Batman: The Complete Television Series DVD Review
The “Batman” DVD collection is well worth the long, long wait.
For many people, Adam West was their Batman. Granted, his take is the farthest thing from “The Dark Knight” that we are so accustomed to nowadays, but so what? There’s plenty of room for different interpretations of the character and, as we all know, there have been many interpretations of the character for 76 years now with the comics, serials, and movies. However, there’s little doubt that the 60’s “Batman” series is a huge reason why the character has continued to endure as a pop culture legend.
There aren’t a ton of older TV series that have continued to find an audience decades later, but “Batman” has and it’s easy to see why. It’s a colorful, amusing, satirical, and, above all, fun superhero series that appeals to people of all ages. More than that, however, it convincingly plunged viewers into the world of Gotham City. Bruce Wayne, Alfred, Dick Grayson, and Aunt Harriet feel like fully developed good guys and the rogue’s gallery has rarely been better with the likes of The Joker, The Riddler, The Penguin, Mr. Freeze, Catwoman, Mad Hatter, and other kooky villains like Egg Head, Ma Parker, Clock King, and King Tut. Of course, without the talent of the likes of Adam West (Batman), Burt Ward (Robin), Alan Napier (Alfred), Neil Hamilton (Comm. Gordon), Burgess Meredith (Penguin), Cesar Romero (Joker), Catwoman (Julie Newmar and Eartha Kitt), and Riddler (Frank Gorshin), the series would be unwatchable. The cast sells everything about the show and the high production values (for the time) don’t hurt either.
For fans of the character, there’s a lot to geek out about with this series as well. Over 3 seasons and 120 episodes, we see gadgets, vehicles, numerous fights that feel as if they are straight out of the pages of a comic (complete with the Pow! Thwap! and everything), a cool Bat Cave, a run in with Green Hornet and Kato, intense cliffhangers, fiendish criminal schemes by beloved villains, the introduction of Batgirl, and Batman acting as the Great Detective we know he is. Sure, one can argue the robbery and kidnapping plots wear a bit thin (especially in season 3), but the series is pure Batman through and through.
Presentation: Fullscreen. How does it look? The video quality is unbelievably good. The colors are astonishingly crisp and the clarity of the picture has never been better. I imagine the Blu-ray set looks even better.
Audio Track: Dolby Digital Mono. How does it sound? It sounds like a Mono track, but it’s
* A booklet featuring an episode guide, an intro by Adam West,
* “Holy Memorabilia Batman!”- “Batman” superfan, radio personality and “Hollywood Babble-On” podcaster Ralph Garman gives Adam West a tour of his massively cool “Batman” toy/merchandise collection. Other fans (including Kevin Silva and Mark Racop) are also spotlighted as well.
* “Hanging With Batman”- A half-hour in-depth interview with Adam West about his career, life, “Batman,” his struggles, and more.
* “Batmania Born! Building The World of Batman”- A documentary about the popularity of the series and the look of the show (AKA the production design). Interviews with DC Comics talents and cast members are included.
* “Inventing Batman: In The Words Of Adam West”- Adam West essentially provides commentary for the first 2 episodes and talks about script notes.
* “Na Na Na Batman!”- Interviews with random Hollywood actors about their memories of the “Batman” series.
* “Bat Rarities! Straight From The Vault”- Screen tests, a James Blakeley tribute, and a short “Batgirl” pilot.
* “Bats of the Round Table”- A charming roundtable discussion about the show with Kevin Smith, Ralph Garman, Jim Lee, Adam West, and Phil Morris.
Overall Thoughts: You can’t go wrong with “Batman.” It’s clear a lot of love went into this DVD set and I’m certain most fans will be happy with the results.
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