RETURN TO THE BATCAVE aired on CBS Television
Starring Adam West, Burt Ward and Frank Gorshin

PLOT

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This wild, wooley and wacky look back at the evolution of the 1960's camp classic is a lighthearted romp through a lot of memories for fans of the series, as well as an interesting expose for those who were unaware of the true lives of the stars.

Hosted by the originals, Adam West and Burt Ward, their hunt for a missing Batmobile (George Barris' 1955 Ford Futura), is filled with rememberances of the lives of the dynamic duo in and out of their tights. The plot is peppered with actual Batlore, including Mickey Rooney's turning down the part of The Penguin, Lyle Waggoner's original screen test as the Dark Knight, et al.

Appearences by Frank Gorshin, Julie Newmar, Lee Meriweather help round out the cast that are superbly lead by West and Ward, taking a step backwards from ego and attitudes and goofing it up with the rest of the gang, with great impersonations of younger versions of West, Ward, Gorshin, Burgess Merideth, Meriweather, Vincent Price, Yvonne Craig and a Ceaser Romero Joker that will knock your socks off.

Adam West and Burt Ward and summoned to a showing of the original Batmobile. While they are there, the car is stolen.

The Adam West of the movie is a man demented. He called Jerry, his butler, `Alfred'. He opens a bust of Shakespeare in his apartment and reveals a hidden pole to slide down to the parking garage. He's obsessed with being a crime fighter, when in fact he's merely a washed up actor. When the Batmobile is stolen he not only believes it's his duty as a crime fighter to recover it, he drags and unwilling Burt Ward in as his assistant.

The pursuit is largely loquacious, with West and Ward reminiscing about the old days. It is broken by `flashbacks' with actors playing West and Ward in the old days. The modern scenes and the `flashbacks' both have the wacky lack of reality the show maintained. There are also running gags that show West is able to make fun of himself: in Ward's book about his time on the show, he spoke frankly about West's libido and also his being a skinflint (West makes Ward pay for everything in their pursuit, down to tips and bus fare). The clues they follow, the characters they meet (even in flashback) all fit the mentality of the old series, and there are several homages, including a fist fight with written sound effects.

The whole thing is
extremely funny and done with great panache. There are also cameos by Julie Newmar (looking like she's had one facelift too many) and Frank Gorshin, reminding us why he has such a cult following. Gorshin will be the Riddler when Jim Carey, his obvious successor, is long forgotten. The movie builds to a fairly obvious but funny climax.

This show is a model for reunion shows – unfortunately, there are few that can fit the pattern. This show had actors replaying their old characters; young actors playing a movie about the making of the show; the actors West and Ward reminiscing; and a modern-day movie with the real Adam West playing the demented Adam West. It has everything. If you loved the old show, this is the stopper on the bottle.

TRAILER

MOVIE

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REVIEWS

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER - "KAPOW! BAM! THWAP! CBS is looking to stir up some Bat-nostalgia on Sunday with a cheeky, so-stupid- its funny telefilm about the making of ABC's 1966-68 "Batman" series, staring Adam West and Burt Ward."

THE STAR LEDGER - "Hilarious...RETURN TO THE BATCAVE should leave you howling. In the spirit of the series, it's campy, kooky, and a whole lot of fun."
"The stop action shots of Romero being transformed into the Joker are terrific... And speaking of makeup, this is one of the few movies about the 1960s in which the women actually LOOK as if they are from the 1960s."

USA TODAY - "The good news for those who loved the'60s camp classic, with its comically stiff hero and its crooked-camera crooks, is that Return adequately captures the tone and appeal of the series."

TV GUIDE - “Jack Brewer and Jason Marsden hilariously playing the younger West and Ward.

THE DENVER POST - "POW! - a clever, winking "Batman" reunion movie."

BBC - "Expect many bat-laughs."

HOUSTON CHRONICLE - "'Marvelous! This is such a clever twist on reunion show."

"Like Batman itself, this is two layers of entertainment-the POW's and SMACK's for the young-uns, with plenty of double entendres for the rest. And this script is very skillful at letting West and Ward fill in their own 'whatever happened to' resumes, as well as weaving their more serious personal affairs amid the comedy without overwhelming the funny business."

"Return to the Batcave is fun in a smart new package of old times. Top that, all you creaky old reunion movies."

AIN'T IT COOL NEWS - "They've actually turned the ol Bat-Theme into a full-fledged rapping song that frankly, I just love. The best superhero song in years!"

NEW YORK MAGAZINE - "Certainly more fun than anything in the subsequent gloomy Hollywood movie version." "There will be at least one egg-filled food fight, one remarkable Bat Rap (as in hip-hop), and one discussion about whether Batman and Robin are gay. We all deserve a break, and affable Adam provides it."

NEWSDAY - "The movie - every bit as campy and daffy as the 1966-68 ABC series."

THE MIAMI HERALD - "An endearing couple hours of silliness that sends itself up without putting itself down." "The best thing about Return to the Batcave is that it allows you to relive your '60s hallucinations without the muss and fuss of sugar cubes and bongs."

KNOX NEWS - "Fans of the 'Batman' series will appreciate director Paul A. Kaufman's adherence to the show's production design. And that's really what 'Return to the Batcave is all about: wallowing in nostalgia and getting just a whiff of the essence of the original show."


LINKS

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