Harley Quinn isn’t home right now, but “Batman’s Back, Man!”

Batman awakens from his coma in a shattered body and is determined to get back into Gotham and right the wrongs plaguing the city and to deal with the new crime fighters that have cropped up in his abscence including the new Batgirl.

Beginning with an absolutely roasting of toxic masculine fanboys, “Batman’s Back, Man” is a departure for the series as Harley Quinn does not even appear once. Instead, the episode focuses completely on Batman portraying him as a self-destructive narcissistic know-it-all… which is a little disappointing as I’ve always thought of Batman as the straight man of the series, but I guess the stress of being gone for so long and his manic craving for justice would break any man.

I love the characterization of Batgirl being the overly-enthusiastic sorority girl with an instagram following and Alfred being the snarky dad figure who has a five gallon bucket of rage boiling under the surface was a lot of fun.

Of course, you can’t talk about this episode without talking about Bane who steals every scene he’s in with his masterful mishmash of Tom Hardy’s Bane from The Dark Knight Rises and a high school student’s impersonation of Tom Hardy’s Bane. Taking a, quite frankly, dull character and making him the high point of a new interpretation… sort of like what Batman: The Brave and the Bold did with Aquaman before the Aquaman movie came along.

Some parts of the episode worked and others didn’t. For every wonderful Batgirl and Bane scene, there was a bizarre Iron Man parody that didn’t land no matter how much they played it up… probably because imitation by itself isn’t funny.

I still think that a comedy show about the Batman extended family would be hilarious and, even though this episode isn’t what I would call the best, it definitely shows that the idea has potential.

Needless to say, although this was a fun diversion, I am going to be happy to see Harley and Ivy back in action next week.

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