I wonder if Batman would ever have become the hugely popular character he is today without
the Adam West series. If he'd just been a character from the comics, a few Saturday morning cartoons, and a couple of 1940s film serials, he probably wouldn't have been that widely known to general audiences or movie executives. After all, Captain Marvel (of Shazam!
) was also a '40s-vintage comics character who was featured in a movie serial and a Saturday morning TV show or two, but he's never had a feature film franchise. A prime-time TV series, especially one that gets rerun in syndication for decades thereafter, can do a lot to increase a character's visibility and name recognition. So I suspect that the whole reason we got a Batman film franchise in the '80s-'90s is because a lot of people, among both Hollywood decision-makers and their target audience, had grown up watching Adam West as Batman, and whether they liked that version or not, they were familiar with the character and his world.