An exciting scene worthy of any Batman movie, show or comic…
UPDATED 7/20/19: John S. Drew and I have wrapped up our episode-by-episode look at Filmation’s 1968 The Adventures of Batman cartoon series with a special overview on The Batcave Podcast. Click here to check it out. I think you’ll dig it. Meanwhile, it’s the perfect time to re-present some fave Filmation columns — including this piece from 2017. Enjoy. — Dan
This week, host John S. Drew and I check out How Many Herring in a Wheelbarrow?, a Joker corker by Bill Keenen, and the weak sauce In Again, Out Again Penguin, also by Keenen. (Click here or here to listen, or download it on iTunes — you’ll dig it.)
While I still haven’t picked an overall favorite episode yet — though Herring is definitely a strong contender — there’s no question in my mind that the series hit its pinnacle with a single sequence in this entry: When Batman and Robin slide toward their doom, zipping toward a fiery furnace bearing the ebony carved face of the Joker.
It’s fantastic and for decades has remained the most memorable aspect of the entire series for me.
The set-up is simple: Batman and Robin get lured into a dark room and the Joker taunts them by flashing on full-size wall panels bearing his image.
Next thing? A trap door drops the Dynamic Duo onto a slide, as the Joker watches them on CCTV, heckling them all the way:
They round a curve and …
It’s reminiscent of Catwoman’s trap from the live-action episode The Purr-fect Crime. But it’s edited so smartly, with exciting music and quick cuts, that it stands on its own as a 1-minute, 14-second masterpiece until the screen fades as the cliffhanger reaches its climax before the commercial break. (SPOILER ALERT: They escape at the beginning of Part 2.)
Anyway, there’s a lot more to recommend the episode and John and I also have fun with the highly questionable logic of the Penguin one-parter that accompanies it.
— 13 QUICK THOUGHTS: The Kitschy Kick of FILMATION BATMAN. Click here.
— MR. FREEZE: The Fifth Beatle of Batman Villains. Click here.