The Dynamic Duo!
|Batman! (all photos courtesy Batman/ABC/20th Century Fox/DC Comics).|
Batman, also known as the Caped Crusader, fights crime while posing as a rich playboy.
Batman was created by DC Comics and has been a fixture in the comic book universe for many decades.
Unlike recent representations, Batman often has been portrayed in a lighthearted fashion which is perfectly in keeping with the holiday season.
While the story of Batman has become a series of blockbuster films, many fans still remember it best as the 1966-1968 television series that aired on ABC-TV. This page has some Batman TV series coloring pages free and downloadable.
Batman is a fictional character who was created by Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger. The Batman character first appeared in Detective Comics #27 in 1939.
The 1960s television series was not the first time that Batman appeared on film. In fact, the character (first called "the Bat-Man") was featured in a 1943 black-and-white serial series that spanned 15 chapters and was shown in theaters.
In fact, the theatrical re-release of the 1943 serial in 1965 is what gave producers the inspiration to bring the character back in a television series.
The star of the television series was Adam West. As Batman and his alter ego Bruce Wayne, he engaged in adventures with his partner, Robin/Dick Grayson, played by Burt Ward.
The distinguishing feature of the television series was a humorous and lighthearted attitude that many viewed as camp. It also was very colorful, as color televisions were just becoming popular and producers wanted to take full advantage of it.
Batman and Robin live in Gotham City. They fight a variety of colorful villains who have descriptive nicknames that reveal their primary criminal traits.
Batman and Robin work closely with the Gotham City police. When they need Batman's help, the police send a Bat-signal that reflects off of clouds.
Even though the television series aired for only parts of three seasons, it often aired more than once a week. This led to the creation of 120 episodes, which now would be enough for four or five weekly seasons.
Batman and Robin rode in their distinctive Batmobile, which was a modified 1950s concept car that never entered production.
The Batman television series used a lot of gimmicks that created a distinctive look that has never been equaled.
These gimmicks included tilting the camera to make certain scenes appear off-kilter and written descriptive words such as "Wham!" and "Pow!" shown in comic book style.
The Batmobile was parked in the Bat Cave underneath Wayne Manor on the outskirts of Gotham City.
The Batmobile would leave the Bat Cave via a hidden tunnel that led out to a road.
The villains in the Batman television series were colorful and hammy.
These villains were led by the Joker, played by Cesar Romero. Many of these villains appeared several times on the series.
Frank Gorshin played the Riddler.
John Astin also played the Riddler in a few episodes.
Batman and Robin were helped by Batgirl, played by Yvonne Craig. She was the daughter of Commissioner Gordon and was an inexperienced but enthusiastic crimefighter.
Batgirl often wound up needing to be saved herself.
Julie Newmar played Catwoman for most of the series. She wore a black skintight catsuit.
Some people forget that two other women also played Catwoman.
One of the other women who played Catwomen was singer Eartha Kitt.
Lee Meriwether played Catwoman in the related Batman film that otherwise featured the same actors and characters as the television series.
Burgess Meredith played the Penguin. He liked to smoke using a long cigaret holder.
Meredith later appeared in the "Rocky" films.
When Adam West passed away in 2017, the Los Angeles police sent a Bat-Signal into the night sky as a tribute.
The only surviving main cast member as of this writing is Burt Ward.
There were many other memorable villains aside from the main ones.
These villains include, among others, Mr. Freeze, Mad Hatter, King Tut, Egghead, Marsha Queen of Diamonds, Shame, Louie the Lilac, and Lord Marmaduke Ffogg.
One of the enduring images of the television series was when Batman and Robin climbed the sides of buildings.
Top stars of the day such as Jerry Lewis and Sammie Davis Jr. would pop out of windows and greet the Dynamic Duo.
The producer was William Dozier. He also narrated the series.
Dozier told viewers at the end of episodes that they should return for future episodes at the "Same bat time, same bat channel."
Batman and Robin were aided in their adventures by their faithful butler, Alfred, played by Alan Napier.
Commissioner James Gordon of the Gotham City Police Department was played by Neil Hamilton. He would summon the Dynamic Duo either using the Bat-Signal or the Batphone.
Many of the characters and plots in the episodes were drawn from the comic book adventures of Batman and Robin.
Because "Batman" was aimed at children, the characters were scrupulously careful to follow safe practices such as fastening seat belts in the Batmobile.
When in real trouble, Batman would use special items in his utility belt to get out of trouble. Sometimes these items were quite large.