Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham (2023)

Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham, 2023.

Directed by Christopher Berkeley & Sam Liu.
Featuring the voice talents of David Giuntoli, Jason Marsden, Christopher Gorham, Tati Gabrielle, John DiMaggio, Emily O’ Brien, and David Dastmalchian.


An ancient evil has come to Gotham and only Batman can save the city from its inevitable doom.

I’ve always been a fan of the DC Elseworlds stories, as well as their respective feature film adaptations. Because the Elseworlds banner allows storytellers and artists to break free from the constraints of ongoing narratives and the established mythos, the creatives are able to flex their imaginations in unconventional ways leading to the creation of storylines which are both unique and memorable in nature.

Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham is such a tale, written by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola and Richard Pace, which sees an alternate 1920’s Batman putting his crime fighting skills to the test, as he grapples with supernatural entities which threaten to destroy Gotham.

Mike Mignola’s much loved Hellboy series were heavily influenced by author H.P Lovecraft’s works and the cosmic horror elements therein. Chock full of Eldritch creatures, otherworldly entities, and mythological monsters, the comic books struck a chord with people and gained a broader audience, down the line, with the release of Guillermo del Toro’s films based on the property. Following the success of Hellboy, Mignola sought to put a Lovecraftian spin on one of his Batman stories and thus, the three-issue comic book mini-series Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham, was born.

Having made successful adaptations of Elseworlds properties like Gotham by Gaslight previously, it was only inevitable that DC animation would turn to Mignola’s effort next, and boy they did not disappoint. Although they’ve taken a few liberties with certain characters and plot points, this adaptation is, by and large a faithful adaptation of the source material and a damn good one at that.

The animation style brings to mind Bruce Timm’s Batman: The Animated Series albeit with a bit of a modern edge, effectively capturing the original artwork of the comic in all its grotesque glory. Although few and far between, the action set pieces are exhilarating and breathtaking to behold, picking up the pacing when the baroque drama slows things down. The score by composer Stefan L. Smith heightens the horror elements of the movie, and adds some much-needed urgency when the action kicks in.

The real winner, however, is the excellent voice acting by the cast members. David Giuntoli reprises the Batman/Bruce Wayne role he took on in Batman: Soul of the Dragon to deliver a nuanced yet commanding performance as the crime fighting vigilante. Christopher Gorham who voiced Barry Allen/The Flash in the DCAU, beginning with Justice League: War and concluding with Justice League Dark: Apokalips war, lends his vocal talents to breathe life into an older Oliver Queen/ Green Arrow, who is a drunk wreck tortured by his past. Newcomer Tati Gabrielle is pitch perfect as Kai Li Cain and Emily O’Brien is sultry as ever as the nefarious Talia al Ghul.

Horrific scares, suspenseful thrills and Lovecraftian goodies are all-a-plenty in this latest DC animated Batman flick which brings Mike Mignola’s Hellboy-esque vision to life. In short, Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham is an Elseworlds entry you would not want to miss.

Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★ ★

Hasitha Fernando is a part-time medical practitioner and full-time cinephile. Follow him on Twitter via @DoctorCinephile for regular updates on the world of entertainment.


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