‘Batman: Year One’ Clip: Meet The New Guy In Town

Published 4 years ago by , Updated September 22nd, 2011 at 4:06 pm,

Batman Year One Frank Miller movie Batman: Year One Clip: Meet The New Guy In Town

Comic book legend Frank Miller will see his grim version of the Caped Crusader’s origin story brought to (animated) life in Batman: Year One – an adaptation of the writer’s highly-influential 1987 story arc.

Early images released from the film – along with the Batman: Year One trailer – suggested it will be an appropriately atmospheric and gritty cinematic realization of Miller’s source material. The first clip unveiled from the movie likewise supports that assertion.

Similar to previous animated DC Universe releases, Batman: Year One appears to be visually structured as (essentially) a mobile version of a comic book – where every one of the film’s frames resemble actual comic panels. Similarly, the characters have a distinct hand-drawn look and spout lines of dialogue that sometimes sound better (or worse) in written form. That approach to creating an animated comic book adaptation may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but here, it appears to be done quite well.

Here is an official synopsis for Miller’s original Batman: Year One comic:

A young Bruce Wayne spent his adolescence and early adulthood traveling the world so he could hone his body and mind into the perfect fighting and investigative machine. But now as he returns to Gotham City, he must find a way to focus his passion and bring justice to his city. Retracing Batman’s first attempts to fight injustice as a costumed vigilante, we watch as he chooses the guise of a giant bat, creates an early bond with a young Lieutenant James Gordon, inadvertently plays a role in the birth of Catwoman, and helps to bring down a corrupt political system that infests Gotham.

Ben McKenzie (The O.C., Southland) provides the vocals for Bruce Wayne/Batman in Year One, following in the footsteps of many another voice actor – including fan-favorite Kevin Conroy. Does it sound like McKenzie has put his own unique (in a good way, that is) spin on the Caped Crusader’s gruff tones?

Find out by watching the Batman: Year One clip below:


McKenzie as Batman seems to be going for something between the growling intensity of Christian Bale in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight - and the more naturalistic, yet still uncannily masculine and threatening pitch that Conroy managed so well. While some might be bothered by how McKenzie’s version of the Caped Crusader certainly sounds younger than previous cartoon incarnations, that’s arguably fitting, given that Batman: Year One is meant to revolve around a more youthful version of Wayne – one who’s just begun his career as a vigilante.

The Batman: Year One voice cast includes several decorated TV actors and actresses, including: Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) as Lt. Gordon, Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica) as Detective Sarah Essen, Eliza Dushku (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse) as Selina Kyle/Catwoman, Grey DeLisle (Batman: The Brave and the Bold) as Barbara Gordon, Jon Polito (Miller’s Crossing) as Commissioner Loeb, and Alex Rocco (The Godfather) as Carmine Falcone. Each actor is an excellent match for their respective character – which should help make this new return to the animated Gotham City a worthwhile one.


Batman: Year One will be available on DVD, Blu-ray, and VOD on October 18th, 2011 and you can pre-order by clicking here or on the image below:

batman year one blu ray Batman: Year One Clip: Meet The New Guy In Town

Source: Warner Home Video

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  1. I want to enjoy the efforts of Batman voice-actors who aren’t Kevin Conroy, I REALLY do. But after all these years of listening to him everyone else just doesn’t compare.

    • Agreed!

    • Was going to post something similar.

      Honestly, they [meaning DC and Marvel] need to award an extended contract to certain voice actors for reoccurring characters so we don’t have to suffer through numerous different voice iterations.

      For animated shows the voice is almost more important than the visuals. There is something to be said for different visual looks and artistic styles but voices are the one constant that should remain the same, just like an actor’s face in movies.

    • I agree with you 100%. Though I have to say that the only other actor that, to me, can pull off Batman’s voice in the animated universe besides Conroy is Bruce Greenwood.

      Actually, there is another…Michael Ironside’s guest appearance as Bats in that short adaptation of The Dark Knight Returns in The New Batman Adventures.

    • Exactly!!

  2. Awesome.

  3. I have a friend who saw the film at SDCC this year. He claims it’s among the best in terms of Batman Animated features. Considering that Batman probably has the best selection (in terms of quality) animated features based off of him (as compared to Superman, Green Lantern, or any of Marvel’s efforts) I think that this should be fine.

    The voice sounds off to me, but I think that it’ll be better within the given context. Maybe when I see the whole thing I’ll think it’s perfect. I’m looking forward to it.

