Several weeks ago, I was complaining to my best friend that Warner Brothers had decided to cancel the current “The Batman” cartoon that had been running for a few years. I really liked that show, but Warner decided to replace it with a new Batman toon with much more childish animation and goofy stories. My friend’s response stopped me cold: “I like the new one. I like that I can watch it with my kids and not worry about it.”
That’s a great perspective, and one that I better learn fast. You see, I always loved superhero comics, stories, and cartoons. From a very young age, my head was filled with fantastic fantasies about saving the world. When I closed my eyes at night, I always drifted to sleep with images of heroic deeds and astonishing adventures running through my head. At bedtime, alone in my room as a kid, I flew. As soon as my eyes closed, I was saving the world. Sometimes, I still am.
I want that for my kids. I want fun, kid-safe comics and superhero cartoons to watch with them. Growing up, I felt like the comic industry matured along with me. The stories were grittier, darker, and more complex. In my teens, I loved it. The problem is, that’s not a great starting point for a little kid. I’d rather sit down with my little geek in a few years and watch the kind of shows that got my own imagination spinning 30 years ago. I want some shows like “Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends” and “Super Friends.” Granted, they aren’t as amazing for me to watch today, but they do remind me of how I felt sitting in the floor watching them for the first time. I’m looking forward to that with Wedge.
So, bring it on, Warner Brothers. May the new “Batman: The Brave and the Bold” cartoon thrive and flourish, ushering in a new era of kid-friendly superhero tales. Keep the flame alive for a while. Wedge needs some more time.