List of Batman television series characters

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The following is an overview of the characters who appeared in the 1966–1968 live-action Batman television series.

Main characters[edit]

Burt Ward as Robin (left) and Adam West as Batman (right) in 1966
Yvonne Craig as Batgirl from Season 3 of Batman, 1967.
Character Actor Description
Batman / Bruce Wayne Adam West Based on the comic book character of the same name. In the first episode, it is very briefly mentioned that his parents were killed by criminals when he was a boy. He is presented as a well established superhero and legally deputized member of law enforcement.
Robin / Dick Grayson Burt Ward Based on the comic book character of the same name, no actual origin is provided for the character in the series. He is presented as well established as Bruce Wayne's ward and Batman's sidekick.
Batgirl / Barbara Gordon Yvonne Craig Commissioner Gordon's daughter who works at the Gotham Library. Created in conjunction with the character introduced in the comic books the same year.[1][2][3] Unlike the comic books, no actual origin is provided within the series.

Supporting characters[edit]

Character Actor Description
Aunt Harriet Cooper Madge Blake Based on the comic book character of the same name. While the character began as a regular supporting character, her appearances became less frequent during the second season and almost nonexistent in the third. This was due to Blake's declining health.[4]
Commissioner James Gordon Neil Hamilton The commissioner of the Gotham City Police Department who is based on the comic book character of the same name.
Chief Miles O'Hara Stafford Repp The chief of police at the Gotham City Police Department who is always seen with Commissioner Gordon. Created specifically for the series, the character would later be mentioned and adapted to DC Comics publications.
Alfred Pennyworth Alan Napier Bruce Wayne's butler who is based on the comic book character of the same name.

Recurring antagonists[edit]

Julie Newmar as Catwoman from the show, in 1966.
Burgess Meredith as Penguin (left), Frank Gorshin as Riddler (center), and Cesar Romero as Joker (top), as they appeared in the film adaptation.
Character Actor Description
Catwoman
Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

Meriwether was cast for the film role when producers learned that Newmar would not be available for filming after the production of the first season wrapped.[5]

Due to prior commitments to the film Mackenna's Gold, Newmar was unavailable for the production of the third season and Kitt was cast for the role.

Egghead Vincent Price Egghead was created specifically for the series and is presented as a master criminal with a fixation on eggs.

Egghead, among others created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Joker Cesar Romero Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

Since Cesar Romero refused to shave his trademark mustache, his white pancake makeup was applied over it.[6]

King Tut Victor Buono King Tut was created specifically for the series and was provided with an origin story.

Within the episodes, Professor William McElroy is an Egyptologist at Yale University. He suffers a blow to the head during a student riot that results in amnesia. His subconscious creates a new personality as the reincarnation of King Tut. Each time he is struck on the head, his personalities reverse.

King Tut, among others created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold voiced by John DiMaggio. Due to FOX holding the rights to the King Tut name, the character was renamed "Pharaoh."[citation needed]

Later that year, the character was adapted to the comics.

Mad Hatter David Wayne Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

This version was based on the Imposter Mad Hatter.

In Batman '66, it is revealed that Clock King is Mad Hatter's brother Morris Tetch.[7]

Mister Freeze Based on the comic book character originally known as Mr. Zero but later changed to match the new name from the show,[citation needed] an abbreviated origin for the character is provided within the series. What is related that Batman had accidentally spilled cryonic chemical on him during a previous arrest. This renders him incapable of living in temperatures above -50°F.[8]
Penguin Burgess Meredith Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.
Riddler
Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

Leading into the production of the second season, Gorshin held out for higher wages. This resulted in the writers putting off Riddler-themed episodes in case the issue was resolved. Late in the production, they reworked one script to use the Puzzler[9] and finally produced a Riddler story for which John Astin was cast. The issue was resolved before the third season with Gorshin returning to the role.[citation needed]

Additional characters[edit]

Character Actor Description
Mayor Linseed Byron Keith The Mayor of Gotham City. Linseed was a pun on the name of then-New York City mayor, John Lindsay; the unseen character, Governor Stonefellow, was a similar play on New York's then-governor, Nelson Rockefeller.
Warden Crichton David Lewis The Warden of Gotham City Penitentiary.
Britt Reid / Green Hornet Van Williams Based on the radio character of the same name, he appeared in a "crossover" from the production company's second comic book themed series The Green Hornet
Kato Bruce Lee Based on the radio character of the same name, he appeared as the Green Hornet's sidekick.

Additional antagonists[edit]

Character Actor Description
Archer Art Carney By company records, the Archer was created specifically for the series by writer Stanley Ralph Ross and not related to the previous comic book character of the same name.[10]

The character is presented as a skewed version of Robin Hood.

The Archer, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Black Widow Tallulah Bankhead An original character created for the series, Black Widow is a bank robber who uses a spider motif. No actual origin is provided in the series.

The Black Widow, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Bookworm Roddy McDowall An original character created for the series, Bookworm themes his crimes on books and literary tropes.

Bookworm, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

The character made his comic book debut in the sixth issue of "Batman '66,"[11] the comic book series, based on the television show.

McDowell would later provide the voice of The Mad Hatter on Batman: The Animated Series

Chandell Liberace An original character created for the series, Chandell is a pianist who is blackmailed into a life of crime as the criminal Fingers by his twin brother Harry.

