It looks like the original 1966 New Adventures of Superman and Batman cartoons from Filmation will finally be coming to DVD, according to Warner Brothers animation writer Earl Kress.

At the end of a post detailing release plans for more old-school Hanah Barbera animation, Kress drops the following dates:

6/26/07: The New Adventures of Batman
The New Adventures of Superman

Those have not been “officially” announced by WB, so I wouldn’t call it 100%, but it’s a good sign. I would hope that the Batman series they are referring to is the Batman with Robin the Boy Wonder. It’s the one that was paired with the New Adventures of Superman in 1969 when they originally aired together as the Batman / Superman Hour on CBS.

The New Adventures of Batman was the series produced by Filmation in 1977. It’s the one I remember watching as a kid. It aired as part of the Super 7 block that featured Tarzan, Freedom Force, Jason of Star Command, Manta and Moray, Superstretch and Microwoman, and Web Woman. Freedom Force is out on DVD now and Jason of Star Command will be released in May.

These shows are the reason I started making my own DVDs a few years ago and I’m excited to see them finally get the actual release they deserve. If there is one area that DC dominates Marvel in, it’s tv/animation/DVD. With Superman and Batman coming, I hope they follow up with: Adventures of Superboy, the DC Heroes shorts, Aquaman, the 1988 Superman cartoon and the other Batman series (whichever one doesn’t get released). I haven’t completed (actually-just barely started) my Superman set, so it will save me some work.

Kress also states four more of my favorite cartoons will be released on July 17.

On July 17, Warner Home Video will release them in their original configuration as Space Ghost and Dino Boy and Birdman and the Galaxy Trio.

He also teases that a release of the Banana Splits Adventure Hour is pending as well.

Recently, comic author Mark Millar posted his thoughts about Bryan Singer being announced as the director for the sequel to Superman Returns. They were:

For half the cash, it seems we’re getting twice the excitement and everything that was missing from the first picture. He also says he’s getting all Wrath of Kahn on this one’ which is cool if he means they’re firing the people who did the first flick and bringing in a whole new writer/ director team.

Good news for anyone who’s always wanted a remake of Superman 2, I guess, with Superman’s kid.

Who would Millar rather see attached to the project?

[Brett] Ratner would be better. Seriously. Ditto Michael Bay. Bay can be awful. Truly, truly awful. But when he’s on he’s the best action guy in town. I think he would have raised his game for Supes’ [Ratner’s] Red Dragon is perfect. It’s a really slick movie. And X3 was OK, given what he was working under. Would have loved to have seen him bring back Supes for a new generation (as he planned with a new Krypton, etc, etc) as opposed to the wank-fest for the over 35s Singer did. I want someone to remake Jaws just so Singer knows the agony I’ve gone through since that flick!!!

I have to say I disagree with Millar and here’s why. . .

I loved the Superman movie for what it was. Yes, it was nostalgic for those that grew up watching th original Donner movie, but it also tried to be more than an action movie. The problem with X3 (which I did like quite a bit) was the fact it was too much action and not enough plot/character development. Or, too much plot crammed into too little movie.

Superman Returns took a few simple ideas and developed them. Father/son issues have always been big in Superman, so it’s no surprise to see them in Returns. The idea of Superman being relevant in a post 9/11 society is also quite appealing and timely. While 9/11 didn’t happen in the DC film universe, the idea of violence out of control was shown when Clark watched the news upon returning. Plus, you have to admit Superman stopping the jet from crashing into the ballpark was designed to evoke those emotions.

Yes, I would have liked to have seen a few more action sequences in the film, but not if it meant sacrificing plot. If I have one complaint, it’s that I’m tired of seeing Luthor as the villain.

If anyone questions the success of this movie, then you should watch Carter (our 3-year old son) for a day. At 2 and a half, Superman Returns was the second movie he saw in the theater. Carrying him out of the theater, he had his arms stretched in from of him, imitating Superman flying. Almost a day doesn’t go by without mention of Superman or him recreating the scene from the movie where Superman lifts the Space Shuttle off of the jet plane. He either acts it out with his Superman and Space Shuttle toys or he grabs some large object and lifts it over his head.

While I have no idea what’s going on inside of his head, I can’t help get the feeling that it’s they way I felt when I first saw Star Wars when I was 3 years old or the way I felt when I saw Superman fly for the first time in 1978. To me, as a father, that’s a much better feeling than watching the Superman “action” movie by Michael Bay for 2 hours.