Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Classics - 3-D Batman

We're all friends here, so I trust you'll forgive me if a confess a secret: I loved the '60s Batman TV show.

Yes, even as a 10-year-old, I knew the series was kinda silly and over the top - but this was at a time when the only place you could find comic book characters was in comic books!

Aside from reruns of the old Superman TV show (which was only slightly more serious), there were few shows on TV for comics fans. We embraced the Batman show fervently, and loved the villains, the gadgets, the earnest heroes, the cliffhangers - it was all great fun!

I was one of a sold-out crowd of kids who went to the movie theater to see the feature film based on the TV show. I clearly remember the cheer from the crowd when Batman first appeared on the screen - the show was a hit!

Even now I enjoying catching the show, even if the campy bits grate a bit more, and every comic fan grinds his or her teeth when a newspaper headline begins with "Zap! Pow!"

But for a year or two, Batman ruled TV and the merchandise flowed like water. Here's one of my favorite example: 3-D Batman!

Printed in 1966, I believe it's the first 3-D comic I ever saw. For those who have never seen such a thing, here's the splash page - who knows, if you have a pair of red and green glasses around, you might even see the 3-D effect.

The effects were pretty impressive, and if you could stand the headache, the stories were fun, too.

There were three in all - one of Batman fighting the Penguin, a Tommy Tomorrow story, and one with Batman fighting robots!

I always struggled with 3-D because of the instant headache that hit right after putting the glasses on. It doesn't seem to be as bad today, though I'm no fan of most 3-D movies (too murky).

Of course, 3-D was a fad that came and went (sort of like it's doing these days at the movies), and the same is true for Batman - soon after its sizzling first season, the show faded and was eventually canceled.

Ah, but it was fun while it lasted!

Grade: B+



Anonymous said...

I was 11 when the Batman show came
on and was kind of aware of the campiness of it, but I loved it too
and forgave it...for awhile. It's formula wore on me, week after week
of the same plot with different villains to liven things up.
When they made up silly villains for tv, to highlight the guest stars who wanted to get in on the latest thing, I sighed. 12 years old and jaded!
Around this time I began to realize
that Marvel was cooler than DC, largely.
But I still bought DC comics, too.

Sam Kujava

Chuck said...

It was the same for me. I think the Batman show was broad but not deep, so the formula got tired after a season or so - but for a while there, I was a Batmaniac!

Kyle said...

Ha ha... when I was back home last summer I got my 6 year old nephew hooked on the show... guess he was asking Grandma about it after I was gone. On a side note I have an autographed "Back to the Batcave" Adam West bio :) Didn't get to meet him myself by my sister got it for me as a gift... Got an actual "To Kyle" non-generic one of course :)

Chuck said...

Kyle, excellent haul! I've never met West, but I admire the attitude he has about being Batman - he seems to have embraced it, which is good, since that's what he'll be remembered for. That and his appearance in the movie "The Three Stooges Meet Hercules."