Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders is full of fun for fans of Adam West, but not perfect.
It was a typical Monday. Class went well, but a little uneventful. I was supposed to get my laptop repaired, but the place I wanted to go wasn’t open. It was my ex-girlfriend’s birthday, but I’m not on speaking terms with her, and I’d really rather not be.
Then, I saw it online: Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders, would be playing one night only in theaters. It was a throwback to a time when Batman was a cheery, upright, well-adjusted member of society that just happened to wear actual tights. Someone who lived the dream of being a superhero. And no matter what, this Batman‘s just as valid as brooding, maladjusted individual everyone knows and loves, unless you’re my mom. For some reason, she still hasn’t grasped the nuanced modernization.
With no more than 10 people in the theater, we sat down to a Fathom event, which was projected at the wrong aspect ratio. It’s particularly jarring when you see Easter eggs in the Batcave background, but half of them are projected onto a curtain.
Speaking of, there are references a plenty, to not only the 1960s television series but even The Dark Knight Rises, as well as the Silver Age of comic books, which spans roughly 1956 to 1970. Batman and Robin fly a Bat-Rocket at one point, something production designers in 1966 only dreamed of. Oh, and the United States is still in the Space Race.
The plot itself feels as though it’s a direct continuation of the original series, albeit with, somehow, the Bat-tongue even firmer in the Bat-cheek. The animation itself manages to feel like a sophisticated update of cartoons of the era most of the time, however, it isn’t flawless. In one shot, a person supposedly walking a stroller (I can’t say who or else it’ll spoil the film) doesn’t move their legs at all! It’s simply a drawing moving in front of a background!
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