Follow TV Tropes


Western Animation / Batman: Year One

Go To

"I've tried to be patient. I've tried to wait. But I have to know... how, father? How do I do it? What do I use... to make them afraid?"
Bruce Wayne

Batman: Year One is a 2011 animated superhero film, based on the four-issue story arc of the same name printed in 1987. It premiered at Comic-Con on July 22 and was officially released October 18, 2011. The film was directed by Lauren Montgomery and Sam Liu. It is the 12th film released under the DC Universe Animated Original Movies banner and was released on DVD, Blu-ray, Ultra HD Blu-ray, and Digital copy.

The animated adaptation contains examples of:

  • Adaptational Badass: Selina puts up considerably more of a fight against Bruce than she does in the comic, managing to fight him to a standstill, whereas in the comic she goes down with one hit.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The film expands or completely adds a few scenes and makes things the comic left subtle a bit more obvious. The biggest example is a scene demonstrating that the girl Bruce had over during the Gordons' visit was simply a cover working for $5000.
  • Adaptation Name Change: A minor sort, but Branden's name to modified to Brendon.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: In the comic, Lieutenant Branden is still an antagonist, but is a fascistic Rabid Cop who is used by the corrupt cops rather than directly aiding them. In the film, he's explicitly shown to be corrupt himself, as he conspires with Loeb and Falcone to kidnap Gordon's family.
  • Adapted Out:
    • Branden's second in command, Pratt, is omitted, with Branden/Brendon taking his place as the one Batman punches through a wall.
    • The movie also removes mentions of Loeb's resignation and his successor, Grogan.
  • "Basic Instinct" Legs-Crossing Parody: When the Gordons are invited to Wayne Manor, Bruce (seen from his POV) pulls this on Barbara; from her revolted expression, he's not wearing anything under his robe.
  • Big Bad: Carmine Falcone, The Don of Gotham City.
  • Bringing Running Shoes to a Car Chase: Bruce Wayne (not as Batman) chases a car on foot, going as far as to run on rooftops and jump down onto another truck.
  • Company Cross References: The film changes some of the toys stolen from Loeb (originally Lawyer-Friendly Cameos of Mickey Mouse and Peanuts characters) into a Huckleberry Hound and an Elmer Fudd, two characters owned by Warner Bros..
  • Creative Closing Credits: The first part of the film's credits shows off panels from the newsprint version of the comic.
  • Darker and Edgier: The movie starts out with Gotham City at its worst with Gordon bemoaning even coming there with his wife due it being run by corrupt officials, crooked cops, and criminals polluting the streets. Gordon becoming a Rabid Cop who beats on crooked cops and cheats on his pregnant wife and Catwoman originally being a dangerous prostitute only affirms the point.
  • Demoted to Extra: In the animated adaptation, Dent is only seen and mentioned once when Gordon investigates him on the belief he is Batman. In the comic, he was one of the main three that took down the corrupt network (aside from Batman and Gordon), but he was either not mentioned or his involvement was given to Gordon (such as the reason IA was going after Flass was Dent's doing in the comic, but Gordon's in the film, and the reason Skeeter was given parole was Dent's doing so Batman could interrogate him). This was most likely due to focus more on Gordon and Batman's beginnings.
  • Dirty Cop: Gotham is run by these, with even the Commissioner being in the pocket of criminals. When Gordon tried to give some cops under his watch a lecture on ethics, the Commissioner had him beaten to near death. It really speaks volumes when the witnessing crowd gladly cheers when Batman beat up a SWAT team sent to kill him.
  • The Gadfly: One of the ways Batman drives Falcone crazy, is wrecking his car.
  • Mauve Shirt: Merkel, Gordon's only ally on the force besides Sarah, only has a few short scenes.
  • No Smoking: Not surprisingly, all the smoking from the original comic gets axed.
  • Plot-Irrelevant Villain: Catwoman. More like Anti-Villain since she's only trying to steal from the mob. Other than inconveniencing Batman one night, she has no impact on his or Gordon's story.
  • Skintone Sclerae: All of the character designs sport these, as do the designs in the DC Showcase: Catwoman short attached to it.
  • The Hero's Journey: The film shows Bruce Wayne's first transition into becoming Batman with plenty of pitfalls and painful trial and error along the way. Get knifed by a teenage prostitute while trying to defend her from her abusive pimp for instance.
  • Vocal Evolution: As noted in "Role Reprise" in the Trivia page, despite Jeff Bennett reprising the role of Alfred from Young Justice, his Alfred here sounds gruffer than his Alfred in YJ.