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Every Season Of Batman: The Animated Series, Ranked From Worst To Best

While upcoming The Batman will offer audiences yet another take on the legacy of Batman, one of the best versions of the Caped Crusader wasn't a live-action one. Batman: The Animated Series was a massive hit with fans in the 1990s, exploring the iconic hero in a way that was suitable for kids but didn't ignore the dark edge of the story. Along with being one of the best interpretations of Batman, it is also one of the best DC animated projects.

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While fans were sad to see the show end in 1995, its popularity has only increased over the years. With news that HBO Max will be making a new Batman animated series with the team behind this one, it seems like the perfect time to take another glimpse at the entire series and what season ranks as the best after all this time.

5 Season 4

It must be said that Batman: The Animated Series didn't ever have a period of time that was not worth watching. Even its lesser episodes are often fun and thrilling enough to warrant a rewatch. However, the fourth season of the show simply doesn't hold the same excitement as what came before. But the main reason why at the bottom it is considered one of the weakest seasons is because of its limited number of episodes.

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Though the episodes that do remain in season 4 are not bad, they do lack many of the iconic characters that helped make the show so fun. They also include some strange DC characters, like Jonah Hex, who doesn't feel like he belongs in the show. Episodes like "The Terrible Trio," which is about a group of young criminals robbing for fun, don't match the heights of previous seasons. That being said, "A Bullet for Bullock," in which Detective Bullock has to ask Batman for help when his life is in danger, is a highlight of the season.

4 Season 3

As a testament to the quality of the show, season 3 of Batman: The Animated Series would have been a very solid season of television for any show. There is plenty to satisfy fans and it continues to deliver the kind of elevated storytelling that fans had come to expect with the series. However, as good as it is, it is still a bit of a noticeable decline from the previous seasons.

On the upside, the series doesn't deliver any episodes that would be considered bad. In fact, it is one of the more consistent seasons out of the bunch, with them all being solidly entertaining. But the season is also short on those classic episodes that are remembered among the best of the series. The best it delivers is a terrific continuation of Two-Face's tragic journey as a villain in "Second Chance." The season should also be noted for introducing Bane in a thrilling episode as well.

3 Season 2

With the first two seasons of the show, Batman: The Animated Series cemented its status as one of the defining versions of Batman. This season allows the show to reach new heights with some of its storytelling. However, a smaller episode count means that it doesn't have quite as many classic episodes and falls a little short of the amazing two-part first season.

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Even though it's not considered one of the most favorable seasons, it does include one of the best episodes of the entire season with "The Trail." The episode finds Batman taken captive and put on trial by all of the classic villains he has faced over the years, with Joker obviously sitting as the judge. While the other episodes of the seasons fall much shorter of this gem, it helps to make season 2 an all-around great era for the show.

2 Season 1 – Part 2

The first season of the show has a pretty unfair advantage over the rest of the series as it contains a whopping 60 episodes in total. Needless to say, this long season took more than a year to air in its entirety, with the first part of it being released in 1992 and the second following in 1993. As the shorter of the two parts, it's not surprising that part 2 didn't live up to the hype of its predecessor, although it features plenty of greatness from the show in its own right.

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The second part continued to explore what made the show so successful. It featured episodes dedicated to some of the classic villains of Batman lore such as Joker in "The Laughing Fish" and Penguin in "Birds of a Feather." It also told a fantastic standalone story with "The Man Who Killed Batman," which remains a highlight of the season, focusing on a small-time criminal who gains notoriety for seeming to accidentally kill the Caped Crusader.

1 Season 1 – Part 1

While it would have been nice to see the series stay a little more consistent with the quality of episodes over the seasons, there is no denying that it delivered some wonderful television in the jam-packed first season. The show was an instantly intriguing take on the typical superhero cartoon, ready to take risks and be true to the character while also knowing how to be fun and accessible to its audience.

There are countless great episodes that fans will no doubt be revisiting for years to come. Along with creating a brooding and intelligent detective take on Batman, the show also gave audiences Mark Hamill's iconic take on Joker. The season was so impactful that it began to add things to the Batman lore like the sympathetic reimagining of the villain Mr. Freeze. And the first part of season 1 also delivered the best episode of the series in "Almost Got 'im" in which some of Batman's famous foes play poker together and swap stories about the times they nearly beat the hero.

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