Man-Bat: On Leather Wings, Batman the Animated Series (1992)

leatherwings

 I knew he discovered a formula to create a totally new species, neither man nor bat.

When I think of Batman, two things come to mind instantly. First, Michael Keaton as Batman and Batman: The Animated Series.

batman

Batman: The Animated Series came out in the ’90s, when children’s television was perfect. It was one of the best animated shows in the history of TV. One of my absolute favorite things about it is how they blend three different styles to create this artistic and amazing work. We have the Art Deco movement of the 1920s-30s, the 1940s outfits and clothing, blended with the technology of the ’90s and beyond (seriously, some of the things they created in this are things we actually have today!)

So this is the “first episode” in the series, but not the first one shown. It was the first one made but was actually aired later because of the popularity of Batman Returns, them going with the episode The Cat and the Claw as it had to do with Selena Kyle.

Batman_returns_poster2

So while this isn’t the most famous episode, the best written, etc; I liked it and it fit one of the themes we had going this year. The real name of the episode is actually On Leather Wings, but I liked Man-Bat better.

leatherwingsbatman

So the first part of this episode is the amazing opening.

We open on Phoenix Pharmaceuticals. The night watchman of course, isn’t paying any attention. He’s trying to make a tryout tape for a radio program. All of a sudden he is attacked!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We, the viewer, are unable to see what this creature is. All we see is a shadow, that resembles something like a….Bat!

Dracula

NO not him…that movie were he and Batman meet was kinda weird.

batclawcomingafter

NO not him either.

Sadface Batman

Definitely not him. But everyone thinks it is. Who else could have gotten in and loves bats as much as him?

batman

Officer Bullock hates Batman and is all set to do anything to take him down. The commissioner, on the other hand, doesn’t want to destroy Batman, he thinks that he does good (even though he does technically break the law by being a vigilante.)

However, the mayor sees it as best to get rid of him and gives Bullock full backup. Harvey Dent also agrees if they can get the evidence and the Batman; he will do it.

OhNOthisisgonnabebad

Things are looking grim for the Caped Crusader, everyone is going to be on his tail.

Sadface Batman

So Batman starts investigating. The first thing he does, it head out to the Pharmaceutical company to do some research. As he looks around with his special goggles, he spots a hair, strange. After some more thorough digging, he also finds the tape recorder, which not only caught the guard but the sounds of whatever attacked him.

As he is searching around, Bullock comes with a whole contingent of SWAT. Man when the mayor says he’s got your back, he means it.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

So Bullock comes in and pretty much blows up the lab with his trigger happy ways. Thank goodness for Batman, or they would all be dead right now.

Batman-Begins

Commissioner Gordon comes by and relays that while Bullock was pretty much wiping out his own men; another company was being robbed. It clearly is not Batman. But we already knew that, I mean come on. It’s Batman!

Batmanjustice

As Bruce Wayne is an amazing scientist, with technology that most only dreams of, he still isn’t the leader in the study of bats and heads out to visit a Dr. March.

Freidrich March

Freidrich March?

He tells the doctor that he has a “bat issue”:

Dr. March: You donate a few million and you think you own the place. I understand I’m the analyze something for you.

Bruce Wayne: Yeah, doc. See, I keep hearing squeaks in my chimney.

[Hands Dr. March a small plastic sandwich bag]

Bruce Wayne: And I found these in my empty fireplace. They look like hairs. I thought maybe you could tell me if I have a bat problem.

Dr. March: And what if they are bats, Mr. Wayne? What then? Destroy them like insects? We won’t survive the next evolutionary cataclysm, but bats will! They’re survivors, Mr. Wayne, not pests! You should understand that!

I think he loves bats a little too much.

Gilmore girls creep

However, a beautiful blonde doctor rescues Bruce, Dr. Francine Langstrom, his daughter. She is followed by her husband Dr. Kirk, who assures Bruce that they can help him. Kirk acts kind of weird too…

What! Mark Wahlberg that's weird

Maybe it runs in the family? Francine could be the exception.

