Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part Two (4K UHD Review)

  • Reviewed by: Stephen Bjork
  • Review Date: Dec 28, 2023
  • Format: 4K Ultra HD
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Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part Two (4K UHD Review)


Dustin Matthews, Yssa Badiola

Release Date(s)

2023 (October 31, 2023)


DC Studios/Warner Bros. Animation (Warner Home Video)
  • Film/Program Grade: B
  • Video Grade: A
  • Audio Grade: B+
  • Extras Grade: B

Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part Two (4K UHD)

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Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen is a two-part animated crossover event between the classic DC characters and those from the web series RWBY that Monty Qum created for Rooster Teeth Productions. It’s loosely inspired by the 2021 crossover comic book RWBY x Justice League that was written by Marguerite Bennett—or at least it’s inspired by the basic concept from those books, anyway, since Super Heroes & Huntsmen generally follows its own storyline instead. While the likes of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Cyborg, Green Lantern, The Flash, and even Vixen should need no introduction, their counterparts Ruby Rose, Weiss Schnee, Blake Belladonna, and Yang Xiao Long (hence the acronym) will probably be completely unfamiliar to anyone who hasn’t watched RWBY. They’re students at the Beacon Academy in the Kingdom of Vale on the world of Remnant, and they end up joining forces together as Team RWBY in order to fight off groups of invading monsters known as the Creatures of Grimm.

In Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen, Team RWBY ends up joining forces with an ever-widening circle. Part One dropped the Justice League onto Remnant with no memories of how or why they got there, and worse, they had all been transformed into a teenage version of themselves with powers that didn’t quite work in the accustomed fashion. With that problem solved, Part Two returns everyone to their normal worlds, only now nothing is quite so normal on either side of the divide. The Grimm have invaded Metropolis, forcing some of the villains from each hero’s rogue’s gallery to reluctantly aid the Justice League in fending them off (except for a certain dysfunctional couple who decide to sit everything out and enjoy the show). The only way for the League to deal with the problem is to transport Team RWBY to Metropolis in order to help solve what’s been happening once and for all—and this time, it’s Team RWBY that will have to deal with altered versions of their normal powers. Sauce for the goose. Original RWBY voice actors Lindsay Jones, Kara Eberle, Arryn Zech, and Barbara Dunkelman return for the crossover, joined by Travis Willingham, Laura Bailey, Troy Baker, David Dastmalchian, Jeannie Tirado, True Valentino, and Ozioma Akagha as their Justice League counterparts. (For Part Two, anyway; the nature of the story means that some of the Justice League characters were voiced by different actors in Part One.)

While Part One had dropped viewers into the world of Remnant with little or no explanation, Part Two at least offers a recap from Ruby Rose to bring everyone up to speed. In a few brief sentences, she manages to successfully describe the events of the first film and the nature of the entire world of RWBY, all at the same time. Something like that might have been appreciated the first time around, especially for anyone who’s never watched RWBY. Writer Meghan Fitzmartin came from the world of DC Animation, but Part One director Kerry Shawcross was a veteran of RWBY, and he assumed a level of familiarity with his show that might not exist for all viewers. For Part Two, Shawcross was joined by fellow RWBY vets Yssa Badiola and Dustin Matthews, but this time they were the fish out of water in the world of Metropolis, and everything has a clearer DC focus. Or as clear as can be, anyway; Fitzmartin still leans into her curveball of using a less familiar villain who had never appeared previously in the DC Animated Universe, and while she still doesn’t offer much clarification about that choice in Part Two, at least it was already established in Part One. (On the other hand, she does take advantage of the opportunity for some DC in-jokes, like the fact that The Flash has a subpar rogue’s gallery compared to the others.)

Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part One arguably had too many repetitive action scenes and too little exposition to explain what was going on, but this time around, the backstory from that installment does help things flow more smoothly. There’s still a ton of fights with the Grimm, but they’re a bit more varied due to the fact that the Grimm keep evolving throughout the story. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that the Justice League members have their normal powers back in this universe, which gave the creative team the opportunity for stage things more inventively. (That’s not a knock against Team RWBY, but there’s no getting around the fact that the Justice League have some far more interesting tools at their disposal.) Ultimately, Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen was created by fans for fans, and where you fall into that spectrum will have a direct bearing on how you react to both installments of the film.

Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen was rendered digitally in full 3D at 1.78:1, and while there’s no information available regarding the resolutions involved, it was likely finished as a 2K Digital Intermediate. For this Ultra HD version, the 2K DI has been upscaled to 4K and graded for High Dynamic Range (only HDR10 is included on the disc). Warner Animation has been playing around with different styles lately, and this time they’ve embraced the look that Rooster Teeth used for their RWBY series. It’s openly mimicking the style of anime, but in full cel shaded 3D. Warner Animation has done something similar before in titles like Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons, but there’s a key difference this time: everything has been rendered as full 24 frame animation, rather than in twos (repeating every frame twice). It also looks like some of the movements were mo-capped. That means that all of the motion is smoother than normal, almost too smooth. The characters may be cel shaded in order to give them a traditional look, but the smoothness of the animation means that they still have a very 3D digital appearance. Regardless, the line work is crisp and clear, with just a trace of aliasing from the upscale visible along some of the diagonal or curved edges (although to be fair, it will be barely noticeable on an average-sized screen). The HDR grade adds a nice amount of depth to the colors, right down to the subtly different shades of the blushes on each character’s cheeks. There’s a lot of subtle variations like that in all of the digital inking, including the different shades on the costuming—the red on Superman’s cape, the reds and golds for The Flash, and Wonder Woman’s own reds and golds are all distinctive from each other. The skin tones are never monochromatic, nor are the eye colors, either. It’s a bold color scheme, but a diverse one. The urban environments in Part Two also allow for a more dynamic contrast range than in Part One, with brighter highlights and deeper blacks. This may not be a dramatic improvement over the Blu-ray version, but the differences are still clear.

Audio is offered in English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, with optional English SDH, French, and Spanish subtitles. Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part One was a return to the standard house style for the DCAU, with everything tending to be focused on the front channels, and the surrounds used primarily for ambient reverberations and the occasional directionalized effect. It wasn’t a very balanced mix, either, with the music threatening to overwhelm the dialogue at times. Fortunately, Part Two solves most of those issues. It’s better balanced overall, with improved directionality for the sound effects. This time, objects move all throughout the soundstage. The only caveat is that the new track is mastered at a lower level than the previous one, which requires notching up the volume a bit in order to match.

Bafflingly, the Warner Bros. 4K Ultra HD release of Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part Two includes a slipcover and a Digital Code on a paper insert, but no Blu-ray. That may be par for the course with Warner Bros these days, but in this case their previous release of Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen – Part One was a combo pack that included a Blu-ray, so it’s frustrating that they switched streams between the two halves of the same film. Only two extras have been included this time around:

  • I Got Your Back: The Bond Between Justice League x RWBY (HD – 6:45)
  • You Look... Different: RWBY on Earth (HD – 7:12)

These two featurettes use the same irritatingly hyperkinetic ADHD style as the ones that were included with Part One, cutting from interview to interview and clip to clip at such a lightning pace that there isn’t even enough time to read the names of the participants. Those include Kerry Shawcross, Yssa Badiola, Dustin Matthews, and creative director Mike Pallotta, as well as RWBY voice actors Kara Eberle, Barbara Dunkelman, Arryn Zech, and Lindsay Jones (joined this time by Justice League voice actors David Dastmalchian and Jamie Chung). If you don’t recognize most of them—and you probably won’t—it may be necessary to rewind and freeze-frame just to be able to decipher who is who. I Got Your Back covers the shifting nature of the relationships between the Justice League and Team RWBY in Part Two, while You Look... Different is the flip side of the similar featurette on Part One, this time exploring how Team RWBY changed powers and appearances in the journey to Metropolis.

On the whole, this is pretty much the textbook definition of a mixed bag: Part Two of Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen is stronger than Part One, offering similarly high-quality video but noticeably improved audio. On the other hand, the extras are weaker, and it’s no longer a combo pack. That pretty much sums up the state of physical media these days: an almost overwhelming abundance of available titles, but you can’t necessarily get everything that you want with any of them. Such is our lot. Still, that doesn’t change the fact that these 4K Ultra HD releases are clearly the best way to watch Justice League x RWBY: Super Heroes & Huntsmen.

- Stephen Bjork

(You can follow Stephen on social media at these links: Twitter and Facebook.)



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