Batman, the original series

The other, while at Best buy to buy a new mouse for my mac, I found the Bluray set of the original Batman TV show from the sixties. Having always heard about how funny and over the top it was, I decided to buy it. I just finished watching the first six episodes and I have to say I am quite impressed!

The restoration of the footage is incredibly well done and the image is very sharp, though there are occasional shots that still blurry. The sound mixing is not so great. Some scene are quieter than others, and the music and sound effects can drown out the voices on occasion. The main menu on the Bluray disks are quite lazy however. Also, most of the time episodes will play one after another but sometimes they don’t and the thing crashes. Maybe it’s my computer, but I am not sure.

The storylines are very procedural. Every  story is played out on the two episode, with the first one ending on a cliffhanger and finished in the second one. Each storyline pretty much start the same way: the villain is introduced/leaves a clue for their next crime, commissioner Gordon decide there is only one person who can help them and Batman is called. They always seem relunctant to call him. Robin complains about something, and Bruce/Batman explains how that something could be the key to world peace and Robin goes “Gee Bruce, you are right…”. Batman and Robin answer the Batphone and go to the Batcave via the Batpoles, take the Batmobile to the police headquaters and them the episode really starts. The stories are actually quite well written, and full of puns. One of the plots involved the Penguin committing senseless crimes and giving Batmen a bugged umbrella so that Batman actually decide what the Penguin next big crime would be and how to do it.

Everything in the Batcave is called “Bat-“something. They have the Bat-computer, the Bat-hidden writting detector, the Bat Nuclear Reactor (which also fuels the the Nuclear powered Batmobile), the Bat-spectographic analyzer, and so on. Even most thing inside the Batmobile is labeled and given Bat-names. There’s this red lever labeled “Emergency bat-turn” which allows the Batmobile to deploy drag-chute and turn the Batmobile 180 degrees. The anti theft system is actually labeled “anti theft system” but has a secondary label that can be place on top of the first that reads “start button” instead. Clever.

Unlike most Batman, he is a deputized law enforcer, instead of a vigilante. He also has siren lights on his Batmobile, like a police car. And he carries Bat-handcuffs. And he always says “In the name of the law, You are under arrest”… And they always run in and out of rooms. They reuse the same footage of the Batmobile turning on driving in and out of the Batcave, and of Batman and Robin arriving at the police station.

It is a great show and if You get the chance, I would recommended buying the series. The production value is very high and definitely aged very well.


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