Anyways, later Dr. Langstrom calls Bruce and tells him that they ran the hair and that it is a regular old brown bat, and the noise on the tape a combo of bats and birds.

Not always the best idea

Just the usual.

Except, unbeknownst to Dr. Langstrom, Batman already ran the hair follicle and the sounds through the computer and no match came up. He the tape again, under combined noises, but no match.

Meanwhile, we see someone burning the evidence of the tape and the hair. We already know both doctors are crazy, maybe even Francine (nicely rounding out to three), but which could be behind this? And why?

suspicious Hmm

Batman also figures out that the answer lies in the lab and takes off.

Batman reaches the lab and finds things from Phoenix Pharmaceuticals. He  searches for Dr. March to apprehend him, but runs into Dr. Langstrom.

Dr. Kirk Langstrom: Who’s back there? [Batman steps out of the shadowsYou.

Batman: I’m looking for Dr. March.

Dr. Kirk Langstrom: He’s not here, Batman.

Batman: Where is he?

Dr. Kirk Langstrom: Giving a lecture on human extinction and bat evolution. He’s really quite brilliant.

Batman: [holding up a stolen chemical] He’s misguided and a thief.

Dr. Kirk Langstrom: He’s just a theorist. He was afraid to put it to the test. But I wasn’t. I knew he discovered a formula to create a totally new species, neither man nor bat. And once I started taking it, I couldn’t stop.

Yep Kirk is the Man-Bat

Jekyll&Hydedrink potion

Batman asks him why he didn’t stop, but Dr. Langstrom said he couldn’t.

batmandrjekyllmrhydebeastchange

And he enjoyed it. Like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; he got a little taste and can’t give it up. He’s addicted and can’t stop, turning into….the Man-Bat.

black cauldron

He only needs one more component to stay that way forever, and he’s out to get it.

You know what that means for Batman.

batmanBamSmackKaboom

Batman Vs. Man-Bat

Batmanmambat

Batman and the Man-Bat are fighting in the sky, as Batman has hooked on to him. As they struggle, Commissioner Gordon and Officer Bullock heads up in a chopper to try and get him.

They manage to get away from the police and Batman knocks him out.

batmanBamSmackKaboom

He takes him back to the lab, and Batman uses it to fix Dr. Langstrom and heals him of the drug. How you may ask? Two words:

Dean Winchester Batman

Batman can do anything.

Batman NaNaNaNa

halloween banner

To start Horrorfest IV from the beginning, go to You Cannot Conquer It. It Has Conquered You!: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

For the previous post, go to And Then There Was Two: A Study in Scarlet (1933)

halloween banner

For more on Batman, go to Na Na Na Na Batman!

For more on mad scientists, go to We’re Mad Scientists. We’re Monsters: Avengers, Age of Ultron (2015)

batman

 

I Bid You Welcome: Dracula (1931)

 I am Dracula…I bid you welcome

So Dracula is one of the best horror films ever made. I know you all were wondering when he would be popping up. This version with Bela Lugosi is my favorite; as I feel the other version either have subpar acting, a distortion of the story, or just fall flat in their presentation.

Bela Lugosi was never intended for the part of Dracula. Originally Lon Chaney was going to play him, but he died the year before. As much as I love Lon Chaney, I can’t see Dracula as anyone but Bela Lugosi.

I have to say that this film probably has the most remakes of all time. There’s House of Dracula, Dracula (1958), The Return of Dracula, Dracula: Prince of Darkness, Dracula Has Risen From the Grave, Billy the Kid vs. Dracula, Taste the Blood of Dracula, Scars of Dracula, Blood of Dracula’s Castle, Count Dracula, Dracula vs. Frankenstein, Count Dracula’s Great Love, Dracula AD 1972, The Satanic Rites of Dracula, Dracula (1979), Love at First Bite, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Dracula: Dead and Loving It, Dracula 2000, Dracula II: Ascension, Dracula III: Legacy, Dracula’s Curse, Dracula 3000, The Batman vs. Dracula, Dracula (2006), Dracula 3D, Hotel Transylvania, Scooby-Doo & the Ghoul School, and Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf . Not to mention all sequels or films that Drac has a part in; this guy sure gets around.

