Production: USA, 1966-68
 Cast: Adam West, Burt Ward, Alan Napier, Neil Hamilton,   
 Stafford Repp, Madge Blake, Yvonne Craig, William Dozier, 
 David Lewis, Byron Keith.

There are series which possess some records; Batman is surely the most “camp” of ever.
This serie about the caped crusader was full of excesses: improbable recitation, clownesque villains, dialogues which could have been rediculous also in a comic strip, and an absolutely original idea: the onomatopoeic words (“Smash!” “Pow!” “Bang!”) which appeared on the screen during the fight scenes

between Batman, Robin and the villains.
We have to point that it was a very different Batman compared to Tim Burton’s of 1989, and also to Cristopher Nolan’s of 2005.
Although everybody knows it, Batman’s story needs to be recalled.
Bruce Wayne has had a trauma during his childhood: he saw his parents being killed in a robbery. So he has grown up with an irresistible desire for fighting crime. Being heir of an immense wealth, Bruce can attend to deep scientific studies and physic training to prepare for his mission. And in order to terrify criminals, he chooses a night scary animal, the bat.
This story was created by Bob Kane in 1939 for Detective Comics.
In a short time, Batman finds two reliable assistants: by first young Dick Grayson,

who was working in slavery as a circus acrobat, so becomes Batman’s ideal partner wearing the clothes of Robin, the wonder boy; then Alfred, the butler who is engaged a short time later (he was the son of Wayne family’s old butler, and only in a second time was described as Bruce’s tutor after his paerent’s death). At first he was over-weighted, then become the slim moustached figure we all know.
First Batman stories were very noir, the police chased him for his non legal methods, and villains were darker too: the Joker was a sort of serial killer, although he already had his typical look.
But some years after censors wanted more “politically correct” stories, with less violence and less evil villains, so Batman begun his cooperation with police and

the villains become ludicrous, megalomaniac buffoons.
This television Batman exactly comes from this version of the comic: his origins are not mentioned, we assume he’s there and is fighting criminals...
Performing Bruce Wayne/Batman actor Adam West in his life’s role (he never did anything so memorable), and who seemed a little over-weighted too in Batman’s clothing (totally different from the recent hypertrofic armours). Burt Ward was Robin, while the butler Alfred was the late Alan Napier. Other supporting characters were commissioner Gordon (Neil Hamilton), always ready to call in the bat-phone, and his assistant sergeant O’Hara (Stafford Repp).
In the Wayne mansion a regular presence was aunt Harriet (Madge Blake), who absolutely did not know about Bruce and Dick’s secret.

In the third season also Batgirl (Yvonne Craig) appeared. Athletic and, wearing the costume, quite sexy, Batgirl was Barbara, commissioner Gordon’s daughter, who had decided to fight against crime together with Batman and Robin. The dynamic duo was unaware of her real identity, as she was unaware of theirs, and her father was unaware of everybody’s...
Producer William Dozier had his role too: his was the voice which commented the final cliffhanger saying “same bat-hour, same bat-channel!”.
But the most intriguing characters were the “guest-villains” who appeared in the episodes.
The Joker was Cesar Romero, famous character actor of the sixties, who often portrayed various villains (we can see him in many Disney films and in the japanese
movie “Latitude zero”).
The Penguin was Burgess Meredith, who appeared in “The twilight zone” and was in the regular cast of the TV serie “Search”).
The Riddler was Frank Gorshin, while Catwoman was portrayed by three different actresses: Julie Newmar, Lee Meriweather (who was also in the regular cast of “The Time Tunnel”) and Eartha Kitt. Three actors too were used for Mr. Freeze, all famous: George Sanders, Otto Preminger and Eli Wallach. Egghead too was a famous actor, Vincent Price.
In fact they said that many famous Hollywood actors contacted Dozier to be a Batman villain...
As they did in the comics, Batman and Robin had a large number of bat-gadgets,

first of all the bat-mobile. In the years Batman owned a lot of different ones, starting from the chunky ones of the thirties and forties, to the futuristic and baroquesque of the nineties. But this one is surely the most elegant and luxurious: this one became a big businness for Corgi Toys (together with many others TV and cinema cars), which produced it also in a version with tow and bat-boat.
As said above, the episodes were made in two parts, and the first part ended with a very stereotyped cliffhanger: Batman and Robin could have been sitting on a bomb, or tied in a room which was fileld with water or some gas, or (the very classic) tied to a rail road while the train was coming, while Dozier’s voice reminded to the audience to watch the show the following week.
The first episode was broadcast by ABC in January ’66, and immediately was a
huge success despite “Lost in Space” was on CBS.
Not only it fancied viewers of any age, but the television Batman also saved the comics one. In fact just two years before DC comics had considered the idea of closing Batman stories, and the TV show raised the sellings at an incredible rate.
No need to mention the merchandising and the sellings of all the possible bat-gadgets...
After the end of first season, a cinema movie was made, where the dynamic duo had to face the four main villains (Joker, Penguin, Riddler and Catwoman).
In the third season Batgirl made her debut, but all was becoming too repetitive, and only children were left to watch it. Considering the high budget, it took very little effort for ABC to decide the show cancellation.

