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11 August 2014 @ 11:34 am
I love Batman.  
I love the campy, silly, ridiculous 1960s Batman TV show.  When I was a kid, watching reruns of the show that my Mom taped for my brother and me, I thought it was the greatest show.  It was my first exposure to Batman - this was before Tim Burton got his hands on Batman and made him so dark and broody, kids - and I adored his endless bat gadgets, his awesome Batmobile, and those perfectly penciled Bat eyebrows on the outside of his cowl.


adam-west-batman-costume
Oh yeah, you know Batman chose satin for his gloves and cape because he is smooooooth.

In fact, I'm pretty sure that Batman was my first exposure to superheroes.  With the possible exception of She-Ra, I can't think of any others that I was watching when I was five or six.  No wonder he's still my favorite superhero today; it was imprinted early on.

Anyway, my point is that I adore Adam West and Burt Ward as the Dynamic Duo. I can't wait for the show to be released on Blu-Ray later this year -I believe it's the first time the entire series has been available for home viewing?  Certainly, it's the first time the series has been available since the DVD came to prominence - and I'm certain that I'll be shocked by how corny it is when I see it for the first time in twenty years, but no matter.  Adam West Batman is the best.

I'm certain of this because Seanie recently bought the 1966 Batman movie as a present for me, and we watched it last night.  It was so bad and so awesome.

So the plot of the movie is something like this: The Riddler, Catwoman, Joker and Penguin team up, certain that together they'll be able to defy Batman and take over Gotham City.  They do this by kidnapping the United World Organization's representatives by dehydrating them - that is, they reduce the various politicians to a small vial of powder by removing all of the water from their bodies.  (Don't think about it too much, science people.)  Batman and Robin must rescue the council members, overcoming sharks,  bombs, romantic entanglements, and the kidnapping of Bruce Wayne.

Sound like a mess?  It totally is.  But somehow this movie works.  I really can't explain why.  Maybe it's because the two superheroes take everything so seriously - Batman is the straight man, a bizarre sort of Boy Scout upholding law and order while his insane villains constantly try to outwit him.  Adam West really throws himself into the role, and no matter how ridiculous the scenario is he does his best to make it convincing, even when he's fighting off an obviously fake rubber shark or running around a pier trying to dispose of a lit bomb.


batshark


One of the tragedies of watching the show in high definition is you can see just how fake some of the sets are.  There's a scene where Batman and Robin are out on the water in their Batboat, and you think "What a lovely day on the ocean - hey, what's that movement in the background?" and you realize that the fabric backdrop of the soundstage is rippling as a draft hits it.  It's also hard to ignore the fact that Batman's cowl and his cape are two different colors, or that neither Batman nor Robin's eyes line up very well with their masks, so I question their ability to fight crime when they can't even see!

But no matter.

I love every crazy nonsensical moment of it.

(Incidentally, Seanie does not feel the same way.  He fell asleep before the movie was even half done.)