Of course even with all of these, Lugosi’s version still stands the test of time. It is the one we quote, the one that we mimic Lugosi’s voice from, and the one that we copy the cape movements from; pretending that we too are a vampire.

Dracula

It’s funny that in this film Dracula doesn’t display fangs or show vampire bite marks on the neck.

So the film starts out with Renfield, a lawyer, going to Dracula’s castle. All the villagers warn him that there are vampires there, but Renfield doesn’t listen.

“Innkeeper: Castle Dracula?
Renfield: Yes. That’s where I’m going.
Innkeeper: To the castle?
Renfield: Yes.
Innkeeper: No. You musn’t go there. We people of the mountains believe in the castle there are vampires. Dracula and his wives – they take the form of wolves and bats. They leave their coffins at night and they feed on the blood of the living.”

When Renfield enters the castle he is greeted by Dracula and those famous lines! My favorite.

1380088_10200852887992904_669709111_n

“Count Dracula: I am Dracula.
Renfield: Oh, it’s really good to see you. I don’t know what happened to the driver and my luggage and… Well, and with all this, I thought I was in the wrong place.
Count Dracula: I bid you welcome. [Dracula goes up the stairs. Renfield starts to follow him. Suddenly, Dracula hears wolves howling] Listen to them. Children of the night. What music they make.
[Dracula goes up the steps and waits for Renfield, who, without difficulty, cuts open a hole in a huge spider’s web using his walking stick]
Count Dracula: The spider spinning his web for the unwary fly. The blood is the life, Mr. Renfield.
Renfield: Why, er… yes.”

Renfield doesn’t make it out alive as Dracula ends up attacking him and turning him into a vampire. Renfield becomes crazed as the slave of Dracula. The two travel to England, and when the ship docks only Renfield is left on the boat. Everyone else is dead with the blood sucked out of them. Renfield is a looney, so he is taking to Dr. Seward’s sanitorium.

Martin: Aren’t you ashamed now? Aren’t you? Spiders now, is it? Flies ain’t good enough!
Renfield: Flies? Flies? Poor puny things! Who wants to eat flies?
Martin: You do, you loony!
Renfield: Not when I can get nice fat spiders!
Martin: All right, have it your own way

Later Dracula runs into Dr. Seward, his daughter Mina, Mina’s fiancé John Harker, and family friend Lucy Weston. Lucy becomes enamored of Dracula. Later that night Dracula visits her in her sleep and drinks out all her blood.

Blood!

The next day Lucy is dead as no transfusion is able to save her.

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Renfield is acting crazier, and crazier and Professor Van Helsing starts speaking to him to try and help him work through his problems. He believes there is a vampire involved in this.

Renfield: He came and stood below my window in the moonlight. And he promised me things, not in words, but by doing them.
Van Helsing: Doing them?
Renfield: By making them happen. A red mist spread over the lawn, coming on like a flame of fire! And then he parted it, and I could see that there were thousands of rats, with their eyes blazing red,l ike his, only smaller. Then he held up his hand, and they all stopped, and I thought he seemed to be saying: “Rats! Rats! Rats! Thousands! Millions of them! All red-blood! All these will I give you! If you will obey me!”
Van Helsing: What did he want you to do?
Renfield: That which has already been done! [giggles sinisterly] “

Renfield doesn’t like it when Van Helsing shows him wolfsbane; something he declares is able to stop vampires.

Later that evening Dracula attacks Mina; he doesn’t fully drain all her blood, but chooses to do it a little at a time.

Van Helsing also notices that Count Dracula doesn’t have a reflection and concludes he must be a vampire.

Van Helsing puts a wreath of wolfsbane around her neck and tells her nurse not to remove it. He also gives Harker a cross and tells him to hold onto it; that it will protect him from harm of the vampires and not to give it away.

Immediately Harker tries to give it to Mina and it doesn’t work.

DID YOU JUST NOT HEAR THE MAN? HE SAID IT WILL WORK ONLY FOR YOU! YOU KEEP IT!

princess Bride Victim to classic blunder Vizzini

I mean this is such a classic mistake made by these men in these horror films. In The Mummy, he just has to give the girl the charm that is supposed to protect only him, and then gets knocked out and is unable to keep her from being kidnapped. In The Wolf Man, he gives the girl the charm to protect him, and it doesn’t work for her. Instead he manifests into being a werewolf and almost kills her. MORAL OF THESE STORIES, KEEP THE DANG CHARM!!! DON’T GIVE IT AWAY!!!

Van Helsing confronts Dracula and tells him to leave Mina alone. Dracula tells him that it is too late, he has given Mina some of his blood and he belongs to her. Van Helsing tells Dracula that he will hunt down his coffin and drive a stake through his heart no matter what.

“Count Dracula: Van Helsing.
[Van Helsing turns to face Count Dracula]
Count Dracula: Now that you have learned what you have learned, it would be well for you to return to your own country.
Van Helsing: I prefer to remain and protect those whom you would destroy.
Count Dracula: You are too late. My blood now flows through her veins. She will live through the centuries to come, as I have lived.
Van Helsing: Should you escape us, Dracula. We know how to save Miss Mina’s soul if not her life.
Count Dracula: If she dies by day. But I shall see that she dies by night.
Van Helsing: And I will have Carfax Abbey torn down, stone by stone, excavated a mile around. I will find your earth-box and drive that stake through your heart.
Count Dracula: Come here.
[Dracula raises his hand to hypnotise Van Helsing]
Count Dracula: Come here.
[Van Helsing takes three hypnotised steps towards Dracula but soon steps back, resisting Dracula’s hypnotic power over him]
Count Dracula: Your will is strong, Van Helsing.
[Van Helsing reaches out for his crucifix as Dracula looms toward him]
Count Dracula: More wolfsbane?
Van Helsing: More effective than wolfsbane, Count.
Count Dracula: Indeed. [Dracula lunges towards Van Helsing. Van Helsing holds up the crucifix. Dracula snarls and turns away. Van Helsing, in triumph, puts away the crucifix]”

Harker still hasn’t realized what is happening to Mina. He takes her out in the night, where she attacks him. He is saved by Van Helsing who puts Mina in her room with wolfsbane. He tells the nurse to make sure that she does not remove it.

He and Harker leave to look for the coffin. They know it must be in the area as Dracula would never travel too far from it.

While they are gone, Dracula hypnotizes the nurse and has her remove the wolfsbane.

Dracula takes off with Mina, bringing her to his lair.

 Harker and Van Helsing see him and follow him; Harker wanting to save Mina while Van Helsing wants to destroy Dracula. Renfield manages to escape from his cell and follows them as well. Dracula kills Renfield; thinking that he lead everyone to his lair. Eventually Dracula is forced to return to his coffin as the sun is rising. When he does Van Helsing drives a stake through his heart and Harker goes to get Mina.

This film is truly amazing and I think you should check it out. It has influenced countless generations and really became the face and substance of who Dracula is.

This was one of Bela Lugosi’s favorite films and when he died he was buried wearing the black silk cape he wore for this film.

So that’s today’s  fearsome tale. More on the way.

Here’s poster I made for my cover page on facebook in honor or Halloween. Hope ya love it.

3eba7873e6ca8f04d565b4ebd52e8f6d

halloween banner

To start Horrorfest from the beginning, go to I Don’t Belong in the World

To go to the previous post, go to It’s Alive, It’s ALIVE!

halloween banner

For more on Dracula, go to A Monster Race

For more on vampires, go to Grimwood Ghouls’ Gyn Teacher

For more on Bela Lugosi, go to Universal’s Classic Monster Movies

For more films based on books, go to The Only Thing That Matters is the Ending

For more on Lon Chaney, go to Feast Your Eyes On My Accursed Ugliness

For more films that spanned countless sequels and remakes, go to Camp Blood