2019 is the 20th anniversary of Warner Bros. Animation's Batman Beyond, and its a year to include celebating the classic and talk of Warner Bros. (and DC) utilizing those characters and stories in new ways going forward. But why was that series so memorable for people.
"The thing that resonated with most of the fans at least with Terry is that he was truly the everyman," said Will Friedle, who voiced Terry/Batman in Batman Beyond. "He wasn’t a billionaire. He was a kid in high school who managed to be trained by Batman."
The older Batman in this case was Batman: The Animated Series' Dark Knight, voice actor Kevin Conroy. Conroy says that his Batman's approach to Terry as an actual son was baked into the process even before it was revealed to the public.
"I’ve felt very paternal towards Terry before we knew that was going to be the storyline," Conroy told Newsarama. "That’s just the way it was written – that dynamic in the relationship. So yeah I think he knows."
Conroy is set to play an older Bruce Wayne - possibly even his Batman Beyond version of Bruce - in the CW's upcoming "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover this fall, but the actor said what he'd really like is to revive the character in animation again.
"If Batman Beyond came back I feel like it would be really interesting to explore the relationship between Bruce and Terry knowing that Terry is his son," Conroy said. "That would give it a whole new area for the show to explore."
Bob Goodman, one of the show's writers, has his own ideas where a revived Batman Beyond series could go.
"The first thing that comes to mind is that in this moment and time, and I’m going to depress everybody," Goodman said. "Spoiler, we live in a moment where all these rich, powerful tech controlling class have kind of decided to give up on the human race and leave us behind."
"You notice that all these guys aren’t talking about solving global warming instead they are talking about how they get themselves into space," the writer continued. "I think that’s a really interesting area to start discussing, and it would be perfect for Batman Beyond."
Terry McGinnis lives on in DC's Batman Beyond comic book title, and that era will be featured heavily in the upcoming comic book event Legion of Super-Heroes: Millennium. Goodman said it was "flattering" that their stories continue to find new life 20 years later.
"Anybody drawing from what we did is flattering. I’m really proud of the work we did," said Goodman. "This is kind of scandalous, but I think Batman Beyond was the best Batman series we did. Both in terms of the art and writing. So the fact that it has had an impact on culture and that it moved the needle in what’s done in the Batman universe – I’m very proud."
James Tucker got his break directing with Batman Beyond, and has went on to direct other animated shows including CW Seed's Vixen. According to him, a Batman Beyond movie has actually been on Warner Bros. Animation's schedule before but was aborted.
"It’s come up several times where they are open to the idea to a Batman Beyond movie, it gets on the schedule, and then something else happens that pushes it off," Tucker told Newsarama. "But I think having a Blu-Ray set out and if the sales are good that would put it firmly on their radar."
Tucker said that while he's aware the Batman Beyond continued was carried on in comics, if they were to do new Batman Beyond work in animation he said it'd be easier to go base it off the show solely.
"I would have to read what they’ve been doing, but it would probably be easier for us to just start where we left off," said Tucker. "There’s the end of the Batman Beyond series, and then there is the Epilogue. There’s this whole middle part we haven’t touched upon, and maybe even beyond the Epilogue."
Warner Bros.'s limited edition Batman Beyond collection is due out digitally October 15, with a Blu-Ray version coming out October 29.