Batman Filmation Series
Over the past two months, I’ve been giving you a series of Batman cartoons that date back to 1968. They are from the Batman CBS series that ran for one season. They first were part of the Batman-Superman hour, then were spun off into their own series. Unlike the Batman series that starred Adam West and Burt Ward, these were not campy and were more faithful to the DC comic series. I happen to like this series the best.
If you want to see the others that were posted, you can find the first one posted in September here and the one I posted in October here. As with the previous posts, the cartoons and descriptions come courtesy of YouTube member alanr4447a. I thank him for posting the cartoons.
The Great Scarecrow Scare
In this shorter episode, the Scarecrow steals a valuable painting being auctioned for charity, and takes Batgirl hostage. Batman & Robin track down where he has taken her (with her help). The Scarecrow captures Robin, and, thanks to Batgirl’s blunder, her and Batman as well. Then the Scarecrow prepares to give Robin a sound thrashing — or rather, threshing!
1001 Faces of the Riddler
…or to be more precise, FOUR faces. In this shorter episode, the Riddler uses face masks and trick riddles to try to throw off the Dynamic Duo. When they track him down, he captures them, and ties them up in a condemned building, which he proceeds to knock down with a wrecking ball!
For the record, his four faces are: himself, Bruce Wayne, Commissioner Gordon, and an athlete.
The Nine Lives of Batman
Catwoman ensnares the Dynamic Duo in a room set with 9 lethal traps; and later, gasses them with radioactive gas to make them glow, preventing Bruce Wayne from appearing in public to vote on election day. Then she captures Robin, and puts him in a tank filling with water and wired to explode if broken; and also unleashes a ring of fire. The story also copies devices from the live-action TV series: Catwoman plants a bomb in the Batmobile, set to explode when it hits 60 mph, like “Ma Parker”; and traps the Dynamic Duo in quicksand, which they escape the same way as from a like trap set by John Astin’s Riddler.
The Joke’s on Robin
In this shorter episode, Robin suddenly becomes clumsy with the devices in his utility belt — thanks to the Joker! When, thinking he must be overworked, Robin decides to take a rest, Batgirl steps in to help Batman, and the two of them are promptly captured by the Joker. He ties them both up in the giant gears of a clock mechanism, set to mesh…and MASH…at midnight!
The Cool, Cruel Mr. Freeze
Mr. Freeze freezes all sources of water in Gotham City. Later, he causes the Batmobile to slip off a high bridge he iced over. Then, he threatens to freeze all of Gotham City unless paid $1 billion (like in the live-action TV series with Otto Preminger). Lastly, he freezes the Dynamic Duo in a block of ice, and feeds them into an ice cube maker!
Robin seems to take most of the abuse again. He’s lucky to have Batman otherwise the Boy Wonder might have been dead early in this series. LOL. That’s it. Enjoy.
Almost exactly to the date, one month ago, I gave you some Batman cartoons from the 1968 Filmation series. YouTube member alanr447a has uploaded some more episodes since last month. Once again, I’ll paste his descriptions of the episodes.
Bubi, Bubi, Who’s Got the Ruby?
The Penguin steals the million-dollar Maharaja Ruby, and kidnaps Bruce Wayne. But Catwoman has her own designs on the ruby, and sabotages Penguin’s plans by leaving a map to his hideout. Robin (with Batgirl behind him) follows the map, but ends up also caught by the Penguin — who leaves the walls closing in on him and Bruce Wayne. Holy nutcracker!
How Many Herring in a Wheelbarrow?
The Joker invades several research facilities, and only seems to steal worthless trinkets — but he also photographs plans for a solar mirror… Along the way, he sends Batman & Robin down a magnetized ramp toward a raging fire!
A Perfidious Pieman is Simon
Simon the Pieman returns to steal 4 million Turkish coins (“piastres”). In the process, he kidnaps Barbara Gordon, and sets up: Batman in a belfry, hanging on to the clapper of a swinging bell to avoid ending up in the soup; Robin running to dodge candles that will light dynamite fuses on his ankles; Batgirl to be thrown down a well in a pumpkin shell; Batman & Robin trapped in a submersible pie heading to crash into a reef; and Batgirl to be crushed under a PIE-zoelectric crystal. Where does he get all those marvelous toys?
