Some Bat-fans love Lorenzo Semple Jr.’s work; to others, he’s an arch-fiend worse (and sillier) than the Riddler or the Joker. He’s the creator of the old ABC Batman series, starring Adam West (pictured), that ran for two seasons in the ’60s. I always thought his light, unabashedly campy approach to the Bruce Wayne saga was hilarious fun, but I do sympathize with hardcore Batman flame-keepers who felt he ruined the character for decades, before Frank Miller and Tim Burton brought him back to his bleak, brooding roots. (See an overview of the Bat-history here.)
Now, in a Variety essay published on the eve of this week’s release of The Dark Knight, Semple defends his frothy, angst-free take on the character. Whether or not you liked Semple’s show, the article is a great read. Semple is, after all, quite the raconteur, as anyone knows who’s watched his delightful “Reel Geezers” series of online movie reviews, which he tapes with fellow octogenarian Hollywood veteran Marsha Nasatir. Sample Semple’s sensibility, then spill as to whether you prefer your Batman black and scalding or light and sugary.
addCredit(“Adam West; Everett Collection”)