NBC thought about producing a fourth season, but it wasn’t done. The show went on, if we can say this, as animated serie, and to see again a live-action Batman it was necessary to wait for the Tim Burton movie, which was absolutely more psychological and dark (like Frank Miller’s comic), in the style of its director. They said Adam West was quite upset because nobody contacted him, and let’s hope he wanted to do a cameo...

120 episodes, color, 30’

First season

1) Hi Diddle Riddle
2) Smack in the Middle
3) Fine Feathered Finks
4) The Penguin's a Jinx
5) The Joker is Wild
6) Batman is Riled
7) Instant Freeze
8) Rats Like Cheese
9) Zelda the Great
10) A Death Worse Than Fate
11) A Riddle a Day Keeps the Riddler Away

12) When the Rat's Away the Mice Will Play
13) The Thirteenth Hat
14) Batman Stands Pat
15) The Joker Goes to School
16) He Meets His Match,
17) True or False-Face
18) Holy Rat Race
19) The Purr-fect Crime
20) Better Luck Next Time
21) The Penguin Goes Straight
22) Not Yet, He Ain't

23) The Ring of Wax
24) Give 'em the Axe
25) The Joker Trumps an Ace
26) Batman Sets the Pace
27) The Curse of Tut
28) The Pharaoh's in a Rut
29) The Bookworm Turns
30) While Gotham City Burns
31) Death in Slow Motion
32) The Riddler's False Notion
33) Fine Finny Fiends

34) Batman Makes the Scenes

Batman - The Movie (Cinema feature film)

Second season

35) Shoot a Crooked Arrow
36) Walk the Straight and Narrow
37) Hot Off the Griddle
38) The Cat and the Fiddle
39) The Minstrel's Shakedown

40) Barbecued Batman?
41) The Spell of Tut
42) Tut's Case is Shut
43) The Greatest Mother 
44) Ma Parker
45) The Clock King's Crazy Crimes
46) The Clock King Gets Crowned
47) An Egg Grows in Gotham
48) The Yegg Foes in Gotham
49) The Devil's Fingers
50) The Dead Ringers

51) Hizzonner the Penguin
52) Dizzonner the Penguin
53) Green Ice
54) Deep Freeze
55) The Impractical Joker
56) The Joker's Provokers
57) Marsha, Queen of Diamonds
58) Marsha's Scheme of Diamonds
59) Come Back, Shame
60) It's the Way You Play the Game
61) The Penguin's Nest

62) The Bird's Last Jest
63) The Cat's Meow
64) The Bat's Kow Tow
65) The Puzzles are Coming
66) The Duo is Slumming
67) The Sandman Cometh
68) The Catwoman Goeth
69) The Contaminated Cowl
70) The Mad Hatter Runs Afoul
71) The Zodiac Crimes
72) The Joker's Hard Times

73) The Penguin Declines
74) That Darn Catwoman
75) Scat, Darn Catwoman
76) Penguin is a Girl's Best Friend
77) Penguin Sets a Trend
78) Penguin's Disastrous End
79) Batman's Anniversary
80) A Riddling Controversy
81) The Joker's Last Laugh
82) The Joker's Epitaph
83) Catwoman Goes to College

84) Batman Displays His Knowledge
85) A Piece of the Action
86) Batman's Satisfaction
87) King Tut's Coup
88) Batman's Waterloo
89) Black Widow Strikes Again
90) Caught in the Spider's Den
91) Pop Goes the Joker
92) Flop Goes the Joker
93) Ice Spy
94) The Duo Defy

Third season

95) Enter Batgirl, Exit Penguin
96) Ring Around the Riddler
97) The Wail of the Siren
98) The Sport of Penguins
99) A Horse of Another Color
100) The Unkindest Tut of All
101) Louie the Lilac
102) The Ogg and I

103) How to Hatch a Dinosaur
104) Surf's Up! Joker's Under!
105) The Londinium Larcenies
106) The Foggiest Notion
107) The Bloody Tower
108) Catwoman's Dressed to Kill
109) The Ogg Couple
110) The Funny Feline Felonies
111) The Joke's on Catwoman
112) Louie's Lethal Lilac Time
113) Nora Clavicle and the Ladies'

114) The Penguin's Clean Sweep (Pinguin e il grande sonno)
115) The Great Escape (La grande fuga)
116) The Great Train Robbery (La grande rapina del treno)
117) I'll Be a Mummy's Uncle (L’alter ego di re Tut)
118) The Joker's Flying Saucer (L’astronave fasulla)
119) The Entrancing Dr. Cassandra (Il nemico invisibile)
120) Minerva, Mayhem, & Millionares (Il lavaggio del cervello)


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