Batman "The Worst Is Yet To Come": Rewatching Batman '66

Willie Oleson

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All opinions can expand our understanding of these shows and characters
Well said. I've had a false start with this show, but also with Twin Peaks and Mad Men. Simply because it didn't compute with anything in my mental "library" of things that I already knew and liked or disliked.
It isn't so much about changing one's opinion but about expanding one's mental library, to find a place in it for an additional "standard", so to speak.
Sometimes it's a natural process, like putting your thoughts into words (e.g. episode reviews like these) which is basically having a conversation with yourself, and sometimes it's the insight of other forum members that helps speeding up that process.

And sometimes you just have to accept that it's not going to work. I've lost count of how many times I've given CWDynasty the benefit of the doubt, desperately exploring different angles that would make it enjoyable to watch. The only thing I've learned from that show is that even my mental library has its limits.
 

Willie Oleson

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The next episode is another Joker story with some interesting optical illusion tricks. I figured that the Maharaja was in cahoots with "bandit Joker" but at the end of the story Batman explains that the Maharaja had never been in Gotham City at all. A most surprising reveal! Aunt Harriet concludes this instalment with some good old-fashioned fat-shaming.

After that it's the arrival of King Tut whose villainy is the result of amnesia (kinda like S&D's Sarah Hunt didn't remember that she wasn't the real Patricia) and I think it takes the sting out of the situation. A rather forgettable story except for the fantastic costumes and props and how some of these props are used in Flintstones style.

As soon as I spotted Bookworm I knew I was going to like him but unfortunately this new character gets a bit lost in his crowd of henchmen and everything's that's going on. He's not an obvious scene stealer like Joker and Riddler therefore I think this episode could have benefited from a different approach. Something that could really bring out the best & worst in Bookworm.
Nevertheless, this episode features one of my favourite predicaments: Batman and Robin being cooked inside a giant cookbook.

Batman performs a vocal flashback.
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He reacts surprisingly aggressive when Chief O'Hara interrupts his flashback trance. I like these little moments of Batman's dark side.

The last episode on disc 4 is an extremely convoluted Riddler scheme but somehow it works out flawlessly. This story is even more entertaining than the Riddler himself, and that's saying a lot.
There's the (pseudo?) German director calling his star "Riddler, baby", and some deviously laced lemonade turns the noble citizens into savages. Shocking!
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It's almost like the Carlton fight scene from DYNASTY's season 9.

Speaking of prime time soap, there's also a guest appearance by the future First Black Soap Bitch a.k.a. Vickie Fletcher in PEYTON PLACE '69.
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Something tells me I need to approach this series moderately
With only one disc left I may as well finish season 1 now. Then I'll take a break because the movie DVD hasn't arrived yet - as the saying goes "chronology is everything".
 

Willie Oleson

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It looks like disc 5 has only one story on it and it's not a new villain, therefore I can rank the season 1 villains without having watched those last two episodes.

1. The Riddler
I'm sure I've already mentioned everything I love about this character.

2. Penguin
A formidable adversary who appears to be a bit more shrewd than the others - at least within the parameters of this particular Batman world.

3. Mad Hatter
There's something charmingly childish about Mad Hatter, the very idea that the hatnapping was considered a new crime wave in Gotham City.
It's an effective blend with the nutty character from Alice In Wonderland.

4. Catwoman
Not that the other villains cared about their henchmen, but the dominatrix/worshippers dynamic gave it a lot of "cult" appeal, and I don't mean the popularity kind of cult.
Like real cats she's a solitary person who marches to the beat of her own drum, which makes her one of the most unpredictable villains.

5. Mr. Freeze
I thoroughly enjoyed the Bond vibes I got from this villain. It's not the most OTT episode but I loved the sci-fi hot/cold zone gadgetry which could have been used in shows like U.F.O. or The Avengers.

6. False Face
Delightfully creepy and I'm always intrigued by shape-shifting and impostory.

7. Bookworm
A quirky and seemingly harmless criminal except for his ferocious outbursts which creates a nice contrast.

8. The Joker
No doubt Cesar Romero was having a ball with his performance but I feel that the Joker Show usually overshadows the villainy. I would have liked him to be more creepy instead of embracing his clown-y dumbness.

9. Zelda The Great
Not the most notable villain but let's not forget that image of Aunt Harriet dangling above a big pot of burning oil while Zelda calmly continues her knitting.

10. King Tut
It's not that I dislike him, I just don't have many positive things to say.
 

Willie Oleson

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How goes the Bat-queue, Willie?
The movie DVD has been sitting in front of my very nose all along, but when @Richard Channing and @James from London decided to join dark forces in order to lure me back to netflix it rendered me completely powerless.
I don't mean to pull a Frankie Colby here but it's really not my fault.

The good news is that I've finished watching all the netflix stuff I wanted to watch and I plan on sliding down that batpole a.s.a.p.
And to be on the safe side maybe it's better to put the aforementioned forum members on "ignore" for a little while. (but they don't need to know that).
 

Mel O'Drama

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I plan on sliding down that batpole a.s.a.p.

I shall be waiting to encourage you quietly from the sidelines with plucky British reserve.

In the meantime, I can be found in the corner of the Batcave putting the finishing touches to the Bat-Netflix-Jamming-Device to ensure there are no further distractions from your mission.

