Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by jefferiestubes8, Jul 7, 2014.
Interesting. Is this a DC production or fanfic? Do you have a link to it?
^It's an official DC comic produced by their digital-first division, although there is a trade paperback collection coming soon. The Green Hornet crossover is written by Kevin Smith (the director), who's written a number of GH comics before.
I can see some ways of making Jean-Paul Valley work in a Batman '66 context. I'm thinking The Phantom crossed with Dick Lester's The Three Musketeers. But that would be purely in his Azrael guise. A quippy, lighthearted, sword-wielding French hero.
The whole Az-Bats thing, though, I don't see how it would work, unless you went an Alan Moore route and the point of the story was to show that the campiness was a narrative dead end and to be viable and relevant the series needed to grow up. Which is not what Batman '66 is about.
If I have a dream Batman '66 story, it would be to show Batman/Planetary: Night on Earth from the Adam West Batman's point of view and give his scene some context. I'm curious how West's Batman viewed Jakita Wagner. Maybe Warren Ellis would have run writing something like that.
I'd just like to see a '66 take on Two-Face. He's the biggest (pre-existing) rogue who never showed up on the series, which is probably largely because he hadn't been seen in the comics since 1952 (not being one of the classic villains that Julius Schwartz had reintroduced to the comic to provide material for the show), but also perhaps because the makeup would've been too expensive or too shocking for the era. But the comic wouldn't have those restrictions. And Two-Face's duality obsession would've been a perfect fit for the '66 series with its themed villains constantly dropping clues that fit their obsessions. ("That's it, Robin! 22 Janus Street -- Janus, the two-faced Roman god! That must be Two-Face's hideout!" "Holy reflections, Batman!") Although I've had the idea that the show could've done Two-Face if they'd gone the Phantom of the Opera route and put him in a half-mask with his scarred side never shown.
By the way, I recently heard a 1947 Superman radio episode in which Robin (a frequent guest, along with a really inept version of Batman) said "Holy smokes, Batman!" at one point. So Burt Ward wasn't the first to holy-ate. Although radio Robin's preferred oath, bizarrely, was "Christopher Columbus!"
The tone of the show was not entirely campy. It seemed to get increasingly campy as time went on (like having the running gag of the celebrities popping their heads out of windows when they were climbing buildings). At times the show was more of a traditional comic book grade good vs. evil show. Most of the scenes that take place in Wayne Manor or the batcave, like where they are decoding riddles or predicting the next move of the villain, are played 100% straight. If you just saw those scenes and nothing else, Batman would seem to be at least as serious as, let's say, the Superfriends type of kiddie storytelling.
The '66 show was a remarkably faithful adaptation of the way the comics were actually done in the 1950s-60s. In fact, the show was a lot less ridiculous than the comics, because you didn't have Bat-Mite or alien invaders showing up, Batman wasn't constantly putting on strange costumes or mummy bandages or whatever, he and Robin didn't periodically go on time-travel adventures, and he and Superman weren't engaged in an ongoing prank war with each other or a romantic rivalry over Lois Lane.
But of course I'm not proposing a story that shows that night in Crime Alley. It can be referenced briefly in dialogue the way it was in the series premiere. I'm more interested in how the West version of Batman chose to adopt the cape and cowl, how Dick Grayson got involved (which might be a very different origin from the comics' version, since I imagine Bruce and Dick already being a team from the start, since they were always such an inseparable duo on the show), how Batman began his association with the police, and so on. I'm not talking about the kind of origin stories we're used to in comics today -- more the sort of thing you might've seen in the '60s if the show had bothered to do an origin episode rather than just starting with the status quo already established.
I'd like to have seen Adam West bring a little drama in a scene like this:
I remember that one but I haven't seen it in a long time. Which issue was it?
^That was "The Origin of Batman" from Batman #47, June 1948. Written by Bill Finger with art by Bob Kane and Charles Paris.
