ANYWAY. Not long after I acquired that classic gem, I found the 1943 Batman movie serial for $10... I think at a Safeway? So I bought that too, DUH. I've only just now gotten around to starting to watch it.
OH. EM. GEE.
Okay, so this one is actually a much higher-quality Batman product. Better acting all around, better costumes... Batman and Robin are actually semi-competent.... Luckily this film is saved from not being a circus of lulz by being filmed and set during WWII. So... war propaganda! And, even better, RACISM!
I started to realize what I was in for when they opened a scene on Gotham's Little Tokyo, which had become a ghost town as Gotham law-enforcement had, and I quote, "wisely rounded up the shifty-eyed Japs." At which point I say, "...HOLY SHIT DID THOSE WORDS ACTUALLY JUST GO INTO MY EARS JUST NOW?!" :DDDDDDD
The Main Villain of the piece, is, in fact, meant to be Japanese, but as all the actual ethnic-Japanese in the country have been "wisely rounded up", what we have instead is an incident of... yellow-face??? The character is very authentically named Tito Daka; his hair is black and slicked back, he has a skinny little mustache, his eyes are all made-up to look dark and squinty, and he has a vaguery Asian-sounding accent. There's a truly amazing moment when someone he's captured exclaims something about his "twisted Oriental brain!" Daka has an army of EVIL AXIS CYBERMAN ZOMBIES that he controls through a special microphone, and radium-powered ray-gun technology. :DDDD
Bruce, Dick, and Alfred are FABULOUS, btw. Dick is ADORABLE. The one in Batman and Robin is... kinda dumb as a brick. This Dick is smarter, younger, more exuberant, and SO MUCH A BETTER ACTOR OMG. He has kind of a weirdo derp face, but... HE'S PRECIOUS. You get to see him weiring PIMPIN' SCIENCE GOGGLES, and also looking like a tiny GQMF in his pimp-ass suit at a restaurant. And and and Bruce and Dick actually go UNDERCOVER in COSTUMES so we get to see PAPERBOY DICK AAAAAAAWWWW HE'S SO CUTE!!! And he does many classic Robin crotch-dives! :DDD This is important. *nodnod*
Bruce is... kind of a special panda, omg. Just... asdfjkl;ljhgsd SCENE:
[Batman and Robin have small-time crook tied up for questioning in their "Bat's Cave"... small fluttering shadows can be seen]
Crook: [terrifed] What are those?!
Batman: [airily] Just some of my bats.
Also he uses appropriated evidence, which just happens to be a high-powered future weapon, to prank unsuspecting Alfred! And he and Dick have a big jolly laugh about Alfred's terror. Wtf? XD ...Bruce, just say no to firing ray guns in the house.
Finally, in case I wasn't already in love, Batman and Robin take, like, any excuse they can get to come CRASHING THROUGH WINDOWS at people. ...Oh man, I'm only two episodes in, this is going to be SO. AWESOME.