 

darkshadows38

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for you non gamers in the game Arkham Knight (2015) one of the skins you can use is the 60's batman outfit and one of the skins for the car is the 60's batmobile how ya like that? that's the one i'm currently using
 

Willie Oleson

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The movie was fabulous and laugh-out-loud funny, but I think this was the first time I realize that the real strength of BATMAN 66 isn't what they DO, but what they DON'T.
It always gets dangerously close to being a parody on the wholesomeness of children's TV programmes - but somehow they know exactly when to hold back.
Because parody or satire only works with a certain lack of respect and BATMAN never crosses that line.
They have an uncanny talent to exploit the juxtaposition of it all e.g. the public's admiration for their beloved caped crusaders and the idea that everything's going to be all right as long as they continue to protect Gotham City is laughable, and yet there's nothing in those scenes that suggests that that feeling isn't genuine.
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A full-on-parody would make a point of it that the admiration couldn't be genuine simply because it's too hilarious.

This idea - or at least my interpretation thereof - isn't only evident in the story itself. BATMAN may not be masterpiece theatre but all the actors seem to understand their respective characters.
I've already mentioned several actors/characters that impressed me, but after watching this movie I'm inclined to single out Adam West who has mastered the effect of pause in dialogue. And just when you think it's about to break the fourth wall, it stops.

The foul foursome plotline proves to be surprisingly entertaining considering how eccentric these characters are.
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The reveal of Kitka's true identity throws Batman off balance, and it pains Robin to watch his friend processing the deceit of it all.
It's a nice moment of humanity in a world of cartoon characters.
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Or does the expression on Robin's face reflect guilt because he's secretly relieved that Adam won't be kissing Kitka again?
Perhaps we all should be relieved that I'm not an obsessed fanboy who likes to write Batman&Robin4Eva fan fiction.
 

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for you non gamers in the game Arkham Knight (2015) one of the skins you can use is the 60's batman outfit and one of the skins for the car is the 60's batmobile how ya like that? that's the one i'm currently using
I realise that the gameplay wouldn't be affected, but do the 60s skins look right in the Arkham setting?
 

Mel O'Drama

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I think this was the first time I realize that the real strength of BATMAN 66 isn't what they DO, but what they DON'T.
It always gets dangerously close to being a parody on the wholesomeness of children's TV programmes - but somehow they know exactly when to hold back.
Because parody or satire only works with a certain lack of respect and BATMAN never crosses that line.

This sums it up perfectly.




The foul foursome plotline proves to be surprisingly entertaining considering how eccentric these characters are.

It's great fun to see a super-villain team-up, especially when it's the four main villains. What did you think of Lee Meriwether stepping in as Catwoman?





They have an uncanny talent to exploit the juxtaposition of it all e.g. the public's admiration for their beloved caped crusaders and the idea that everything's going to be all right as long as they continue to protect Gotham City is laughable, and yet there's nothing in those scenes that suggests that that feeling isn't genuine.

Yes. The sentiments characters express are funnier because they are so sincere. From Bruce's square-jawed earnestness and adherence to rules and laws to the enthusiasm with which Robin responds. And Gordon and O'Hara's admiration for the Dynamic Duo's sleuthing. It's not so much that it's played for real, but as you said, everything suggests that the characters are genuine in their various sentiments. In the world of Batman, the deeper the sincerity, the bigger the laugh.




I'm inclined to single out Adam West who has mastered the effect of pause in dialogue. And just when you think it's about to break the fourth wall, it stops.

Absolutely. He knows exactly where that invisible line is and he seems to enjoy running towards it.
 

darkshadows38

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they look good look it up on you tube the skin i'm using right now is of (1989)'s Batman and you can drive the (1989) batmobile but you can only do so much with it but still it was f.. awesome to drive that in a game
 

Willie Oleson

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What did you think of Lee Meriwether stepping in as Catwoman?
Kitanya Irenya Tatanya Karenska Alisoff:lol:...but I was a little confused that she kept the Russian accent as Catwoman.
The sexiness is played rather...hm...thickly, and sometimes it looks and sounds as if Catwoman is playing herself. I understand that it must be very difficult to play the cooler villain in this maniacal villain ensemble - and cats are not the greatest team players anyway.
 

Mel O'Drama

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I was a little confused that she kept the Russian accent as Catwoman.
The sexiness is played rather...hm...thickly, and sometimes it looks and sounds as if Catwoman is playing herself.

Yes - there's a certain identity crisis going on, and I think it's deliberate. There's that scripted moment in the bar where she slaps a henchman for using her "real name" in public after he called her Catwoman.

Even though I've watched it heaps of times, I don't know if the Russian accent as Catwoman had registered with me. I just watched a couple of her scenes and while it's not as strong as Kitka's Russian accent, there is something going on there. To me it sounds more like a sultry, purring version of a mid-Atlantic/American accent. Whatever it's meant to be, my theory is that she was trying to sound like Julie Newmar, and I'd say she did a really nice job at that.



I understand that it must be very difficult to play the cooler villain in this maniacal villain ensemble - and cats are not the greatest team players anyway.

Both great points.
 

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Even though I've watched it heaps of times, I don't know if the Russian accent as Catwoman had registered with me. I just watched a couple of her scenes and while it's not as strong as Kitka's Russian accent, there is something going on there. To me it sounds more like a sultry, purring version of a mid-Atlantic/American accent. Whatever it's meant to be, my theory is that she was trying to sound like Julie Newmar, and I'd say she did a really nice job at that.
I don't think she has a Russian accent as Catwoman and I'm not sure she's trying to sound like Newmar either. That way she says "purr-fect" seems to be completely her own. They both (or at least their voices) appear in the recent Batman vs Two Face animated movie - compare and contrast. ;)
 
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