I’ve long been skeptical about adaptations of the comics and books that I love, partly because I’m a real stickler about voices and casting, and partly because of budgetary issues forcing needless changes on live-action versions.  By that token, cartoons are the perfect balance, allowing for the unlimited budget madness of a comic book but giving us that all-important motion that everyone seems to want to add to comics.  If you’d asked 16-year-old me if I’d get to see Blok, The Vigilante or Swamp Thing on the small screen, I’d probably have looked at you like you were insane (and only part of that would be the fact that 16-year-old me was an overconfident punk with no manners), which leads us to today’s Syncro-Vox query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) had some fun with the Legion Of Super-Heroes series, but is torn between giving top honors to DuckTales or Justice League Unlimited, asking: What’s the best cartoon adaptation of a book or comic in your eyes?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


    • Agreed. I keep hoping they will eventually expand on it in future DC animated movies. It would at least be nice to get one to wrap up some loose ends from the series.

  1. For me, the entire DCAU, hands down. While it wasn’t a 100% to the letter adaptation, it was both faithful enough yet creative enough to be it’s own world. It made me care about Batman, it made me leap for joy at seeing characters I never thought I’d see outside the comic page, and most of all, it STILL keeps me entertained (which is both a testament to how good it was and a bit sad at how bad some recent adaptations have been). And not only did it adapt from the comics, it also created a few things that have gone from the TV to the comic page, like Harley Quinn and Batman Beyond.

    But I also really REALLY loved “Green Lantern: The Animated Series”. I’m a big GL fan, so I probably would have liked the series no matter what, but it was actually better than I had hoped for. It did what the live-action movie didn’t and made a GL story that was a sci-fi adventure rather than just another superhero story.

    Second place would be a tie between the 90’s FOX X-Men and Spider-Man series, most animated versions of TMNT and Batman: The Brave and The Bold.

  2. Malone_hasco on

    The ones I liked best are Justice League Unlimited, because of wide variety of characters and DC animated films in general. All-Star Superman was a good adaptation of my favorite comic book story of all time and Batman TDKR was great too. Those two stand out from the rest, but almost all of them I have liked.

  3. JLU stands up not only as a great superhero cartoon adaptation but, good TV in general. I can still quote this show from memory at any given point, and feel as compelled to rewatch it as some people are to rewatch Breaking Bad.

  4. Kevin_Flythe on

    For me it has to be Batman: TAS. Nothing else so perfectly mirrors all the best elements of the source material.

  5. I almost feel like they should have disqualified Batman: The Animated Series…because nothing else compares. That show got absolutely everything right: the animation, the dark tone, the voices, the soundtrack…EVERYTHING! I have friends who are neither comic book fans or cartoon fans, but are still impressed by that show.

    • Partly why I mentioned multiple favorites. For a large number of us, you just can’t compete with B:TAS (or most of the rest of the DCAU).

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