Exclusive: Jeff Parker Tells Us What To Expect With Batman ’66
Friday it was announced that not only would we be able to get more merchandise from the classic 1960s Batman show than we can shake a stick at, there’s also going to be a digital-first comic book later this year. Batman ’66 will be written by Jeff Parker and feature some very screen accurate and stunning art from Jonathan Case. If you missed the announcement and the art that went along with it, you can find that here. While we have to wait a little while longer before the comic is released, I got the chance to speak with writer Jeff Parker about what we can expect. