Longtime Batman voice actor Kevin Conroy says Batman: The Animated Series has endured for more than 25 years because of its “deep drama” and serious handling of the material, which elevated the Emmy-winning animated series beyond a children’s cartoon.
“I was really serviced so well by the scripts they wrote,” Conroy said at Fan Expo Vancouver, noting the approach taken by producers Bruce Timm, Eric Radomski, and Paul Dini was “never to do a kid’s show.”
“They never condescended to the audience,” Conroy added. “And they never condescended to the material. They respected the audience, and they respected the material.”
Addressing a fan who remarked they grew up with the show and would now share it with their own child, Conroy commented on the all-ages appeal that has made the series’ first-ever Blu-ray release a highly coveted collector’s item.
“And that’s why when you look at it now as an adult, I look back at these shows and I think, ‘This still looks so new, this still looks so fresh.’ Because it was always created to appeal to people on many different levels,” Conroy said.
“There is something there for kids of 10, but there’s also something there for people of 60. It’s just lots of different levels.”
Conroy praised the efforts of casting director and voice director Andrea Romano as well as the talents of co-star Mark Hamill, who voiced Batman archfoe the Joker, for entrenching themselves in the seriousness of the material.
“I was encouraged — in fact I was pushed, by Andrea — to be as genuine and as sincere, to go to the depths of my emotions, to really pull something up,” he said.
“People were giving really full-out performances in there. And I watched Mark go crazy, crazy, and you think, ‘No one can see these performances! But they can hear them.’ And it’s why the show resonates with people, because we were really giving full-out performances in there.”
Warner Bros. released the remastered animated series on Blu-ray in October with a set collecting all 109 episodes of the acclaimed series as well as feature-length animated movies Batman: Mask of the Phantasm and Batman & Mr. Freeze: Subzero.
The set, initially limited to a 30,000 limited edition run, was extended to nearly 70,000 units due to high demand.