n a chilly Wednesday night in the heart of New York City, DC Animation premiered their first blockbuster offering of 2016 to an excited crowd of both lucky fans and eager press. With the coming schedule of big name comic films from not only Warner Bros. but Fox and Marvel Studios, the anticipation to see how this year in comic book adaptations would start was at a fever pitch. The crowd outside the Paley Center wanted to know what the tone would be for this new year in comic media. Are we in for another year of studio meddling and overwhelmingly meh features, or was 2015 a fluke and are we still in the golden age of comic cinema? If Tim Burton, Christopher Nolan and even Joel Schumacher have taught us anything, it’s this: as goes Batman, go all of comic features. With that firm certainty everyone took their seats and braced themselves for what would be one of the most ass-kicking outings the caped crusader has ever had. This year just might be okay after all.
Batman: Bad Blood is an action-packed beast of a feature. The fight scenes are as visceral as the animations are gorgeous and the cast of characters reads like a Bat fan’s wish list. This is not to say that Batman: Bad Blood is a perfect film. I would have appreciated a little more character development for some of the supporting cast and I’m still not totally on board with Jason O’Mara’s raspy Batman voice but if you are fan of the Bat Family then this is not a movie to be missed.
Comic Attack: Sean, you’ve been Nightwing for three movies now. Has your approach to how you portray the character changed over time?
Sean Maher: Well, I mean it changes with the tides of the script, certainly, and I try to do the best I can to have a fresh approach on him while at the same time taking inventory of where he is now.
Comic Attack: You’re pretty new to this franchise, Yvonne. What drew you to the role of Batwoman?
Yvonne Strahovski: It’s always about having a character that is different from what I’ve done before. Whether it’s people from different times or different cultures or that speak with a different accent, it’s nice when you have the chance to play those roles and I jump at those opportunities.
CA: You’ve also been in lots of nerd deep cuts from Mass Effect to Lego and now Batman. It seems like your career has been steeped in nerd and pop culture. Do you self-identify as a nerd?
Yvonne: I feel like an adopted nerd. From day one of me getting here from Australia I got thrown in and I’ve been along for the ride ever since. It’s been great and I feel like I couldn’t be part of a better community. The people are so embracing and they’re very specific, they know every one of your projects. It’s a wonderful world to be a part of.
CA: Do you guys read any comics in your free time?8
Sean: You know what? I don’t. I used to lie and say that I did but I don’t really have the time for it. I have two small children now and I can barely keep up with their TV and books. I do read some of the Serenity comics but not religiously.
CA: Here’s a question for the both of you: If you could have your choice, which superhero or heroine would you next like to play? Live action or voice.
Yvonne: A live-action Batwoman would be pretty nice — I mean what wouldn’t you want to do? They’re all amazing action heroes!
Sean: I actually find myself more drawn to the villains. I had a blast playing Shrapnel on Arrow but I don’t know. I’ve been asked this question a few times and I never feel like I have a good answer. What do you think?
CA: Maxwell Lord definitely. I don’t wish this franchise on you but I think you would be an amazing Dr. Doom based on how you played reserved anger as Dr. Tam in Firefly.
Sean: Thank you.
CA: Yvonne, one of my favorite things that you’ve done was a rap battle as Daenerys Targaryen (which I think you won by the way). What’s the story behind that?
Yvonne: [Laughing] Well, my agent called me one day and told me about [Princess Rap Battles] and they were explaining it to me and within the first two minutes I was like “I’m in!” because it was silly and fun and I actually hadn’t watched Game of Thrones at that point so I ended up watching like six seasons in three weeks.
CA: Last question. Superheroes generally fall into two categories; protect the innocent and punish the guilty. I know your characters Nightwing and
Batwoman walk a fine line between both but what about you guys? You get superpowers tomorrow, which side are you on?
Sean: That’s a good question. I would like to say I’d be more of a Superman, saving cats from trees type of character but… I think I’m gonna go with punish the guilty.
CA: Nothing wrong with that. There’s a lot of great heroes in that category.
Yvonne: Protect the innocent I guess, but… you know, just quietly on the side, do some punish the guilty, unbeknownst to anyone else.
CA: Save some cats from some trees and later on you rough some people up.
Yvonne: On the sly. [Laughter] I don’t know.
CA: You don’t have to be malicious about it….
Yvonne: Well…. [Laughter]
Photo Credit: Eric Snell