You might be a fan of Christian Bale, Michael Keaton, or even Ben Affleck, but if you ask anyone, “Who was the original Batman?” they would most likely say, “Adam West.” The classic ABC series, Batman that ran from 1966 to 1968, was the first major exposure that many people had to the pteropine vigilante and his brightly garbed cohort, Robin. It had cheesy dialogue, used the cheapest of special effects, and is extremely dated. However, all of those things are part of what fans love about the show to this day. People still enjoy the 1960’s Batman for its goofy, campy, and “so bad it’s good” qualities. For these reasons, Warner Bros. Animation and DC Entertainment came together to create a new crime-fighting adventure for the Dynamic Duo for the modern age. On October 6, Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders will premiere at New York Comic Con. The straight-to-video animated feature harkens back to the madcap antics that made the classic show so beloved. Also, the two stars from the original show – Adam West and Burt Ward – lend their voices to their iconic roles as Batman and Robin, respectively, along with Julie Newmar, who will once again take the part of Catwoman. Following the premiere, the film will be available for digital download on October 11, and for home video on November 1.
Reportedly, West and Ward love to play their roles as the Dynamic Duo. In fact, there is a rumor that the latter had to turn down the lead role in The Graduate that was eventually played by Dustin Hoffman because he had already signed on to act in Batman. Even after performing for three seasons and a theatrical motion picture in the roles, the two never seemed to grow tired of playing Batman and Robin. Throughout the 1970’s, they would go on to reprise their roles in shows like Legends of the Superheroes, The New Adventures of Batman, and Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show. West and Ward continuously collaborated with each other on many different projects. They starred together in the 2003 television movie, Return to the Batcave: The Misadventures of Adam and Burt, in which they played themselves in a story that paid homage to the series that made them famous.
However, the pair can’t play their earlier roles forever. Ward is now seventy-one years old, whereas West will turn eighty-seven this week. They aren’t able to perform the same kind of physicality that they did in their younger years. Luckily, through the magic of animation, West and Ward can still portray the heroic icons, while the animators can make the characters do whatever they want them to do. Adam West is no stranger to voice acting, either. He has appeared in numerous animations and has recurring roles in cartoons such as Family Guy and The Fairly Oddparents. Fans of the classic show should be excited because Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders will be arriving with a “SOK!,” a “BAM!,” and a “POW!”