"Heart of Steel" is a two-parter composed by the thirty-ninth and fortieth episodes of Batman: The Animated Series. It originally on November 17, 1992.
Batman struggles against the robot arms but they're much stronger than he is. Fortunately, he manages to wriggle free and cuts the arms' wires. Free of the arms, he goes to the computer and attempts to trace the link but H.A.R.D.A.C. discovers it, and cuts the link off. Meanwhile, the robot Gordon talks with H.A.R.D.A.C. and they make plans to kill Bruce Wayne. Barbara tries to talk to him but, because it's only private business, he only tells her to leave him alone. Barbara leaves and runs into Harvey Bullock who is told to go see Randa in Cybertron.
Out at Cybertron, Rossum realizes that H.A.R.D.A.C. has been doing more than he anticipated and decides that he gave H.A.R.D.A.C. too much free will. H.A.R.D.A.C. refuses to be re-programmed, however, and shoots Rossum with a beam that knocks him out. H.A.R.D.A.C. tells Randa that Rossum needs to be "improved upon" and she carries him off. In City Hall, Mayor Hamilton Hill soon finds himself approaching him and is knocked out.
Knowing that the robot isn't her father, Barbara activates the Bat-Signal and calls in Batman. When Batman arrives she shares her suspicions with him and he tells her he'll look into it. However, Bullock shows up and attacks Batman. Bullock now has superman strength and Batman finds himself outmatched. However, he manages to throw Barbara a grapple and she uses it to catch one of Bullock's legs, just as he's about to finish Batman off, allowing Batman to push him into the Bat-Signal. Barbara is horrified to think she killed Bullock but a robot skeleton crawls out of the cooked skin and attacks her but Batman cuts its head off with a shuriken. Barbara realizes that her father has been replaced with a robot and Batman promises her to look into it. He tells her to stay with a friend but she's got other ideas.
Later, Bruce goes to the Gotham Club to meet up with Mayor Hill who tells him he'll be part of "a very exclusive club." There Bruce finds several elite members of Gotham, all of whom have glowing red eyes. Randa arrives with a taser but Bruce isn't ready to give up and escapes his captors. The robots give chase and he dashes into an elevator where he changes into Batman. Four of the robots, however, manage to break into the elevator, only to find that Batman isn't inside and is cutting the cable. Unable to stop him in time, the robots fall and are destroyed.
Having deduced, where her father should be, Barbara gathers up some equipment and goes to Cybertron where she uses a fingerprint trick to learn the entry code, and sneaks past a security camera. However, she hadn't counted on the wastebaskets being rigged with robot eyes and one follows her. Just before she can reach the Research and Development lab, the wastebasket transforms into a humanoid robot and captures her. Rossum and Randa greet Barbara and assure her that she'll be joining her father.
Outside, Batman arrives and sneaks into the lab. H.A.R.D.A.C. however, is expecting him and sets some security robots on him. Batman easily disables them but finds that H.A.R.D.A.C.'s robots have Barbara. H.A.R.D.A.C. explains that he intends to replace humans, who make errors, with robots who he sees as being perfect. He goes on to say that the idea was really Rossum's, made when his daughter died in a car accident. Rossum wanted to replace people who hurt others but H.A.R.D.A.C. wanted to replace all humans. Barbara questions if her father is dead, but H.A.R.D.A.C. shows her that he's not. At this, Batman and Barbara implement an escape plan and a robot is thrown into the tank holding the humans releasing them. Batman then goes on to destroy the robots. First, the robot version of Rossum jumps at Batman, but he gets caught by that same knockout gun and get blown up. Next, Batman gets caught by the robot version of Gordon and throws a bomb beside H.A.R.D.A.C.. The robotic Gordon jumps at the bomb, but the bomb blows up in his hands, just as he's about to throw it at Batman, and damages H.A.R.D.A.C. with some explosives. Unfortunately, Randa catches him before he can escape.
The prisoners and Barbara attempt to escape but H.A.R.D.A.C. insists he has locked every way out. Fortunately, Rossum has a personal elevator not controlled by H.A.R.D.A.C.. The group escapes and Barbara goes back to help Batman. Meanwhile, Batman fights with Randa and eventually manages to crush her underneath an elevator. Barbara then runs in and helps Batman out. H.A.R.D.A.C., unable to move, is destroyed.
Outside, Rossum sadly says he didn't know of H.A.R.D.A.C.'s actions and Mayor Hill assures him that the investigation will probably show he's telling the truth. Now free of H.A.R.D.A.C., the group heads home. While leaving, Gordon groans that he's getting too old for this sort of thing while Barbara claims she enjoyed herself.
- This episode foreshadows Barbara Gordon's desire to become Batgirl.
- H.A.R.D.A.C. returns in the episode His Silicon Soul.
- Another android duplicate of Commissioner James Gordon would appear in the third season of Gotham Girls, this time made with technology invented by Victor Fries. That duplicate would be destroyed in a similar fashion as the Harvey Bullock duplicate in this episode: by Batgirl throwing it in the Bat signal.
- Kevin Conroy as Batman / Bruce Wayne
- Bob Hastings as Commissioner James Gordon
- Lloyd Bochner as Mayor Hill
- Robert Costanzo as Harvey Bullock
- Efrem Zimbalist Jr. as Alfred
- William Sanderson as Karl Rossum
- Jeff Bennett as H.A.R.D.A.C.
- Leslie Easterbrook as Randa
- Melissa Gilbert-Brinkman as Barbara Gordon
- Written by Brynne Stephens
- Directed by Kevin Altieri
- Supervising Composer Shirley Walker
- Music Composed by Harvey Cohen
- Animation Services by Akom Production Co.
- Layout Services by NOA Animation
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