metal this thing is made of. (nothing happens) Computer?
    Computer: Incorrect command.
    Terry: Uh...do the thing where you figure out what's it made of.
    Computer: Request for spectrographic analysis.
    Terry: That's it. What you said.
  • Continuity Cameo/"Wanted!" Poster: The old, abandoned police headquarters building still has a wanted poster for the Joker hanging on the wall.
  • Cool, But Inefficient: That is essentially what Powers tells Shreeve what his inventions are; they too expensive to use for jobs when cheaper conventional tools like dynamite can do the job just as well.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Inverted with Shriek, who actually tried to make legitimate money off his inventions and became a criminal in order to secure funding for his research.
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  • Delivery Guy Infiltration: Terry pretends to be a pizza delivery boy in order to infiltrate Shreeve's laboratory. Shreeve is suspicious, but he lets him in. To be fair, Shreeve's initial suspicion is the classic "I didn't order any pizza." Terry manages to get around this by claiming it must have been a prank and his boss would have a fit when he brings it back. The letting him in is sympathy on Shreeve's part (Shreeve isn't a bad guy, just desperate for money for his funding). The suspicion came when Terry asked too many questions about the tech.
  • Gaslighting: Shriek tries to make Bruce appear insane and push him into killing himself by broadcasting voices at him through a hidden miniature receiver. He realizes that the voices are fake because they address him as "Bruce", which isn't how he thinks of himself.
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  • Go-Karting with Bowser: Terry is investigating an attempted assassination of Bruce Wayne and decides to visit what might be the source of the technology used in the attack. However, instead of sneaking in as Batman he dresses up as a delivery boy and brings over a pizza. He and Walter Shreeve end up splitting the pie and pleasantly talking about sound waves... at least, until Terry's questions get a bit too pointed and Shreeve tries to split open his head.
  • Hearing Voices: Part of Shriek's debut was convincing everyone Bruce had gone crazy so he could be locked up. Bruce himself never believed it, and Terry eventually uncovered the secret - an oversized bandage that concealed a "tiny" two-way radio only Bruce could hear. After Shriek is defeated, they have an interesting conversation:
    Terry: Tell me something - why were you so sure those voices weren't coming from you?
    Bruce: Well, first, I know I'm not psychotic.
    Terry: I hope your other reason is more convincing.
    Bruce: Second, the voice kept calling me "Bruce." In my mind, that's not what I call myself.
    Terry: What do you call yourself?
    Bruce: (stares)
    Terry: Oh, yeah. I suppose you would. [Batman voice] But that's my name now.
    Bruce:Tell that to my subconscious.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Sound expert Shriek goes deaf from his suit's amplification.
  • Meaningful Rename: When Walter Shreeve, sound researcher and technician, is exposed as the attempted murderer of Bruce Wayne, he complains to Powers that he can no longer show his face or use his name. Powers explains that the face is no great loss, and he will give Shreeve a new name more fitting to his powers: Shriek.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Terry, while pretending to be a pizza delivery boy.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Shriek was only working with Powers to receive funding.
  • Quieter Than Silence: A variation is used, where the only sound heard is a very high tone. It's not actually silence, but to show that Shriek has gone deaf. note 
    • Earlier in the episode, they do go completely silent, with the only sounds being the occasional distorted footfall when Batman moves.
  • Saving the Orphanage: Bruce refuses to allow a section of Gotham City, which included the theater he'd gone to the night his parents were murdered, to be demolished. Terry asks him if he'd rather have it demolished, so that the painful memories would end, until Bruce asks "Do you want to forget what happened to your father?" Powers hires Shreeve to kill Bruce so that he can go ahead with demolishing it.
  • Silence Is Golden: The fight with Shriek in the car factory.

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