Warner Bros. Animation just dropped a new trailer for The Lego Batman Movie, and it’s a big one.
The upcoming animated flick features Will Arnett reprising his role as Batman from 2014’s The Lego Movie.
On the off-chance that you missed that one, then firstly, you should rectify that situation ASAP. But for now, know that this Batman was kind of a social outcast in the most hilarious way possible. He’s a hero, sure, but he’s also a self-obsessed, over-entitled kid who tries to cover up his complete lack of personal skills with mountains and mountains of stuff. Mostly painted black. Bat-black.
This new trailer is an important one because WB has finally unveiled the voices for characters besides Batman, Alfred, and Robin.
The previous trailers focused purely on Batman’s home life as he puttered around the comically enormous Wayne Manor. He would microwave a turkey. He would yell at Alfred. He would ignore Dick Grayson, at least until the kid stumbles into the Batcave and starts messing with all the Bat-stuff.
In the new Lego Batman Movie trailer #4, we get plenty of that too, but also glimpses of Batman’s life out and about, fighting crime in Gotham and interacting with the citizens. It looks like this film will focus largely on those very same social failings that made the character so hilarious in The Lego Movie.
That’s not surprising at all, since it’s what made this version of the character so memorable. We’re all fans of Superdickery, but in many ways Batman is even worse. The Lego Movie brought that obvious truth to the forefront.
It seems that in The Lego Batman Movie, Barbara Gordon has become the new police commissioner, and wants to officially recognize Batman as a force for good. This is a divergent timeline from the comics and cartoons such as the DCAU, in which Barbara has long since found out Batman’s identity, become Batgirl, become paralyzed, become Oracle, and had all sorts of other misfortune befall her.
We also finally get a bit of dialog with the Joker. The voice actor behind the Clown Prince of Crime is Zach Galifianakis this time around, and we’ll certainly be adding him to our ultimate guide once the movie is released.
For now, we can all rest satisfied that the role is in good hands. This Joker voice is in the old-timey Filmation mode. He’s nasally and mustache-twirling, even as he’s feeling genuinely hurt that Batman doesn’t consider him his #1 villain.
That’s a nice nod to the comics, the Arkham Asylum games, and The Dark Knight Returns, all of which share a major theme in the relationship between Batman and the Joker. The Joker needs Batman, and he’s fully aware of that fact. His life just isn’t complete without the Dark Knight to torment.
Joker also fully believes that Batman needs him, too, although Bats would certainly disagree with that. It’s a fascinating piece of character development, and it’s interesting to see it touched on in what is essentially a kids cartoon.
That’s not the only reference to other Batman media, here. There’s also a hint that the movie may lampoon 2016’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. At one point in the trailer, Batman and Superman face off across a darkened street, glowing eyes and all.
The Lego Batman Movie will be released in US theaters on February 17th, 2017. We’ll be watching.