Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes and Huntsmen, Part Two
Worlds collide for a second time when the RWBY characters find themselves in the DC universe and encounter the Justice League in Yssa Badiola, Dustin Matthews and Kerry Shawcross’ Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes and Huntsmen, Part Two.
A crossover can introduce audiences to something they weren’t aware of and open up a potential avenue of interest for them to explore. The beauty of animation is that crossovers can be much easier to facilitate. The Justice League characters found themselves in the world of RWBY in the first part of this two-part story which allowed the animators an opportunity to reimagine iconic characters like Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman as anime characters while altering them to conform to the rules of an unfamiliar world. Both DC and RWBY fans benefit from this as it allows both fandoms to look at the other to help them decide if they want to learn more about it. It’s also a great opportunity for familiar characters to react to the situation and possibly enrich them as a result.
Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes and Huntsmen, Part Two does the expected and sends the RWBY characters into the DC universe which returns the favour somewhat. Like in Part One, they have to adapt to their new surroundings and the alterations in their powers that comes with the universe hopping while dealing with the growing threat that requires their collective attention. This is a direct sequel to Part One with a handy recap opening summarising the broad strokes of what happened previously before picking up pretty much where it left off and concluding the story.
There’s a lot to like here. The animation is impressive, adopting a more minimalist style which allows the iconic designs of the DC heroes to stand out as the traditional monoliths seared into the minds of viewers while the RWBY characters are distinct and recognisable to help audiences differentiate them from one another at a glance. Further creativity can be found in the excellent creature designs translating perfectly from the anime canvas to the different animation style. The combat sequences are creative, frenetic and exciting with a wide variety to the presentation.
Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes and Huntsmen, Part Two suffers most in its storytelling. The narrative moves from set piece to set piece with very little time for the audience to catch their breath and take stock of the story being told. Giant monsters must be fought because they’re dangerous but there isn’t a lot of in-depth characterisation accompanying the constant action. It is present such as David Dastmalchian’s Flash struggling to process being taken over by Kilg%re (Tru Valentino) and Batman (Troy Baker) having difficulty accepting that he’s injured and has to rely on help from others but these elements receive minimal attention. Similarly, Ruby’s (Lindsay Jones) lack of confidence in her abilities as a leader and the connection she makes with the far more seasoned Superman (Travis Willingham) who serves as a mentor of sorts offers some emotional grounding but it’s barely enough to stitch together the various monster fights and certainly has a lot more potential for exploration than the film provides.
Despite this, the film moves at a brisk -sometimes overly so- pace, and offers plenty of exciting action and vibrant visuals with the featured characters behaving as fans would expect them to. It’s a fun crossover that does enough to help the audience understand the characters and their background so that neither side of the fanbase will feel alienated. Crossovers can be fun and this is a good example of what can result from combining two properties into a single story.
A creative and fun crossover that moves at a brisk pace, offers plenty of exciting action and vibrant visuals that doesn’t alienate either side of the fanbase.
- impressive animation
- excellent creature designs
- creative and well-executed set pieces
- not alienating either side of the fanbase
- uneven pacing
- very little depth to the characters between set pieces
- not capitalising on obvious potential found within the character interactions
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