i respect your right to produce non-canonical batman movies but i maintain that a live action batfamily tv series would be the greatest thing on earth
OK SO - HBO show, twelve episodes a season, six seasons and a movie, cool? (or even ABC and full 22 episode seasons IT DOESN’T MATTER ok) IT GOES A LITTLE SOMETHING LIKE THIS:
season one begins a few years into bruce and dick’s dynamic and they’ve finally got everything sorted out and they and alfred are just three bachelors living the life~ in Wayne Manor. First episode covers a single night’s mission, tracking down some lesser Batvillan. A woman watches them through binoculars from a clock tower in the Gotham skyline. The Bruce and Dick sassy/serious rapport is established with Alfred on comms, there’s lots of flips and shit, the usual - until they literally fall into a woman pulling a heist. Bruce hasn’t met her before, and he knows all the Gotham big names. She calls herself Catwoman and narrowly escapes them. Team Bat return home and catch some z’s - except NOT, because Bruce sneaks out and meets the woman on the watch tower - who is Talia al Ghul. They get it on like donkey kooong.
season one introduces some of the major villians - batman goes for weekly visits to see the joker in arkham, bane takes control of the mob, penguin tries to find the batcave in the sewers, brief appearances by the cluemaster and two-face - with bruce’s relationship with talia and her eventual leaving as the underlying arc. dick’s life and ~~adventures at gotham academy are the main subplot; bruce and selina’s growing relationship another. it’s not all serious: dick develops a “batsignal” iphone app, and when he and Bats go on patrol every building is lit up with them: bruce is all “what in actual CHRIST” and then dick is all “uh…. bruce? i can explai-” “NO NAMES ON MISSIONS!” it’s great tbqh.
season two focuses more on bruce and selina because talia’s gone. the joker breaks out of arkham and becomes the big bad of the season. we meet barbara (her father enlists bruce’s help to get her into gotham academy; she and dick have a ~~thang), cass cain, jason todd (already a bike nut let’s be real) and maybe tim drake??? the season uses infrequent flashbacks to expand more on bruce and dick’s origins. the season ends with the joker back in arkham, but his final scene shows him and harley quinn, still a doctor, sharing a smile; bruce and selina kiss and don’t know how to feel about that; dick tells bruce he’s going to join a “team” over the summer.
season three is when shit gets REAL. bane makes his move on gotham and there’s anarchy in the streets; the batfam all come back from their various summer projects to kick some ass. Stephanie Brown joins them as Spoiler, and as they’re all gathering in the batcave Bruce starts to think that he may be getting old. They succeed in calming bane’s shit and return to HQ - only there’s someone there already. Then - BOOM - Talia’s back - BOOM - Damian Wayne and the shitstorm that follows - BOOM - Dick and Babs start to get closer - BOOM - Jason starts going off the rails - BOOM - the Joker and Harley Quinn start doing random creepy shit - BOOM - selina starts playing the villian more than ever. Bruce starts to lose control; Dick starts to get angry with his decision making, but forms a bond with Damian, who feels even more out of place then the rest of them. the end of the season is a huge blowout between the league of shadows and the batfam, with damian choosing to stay on at wayne manor and selina unintentionally discovering bruce’s secret identity from talia.
season four focuses more on the psyhology and dynamics within the batfamily and less on the villians, who become supporting plots to the relationships in team bruce. alfred suggests that the kids go to a superhero therapist, and an episode focuses entirely on them with intercuts to them talking in the shrink’s chair. the episode hints at dick’s restlessness, jason’s underlying darkness, barbara’s controlling nature and tim’s possible homosexuality (?). Selina is sick of Bruce’s righteous schtick and refuses to join his team or ~let him in; their relationship remains frustratingly static. dick leaves to become nightwing and jason replaces him. the season shows less of bruce’s perspective of the world and more of the batkids and their isolation from society, and how bruce’s inability to act as a parental figure adds to that.
season 5 is more about the ladies then the other seasons, and through them the pressure of dual identities: we follow them on their missions, their interactions with the batdudes, to their homes. The villains for the season are ladies, too, with an underlying subplot of Talia and the League of Shadows that comes to a head in the final arc. the season finale begins with bruce and jason on mission - the mission jason dies on. Bruce returns home, avoiding damian’s questions and alfred’s small talk, heads down to the bat cave, turns off all the computers and the gadgets and the lights, and just breaks down entirely. the screen fades to black - before flashing on a figure standing on a ferry coming in to gotham harbour - he’s wearing a red mask and holding a gun.
season 6 sees the streets of gotham grow quieter, and bruce, still grieving for jason, considers hanging up his cape and beginning a real relationship with selina - who, in turn, thinks that the masks are a part of them and that they won’t work as a couple without them. the batkids all reel from the loss of jason and dick; babs grows closer to her friend black canary, damien starts skipping school to vigilante in the day; tim steps up and becomes the new robin, against bruce’s wishes. the team soon discovers that there is a new player in gotham called Red Hood; Bruce meets him and is struck by a sense of familiarity. He becomes obsessed, and confronts Talia and her father with his suspicions - they tell him that he’s right, and that Red Hood is Jason Todd. Bruce returns to Gotham and tries to reach out to Todd, but is rejected; as is Tim and, when he returns, Dick. Red Hood is established as more of an anti-hero than a true villain, and he teams up with the Batfam when he crosses paths with the usual Gotham big bads.
The series finale is much like the pilot: Bruce returns home from Wayne Enterprises, heads to the Batcave and is informed that Bane is once again on the streets. He stares at the screen for a moment - at Bane’s profile, making note of his incredible strength. he turns and goes to put on the batsuit - there’s no one else in the cave, no Alfred, no music - just him and the suit, the way it was before anything or anyone else. We flash to Arkham, and the Joker, who sits alone in his room at the end of a long corridor, which is littered with rooms holding Gotham’s finest villains. They’re all unusually quiet, and it’s making the guards uneasy - until, all of a sudden, the Joker starts to laugh. He laughs and laughs, the the rest laugh too, Scarecrow and Two Face and Poison Ivy, laughing and laughing until the noise turns into something dark and twisted, crawling up the asylum walls.
Bruce decides to swing into Gotham, the way he did in the old days, and we flash back to his first night’s patrol - a Bruce too young to be called Batman, swinging from buildings and falling more often than not. Dick sees him go, and heads into the Batcave. Barbara follows him, and they talk about Dick’s inevitable departure. They kiss. We pan through the rest of Wayne manor; Damien is in his room, practising with his batarangs; Tim is down the hall, playing a video game with Stephanie, and losing terribly, Kate Kane fixes her hair and chats with Cass Cain, who is watching; Alfred is shining silver, which is revealed to be a large set of weapons.
We head back to Bruce, who is jumping across Gotham’s skyline, heading towards the bat signal ahead. He is joined for a time by Catwoman, and they jump in unison, enjoying the feeling of freedom and the night’s breeze. They share a smile, and she slinks away, leaving Bruce alone once again. He continues toward the bat in the sky, thinking in a voice over about his mission, and how he has passed it on: for a moment we see the entire Batfamily - Nightwing and Batgirl and Spoiler, all of them - jumping along behind Bruce; Selina is there, and Red Hood too. For the first time, Bruce thinks of them as “my friends - and my children. My sons.” He jumps once more, and the screen goes black.
I AM TELLING YOU RIGHT NOW IT WOULD BE FUCKING AWESOME.