Batman actors honor Adam West: 'Thank you for showing us how it's done'
Ben Affleck, Val Kilmer, Will Arnett, and more honor their fellow Dark Knight
The Dark Knights of the silver and small screens have banded together in honor of their comrade, Adam West, who died on Friday night at the age of 88. Justice League‘s Ben Affleck, the latest incarnation of the character, saluted the ’60s-era Caped Crusader Saturday, along with Val Kilmer, Will Arnett, Jason O’Mara, and Kevin Conroy.
“Adam West exemplified heroism. Kind, funny and an all around great guy,” Affleck tweeted. “Thank you for showing us all how it’s done.”
Kilmer, who played the title character in 1995’s Batman Forever, shared, “Ah dear Adam West. He was always so kind when we met. A real gent. Once when I was a kid we found ourselves in front the batmobile. I got in.”
For Arnett, West “will always be Batman.” For his LEGO Batman Movie producer Phil Lord, he lost “a childhood hero who showed us Batman was kind and good and flawed and funny.” Fans may recall Easter eggs and a scene in that film featuring West’s Bruce Wayne. Lord shared one of them (the shark repellent) over Twitter.
“Our beloved AW passed away last night,” West’s family announced in a statement on the actor’s official Twitter account. “He was the greatest. We’ll miss him like crazy. We know you’ll miss him too.”
Jason O’Mara and Kevin Conroy, who have voiced animated Batmans, joined the overwhelming response from the industry after the actor’s death.
O’Mara (voicing the character in films like Justice League Darker and Batman: Bad Blood) praised West for influencing “every actor who played the role since” and his “superb” voice work. Conroy honored “the Batman of [his] childhood” by posting a still from Batman: The Animated Series. The image comes from a scene in which Conroy’s Batman is explaining how West’s Gray Ghost impacted his life.
“He brought us so much entertainment and was a truly class act. We’ll miss u Adam,” he wrote.
DC Entertainment President and Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns released a statement with publisher Jim Lee shortly after the news of West’s death broke. “Like many others, Adam West as Batman was part of my childhood. Watching those reruns every day after school, Batman made reading comics that much more real for me growing up,” Johns said.
“Batman’s popularity will be forever linked with Adam West. He brought joy to legions of fans around the world and was the gateway for many of them to discover or in some cases rediscover their love of comic books,” Lee added. “He’ll be deeply missed.”
The comic book house called West “a huge contribution to the Caped Crusader’s status as a true pop culture icon. His work helped bring comic books into the mainstream, and encouraged a generation to discover the wonderful stories and characters that made up Batman’s world through the pages of comic books like Batman and Detective Comics.”