Justice League Action: Season 1 Part 1 DVD Review

Fans of DC Comics have had it really good over the years with not only their impressive lineup of animated series, including even live action series as well in more recent years. On the animated side, we’ve had series like Young Justice utilize the characters from the Justice League, but we haven’t had a dedicated animated series since Justice League Unlimited ended in 2006 until the debut of Justice League Action late last year that has now gotten its first DVD release with Justice League Action: Season 1 Part 1.

Justice League Action is a bit more lighthearted take on the Justice League, with it fitting somewhere between what you would have expected from Justice League Unlimited and Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Some episodes go a little more more serious, though still with jokes always thrown in, while other episodes are completely off the rails and over the top.

Instead of the usual 30 minute run time that includes commercials, Justice League Action episodes are each half that, coming in at about 11 minutes or so on this DVD set. This obviously means that it’s a lot harder to have a lot of story thrown in, with the individual episodes tending to have more simplistic and self-contained plots, outside of the Shazam Slam multiparter that started the series. This does not mean that they feel like throwaways however, as most of the episodes here are very enjoyable to watch as a DC fan.

One of my personal favorite episodes was the one titled “Time Share,” which sends Batman and Blue Beetle back in time to the first night that Batman appeared in Gotham, as a villain named Chronos is trying to kill him and wipe him from existence. What made this episode so great were the very obvious callbacks to Batman: The Animated Series, which even uses the classic theme song as well.

Justice League Action does not really have one set lineup of heroes and villains, as it features different ones almost every episode. Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman are definitely the most prominant of the bunch, but you’ll see so many different other characters that really feature some deep cuts into the DC lineup.

Kevin Conroy has had more outings as Batman than anyone else and he returns here once again in the role. Superman and Wonder Woman are completely new to their roles here and do solid jobs, with the rest of the lineup being a mix of voice actors that are familiar and new to their roles. For instance, Mark Hamill returns as the Joker once again, though he also voices other characters like Swamp Thing. There’s also some other big names in the list of voice actors like Gary Cole, Jon Cryer, and Sean Astin.

Justice League Action definitely has a more cartoonish and kid friendly art style, but it still looks quite good. The artwork definitely makes the characters look younger than they are, but it’s far and above something like Teen Titans Go.

Video

The video quality in this set is pretty much what you would expect from an animated series on DVD. While the visual clarity is not to the level of a Blu-ray set,  it still looks quite good. The transfers used here definitely show up very well on a modern television. Justice League Action is a very colorful show too, with the various costumes for the heroes and villains shining bright in the scenes and looking good. I really do wish we could have gotten a Blu-ray release as an alternative here, but you can’t really complain at all with the quality for a DVD release.

Audio

Unlike some of the other Warner Bros. Home Entertainment releases, there are not much in the way of audio options with this DVD. The DVD does offer quality 5.1 English audio, but that is it. For an animated series, you might have thought they could include additional dubs with relative ease, but none are included. The subtitle options are also limited to English, which is just fine for those watching the series in the US. For a DVD only release, the audio quality is very solid here and the use of music in the series is top notch. My personal favorite moment is the usage of the classic Danny Elfman Batman theme in the aforementioned “Time Share” episode. Overall, you really won’t have any issues when it comes to the audio.

Special Features

Most disappointingly, there are zero special features included in the Justice League Action: Season 1 Part 1 DVD set. Granted you do get a solid amount of content for a small DVD with 26 episodes, but it would have been nice to get at least one special feature. With the stellar cast of guest stars on this show, we really should have gotten some sort of featurette with some of them. Hopefully something like that may come in Part 2 when it eventually releases.


Verdict

With Justice League Action fast approaching 50 episodes, the first DVD set collects the first 26 together, which are very fun to watch, even if no special features are included. There may be a lack of deep story in most episodes, though the fun factor definitely helps to make up for that. I still do wish we had gotten a Blu-ray set of these, and maybe we still will for the full season, but the DVD set is still worthwhile for the time being. If you’re interesting in binging through the show, with it definitely being a great option for kids as well.

7.0 Constantine Lollipops Out Of 10

Episodes:

    1. Classic Rock
    2. Power Outage
    3. Night of the Bat
    4. Abate and Switch
    5. Follow That Space Cab!
    6. Nuclear Family Values
    7. Zombie King
    8. Galaxy Jest
    9. Time Share
    10. Under a Red Sun
    11. Play Date
    12. Repulse
    13. Trick or Threat
    14. Speed Demon
    15. Hat Trick
    16. Field Trip
    17. Luthor in Paradise
    18. Plastic Man Saves the World
    19. Rage of the Red Lanterns
    20. Freezer Burn
    21. The Trouble With Truth
    22. Inside Job
    23. Double Cross
    24. Battle for the Bottled City
    25. Garden of Evil
    26. All Aboard the Space Train

Release Date: October 10th, 2017
Runtime: 286 Minutes
Reviewed Format: DVD
Discs: 2 DVDs
Resolution: 480i
Aspect ratio: 16:9 Widescreen
Original aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Video: Codec: MPEG-2
Audio: English (5.1)
Subtitles: English SDH
Cast: Kevin Conroy, Jason J. Lewis, Rachel Kimsey, Mark Hamill, Khary Payton, PJ Byrne, Stephen Tobolowsky, James Woods, Chris Diamantopoulos, Tara Strong, Diedrich Bader, Lacey Chabert.
Producers: Jim Krieg, Butch Lukic, and Alan Burnett.

Disclosure: Justice League Action: Season 1 Part 1 Was Provided By Warner Bros. Home Entertainment For Coverage Purposes

Leave a Reply