IF you’re at that stage of the school holidays when all entertainment possibilities have just about been exhausted, why not consider planning a ‘retro’ Batman night for Friday?
SBS Viceland screens two episodes of the classic 1960s series each Friday from 7.30pm, in what has become a regular fixture in our household routine.
Even for younger members of the family who have been raised on the slick cinematic superheroes of the modern age, it is an absolute delight to slip back into the era when Adam West and Burt Ward wore the silkiest, shiniest capes ever known to crime-fighting.
From the familiar theme music (you won’t be able to resist singing that “Na-na-nana-na-na-na-na, Na-na-na-nana-na-na-na, Batman!” line), to the double entendres that will entertain adults while floating right over kids’ heads, it’s a whole lot of fun.
During the fight scenes, we compete to see who can pick the next sound effect that will pop up on screen; will it be ‘Kapow!’, ‘Boff!’, ‘Wham!’, or something completely from left field?
If Batman and Robin are climbing a wall, you can name the guest star who pops out unexpectedly from a window; the labels on equipment in the Batcave are endlessly chuckleinducing; and if you’re really lucky, Batman will dance the Batusi while rounding up the bad guys.
For those who grew up with this show as their only reference to the Caped Crusader, it’s comforting to know that despite all the new incarnations, Alan Napier is still the best Alfred, and Neil Hamilton will always be Commissioner Gordon.
Throw in Cesar Romero’s iconic Joker, and Burgess Meredith’s imprint on the Penguin’s laugh, not to mention the pre-Girlpower moves of Yvonne Craig’s Batgirl/Barbara Gordon, and there is plenty to entice young viewers, and keep their carers happy too.
◆ CULT: Burt Ward and Adam West take you back to a simpler time for superheroes each Friday night on SBS Viceland.