THE CLASSIC TV SERIES!
A Brief History Part 4 - THE CLASSIC TV SERIES!
After witnessing the popularity of the re-released cinema serial, ABC decided that the time was right for a TV series. In order to gain full control over the project, they secured the rights from DC, and then passed on the idea to top TV producer William Dozier. Dozier, along with his editor Lorenzo Semple, Jr., planned a bi-weekly show. They decided that each adventure would be split into two episodes. Each week, the first episode would end with either one or both of the Dynamic Duo facing certain death. The second episode would then begin with them breaking free by use of ingenious methods that would usually cause us kids to gaze in amazement, while our parents fell off their seats in fits of laughter.
The first episode of Batman was broadcast in the USA on Wednesday 12th January 1966. It was less than six months later that it burst onto our screens here in the UK. It was first shown on ITV on the 4th July 1966. The first part of each bi-weekly story was aired on Tuesday evenings at seven minutes past six; with part two following on Wednesday. Down here in the HTV region of Wales though, things were a little more complicated for us Welsh Batfans. For some inexplicable reason, it was decided that each story would be shown in bitesize episodes. Each two part story was divided into four parts that were aired each Tuesday to Friday just before the six o' clock news. The advantage of this strategy being that we got our 'Batfix' four times per week instead of twice. The disadvantage of course being, that even to a six year old like me (with the attention span of a goldfish), each episode seemed to be over before it began.
The TV series survived for three years from 1966-1968. Most agree that the show's popularity died too soon. However, with 120 episodes which produced about sixty hours of film, plus the legendary spin off Big Screen Movie of 1966, we've all been left with plenty of classic footage to enjoy time and again.