Forgotten DC Television Series Now Streaming For Free

By Jessica Goudreault | Published

Birds of Prey

With so many DC movies and TV shows out now, it’s easy to forget that there was once a TV series called Birds of Prey that aired on the WB. The short-lived TV series only released one season back in 2002 before it was canceled and removed from the air. Now, all 13 episodes are available to watch for free on Tubi.

18 years before the Birds of Prey movie, it was a television series broadcast on the WB (which became The CW), and it’s now streaming free on Tubi.

The concept of Birds of Prey was quite simple and entertaining—it brought together three badass women to fight crime in Gotham City after Batman had abandoned it. The DC heroes included Helena Kyle AKA the Huntress, Barbara Gorden AKA Oracle, and Dinah Redmond, not quite Black Canary.

Ashley Scott (Into the Blue) plays Helena Kyle the Huntress, a half-metahuman who is the daughter of Batman and Catwoman, so she is naturally great at fighting crime with her cat-like reflexes. Dina Meyer (Starship Troopers) plays Barbara Gordon, Oracle, a woman who once fought crime as Batgirl, but after being shot by the Joker she becomes paraplegic and starts computer hacking to help fight vigilantes. Rachel Skarsten (Fifty Shades of Grey) plays Dinah Redmond, a metahuman with telekinetic powers that gets taken in by the other two women to join their team.

Later in Birds of Prey, Dr. Harleen Quinzel/Harley Quinn was introduced, marking the first live-action appearance of the DC character. The role was played by Mia Sara (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off), and looks much different than the sexy, psychotic version portrayed by Margot Robbie in Suicide Squad.

Surprisingly, Mark Hamill (Star Wars) was cast as the Joker, portraying the villain in just two episodes. The casting was inspired by Hamill’s voiceover work for the Joker in the 1993 TV series Batman: The Animated Series.

Batgirl (Dina Meyer) in Birds of Prey

When the trailer for Birds of Prey first aired, it looked like it would be a continuation of the Tim Burton Batman films from 1989 and 1992. This is because the trailer used footage from Batman Returns, showing Michael Keaton as Batman, and Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman. Unfortunately, neither of the two stars reprised their roles in the TV series.

Birds of Prey was originally marketed as a sequel series to Batman Returns, but none of the movie’s stars appeared in the show.

If some of the costumes in Birds of Prey look familiar, it’s because some of them were reused from Batman & Robin (1997) and Batman Forever (1995). The Batgirl suit that Dina Meyer wears is actually the same suit that Alicia Silverstone wore when she played Batgirl in Batman & Robin, though it got a new paint job. The Batman suit was the same one that George Clooney wore in Batman & Robin, and the cowl was the same one worn by Val Kilmer in Batman Forever.

When Birds of Prey first aired on TV, over 7 million viewers tuned in for the first episode, one of the largest premieres at the time for the network. Unfortunately, fans stopped tuning in to watch, so the TV series was never renewed for a second season.

Even though Birds of Prey only lived to see one season, some of its characters have made appearances in the DC Universe.

When Birds of Prey first aired on TV, over 7 million viewers tuned in for the first episode, one of the largest premieres at the time for the network.

In 2019, Ashley Scott very briefly reprised her role as Helena Kyle in the Arrowverse crossover event Crisis on Infinite Earths, where multiple heroes from different Earths must work together to fight the villain Anti-Monitor. In the show, Helena Kyle is seen on Earth-203 speaking to Oracle/Barbara through an earpiece, begging her for help as the planet slowly gets destroyed. They aren’t able to stop the wreckage, and Helena Kyle gets sucked into the destruction face first.

Ashley Scott in Birds of Prey

Birds of Prey is getting revived once again, but this time it’s in the form of a DC comic book. Kelly Thompson, the writer behind Marvel’s Black Widow and Captain Marvel, is making her DC comic book debut with the revival of Birds of Prey. She is working with artist Leonardo Romero and colorist Jordie Bellaire (who she previously worked with on Hawkeye) to bring the team of superheroes and metahumans to life.

The new comic book series will include the characters Black Canary, Cassandra Cain, Big Barda, Zealot, and Harley Quinn as they take on a new mission. Birds of Prey #1 will be available in comic shops on September 5, 2023. Before then, check out the one and only season of the 2002 TV series for free on Tubi.