Gotham City 14 Miles offers the 1960s Batman TV series the critical reevaluation it deserves. Its essays examine Batmania, camp, the role of women, the show’s participation in ’60s counter-culture, its many celebrated actors, its lasting cultural effects, and other critical subjects.
From 1966-1968, on both ABC and in movie theatres, America embraced Batman as a campy cultural icon. The nation thrilled to deathtrap cliffhangers and phrases like “Atomic batteries to power!” and “Same bat-time, same bat-channel!” But in the ensuing decades, many vilified the show as an embarrassment that needed to be swept under the rug if Batman — and super-heroes — were to be taken seriously. Having won this battle for legitimacy, perhaps we can now return to Adam West’s Gotham, to the unapologetic fun of colorful, cackling villains hatching bizarre schemes, and deadpan heroes ridiculously climbing walls. And perhaps we may find it not only fun but rich with deeper cultural meanings.
From Sequart Research & Literacy Organization.