There is no denying that Batman: The Animated Series is one of the greatest animated TV shows to come out of the 90s. Heck, I'd even venture far enough to say that it is one of the greatest animated TV shows period. A combination of compelling action, mingled with dark, intriguing storytelling helped this show stand a cut above the incredible crowd of good 90s super-hero cartoons.
One of the men largely responsible for the awesomeness of Batman: The Animated Series was Paul Dini. Anybody who is a diehard fan of Batman and/or the animated series Freakazoid! is likely familiar with this name.
Dini wrote many of the best episodes of Batman: The Animated Series including, "Heart of Ice," "Harlequinade" and one of my personal favorites, "The Man Who Killed Batman." If you are unfamiliar with these episodes and happen to have an Amazon Prime subscription I suggest you watch them now!
Dini's greatest contribution to the show was easily Harley Quinn, the psychologist turned Clown Prince of Crime worshipper, which he and Bruce Timm created. She was an instant hit and it soon became apparent that she would be a new mainstay in the Batman cannon. Dini was even given the honor of working on Batman: Harley Quinn which was a part of the "No Man's Land" story arc, the first comic in which she appeared.
Dini also provided 75% of the women who attend Comic-Cons their inspiration for their cosplay.
Dini was not done with Batman however. After his work on the original animated series he helped create and write for Batman Beyond, another incredible series which focused on Terry McGinnis, the heir to the Bat-cowl.
Years later, Dini was approached by Rocksteady to write the story for a Batman game they were working on. The result was Batman: Arkham Asylum, a game that set the bar for portraying the Dark Knight in video games. Dini also penned the story for the game's equally incredible follow-up, Arkham City.
Which inspired 100% of Harley Quinn cosplayers to update their costumes.
The projects Dini has been a major part of re-introduced an entire generation of kids to the caped crusader. I can honestly say that, as a 90s kid my love for Batman was engendered in me by Batman: The Animated Series and I am sure many other 90s kids feel the same way. So thank you, Paul Dini. Thank you for helping me develop my love for the greatest detective who ever lived. Thank you for giving the world Harley Quinn, the psychopathic, yet some-how-lovable girlfriend of the Joker. I can't wait to see what he gives us next!
Oh, and if you are not convinced of how awesome this man is, check out this clip from an awesomely hilarious episode of Batman The Brave and the Bold which he wrote: