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The Forgotten

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Batman: The Animated Series episode
The Forgotten-Title Card
"The Forgotten"
Airdate: October 8, 1992
Production Number: 8
Airdate Order: 23
Animation Services by: Dong Yang Animation Co., LTD.
Written by: Jules Dennis, Richard Mueller and Sean Catherine Derek
Directed by: Boyd Kirkland
Episode images (7)

"The Forgotten" is the twenty-third episode of Batman: The Animated Series. It depicts Bruce Wayne losing his memory and being turned into a slave. When indigent men start disappearing from the Bowery, Bruce goes undercover as lowlife Gaff Morgan to investigate. He soon ends up as an amnesia victim forced to work with other kidnapped men in a treacherous and remote mining camp.

Plot

It's another peaceful day in Gotham City and Bruce Wayne volunteers at the Dock Street Rescue Mission, which he is also a major benefactor. The priest thanks Bruce for his help and mentions that people are disappearing, mainly homeless people who frequent the soup kitchen, but one of his volunteers has disappeared as well. Although the priest has reported this to the police, they haven't bothered to look into the situation as the disappearance of homeless people has not ranked high on their investigative list.

The Forgotten strike

Gaff Morgan is struck from behind while distracted.

That night, Bruce dresses up in a shabby outfit and fixes himself up to look older, under the guise of Gaff Morgan. He searches the city's slums and eventually a couple thugs that "offer" him a job. After a brief fight, Gaff manages to disable both thugs and watches a stray cat on the fence. However, this distraction is all that a third thug needs to strike him over the head with a blackjack and knock him out.

Later, Gaff wakes up chained to a cot in a remote shack out in the middle of the desert. Two men, Dan Riley and Salvo Smith greet him and ask his name. Gaff, however claims not to know. The group goes to have their breakfast but the boss of the camp demands that they get to work or they'll "all end up like... him". An unfortunate man is pointed out at random and shoved into a small metal box, that magnifies the heat of the desert sun. Gaff tries to save the man but Riley stops him.

Back at Wayne Manor, Alfred greets Bruce but finds that he's not there. Finding this strange, Alfred starts to wonder what's happened.

Meanwhile, Gaff works away at a mine while he talks to his newfound friends. Unfortunately, he still can't remember anything but Riley tells him to hang onto his hope. Riley and Smith explain that they were both in the docks area and were kidnapped. Smith claims that he was unemployed while Riley was a steam fitter at the Gotham Navy Yard and a volunteer at the soup kitchen, the Dock Street Rescue mission, and was kidnapped. Gaff suddenly starts to remember something. Riley continues and mentions that he has a family. Just as the conversation finishes, there's a cave-in, a disaster that happens all too often due to the poor integrity of the mine.

Alfred continues to have problems as there are people who are asking for Bruce but he only tells them to call back another day. Looking to save his friend, Alfred checks the cars and sees that the Studebaker is gone. Using the tracking device, Alfred finds that it's in the Bowery, a low-income section of Gotham.

The Forgotten beggars

Bruce Wayne is mobbed by beggars.

Elsewhere, Gaff wanders a hall filed with funhouse mirrors. As he looks at one of his reflections he hears laughing. One of the mirrors has the image of Bruce Wayne who is laughing hysterically. Confused, Gaff looks at the image which turns into the Joker and pulls him from the building. Suddenly, Bruce is wandering through the slums and generously gives cash to homeless people, but is soon overwhelmed by a mob of homeless people begging for handouts. Just then, Gaff awakens in a cold sweat and recalls the Dock Street Rescue Mission.

Work continues in the mine and Smith makes the mistake of blowing a raspberry at the boss. As punishment he is sentenced to be thrown into the box but Gaff and Riley intervene. Though they fight well, they are soon overwhelmed and thrown into the ovens themselves.

Back in Gotham, Alfred finds Bruce’s car in a junkyard and takes the tracking device. There he sees two thugs get into a truck. Thinking that they might lead him to Bruce, Alfred plants the device on their truck and waits to see where it ends up.

Out in the desert, Gaff and Riley sweat it out in the metal boxes. Time passes and Riley begins to lose his mind. Finally, he cries that he has lost his family. This sparks Gaff's memory to his earlier years of being with Martha and Thomas Wayne and he remembers that he's actually Bruce/Batman. He shouts to Riley that they’ll escape and breaks his way out of the box. Gaff runs from the mine and is quickly pursued by the mine's guards. He makes his way into Box Canyon, which is believed to be a dead-end, but Gaff begins to climb his way out.

Over the canyon, the Batwing flies, piloted by Alfred, but moreso the onboard computer acting as autopilot. Finding the tracking device, Alfred orders the Batwing to land, despite the computer's warning of the danger of Box Canyon. Fortunately, Gaff is nearby and meets up with his friend.

The Forgotten return

Bruce, Riley, and Smith return home at last.

Shortly thereafter, the mine guards run to the boss fearful of a giant bat. Batman makes his presence known and is attacked. The boss joins in on the chase, offering a thousand dollars to the man who kills Batman. In the darkness of the mine Batman easily manages to evade notice and disable the guards. The boss tries to escape but Batman is right after him. During the chase, the boss trips and drops his oil lamp onto crates filled with explosives. Batman shoves the man onto a water flue and dives into the river after him. He saves the boss and drags him off to prison, while the mine is destroyed in an explosion.

Back at home, Riley is reunited with his family and offers his home to Smith and Bruce. However, Bruce declines the offer and reveals his true identity, telling his friends that if they're looking for work, he can help. Bruce then heads for home, leaving Smith half-joking that maybe he can get amnesia and wake up a millionaire too.

Background information

Home video releases

Production inconsistencies

  • The Batwing's hazardous landing in the canyon is inconsistent with other episodes showing it to be capable of hovering and descending in a straight vertical line. However, this may be due to Alfred's lack of proficiency in piloting/commanding the vehicle, as well as his demanding the Batwing land now so as not to stray from Bruce.
  • When Bruce escapes from the labor camp and is being chased by the men with dogs, the perspective of his pursuers is poorly drawn, and at one point it looks like the men and dogs are all different sizes (two smaller men and one giant man).

Trivia

  • This is the first animated episode where Batman is shown to be knocked unconscious and captured on screen. The previous episode, "P.O.V.", shows Batman captured, but it is left to imply that he was caught after the roof fell on him. Not only that, but it is strongly implied that he allowed himself to be captured.
  • The idea for this episode was conceived when Bruce Timm and the writers wondered what Bruce would do if he lost his memory and was forced to find a solution without gadgets or his costume.
  • Alfred makes a brief reference to Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, who claimed what is now San Diego for Spain.
  • Bruce Timm revealed in the DVD introduction for this episode that one of the main difficulties in using "one-shot" villains is that since they only make one appearance, it can be difficult to make them memorable. Thus, Biggis' trademark was to be fat and revolting. In fact, according to Timm, voice actor George Murdock ate food as he read his lines. It worked so well, that the slurping and gulping sounds he made were kept for the character as part of the soundtrack.
  • This is the first episode to feature Alfred away from Wayne Manor.
  • Biggis' huge appetite, physique, and slobbering voice are very reminiscent of Mr.Creosote from Monty Python and the Meaning of Life.
  • One of Biggis' men is named Paur, a reference to series writer/director Frank Paur.

Cast

Actor Role
Kevin Conroy Batman
Joker (Hallucination) (uncredited)
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. Alfred
Lorin Dreyfuss Salvo Smith
Dorian Harewood Dan Riley
George Murdock Boss Biggis
Ian Patrick Williams Ivan
Richard Moll Computer
Jay Thomas Guard 1

Uncredited appearances

Quotes

Alfred: That's odd. Only vampires loath daylight more than Batman.


Riley: Hey, you can't give up hope. Down here it's all we've got to hang on to.


Boss: (chewing noisily while watching his men working hard in the scorching sun) I've never seen such lazy scum.


Alfred: This must be the place. Bring us down.
Batwing: Negative.
Alfred: But Master Bruce is down here, we have to land.
Batwing: Impossible, area too confined.
Alfred: Land, you bucket of bolts!
Batwing: Your funeral.


Batwing: Watch your step.


Alfred: I... I... I claim this land for Spain.


Boss: If I get my hands on that scumbag, I'll eat him alive!
Henchman: A bat, a giant bat! Horrible!
Boss: What are you babbling about? What bat?
Batman: (entering with two knocked out henchmen) Right here.
Henchman: There it is!
Boss: Batman!


Boss: Stop! We'll be killed!
Batman: Stop, and we will be.


Boss: Don't let me drown!
Batman: When you taste the prison food, you'll wish I had.


Smith: Hit me, Riley.
Riley: Hit you? Why?
Smith: Maybe I'll lose my memory and wake up a millionaire too.



Previously produced episode:
"P.O.V."
Episodes of
Batman: The Animated Series
Next produced episode:
"Be A Clown"
Previously aired episode:
"Prophecy of Doom"
Next aired episode:
"Mad as a Hatter"

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