Friday, October 23, 2009

Tonight's the Big Night!



If you're in the States, that is - if you're in the UK or Canada or Australia, it's already aired, I think -but here in the US of A, tonight at 7:30, Cartoon Network will be airing "Mayhem of the Music Meister!", a.k.a the musical episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, directed by me (I posted about it in my last post, which was... wow, over 3 months ago). You can get some previews here, but really, I'm posting this so late, just wait a few hours and you can watch the whole thing on TV. Even if you miss it, it's on again Saturday at 10 AM. I guess I should have been plugging it sooner, but the episode's already getting plenty of attention, like this and this and this, not to mention a soundtrack release already (buy it here!).



Anyways, check it out. I've been wanting to do a musical episode for like 5 years now, since we did Bunny Raven on Teen Titans. We were going to follow that up the following season with a full-on musical episode, but we ran out of money and time, so we made Mother Mae-Eye instead (which I still like, but I know it's not on a lot of fans' lists of favorite episodes).



As always, Batman and Teen Titans characters and images are ™ and © DC Comics.

7 comments:

Cirien Phoenix said...

Crud, I wish I had watched it. :( It looked really crazy!

Shane Neville said...

Hats off to you!

My single favorite animated episode of any Batman show ever. Mildly embarrassed that I spent the rest of the week humming the tunes. (I'm Canadian, so it aired a while ago)

A wonderfully groundbreaking episode.

love it, love it, love it.

Brian S. said...

I swear NPH is the only guy who could get comic book fans to hum showtunes...

I gotta get that album.

Monzo said...

Ben,

Man, I have watched this episode like ten or twelve times by now (and about three of those were on the night of the premiere).

My favorite pieces are definitely the two Music Meister spotlight songs ("I'm The Music Meister" / "The World Is Mine"), with "Drive Us Bats" following up. For some reason the Black Canary spotlight song doesn't quite resonate with me, which... eh, individual tastes and all.

Did that image of the Music Meister as a conductor appear anywhere in the episode itself? I don't remember seeing it...

Also, a little weird to me was that Tom Kenny was listed as Babyface in the credits, but I didn't notice Babyface having any individual lines.

Also also, it was great catching you at BotCon! I was the guy you told "oh, I checked the TF wiki and saw they mentioned my evil superhero shirt collection, so decided to wear one" - or something along those lines - before your panel. Possibly I introduced myself as "the guy who keeps giving you credit for random things on your blog".

Thanks again for bringing us a great episode... whatever you happen to have done on it!

Matt/Monzo, who hopes that he was trying to be complimentary comes across.

Ben Jones said...

The Tom Kenny credit is a little weird, but here's the scoop - originally, this show had a teaser starring Plastic Man (and boarded by Andy Suriano, no less!), so Tom Kenny came in to do Plas' voice for that.

Since he was there anyways, we asked him to be in the chorus for "Drives Us Bats" and "The World is Mine!", which he graciously agreed to do. In fact, each of the actors in the chorus sang through "Drives Us Bats" twice in different voices - Tom did one version as as Babyface.

But lo and behold, when the show got storyboarded, we had more story boarded than we had airtime to show, which happens fairly often. Usually, you just cut bits and pieces here and there until you get the show back down to running time, but since so much of the runtime of this episode was dictated by the music, that couldn't be done.

So we cut the whole teaser.

Now the show was about 10 seconds short, so I slapped together the teaser that you see with the Music Meister warming up the orchestra (and that's the only place that costume appears).

What that left us with was Tom singing in two of our songs, but his original credit as Plastic Man was invalid since the Plas teaser was gone. So apparently someone decided to credit him as Babyface, since Babyface is the voice he used for one version of the "Drives Us Bats" chorus, and Babyface appears fairly prominently in the shot with all the boxes (he's right under Music Meister, if memory serves).

As for the Plas teaser, we couldn't just throw it away - it'll be the first teaser of the next season, which hopefully will air this November.

Monzo said...

Ben,

> originally, this show had
> a teaser starring Plastic
> Man (and boarded by Andy
> Suriano, no less!), so Tom
> Kenny came in to do Plas'
> voice for that.

Ah-ha. Well, that explains another bit of weirdness I was going to bring up: my copy of the Music Meister soundtrack arrived today, and instead of being credited as Babyface, Kenny is listed as voicing Plastic Man in "Drives Us Bats" and "The World is Mine". I guess there was a credits miscommunication between departments somewhere.

(I still couldn't pick Kenny out from the chorus, but that's only so surprising.)

> Now the show was about 10
> seconds short, so I slapped
> together the teaser that you
> see with the Music Meister
> warming up the orchestra
> (and that's the only place
> that costume appears).

Ahh. And... that explains my other bit of confusion. See, when the episode aired on Cartoon Network, there was no teaser at all - it jumped straight from the WB/Bugs Bunny logo to the themesong. Just about all the versions on youtube are like that, too; I did find one example which has the orchestra warm-up you described, but that's the first and only time I've seen that bit of animation. Some friends of mine who watched a foreign-aired version of the episode had never seen the orchestra bit before, either, so I have no idea where the version with the teaser actually aired.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_OpntXZiY8

Incidentally, who designed the zoot suit version of Music Meister? I really liked that one, and hope Mattel get around to making a figure of him... even if it means he'd be covered in giant goofy accessory holes.

Thanks again for your time, Ben!

Ben Jones said...

James designed all of the Music Meister variations. In fact, he designed all but the orchestral one before the boards even started, so his designs set the tone for the musical numbers, especially the Deathtrap scene.