WHOA, NOW! Don't you think you're being a little hasty, and cruel, with the Timm to Miller comparison? Timm's work isn't sterling gold like it used to be, but last time I checked Green Lantern TAS still had a strong fan base, and even with its choices in plot, Gods and Monsters isn't the predictable schlock Miller's done after DKR...
Allow me to clarify. No, I’m most certainly not directly comparing Bruce Timm to Frank Miller. Not only are the two of them world’s apart with who they are as people, but as absolute cringe as The Killing Joke was I’ll still take Bruce Timm at his absolute worst over Frank Miller at his best any day of the fucking week.
When I said that Bruce Timm was slowly becoming the new Frank Miller, I was referring to the one thing they do have in common; their rise to and fall from grace.
Remember when everything Frank Miller touched turned into gold, then once he peaked his work just got progressively worse and worse and now he’s considered a joke these days? Well, I can’t help but feel that the same thing is happening to Timm.
And look, I don’t like it anymore than you do. I was there too. I saw his works from when he cut his teeth on Tiny Toon Adventures all the way to when he and others got DC animated universe off the ground, and everything in between and since. But lately…
I don’t know. I just think that everything he’s done lately, especially the Killing Joke, has proved without the shadow of a doubt why Paul Dini was every bit as important to the much beloved DC animated universe and why it was so great. Let’s be brutally honest. Both Timm and Dini by themselves are good. Damn good! But both have their own hangups. Timm has these wild and insane ideas that may just be crazy enough to work…maybe a little too crazy. Dini, in contrast, is much more down to Earth and generally likes to play safe, sometimes too safe to where no idea of his gets off the ground.
And that’s why they made such a great pair; their individual flaws were perfectly complements to their strengths. Timm would pitch these wild and crazy ideas and Dini would ground them just enough. The result? Well, the DCAU speaks for itself.
I think the fact that Dini isn’t around with Timm anymore shows. Now when Bruce pitches an idea like, say, Batgirl being a shitty crime fight with a fangirl crush on Batman and things get weird between them because they fuck, nobody’s around to say “No, Timm, portraying Babs as needlessly stupid and Bruce having sex with girl half his age that he’s been an on-and-off father figure to is a terrible idea.”
I hope he gets better. I hope I’m completely wrong about ‘Batman and Harley Quinn’ and that it’s not just good but great and that his works only get better and better after that. Believe me, the one thing worse than seeing a great artist meet an untimely end is when a great artist burns their own reputation and legacy to the ground as they keep making pieces that just get worse and worse every time. Frank Miller went from one of the most important figureheads in the comic book industry to an embarrassing joke that writes itself in just over a decade after ‘Sin City’ was a hit. Bruce Timm…hard to call right just yet. I just hope the same doesn’t happen to him, but when promotions like “this is the violent red-headed step child of the Batman family” for Batman and Harley Quinn around, you can’t help but wonder.