Tuesday TV Testimonials #4…

Batman (1966 – 1968)


The classic crimefighting duo.

Adam West who played the titular character in this self-referential and campy sixties show, died a few days ago at the age of 88, so what better way to honour him than with a brief write-up on a blog nobody reads?

Batman was repeated throughout my teenage years, and I used to watch it in the mornings over breakfast before going to school. Forget Michael Keaton and Christian Bale (and absolutely forget Val and George) – those guys were just pretending to be the caped crusader. To me, growing up, Adam West, in his brightly coloured, sexually-repressed world, was Batman. And Burt Ward as Robin was the nerdy sidekick we all secretly wanted to be captured every episode.

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I promise you, it wasn’t the outfit I liked.

It was a show that knew it was silly and enjoyed poking fun at itself. It never took itself seriously. From the fight scene overlays of ZAP and KAPOW, to the measured walks Batman and Robin took up the sides of buildings, where celebrities of the day would often greet them from their windows for no reason – the show was always laughing right along with the viewer at its own absurdity.

Who was the greatest Batman villain? Well, Joker had his crazy moments and The Riddler was always fun to watch, but it’s hard to overlook Julie Newmar as Catwoman. She was… well, she had the best criminal mind of the whole lot of them, didn’t she?

And over fifty years on from when Batman debuted, there are very few theme tunes that are more widely known than this one.

I hope Adam West is doing the Batusi in the afterlife.

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