Given how many movies and TV shows have been set in Gotham City since Kevin Conroy began work on Batman: The Animated Series in the early '90s, one would have thought that somewhere along the line, somebody would have invited him to visit the set of Gotham or pay a visit to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice's Batcave. That is not the case, though, and when the legendary voice actor was joined by Ruby Rose, Camrus Johnson, and Melissa Benoist at the Earth-99 version of Wayne Manor for "Crisis on Infinite Earths," it was the first time Conroy could reach out and touch a piece of the world he has helped to shape for more than a generation.
While fans might find it a little surreal that nobody has ever invited Conroy to one of these sets, he seemed not to have noticed. When we asked if this was his first time, he had to stop and think back to be sure before answering.
"This was my first time on any kind of Bat-related set," Conroy told ComicBook.com. "I have never [visited one]. The closest I've gotten is, there's a wonderful automobile museum in Los Angeles called the Petersen Auto Museum. They have an incredible collection of cars, and they have the Batmobile from the movie, the Michael Keaton original Batmobile. And they also have the Bugatti from the 1930s that was designed for the Shah of Iran, that was the prototype of the Batmobile, and it's a million dollar car. That's in the Petersen, and you can see the Batmobile in that car. It's so beautiful. But that's the closest I'd ever gotten to any bat-related props or things like that."
He admitted that he felt like he had something of a leg-up on the live-action actors, in that being in an audio booth insulates you a little bit, especially when playing characters who are so larger-than-life.
"When you do the voice for a character for 27 years, you sort of inhabit him from within in a sound booth, which is like a cocoon," Conroy explained. "It's very liberating to be in a sound booth. When you're suddenly on a sound stage, you're with the other actors in a set, with the crew all around you and the script people, and the hair and the makeup people, and the lighting and the booms, the sound people. There's dozens and dozens of people around you, and you're inhabiting the character in three dimensions in front of 50 people. It's different. It's a totally different experience and I felt very vulnerable, very exposed. I had an advantage over the live-action actors playing Bruce Wayne in the comfort of a recording studio. To do it on camera is much harder and it was challenging."
The "Crisis" event brings together the heroes from multiple Earths to battle against the Anti-Monitor (LaMonica Garrett), a godlike villain who threatens to destroy all reality. In the comics, the story ended with the deaths of The Flash and Supergirl, and the destruction of DC's multiverse, leading to a single Earth with a complex history packed with hundreds of heroes. The battle brings together together characters from all six of the current DC Comics adaptations on The CW (Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, Batwoman, and Black Lightning), along with characters and actors from Titans, the 1990 version of The Flash, the short-lived Birds of Prey, Smallville, Superman Returns, Tim Burton's Batman, and the iconic 1966 Batman series.
The first three episodes are available now, for free, on The CW app and CW Seed. "Crisis on Infinite Earths" will conclude on January 14.