Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Batscholar on Episodes 83 & 84

By Joel Eisner

Having fallen to her death (again) in her last episode, Catwoman is being released from prison to attend Gotham University as a criminalogy major who along with her three overage Freshman henchmen, steal a statue of Batman so she can use it as a model for a Batman costume, which her henchman uses to rob a supermarket. Then after trying to burn our duo to death with acid inside a giant coffee cup atop a billboard, steals some rare opals, but when she is unable to fence them, tries to do away with the duo once again before she is captured.

The plot what there is of it gives Julie Newmar a lot to do in the Batman Catwoman romance department but little else in the villain department. This was Julie's last appearance as Catwoman, due to a role in the film McKenna's Gold, she was unavailable to return to the series. Although Earth Kitt took over the role during the third season, a Julie Newmar stand-in was seen as the Catwoman in the Dr. Cassandra episode.

Among Catwoman's gang was French actor Jacques Bergerac as Freddie Touche aka Freddie the Fence. Bergerac appeared in several films and tv shows including the horror film The Hypnotic Eye, and was also Ginger Rogers fourth husband. He later retired from acting to become the head of Revlon in Paris. He currently lives in France.

Paul Mantee (who dresses up as Batman) was the star of the film Robinson Crusoe on Mars which costarred Victor Lundin and Adam West. Mantee who now writes novels, was also a regular on the Cagney and Lacey tv series.

Paul Picerni was a regular on the Untouchables and along with his brother Charles appeared as henchmen in previous episodes.

Sheldon Allman, the one with the deep voice was a frequent tv actor but his big claim to fame was his musical talents. He wrote the theme music for the George of the Jungle cartoon series. He also provided the singing voice for Mr Ed the talking horse. He also composed the music for the Let's Make A Deal and Masquerade Party game shows. He also composed the soundtrack for the classic 1950's Space Patrol tv series.

Stanley Adams as Captain Courageous was better known as Cyrano Jones in the Tribble episode of Star Trek and as Tybo the Carrot Man in the Great Vegetable Rebellion of Lost in Space.

Whitney Blake was the mother of actress Meredith Baxter as well as playing Mrs Baxter on the Hazel tv series. Actor and Game show host Art Linkletter made the cameo appearance out of the window.

Director Robert Sparr (seen with Newmar in the above photo) was also a Film Editor who directed much of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea's 4th season, He was another carryover from Howie Horwitz's pervious series 77 Sunset Strip and Surfside Six. He was killed in a plane crash scouting locations in 1969 at age 53.
Actress Julie Newmar, “I remember doing an entire sequence that even to this day amazes me, because it was six, seven, or eight minutes long. The dialogue in it was a seduction of Batman, and I remember it was late in the day, and there was no rehearsal. You would just go out there and shoot it, which is probably why I was good, because being a dancer and choreographer, when it comes to movement, I know how to cover space and use good timing and hit every mark that the camera needs me to hit. So, I would never miss a point, and I would also do everything in one take. You see, they did everybody in one take, and the people that didn’t come off right the first time were winging it. The fact that it came off at all was a miracle. ““There were elements in it that were miraculous."

"The casting of Batman and Robin was miraculous, and certain other characters were perfectly wonderful. People met for the first time, they put it on film, and, wham-bang, it was done. It was remarkable. “

“You got a sense of the rhythm, the sense of the straightness of it. You played it very, very straight. Those people who camped it up too much spoiled it. Many people, even good actors, had a tendency to ham it somewhat, and it didn’t need to be, because it was already campy. The only thing you did add into it was the deliciousness of what you were up to. So, if you were strangling Batman, or if you were putting the pins into him or whatever it was you were trying to do to kill him, you enjoyed it.”

Next, William Dozier does a last ditch attempt to save the Green Hornet and Kato by pitting them up against Batman and Robin and Star Trek's Harry Mudd.

1 comment:

  1. "Paul Mantee (who dresses up as Batman)" and wears Batman's utility belt upside down.