Over on the TV Squad blog, they’ve been reviewing the old Super Friends cartoons during the summer, seeing as how there is little to review on TV right now. Normally, I just skim over these entries, taking my little trip down nostalga lane for a few minutes, and then getting on with my life.
However, today’s entry was a bit of a sticking point for me… it postulated that many of the multi-ethnic heroes and also-rans added later in the show (Specifically, Samurai, Apache Chief, Black Vulcan, El Dorado, and Firestorm) were way more powerful than the original Super Friends (Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman) and thusly should have been running the show at the Hall of Justice. His explanation is fairly simple… in a smack down, the original four (five, if you count Robin) have very few powers between them, and a tremendous weakness or two. (i.e. kryptonite and being away from water for about an hour)
I hate to say it, but I would tend to agree with the commentator, were it not for one thing…
Sure, the Batman in the Super Friends is a far cry from the brooding creature of the night in the Bruce Timmeverse, but he’s still a tactical genius, and one of the baddest hand-to-hand fighters on the planet earth. The blogger in question seems to think that if you take away the utility belts, Batman and Robin are simply helpless.
Au Contrare, mon ami. A Batman (any Batman) without his gadgets is even more dangerous because he is then forced to use his most powerful weapon… his brain.
Methinks it would go down something like this…
INT- HALL OF JUSTICE- DAY
Samurai, Apache Chief, Black Vulcan and
BLACK VULCAN: I’m telling you guys… all of us new members are just the tokens around here. The only reason they let us into this group of theirs is affirmative action! They’ve reduced us and our cultures to stereotypes!
APACHE CHIEF: Ease off on the Spanish, kimo sabe. It’s just what they want you to do.
Apache Chief slaps himself for doing the same thing.
FIRESTORM: Whoa guys…that isn’t true. What about me?
SAMURAI: Do you see any other teenagers around here, Firestorm?
FIRESTORM: Well, there’s The wonder twins… and Robin.
SAMURAI: I meant straight teenagers. Robin doesn’t count. He’s been Batman’s sidekick since the 50’s.
BLACK VULCAN: Yeah. Dude must be at least 60 by now.
APACHE CHIEF: So, what do we do?
BLACK VULCAN: We take em out! Show Superhonky and the whitebread squad how we do things in the ghetto.
APACHE CHIEF: Dude, now you’re doing it.
BLACK VULCAN: Damn.
NARRATOR: AT THAT MOMENT, SUPERHONK… I MEAN SUPERMAN, WONDER WOMAN, BATMAN, ROBIN AND AQUAMAN RETURN FROM SAVING THE WORLD ONCE MORE.
BLACK VULCAN: Get em, guys!
Black Vulcan fires a lightning bolt at Superman, doing exactly squat.
SUPERMAN: What is the meaning of this?
SAMURAI: We’ve had it working as your token minorities!
Samurai hurls a whirlwind at Wonder Woman, making her spin.
WONDER WOMAN: Great Hera!
ROBIN: Holy turncoats, Batman! They’ve all gone from super friends to super foes!
BATMAN: It would seem so chum. Quickly, Robin… batarangs!
NARRATOR: SUDDENLY, FIRESTORM TURNS THE DYNAMIC DUO’S UTILITY BELTS TO SOAP BUBBLES!
ROBIN: Holy disarming, Batman! What do we do now?
BATMAN: Follow me, chum!
Batman and Robin jump past him and kick both Apache Chief and Samurai in the throat.
APACHE CHIEF: INECK- gugh!
SAMURAI: KASINAMO- NE-ackugh!
NARRATOR: UNABLE TO SAY THE WORDS FOR “GROW” OR “INVISIBLE MAN” IN THEIR NATIVE LANGUAGE, SAMURAI AND APACHE CHIEF FALL UNCONCIOUS TO THE FLOOR!
AQUAMAN: My ability to talk to sea creatures is useless in this situation!
BLACK VULCAN: Unfortunately for you, princess, gold is an excellent conductor of electricity.
Black Vulcan sends electricity down the rope, shocking both
BLACK VULCAN: Oops.
NARRATOR: BEFORE BLACK VULCAN CAN REACT, SUPERMAN USES HIS SUPER BREATH TO FREEZE THE MASTER OF LIGHTNING SOLID!
SUPERMAN: Too easy.
FIRESTORM: As easy as this?
Firestorm turns Superman’s cape to kryptonite.
BATMAN: Help Superman, Robin. I’ll take care of this youngster.
Batman walks up to Firestorm. Firestorm raises his hands to activate his powers.
FIRESTORM: Please… what are you gonna do? You have no powers! Why, I could turn your costume to uranium and kill you! Or turn the floor underneath you to tar! Or…
Batman simply punches him in the face. Firestorm falls to the floor, unconscious.
BATMAN: Sigh. When will this younger generation ever learn?