I’ll Review Anything: Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons

Even though it’s now a part of the mainstream DC comic continuity for quite some time now, I still find it odd that both Superman and Batman’s alter egos now have children. Even now, I find it difficult to explain to old school comic fans that Clark Kent is actually married to Lois Lane and she now knows of his secret identity. There’s also the more complicated tale of how Batman and Talia Al Ghul borne a son and how that boy was trained to become a proficient assassin. As someone who grew up reading collections of Silver Age DC Comics, it took me some time to assimilate all these changes. I’ve even grown to like Damian Wayne for the complex character he is and, well, Jonathan Kent, I’ve just accepted he’s there.

Well, now that Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons animated film is out, it looks like I might even start liking Jon Kent as well.

While Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons has been out for a while now, I just don’t think a lot of people have seen this Warner Bros. Animated film for one reason or another. So, once again, to make sure everyone is kept in the dark, I will be making this a SPOILER FREE review.

Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons focuses on Jonathan Ken, Superman and Lois’ son. He’s just started to get his superpowers and the timing couldn’t be any more perfect. That’s because an alien with mind control powers has started invading the planet and has taken over the Justice League, including Superman and Batman. Damian Wayne, the new Robin, then figures out that Jon Kent might be the next target so he goes out to rescue him. The two then have to team up in order to stop the invasion and they just might have to battle their own superhero fathers to do so.

If you watch the trailer, you may notice that the animation looks different from the previous DC Animated movies. That’s because it looks like Warner Bros. shifted from using traditional animation cells and to using CGI. I will say the computer animated graphics do look really good but it did take me a while to get used to. There was just something with how smooth and fluid the movements were that made it slightly dip into the uncanny valley for me. While the character models are really good, there are still some details lacking, like hands and clothing lacking creases and folds. There were also a few background artifacts that looked a little low resolution to me.

Despite these minor issues, however, I will have to say the actual animation is really good as everything moves fluidly. This really helps with all of the plentiful action scenes as it’s really easy to follow what’s happening. I will even go as far as to say this is some of the best action scenes Warner Bros. Animation has put together for any of their superhero cartoon outings. What’s even more impressive is how the animation works well with the more quiet moments, like when Jon Kent is riding on his father’s back. It just sets the atmosphere perfectly.

As good as the action is, even that still takes a backseat to what actually makes this movie great. That would be Jon Kent and Damian Wayne and their overall chemistry together. DC really did a great job of capturing Jon Kent’s wide-eyed innocence as well as Damian Wayne’s general sardonic and bratty attitude. What makes it impressive for me is how they came off as endearing instead of annoying. If Jon Kent was too positive and enthusiastic, he would come off as tiresome and unrealistic. If Damian Wayne was too arrogant, he would’ve become unlikable. They managed to strike this really good balance of showing off these defining character traits but still holding back just enough to make them likable.

It certainly helps that DC and Warner Bros. found the perfect voice actors to play Jon Kent and Damian Wayne. Jack Dylan Grazer does a fantastic job as Jon Ken as you can feel his general excitement to being introduced to world of superheroes. Jack Griffo is also spectacular as the new Robin/Damian Wayne. There’s always a tone of overconfidence and arrogance whenever he says something while also hinting that it’s all an act. What makes them really work is how natural they sound when they’re together. It does sound like a couple of pre-teens talking to each other. The way they interact with each other just works well in a very fun way.

I will say the other voice acting is also really good for the most part. I mean, there was no question that both Laura Bailey and Troy Baker, two veteran voice actors, were going to nail their performances as Lois Lane and Batman. Heck, I even liked Zero Robinson, who portrayed both Jimmy Olsen and Jon’s school bully. The only real weak performance is Travis Willingham’s rendition of Superman. He almost sounds like he’s performing a parody of the Man of Steel at times. It just sounds so goofy at times. It also doesn’t help that he doesn’t change his tone when he does switch between Superman and Clark Kent. Basically, it comes off as incredibly fake and definitely doesn’t sound in any way like I think Superman would sound at all.

The only other problem of Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons is the overall pacing. Around the first twenty or so minutes is devoted to Jon Kent’s normal life and how he deals with his father always being away in his life. This is a big drag as it occupies a huge chunk of the film’s already slim 79-minute runtime. This portion does feel needed as it’s your introduction to the character and there are some callbacks to that time later on in the film. But I do wish they devoted that much time to Damian Wayne as well. Once the movie does get to the meat of things, things do start moving at a nice and brisk pace.

Overall, I was very pleasantly surprised with how good Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons was. The CGI animation was more than decent and the main characters, Jon Kent and Damian Wayne, are incredibly fun to watch together. I say, if you have the chance, go give it a watch if you want a good time.

Have you seen Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments section below!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s