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Episode By Episode: SUPERMAN: TAS (“Stolen Memories”)

I now own all of SUPERMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES on DVD. Each week, I’m going to work my way through the series one episode at a time.  Dig?

Episode: “Stolen Memories”

What Happens: Brainiac comes to Earth with the help of LexCorp! He is creepy and also a jerk and he tries to steal the internet and robo-murder Superman.

MAKE WAY FOR THE ROBO-SUPERIOR

Thoughts:

  • I hadn’t really noticed this but the Timm-universe has been big on Luthor/Brainiac episodes since pretty early on. It’s pretty nuts that this episode has repercussions as far down the line as the second to last JLU finale.
  • The DC Animated Brainiac redesign is gorgeous. Incorporates the important stuff (the three circle head thing, mainly) and the psuedo-Batman eyes are used to great effect.
  • Corey Burton’s Brainiac voice is great. Deadpan with a hint of arrogance.
  • Superman tearin’ around in his spaceship is something that throws me every time they show it. When does Superman ever use a spaceship?
  • I like that Lex Luthor demonstrates the alien technology he’s been given with what is essentially a garage door opener that makes people float.
  • ROBO-CHAIRRR

Stand up, you asshole.

  • Brainiac’s “I AM Krypton” line is great and leads me to why this is truly the best version of Brainiac. Brainiac being responsible or atleast culpable in Krypton’s demise makes the beef between him and Superman that much more interesting. It’s also pretty fascinating that, just as Krypton’s destruction gave the universe Superman, it also gave it something equally terrible. Superman as a character is all about his humanity and empathy for people while Brainiac is precisely the opposite.
  • “Go ahead, touch your legacy” *shudder*
  • “ALL OF METROPOLIS IS MANIAC FOR BRAINIAC” Haha wow. TV reporters don’t really come off well in the Timm-universe, do they? Angela Chen, Summer Gleason, Jack Ryder, all not very flattering. Snapper Carr seems pretty ok.
  • Not enough liquor in the world to make THIS go away:

No more. Please.

  • Superman helplessly witnessing the telepathic montage of different planets Brainiac has subsumed and destroyed is a really effective sequence.
  • Man, Luthor’s plans in this and the last episode sure have been shortsighted and dumb, huh?
  • The whole “Killing a planet and taking their collective knowledge so that said knowledge becomes more precious” is a pretty original and unsettling villain motivation.
  • I like that the Fortress of Solitude starts out as a random cave in Antarctica where Superman stores his weird shit.

Overall?

Very good episode that mainly serves to set up Brainiac as a recurring foe. And like I said, he’s a great foe, not the least of which is because he’s one of the few members of Superman’s rogues gallery that can challenge him physically and mentally. Brainiac episodes as a rule are all pretty solid.

Next Episode: The Main Man (Part 1) (Brad Garrett. Lobo.)

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About Max Robinson

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