Thanks to Michael for showing me this Japanese Batman cartoon intro. It’s the intro for the 1977 New Adventures of Batman animated series (with a few additional clips and edits) set to a crazy Batman theme. Can’t believe I’d never heard of this before.

After watching it, I saw the Japanese opening for the X-Men animated series from Fox in the 1990’s. It’s much more intense than the original opening. Very different from the Batman opening. Interesting how much styles and tastes have changed in 20 years.

Heath Ledger as the Joker

Lots of photos have popped up over on The Movie Blog Community and on a Flickr Page that show Heath ledger as the Joker, as well as several shots of Batman from the Summer 2008 Batman film, The Dark Knight.

I really like the way Ledger looks and I also like the fact that the “Joker look” appears to just be make-up and not some accident. The scarring around the mouth is hard to see and I wish that were a little more prominent, but overall, everything looks great and I absolutely can’t wait to see some footage from this.

Heath Ledger as the Joker in the Dark Knight.

The whole I Believe in Harvey Dent campaign site was a lead-up to revealing the first official picture of Heath Ledger as the Joker. I can’t say that I’m terribly excited. It’s a little too far from the original Joker for me.

Having said that, I won’t pass judgment and I’ll still see the film. It’s too early to tell and one photo doesn’t really show or prove anything. I will say that it does look creepy, almost serial killer like, very John Wayne Gacy, Jr. I trust Christopher Nolan as a filmmaker, having like all of his previous work. This does mean that Carter and I probably won’t be seeing this one together. At least we have the Hulk and Iron Man to look forward to next year as well.

Added…SlashFilm has a great, detailed story on how the picture and site was revealed, beginning with a few Joker playing cards left in a comic book shop.

Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent (Two-Face) in the Dark Knight.

I want to believe in Harvey Dent, but Warner Bros. has messed that up in the past.

I remember the excitement in the fan/comic community when it was revealed that Billy Dee Williams was playing Harvey Dent in the 1989 Tim Burton Batman film. Most Batman fans know that the Joker disfigures district attorney Harvey Dent with acid, causing his face to be horribly scarred and turning him into the villain Two-Face. So, everyone assumed that Two-Face would be in the next Batman movie (Batman Returns) and be played by Williams.

Nope.

They didn’t use Two-Face until the third sequel, Batman Forever, and then the character was portrayed as a Joker rip-off and not the cunning, crime boss he is supposed to be. Even worse, Billy Dee Williams was nowhere to be found and was replaced by Tommy Lee Jones, who I’ll admit, looked visually like the character.

Let’s hope that the Batman Returns sequel (The Dark Knight) will end with the Joker (Heath Ledger) dousing Aaron Eckhart with acid and that the filmmakers bring him back for the third film.