Batman: Mask of the Phantasm and Its Lost Sequel


Welcome to the twenty-fourth edition of Adventure(s) Time, where we examine a classic animated series and an issue of its tie-in comic that shares a similar theme. This week, following a suggestion from commenter Dave Anderson, we look back on the first movie to spin out of Batman: The Animated Series, and a sequel that later appeared in the Adventures tie-in with little fanfare. If you have any suggestions for future installments, feel free to let me know in the comments section.

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Batman: Mask of the Phantasm was released in a limited run on December 25, 1993 in theaters, receiving positive reviews from the few critics who paid attention to the film. (Siskel and Ebert would later express regret that they missed the movie during its theatrical release.) The story was written by Alan Burnett, with Burnett being joined on the screenplay by Paul Dini, Martin Pasko, and Michael Reaves. According to Reaves, deadlines prevented Burnett from writing the entire screenplay on his own, so each of the four writers divvied up scenes and scripted the screenplay simultaneously, then came together for the final draft. The visual masterminds behind the series, Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm, directed Phantasm, and animation was split between Dong Yang Animation Co. and Spectrum studios (although the bulk of the film appears to be a Dong Yang job; it lacks the anime polish of Spectrum’s work.)

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