It was also the basis for the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Chill of the Night!" by Paul Dini, which adapted it (and its sequel revealing the gangster behind Joe Chill) extremely faithfully. It was Diedrich Bader playing Batman rather than Adam West, but West did play Thomas Wayne (along with Julie Newmar as Martha Wayne). It's by far the most intense and dramatic episode of the usually comedic show, and it did a gret job bringing the story to life. (The interesting thing about TB&TB is that it had gone a season and a half without ever showing Batman's face out of costume or clearly identifying him as anything but "Bruce," so when he unmasked and named himself as in the scene above, it was a really powerful, game-changing moment in the context of the series. I wonder if they planned it that way all along.)
Which is kind of odd since Dozier admits to not reading the Batman comics until after reading some of them for reseasch purposes. This is from the Wiki article forteh TV series.
And it worked.
I remember seeing the first promos for the show when I was a kid. I had no idea who Batman was, but I was excited about it. All it took was one episode and I was hooked. Batman was my new hero, and George Reeves' Superman took a bat--er, back seat.
I loved watching both shows too, Adventures Of Superman was a bit more serious, but I loved the style and humor of Batman. And personally I just can't see them doing them anything as serious and tragic as Batman or Robin's origins.
Like I just said in another thread, it's not odd at all that a producer with no prior familiarity with a subject could handle it well after researching it, because that's what research is for. It doesn't matter if you weren't familiar with something before, because people are able to learn new things. (Heck, when I was hired to do a Spider-Man novel, I had little familiarity with anything beyond the TV versions, but I read every Spidey comic I could get my hands on in preparation for the novel, and some reviewers called it one of the most faithful and continuity-savvy Spider-Man novels they'd ever read. Research works.)
And of course, Dozier was not the only person working on the show. He had a whole staff that was probably combing the comics for source material (several episodes of the show were direct and fairly faithful adaptations of comic stories), and he was in regular communication with Julie Schwartz at DC, coordinating ideas between the comics and the show. That's how Barbara Gordon came into existence -- the show's producers asked DC to create a Batgirl character in the comics so they could add one to the show.
Thanks. I'll watch for the TPB. I don't think I want to subscribe to their digital service.
Will this new set include the movie?
An interesting contrast to Nolan's films where the idea is "Batman can be anyone." Different takes with their own arguments I suppose.
I'm sure he can have some menace to him, just not too much.
Another person could fill in as Batman easily enough but what do you do with Bruce? He could be laid up with an unspecified back injury that he takes in stride while this new flamboyant Batman runs amok. Then the story could end with a return to the status quo and an understanding that our well-meaning friend just wasn't right for the cowl.
There's also a monthy print edition. Issue #13 comes out tomorrow. You might be able to find the back issues in the long box at your local comic shop.
I haven't read #4 yet, but I was flipping though it yesterday and they had a British Batmobile waiting for them when they arrived in London by commercial jet.
Well, the middle ground is that someone like Bruce Wayne, someone with a basic decency and intelligence and good judgment -- like maybe Dick Grayson -- could take over as Batman one day, but someone like Jean-Paul Valley, a ruthless '90s-style lethal vigilante, could not.
I'll probably get the BDs.
After seeing the show in re-runs as a child I was somewhat surprised to see what must have been an early episode where Bruce mentions his parents being murdered - I'd never heard that mentioned on the show before.
It was mentioned in the first episode. I have the vague impression there may have been a second reference sometime in the early first season, but I'm not sure. But that was it.
Did ABC broadcast the movie in the 66-67 season? I have a vivid memory of the opening credits on a 19" B&W TV in the house we lived in back then.
Side note: After the show premiered, I was completely obsessed with Batman. I remember riding in the car with my grandfather and passing a gas station with a sign out front advertising a "Batman Kit! 99 cents w/fill up!" I was convinced that this was a full Batman costume and I had to have it. Imagine my disappointment when it was this.
Separate names with a comma.