This week marked the passing of director Joel Schumacher and to celebrate this lover of neon and camp we're looking back at all the wildest moments in his films Batman Forever and Batman & Robin.
Of course we all remember the bat-nipples, we’re not going to insult your intelligence by bringing up the bat-nipples, you remember the bat-nipples, but do you remember …
10. Poison Ivy’s Sexy Gorilla Suit Dance
Our first ridiculous moment happens when Batman and Robin are attending a conveniently flower-themed fundraiser when sexy music suddenly plays and everyone looks up, absolutely enthralled with sexual energy as Poison Ivy makes her entrance and starts dancing … in a giant fluffy gorilla suit.
A few moments later she takes the suit off to reveal she is in fact a beautiful woman and then doses the crowd with her pheromones, but considering how much people seemed to love the gorilla suit dance on its own we’re thinking she didn’t need those pheromones at all.
9. Bat Skates
Batman and Robin’s first fight with Mr. Freeze is at the Gotham Museum, a fight they were not aware was going to happen that night as we see Commissioner Gordon telling them about it on their way out of the Batcave. When they get to the museum the floor’s been frozen but don’t worry, like every reasonable crime fighter, the Caped Crusaders have razor sharp ice skates in their boots at all time, which is great when you have to play an impromptu game of diamond hockey with a bunch of thugs.
8. Batman Attends Court In His Full Costume
Jumping over to Batman Forever let’s discuss the moment when Harvey Dent gets acid thrown in his face, turning him into Two-Face. That part’s pretty familiar to us all, but what you might not remember is that in this version Batman was in the court room when it happened, just kind of hanging out. And no, we don’t mean Bruce Wayne was there, we mean Batman was sitting in the front row of a trial, in broad daylight, among regular people like a Batman Where's Waldo, watching Harvey question witnesses like that’s a totally normal thing for a vigilante in a bat-suit to do. This must have been a really fun day for the courtroom sketch artist who we can only assume was Jim Lee because who else could fully capture the artistry of this.
7. ALL. THESE. ICE. PUNS
Yeah, we know you remember that Mr. Freeze had SOME ice puns, but do you remember that they were almost every single line? Most of them aren’t even puns, he just mentions cold things A LOT. We’ve got an assortment of our favorites below, and you can find absolutely every line he has in the movie right here and see the ice pun glory in its entirety.
We also feel compelled to bring up the only good pun in this movie. After Freeze and Ivy decide to reboot the Earth’s ecosystem leaving them as the only two people alive on Earth, Freeze exclaims that they will be “Adam – and Evil” and that’s pretty solid.
6. Crotch, Butt and Boob Shots
Perhaps the reason we remember the bat-nipples so well is because of the massive close-ups they got in Batman & Robin. Joel Schumacher was a man who loved anatomy and showed that love with detailed shots of Batman and Robin’s body parts as they got dressed to fight crime, and we mean ALL their body parts. There are intense zooms on crotches, pecs and even Batgirl’s boobs - truly no part of the bat-body was safe. And even though every hero wears a cape that goes to their knees, Joel still included butt shots of them all, because he’s a completionist who left no body part unappreciated.
5. Jim Carrey’s Face Melts
As we reach the climax of Batman Forever we see Batman break the huge machine that holds Gotham’s collective knowledge (sure, let’s say that’s what it did) and when that breaks all the knowledge that the Riddler poured into his brain shoots out like your Recycle Bin getting cleaned out. And of course as we all know, when your brain juice is getting sucked away you say “Bummer” in a totally tubular voice, have your face get a little cartoon wobble to it, and then lay in the rubble of your evil lair looking absolutely wrecked.
4. Batman’s Credit Card
There is almost too much to dissect in this truly spectacular scene from Batman & Robin. We already broke down Ivy’s sexy gorilla costume, and it’s a hard choice between talking about the bat-credit card or the terrible sexual innuendo that happens, including Ivy telling the Dynamic Duo that she has “some wild oats to sow". No wonder this woman needs magic pheromones to get a man.
Even more terrible than Ivy’s flirting though is a moment later when Batman and Robin start a bidding war for a date with Ivy that ends with Batman pulling out his valid credit card, issued to Batman, with an expiry date of FOREVER. It's a cute joke, that implies Batman applied for a credit card, under the name Batman, and got approved somehow. Maybe he walked over to the bank and opened a line of credit after he was done at the courthouse in Batman Forever, got a big day of Bat-chores done.
3. Dick’s Martial Arts Laundry
Truly there has never been a scene that was so equally ridiculous and unnecessary as Dick doing his laundry in Batman Forever. After moving into Wayne Manor Dick is doing laundry and even though Alfred says he will take care of the clothing, and EVEN THOUGH there is VISIBLY a dryer in the room, Dick decides to karate chop his clothes dry which includes a pair of sweat pants, socks and one t-shirt, which we must point out again can ABSOLUTELY go in the dryer! These are not delicates. And even if the dryer is broken, twirling your socks around before hanging them on the line is … not anything. Don’t do that. Also the floor's all wet now, Alfred has to mop that up, you've created more work for poor Alfred, this was the least efficient way to do anything.
2. Holy Rusted Metal Batman
As a light at the end of this tunnel of ridiculousness let’s look at an actual good joke from Batman Forever that you may have forgotten. As Batman and Robin arrive on Riddler’s evil island, Robin loudly exclaims “Holy Rusted Metal Batman!”, clearly in homage to Burt Ward’s Robin on Batman ’66. Even better than the line itself though is the explanation that Robin gives for shouting it out which is that “the ground it’s all metal, it’s full of holes, you know, holy!” to which Batman brilliantly replies the perfect line after any joke, “Oh.”
Truly a masterpiece for the ages.
1. Mr. Freeze Makes His Henchmen Sing For Him
It’s truly a wonder that the bat-nipples, ice-puns and credit card get all the attention when there is a scene in Batman & Robin where Arnold Schwarzenegger wears a luxurious robe and polar bear slippers and spends half a minute forcing his freezing cold henchmen to sing “I’m Mr. Snow” while licking microwave meals that are frozen solid, then gets frustrated that they aren’t enthusiastic enough.
It’s a lot of ice things happening all at once, but you have to give it to Freeze, he commits to a bit.