Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (2018)

batman gotham by gaslight poster 2018 movie
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Good entry to the DC animated universe

Could have probably even been a feature film

Movie Info

Movie Name: Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight

Studio: Warner Bros. Animation

Genre(s): Animated/Comic Book/Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  January 12, 2018 (Premiere)/January 23, 2018

MPAA Rating: R

batman gotham by gaslight jack the ripper

Who is Jack?

A killer is prowling the streets of Gotham, but the killer isn’t the only concern of the police.     Gordon is hunting a man called the Batman whose vigilante methods aren’t lining up with the police.  Bruce Wayne is a symbol of the upper class, but he also spends his evening patrolling as Batman.  As the killer continues to strike, Batman must stop his bloody rampage…but Jack the Ripper could be anyone.

Directed by Sam Liu, Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight is the thirtieth film in the DC Universe Animated Original Movies collection.  Following Batman and Harley Quinn in 2017, the film adapts the DC Comics original 1989 Elseworlds graphic novel Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight by Brian Augustyn and Mike Mignola and premiered at the Newseum.  It received positive reviews.

batman gotham by gaslight jack the ripper sister leslie

Death comes to London

I like a good Batman story and I often think that graphic novels where he’s “put out of his element” are some of the best.  The steampunk style of Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight is one of the better entries in the DC Comics animated movies.  A ******Spoiler Alert****** exists for the rest of the review.

The story is quite tight and well told.  You have a classic “real” villain in Jack the Ripper and the noir style of Batman is perfect fit for the world of Gotham version of Victorian London.  It is a story that has been told many times and many ways with many different people revealed as the Ripper, but it was a nice surprise to have Gordon turn out to be the villain simply because James Gordon has always been the peak of integrity.  This fits with the idea that Jack the Ripper is someone who has just completely snapped.

This is perfectly paired with the idea that Bruce Wayne could be the Ripper.  Many “Ripper-ologists” have described Jack as someone who was affluent and educated and Bruce Wayne fits the bill…but Batman also fits the idea of the Ripper and creates a weird dichotomy.  The movie plays with the idea and has a darker ending than many of DC’s stories as a result.

batman gotham by gaslight costume

Steampunk Batman?

The animation and style of the film also is strong.  Like other DC Comics animated films, it doesn’t feel like they take any shortcuts with the artwork or voice work.  It results in a rather strong product that is both fun and stylish.

If you’ve skipped a lot of DC animated features, Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight is one of the entries you should seek out.  Lovers of the Batman:  The Animated Series will find it in tune with that show and it really does feel like a fun, bonus excursion.  Get on the trail of the Ripper and check it out!  Batman:  Gotham by Gaslight was followed by Suicide Squad:  Hell to Pay which was also released in 2018.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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