  4. Dude, Batman’s voice sucks…

  5. Looks good but not sure about the voice.just sounds wrong to me.

  6. The voice was…unsettling. Perfect. But not Conroy.

  7. As good as you can get without being Kevin Conroy. Much better than Bale’s.

  8. Sounds a little like Gollum. Not strong and powerful enough.

  9. Batman’s voice sounds fine. But Falcone’s voice sounds like Billy Bob Thornton from Sling Blade.

    • LMFAO!!! What a great way to describe it!!!

  10. Don’t like the voice it sounds wrong.

    Also the mouths don’t synch up very well with the talking especially Carmine.

  11. Damn. Panel for panel. Line for line. Will have to buy this. I hope they do The Man Who Smiles, Long Halloween and Dark Victory next.

  12. That was extremely cool…I think Batman’s voice sounds appropriately menacing…measured and sinisterly calm. Yes, he does sound younger than in other Batman films, but that IS as it should be considering the fact that he is new to costumed vigilantism. I think his voice is strong…but does not yet possess the confidence he shows later after gaining some experience. That, at least, is what the tonal quality of his voice in this short clip suggests to me. I love the straightforward animation style, as well.

    I can’t wait until this comes out.

  13. Batman has a cold ? .. what happened to his voice :O

  14. REALLY am not a fan of the voice. But the animation and everything else looks great so I’m still getting it. Hopefully if enough people support it we’ll get Hush as an animated feature next.

  15. Hoping this movie will be awesome.

    DC’s animated movies have always been amazing (in comparison to Marvel’s “mediocre” animated features).

    Batman Under The Red Hood was my favorite and Justice League: Crises On Two Earths was pretty awesome as well. (Didn’t like the latest Green Lantern animated movie though… it was BORING! :()

    • TheAvenger shocked at how much we disagree lol. I think Marvel and DC are pretty tied on Animation films. Marvel has made a bunch of good not great ones but no bad ones but DC has had plenty of awful ones. IMO Under The Red Hood is horrible the second worst right behidn that terrible Gotham Knights. The Voice acting was bad no that’s wrong the voice acting was horrible. The plot was meh they took a mediocre comic cut out all the good parts and made it a film. Crisis on Two Earths was ok but far from great. Green Lantern was ok but not very god either. The only truly great one was Justice League New Frontier which was fantastic. The Batman Superman films were pretty good, but not impressive.

      • I agree Daniel F, but I liked Under the Red Hood, and as for DC being better then Marvel in animated movies? IDK about that one, Ild say a tie…

        TV shows is another story, Avengers, spiderman, xmen, that Iron Man:extremis is (in my opinion) eons better then batman brave and the bold…

        I like this trailer, Ill wait for the review before I go out and order it from netflix though…

        • Brave and the Bold is such a terrible show, but DC did have Batman The Animated Series and the JLU cartoons two of the greatest animated shows ever. So it’s a pretty hard argument. Marvel lately IMO hasn’t been as strong. I’ve only liked one Spiderman cartoon the one from the 90′s. I didn’t like the weird computer animated CGI looking one and I don’t like the horrible new Anime ones of Iron man and Wolverine.

          • The Brave and The Bold is actually not bad. It set (and accomplished) what it wanted to; create a lighter toned Batman and expand upon his many team ups. It’s not the darker Batman I prefer but it’s not a bad show.

      • Well Danny ol’ chap ;) I don’t know why you’re “shocked” at how much we disagree (since we almost never agree ;)), but I digress…

        Concerning DC’s animated movies:
        Gotham Knights was indeed terrible, but I really liked Under The Red Hood (I’m not saying it was the “best”, I’m just saying it was my favorite…).
        I didn’t really like the new GL animated movie (it seemed like a waste of space), and it didn’t bring anything worth while to the table… it was just there to accompany the live-action film.
        I haven’t seen New Frontier so I couldn’t possibly deliver an opinion about it…

        Concerning Marvel’s animated movies:
        I’m not saying they’re “bad”, I just don’t like most of em’ (this coming from a massive Marvel fan hoping they’ll make better ones). I thought “Hulk Vs” was pretty good and the new “Thor Tales OF Asgard” wasn’t too bad either, but movies like Invincible Iron Man and Ultimate Avengers 1 just didn’t appeal to me (once again, not saying they’re bad, jsut saying i didn’t really like em’)…

        • Hulk Vs was great IMo as was the first Ultimate Avengers I loved it. The second Avengers not so much, but the first was great IMO. Iron Man was good as well and DR Strange to me was absolutely fantastic. Best Marvel has had to offer yet. The weakest of all the films is probably Avengers 2 and IMO Thor tales of Asgard. Not a big fan of all the dumb kiddy cartoons though I’ll admit parts of me enjoyed Next Avengers but at least it was the kids of the avengers and not the avengers as kids.. Ugh.

