Growing up overseas, the first time I met Batman was on a TV that still had knobs paired with Chinese subtitles. Instead of the dark and brooding vigilante of the night most people know nowadays, this was a flashier and more colorful Batman, complete blue and grey tights and the coolest car my little kid brain had ever seen. Not only that but the giant yellow tool belt had basically gave you the ability to walk up the side of buildings which I was convinced I needed since we lived on the 14th floor in our apartment building. Maybe it was my ability to suspend belief or just the fact that I had never read a Batman comic until after seeing the 1960s TV show but I loved the camp, the humor, and the energy that all the bright colors threw off the screen. The “Zaps!” and “Bangs!” seemed to me like they belonged. Adam West was my Batman until Tim Burton and Michael Keaton came along and shattered my concept of what I thought was the coolest car ever.
This new graphic novel, “Batman: The TV Stories” collects ten Silver Age comics written by legendary comic creators such as Bill Finger (Batman), Gardner Fox (Sandman), Carmine Infantino (The Flash), Dick Sprang (Batman – Golden Age), and Sheldon Moldoff (Hawkman and Hawkgirl). These ten comics inspired the hit TV show and features some great stories such as the introduction of The Riddler (whose costume has stayed remarkably the same through the years), a more clown-ish gagster version of the Joker, and other famous Bat villains such as Mr. Freeze. This collection showcases some truly great artwork that really puts on display what was really special about the Silver Age, namely the details in some of these panels in a pre-Photoshop world. For classic Batman fans and fans who’ve only known the growling all-black clad Dark Knight, this is a fun graphic novel to check out where Batmania all started.
This blog post was written by Kindle Comics expert Charlie Chang. Interested in comics and graphic novels? Sign up for Comics Delivers, a weekly email featuring the best in comics each week - from weekly booklists to deals and exclusive content from creators.