Thursday, 3 March 2011

Batman 1949 serial - Ep1 - Batman Takes Over

Bought the video box set when it first came out on the back of the '89 Burton film but haven't watched it for a looooong time, so thought it was time to add it to my DVD collection.
Boy, what to think?
It has a real charm to it, a true example of post-war cheapo filler material but, in this age of Youtube fanfilms, seems horribly familiar.
The charm comes from the very cheapness:
the standard car as the Batmobile,
the VERY sparse Batcave,
which has two filing cabinets which hold their uniforms,
the same cave being the Wizards lair.

And a lot of unintentional humour - Batman & Robin just running out to their "Batmobile" parked in the driveway of the very standard Wayne house, the "Batman Signal" which is wheeled to the window of Gordon's office when needed, and Batman's outfit...

On the plus side, its nice to see a "real" outfit, folds and all, that Alex Ross would go on to depiect so brilliantly and its interesting to see a spot-on Alfred and that Gordon's office is pretty much replicated in the TV series 17 years later.
And, even in this rather crude take, its still a thrill for me to see Batman with his outfit on but with his cowl off. Which happens often.

But, on the down side - and there's many:
Those ears. Floppy beyond belief. Worse than the slo-mo wobbliness of them at the end of Batman & Robin.
That cowl beak. Great when Brian Bolland et al do the elongated nose effect thing, but here it goes out far too far, just looking silly. And while we're at it, the eyeholes barely allow for Robert to see out of, making for very peculiar ways of looking at things.
Robert Lowery is far too chubby and far too bland for the role.
John Lowery is *ahem* a tad too mature and stocky for Robin, yes?
The Wizard. Hilarious beyond belief. What the heck is the point of that outfit when no-one can see it?
And, worst of all, the lame-o getouts of the supposed cliffhangers. This one has Batman and Robin locked in a burning plane that then blows up.
Can you guess how they get out of it?
Bat-Rating: 3/10

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