Wednesday, September 9, 2009

When OMAC Attacks!

Season: 1
Episode Number: 23
Season Episode Number: 23
Production Number: 123
Airdate: July 18, 2009

Writer: Stan Berkowitz
Director: Brandon Vietti

Voices: Diedrich Bader (Batman), Jeff Bennett (OMAC), Oded Fehr (Equinox), Keone Young (GPA Operative), Dee Bradley Baker (Brother Eye, GPA Operative, Dove), Greg Ellis (Hawk, Shrapnel).

Plot: The Global Peace Agency assigns Batman to work with OMAC, but the pair have different ideas on how to bring down Shrapnel, especially once Equinox gets involved.

Teaser: Hawk and Dove bicker like brothers while Batman tries to unite two fighting nations.

Review (Warning! Spoilers!): I have come to realize that there are a few different types of Brave and the Bold episodes, each using Batman in a particular role. When OMAC Attacks uses Batman as the enabler, as we see when Batman shows underdog Buddy Blank that he is worth something, similar to the way Batman treated G'Nort in The Eyes of Despero.

I've said it before, this series loves Jack Kirby. Just like Day of the Dark Knight and The Last Bat on Earth, this episode centres around another Jack Kirby creation, OMAC (One-Man Mary Corps). Kirby created the character in 1974 and was one of the last characters that Kirby created for DC Comics before leaving the publisher to return to Marvel Comics.

The design is a spitting image of Kirby's character, however, the origin and personality is quite different. In the original, Buddy Blank willingly turns himself into the OMAC in an attempt to save a love interest. In this version, Blank is totally unaware of being OMAC and is being used as a weapon by the Global Peace Agency (GPA).

OMAC's powers appear to be true to the original. An orbiting satellite called Brother Eye increases or decreases OMAC's mass in order for him to either gain super-strength (increased mass) or flight (decreased mass). Brother Eye interacts with OMAC's utility belt.

There are a few different types of plots in Brave and the Bold, all centred around how Batman relates to his co-star. This episode is a "Batman is ticked because his partner has a big ego" episode, which is my least favourite kind of episode because all Batman seems to do is grumble and act all pissed off.

However, this episode is also a "Batman teaches the underdog to be a hero" episode which totally makes up for Grumble-Batman as it is a well told story and one that makes you hope for the return of Buddy Blank.

The villain in this episode (other than Shrapnel who is just a typical brute villain) is a character created for this series, Equinox, who is bent on bring balance to the world by any means possible.

He is as much a villain as, say, Magneto. That is, his mission in life seems to align with Batman's, but his methods are not always morally sound. We first met Equinox in the teaser of Mystery in Space, but this is his first full episode appearance. However, is feels very much like a set up episode for Equinox. I think that we may be seeing a bit more of him in future episodes, bringing a greater sense of continuity to the series, something we haven't really seen in this show yet.

When OMAC Attacks is a pretty good episode, building up the character of OMAC to the point where I would welcome him back in a future episode. And I hope that Hawk and Dove gain their own feature episode. The extreme portrayals of their personalities was hilarious!

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