The producers at ABC had wanted to try something different. Since Superman had been a fairly popular show, they decided to add another comic character to the TV line-up. They decided to go with Batman. Wanting to make it different, they added a campy feel to the show so it would appeal to both kids and adults. They didn't know exactly what to expect from their test audience they played a few scenes that had been recorded (weeks before the actual airing of the first show came). The results? Well, it's not what you would expect. The results were poor by their standards. ABC decided to go with it anyway, aside from the results. They'd later find out they made a wise choice.
Many promotions were made starting a few weeks before the show was going to be seen by the public's eyes. The show had been played up, and much of the public wanted to see it just because of all the hype--who would want to miss something that your friends were going to be talking about at school the next day? The first episode aired on Wednesday, January 12, 1966. The title of it was "Hey Diddle Riddle" starring Frank Gorshin as The Riddler was to decide the fate of the show itself. It was an instant hit, the kids loved the BAM! POW! and the bright colors, while adults liked the special guest appearances. Bat-mania swept the country in the weeks following, anything that could be made with "Batman" somehow promoting it was. Batman, the movie, came out later in 1966, although it was originally slated to come out before the first episode of the TV show. The movie was also a huge success.
As the season rolled by, the show had lost some of its ratings, and ABC decided they'd better introduce a new character to gain the public's interest once again. They decided that character would be Batgirl. Still though, the ratings just weren't good enough. Eventually the public tired of the same plots. Villains steal or kidnap; Batman and Robin alerted and meet in Commissioner's office; villain slips up; Batman and Robin catch the villain who's taken away to jail. On March 14, 1968, the last episode "Minerva, Mayhem and Millionaires" aired, with Batman and Robin ending up in a giant pressure cooker.
7.6/10 (5 Votes cast)