Enter the Judge
Look out, folks — HERE COME DA JUDGE! In this shorter episode, a prisoner who has escaped from Satan’s Island becomes the ultimate self-appointed Judge. He gathers a jury of criminals, and determines to put Batman & Robin on trial. In attempting to kidnap Bruce Wayne to finance his setup, he manages to capture Robin. Convicting the Boy Wonder in his court, The Judge decides to close the book on Robin, permanently — “pressed like a flower”. Then he turns the machine on — and it cannot be turned off!
I notice in most of these episodes, Robin really gets abused. Poor Boy Wonder! If there are more episodes down the line, I’ll be sure to post them.
Don’t ask me why, but I have been a fan of Batman since I was a kid. I liked the Batman TV series with Adam West and Burt Ward, but I preferred the 1968 Filmation series which was first shown on CBS, then aired on various outlets, most recently, the Cartoon Network and it’s sister channel, Boomerang.
I guess it was the crude art and the voices which included Casey Kasem as Robin and Ted Knight as the narrator and the Riddler. I do wish these would make it to DVD, but I don’t know who owns the rights.
Here are a few episodes for you. And instead of me trying to describe the episodes, I’ll copy and paste the descriptions from YouTube member alanr4447a. But first, the Open:
The Jigsaw Jeopardy
With his hideout in a jigsaw puzzle factory, the Riddler captures Robin, and ties him down “spread-eagle” on a giant jigsaw, with its blade poised to DIVIDE UP the Boy Wonder! Batman, meanwhile, walks into an acid-bath trap, and later has to tackle an EGG-splosive peril. Includes Batgirl (who disguises herself as Robin!)
Will the Real Robin Stand Up?
One Robin just not enough for you? Catwoman enlists a wayward teen, a Robin look-alike, to take Robin’s place, and learn all of Batman’s secrets. Meanwhile, she leaves the real Robin dumped into a construction pit in the back of a van, buried under tons of rocks. Includes a “training” scene not shown on cable. Will the REAL Robin Please Stand Up?? Jane Webb is the voice of Catwoman.
It Makes Two To Make a Team
The Joker, Penguin and Riddler are after an Incan treasure map, but their attempts to steal it are continually thwarted by the teamwork of Batman, Robin and Batgirl; so, they plan to break up the Dynamic Duo by making Robin jealous of Batgirl. To top it off, they lure Robin into a trap, where they have hungry crocodiles waiting!
I don’t know where the plank came from. Jane Webb is Batgirl. Ted Knight is the three villains.
Simon The Pieman
Simon the Pieman sets out to be the new king(rolling)pin of crime in Gotham City. He and his “pie-thons” capture Robin on stakeout, and put him under the grindstone of a windmill, as storm winds approach — while Batman is stuck in a traffic jam! Later, Simon invites Batman to a mixer — a giant electric mixer, that is. Simon also serves up chocolate-covered Batgirl, and hot buttered Robin!
The Crime Computer
The Penguin’s latest crime spree is aided by the fancy gadgets invented by the brilliant but eccentric Prof. Billingsly — especially a supercomputer that can plan meticulously detailed crimes. And when the electronic gargantua is fed the brainwaves of Batman and Robin, it perfects its ability to hunt them down! While they struggle to keep one step ahead of their ultimate nemesis, the Dynamic Duo face a deadly sulphur pit, and a crocodile lashes out at Robin!
n this shorter episode, Catwoman moves in to the studio for the completed movie “Tom Thumb in Toyland”, where there are giant versions of various toys, with a plan to destroy the Dynamic Duo. After capturing them, she launches a spinning propellor at Batman, and puts Robin into a giant, explosive pinball game! Catch Batman’s instruction to Robin to save himself…