With the new Batmobile collection in the offing, I decided to raid the loft and dig out my old Batman annuals which have survived the years since I was first introduced to the Caped Crusader in the mid sixties.
I've never considered myself a big fan but thinking about it I have enjoyed the occasional flirtation with the comic from time to time. For me and most people of my age the sixties TV Batman is the basis for any interest . The release of the Corgi Batmobile was the must have toy for any Batfan particularly as it was the same as the one on TV. The comics showed a different car with a shield-like bat across the front, not the same at all!
This story book annual released in 1966 by World Distributors has the bat faced car on the front cover, but inside shows the TV version, along with other references from the TV show.
The Batcave showing the Bat poles, and Batman working the Bat-computer.
This is from 1967 and one I don't have but remember having at the time. I've include it because it does have the George Barris TV Batmobile on the cover.
This is an example I have retained.This story book annual from 1968 has a great cover showing the TV Batmobile.
This Batman Bumper Book from 1970 carries no references to the TV series, apart from a single photo on one of the inside pages of Adam West as Batman.
Most of the book is filled with reprints of American Batman comic strips.
The short lived Super DC also featured text stories similar to TV Tornado as well as reprinted comic strips.
In spite of a lack of TV series related imagery I do remember picking up Smash purely for the front covers which reprinted old newspaper strips.
The TV series got me into the Batman character and from then on I've sporadically enjoyed the various incarnations. The excellent Frank Miller penned Dark Knight Returns comic strip from 1986 really got back into the Caped Crusader. Batman: Year One, also by Miller released the following year was another tour de force which went on to influence the critically acclaimed Dark Knight Trilogy.
While I wait for the next Batmobile model to arrive on my doormat I reckon it's about time I gave these stories another read
Maybe I am a bit of a fan after all!