Thursday, January 5, 2023

The Man Bat


Michael Keaton's Bat Man for me is by far the coolest Bat Man I've seen to date, that includes all incarnations I've been exposed to since childhood.  Since I'm an old fart that started with Lewis Wilson, who played the Bat from 1943 to the 50's and in reruns until the role was reprised by Adam West in 1966.  

When I was first introduced to the Bat Man he was generally considered a vigilante and through the magic of black and white television, implied that he may or may not have mortally dispatched more than a few of his nemesis.  I remember Lewis Wilson having a touch of a gravely voice, probably due to cigar smoking, that would send terror into the heart of the bad guys.  

As I got a little older Adam West and Burt Ward played the Dynamic Duo, Bat Man and Robin.  This version of the hero was the pinacol of campy.  Since I was at the age of developing the ability to think, Adam West wasn't my favorite Bat Man.  As a matter of fact when Bat Man and Robin crossed swords with the Green Lantern and Kato, my money was on Bruce.  My father was appalled that I was rooting on the bad guy of that episode, the Green Hornet just cause I wanted Bat Man to get his ass kicked.  Ain't I a  stinker?  

Finely in 1989 Michael Keaton took up the cowl of the Bat.  His first reappearance in 89 was a lone vigilante that again was doing mortal battle with some really crazy and bad dudes.  Jack Nicholson is the prime example of a perfect Joker, which Bat Man dispatched at the end of the film.  I figure it's old enough as a movie that this is not a spoiler alert so I don't care.  My vision of the Bat was back, yeah!  

My favorite all time scene is from Keaton's first time at Bat.  Bat Man appears on a rooftop suddenly after doing some impressive damage to bad guys at the bottom, grabs the final bad guy by the throat and dangles him over the edge of a building.  The criminal asks, "Who are you man?"  

Bat Man replies in Keaton's perfect hoarse whisper, "I'm Bat Man." then drops him.  Wonderful.  That line has epitomized the Bat for generations since.  I am and will forever be a Michael Keaton Bat Man fan.  

I have enjoyed the other versions since, but his is the best.  Live on Man Bat, your immortality will forever remain in my memory.

Peace and Balance,


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