Chandell, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Chandell also appeared in issue #2 of Batman '66 where he collaborated with Siren.[12]

Nora Clavicle Barbara Rush Nora Clavicle was created specifically for the series. She is presented as a women's rights activist who attempts to destroy Gotham City in order to collect on an insurance policy she had taken out on it. She manipulates Mayor Linseed's wife in order to have the mayor replace Commissioner Gordon with her and all the male police officers with women.
Clock King Walter Slezak Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

In Batman '66, he is revealed to be Mad Hatter's brother Morris Tetch.[7]

False-Face Malachi Throne Based on the Silver Age version of the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series.

This version of False-Face was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold voiced by Corey Burton.[citation needed]

Lord Marmaduke Ffogg Rudy Vallee Ffogg was created specifically for the series. He is presented as an upper-class member of Londinium society who runs a school for thieves and uses homemade fog to cover up his crimes.
Freddy the Fence Jacques Bergerac Freddy was created specifically for the series. He is presented as the owner of "French Freddy's Fencing", a fencing school which is a front for his fencing operation. He allows Catwoman to use the building's basement as a hideout. Freddy would return in the third season as an aide to Minerva's jewel thievery.
Colonel Gumm Roger C. Carmel Gumm was created specifically for the series. He is presented as a stamp factory foreman who is using the company to produce forged stamps in the episodes featuring Green Hornet and Kato.
Lola Lasagne Ethel Merman Lola Lasagne was created specifically for the series. She is presented as a childhood friend of Penguin's who owns a racehorse, the only thing her husband Luigi left her when he disappeared. The pair use the horse in a racing scam.
Louie the Lilac Milton Berle Louie was created specifically for the series and was presented as a gangster using a flower motif. He is a gangster who plotted to take over the minds of Gotham City and then take over the perfume and flower markets.

Louie the Lilac, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Ma Parker Shelley Winters Ma Parker was created specifically for the series. She is presented as an elderly woman and master criminal who runs a gang consisting of her children. She allows herself to be captured so that she can take over Gotham State Penitentiary and form a gang from its inmates.

Ma Parker, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Marsha, Queen of Diamonds Carolyn Jones Marsha was created specifically for the series. When originally introduced, she plots to gain access to the diamond that powers the batcomputer. She later collaborated with Penguin in a movie plot.
Minerva Zsa Zsa Gabor Minerva was created specifically for the series. She is introduced as a spa owner catering to Gotham City's wealthy. Minerva uses a modified hair dryer to scan her client's minds to find out where they hide their fortunes.
Minstrel Van Johnson Minstrel was created specifically for the series and was presented as a genius in the field of electrical engineering and styled himself as a Medieval troubadour.
Puzzler Maurice Evans Based on the comic book character of the same name, no origin for the character is provided within the series. He attempts to steal the "Retsoor", a supersonic plane owned by Artemis Knab.

The season two episodes where Puzzler appeared were originally written for the Riddler. Due to Frank Gorshin holding out over salary issues, the scripts were re-written and Evans cast in the role.[9]

Sandman Michael Rennie This version of Sandman was created specifically for the series and is unrelated to the Golden Age comic book characters of the same name. Presented as an international criminal who uses hypnotic sand to control sleepwalkers, he partners with Catwoman and uses the alias Doctor Somnambula in an attempt to steal J. Pauline Spaghetti's fortune.
Shame Cliff Robertson Shame was created specifically for the series. The cowboy motif was patterned as a parody of the film Shane.[citation needed]

Shame, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Siren Joan Collins Siren was created specifically for the series. She is presented as Lorelei Circe, a chanteuse who is able to sing a notes so high that they place men under her control.

Siren, among other characters created for the series, was adapted for a 2009 episode of the animated television series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

Siren appeared in issue #2 of Batman '66 where she collaborated with Chandell.[12]

Cassandra Spellcraft Ida Lupino Dr. Cassandra Spellcraft was created specifically for the series. She is presented as a world-famous alchemist, occultist, and criminal.
Zelda the Great Anne Baxter Zelda was created specifically for the series. She is shown to be a world-famous magician and escape artist who once a year pulls off a major robbery to pay Eivol Ekdol for the equipment she uses in her act.

"Batclimb" cameos[edit]

Aside from the super-criminals, another coveted spot was the Batclimb Cameo. Often, as the Dynamic Duo scaled a building using Batarangs and Bat-ropes (actually filmed on a horizontal surface, with their capes held up by strings from off-camera, and aired with the shot rotated 90 degrees), a window would swing open, a celebrity would pop his or her head out, and a short conversation would ensue. Batclimb cameo scenes were discontinued for the third season.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Daniels, Les (2004). Batman: The Complete History. Chronicle Books. p. 113. ISBN 0-8118-4232-0. 
  2. ^ "Batgirl and the Batman Phenomenon". 1967. Retrieved 2011-06-31. 
  3. ^ Fitzgerald, Michael (2007). "Carmine infantino: decades at dc and beyond". Archived from the original on November 24, 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-23. 
  4. ^ "Batman". TV.com. Retrieved 2011-03-10. 
  5. ^ Smith, Ronald L. (2004). "Julie Newmar: The Very Last How to Book::Biography". Archived from the original on 2007-05-28. Retrieved 2007-06-22. 
  6. ^ http://www.bat-mania.co.uk/main/villains/joker_cesarromero.php
  7. ^ a b Batman '66 #4
  8. ^ "Batman (1966): Instant Freeze". TV.com. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  9. ^ a b Eisner, Joel (1986). The Official Batman Batbook. Contemporary Books. ISBN 0-8092-5035-7. 
  10. ^ Garcia, Bob (February 1994). "Batman". Cinefantastique. (a special double-issue) (Frederick S. Clarke). 24-25 (6-1): 45. 
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ a b Batman '66 #2

External links[edit]