Sneak Peek

  A journalist who can walk through walls uncovers Batman's identity.
  Original Airdate: March 25, 2000
  Episode # 32
  Rating: * * 1/2

Credits Cast

Story by Alan Burnett
Teleplay by Stan Berkowitz
Directed by Dan Riba
Music by Lolita Ritmanis
Animation by Koko/Dong Yang

Will Friedle as Terry McGinnis
Kevin Conroy as Bruce Wayne
Teri Garr as Mary McGinnis
Ryan O'Donohue as Matt McGinnis
Michael McKean as Ian Peak

Paul Winfield as Sam Young
Clyde Kusatsu as Jimmy Lin
Marcelo Tubert as Ortiz
Dave Walsh as Stage Manager

On the one hand, we find here a juicy little satire about tabloid journalism, backed up by some clever lines. But on the other hand, that story never really develops, wedged in as it is by action sequences. On yet another hand, those action sequences are smartly handled, showing the difficulty of fighting an opponent who is both there and not there. But (on some fourth hand) those sequences are not so smartly handled as to disguise a basic inconsistency: The villain can walk through walls, but he doesn't fall through the floor; other people's fists pass right through him, but his own, when he's swinging it, is quite solid.

On a fifth hand, I concede that consistency is a foolish ideal when there's fun to be hand (and there certainly is a lot of fun in this episode), but it gets slapped down by a sixth hand that reminds me that the climax, in which Peak begins slipping through the floor, depends upon a reassertion of the suppressed premises. I have to borrow a seventh hand to point out that Terry's cry of "Concentrate!" suggests that Peak is solid only when he puts his mind to it (solving the inconsistency), but then an eighth hand pops up with the thought that (a) this is still pretty weak, and (b) it suggests a whole new series of unexploited gags, based on the following fact: If the guy keeps an even footing only when concentrating, then a lapse of concentration will cause him to fall. The result would be a reverse Elmer Fudd: instead of a cartoon character who is safe in mid-air until he realizes he's in mid-air, Peak would be one who is safe on the ground only until he forgets that he's on solid ground.

Written in the palm of a ninth hand, I find the assertion that it may too much to ask a twenty-minute action show to work out and exploit all these permutations, but, scratching my head sadly with a tenth hand I reflect: This could've been the Batman version of "King Size Canary," taking a simple gag and working out every insane permutation on it.

Coordinating all those hands, is it any wonder I can't work up a sustained round of applause?

Related Episodes
   * Time Out of Joint
   * See No Evil
   * Untouchable

What Others Are Saying ...
"Pretty interesting concept."J. Chen for World's Finest

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