  16. I don’t get why people are saying this looks gritty like the comic, it looks nothing like the comic at all. It seems far too clean looking, and the voice acting is even worse than Under The Red Hood. From the clips I have seen, this totally fails to capture the tone of the brilliant genre defining comic.

    I don’t understand why Conroy does some of the voice acting on these DC movies but not all of them.

    • They might be refering to the dark and gritty plot? IDK, just a guess…

  17. Cant see the clip!!!! Damn you security features at my office!!!!!!

    I would still love to see this as a real movie. Sad thing is I think Nolan would have been perfect to do this storyline as there are no over the top villians, there would be no need for the tumbler etc.

    O well. Is this on Youtube yet?

    • I agree that this storyline (the Frank Miller comic, obviously, not just simply the “first year in operation” dynamic) would be great as a live-action film).

      This film looks to continue the great tradition of the DC animated films, but its impending release DOES make my mouth water hoping against hope that “Elseworlds” titles will EVER be made into films…I would love to see “Speeding Bullets” or any other of a LARGE number of those enter the animated universe (“Gotham by Gaslight” would be absolute heaven if they kept the appropriately dreary, dank, shadowy atmosphere)…sigh.

      • Ugh…the closing parenthesis should, of course, be moved over. :P

  18. Nnnnnnnnooooooooooooo!
    Finally got a chance to watch the actual trailer for this movie, and you guys are right! Batman’s voice sucks! :(
    In the words of How It Should Have Ended: “it sounds like Batman is gargling marbles”.
    Truly terrible voice acting.

    *Sigh* I still hope the movie turns out to be okay, despite the whole voice thing…

  19. [insert sternly worded, un-thought-out comment about the voice of Batman, because "no one by Kevin Conroy" can do the job *ahemeveryoneelsewhohasdonethejobahem*]

    There is a reason people stereotype comic fans. This is one of them.

    • heh-heh…

    • Funny and your the reason people stereotype internet posters as rude immature people who have nothing to do but treat others like crap.

      People don’t like the voice why is that some big problem to you.

      I think the voice sucks. I think Kevin Conroy by far does the best voice. However, I have no problems with other people doing the voice from time to time and have actually enjoyed some of them. I also think it would of been bad to have Conroy do the voice for this film because it’s the young Batman and he simply doesn’t sound young anymore. Doesn’t change the fact that this voice sucks.

      • haha.. haha..

  20. I suppose I am in the minority that DOES like Batman’s voice in this clip, but oh well…I’m fine with that.

    Of course, Conroy has THE Batman voice, but he both can’t and won’t do every DC animated piece featuring Batman…I can easily imagine he enjoys variety. I accept the fact that others will do the voice and bring their own interpretations and tonal peculiarites to it, and I find that, over all, I’ve enjoyed those differences.

    But that’s me…

    • same

    • Well, count me in that “minority.” Conroy’s voice may already be “iconic” for the Batman animated flicks but, I don’t have any problems with the voice with this coming animated movie. Can’t wait ’till this comes out.

  21. Yeah my only comment is the voice, its just a little off, other than that im buying it

  22. What’s the deal with most of the animated comic shows/movies looking anime-ish? The mouths always look and move funny.

    • I know right?!

      I don’t really like it either (sometimes it works, but sometimes it just doesn’t).

  23. Grew up with Conroy but I like seeing other actors in the role. Im fine with this voice. Also enjoyed the voice actor in Under The Red Hood.

  24. The voice was unique. Since Conroy is Batman, it’s hard to follow him but I think the closest voice I heard that I believe could give Conroy a run for his money was Jeremy Sisto in Justice Leage: The New Frontier

  25. In one animated flick featuring the core of D.C. heros, a guy named Jeremy Sisto (from Law and Order) did a really good voicing of Batman. I cant remember the name of the movie. Kevin Conroy is good, but he is certainly not the only choice.

  26. This is Batman at the very beginning of everything. Archaeon made the point earlier on about it sounding younger and not as confident, i think thats the most sensible thing thats been said. Yea we all like Conory….hes great as an experienced Batman, however i really dont think the voice sounds anywhere near half as bad as people are making out and for a Batman thats starting out, it fits and sounds about right. If that was done on purpose or not i couldnt care less, but it makes sense and works. I think there is to much moaning without putting everything in context.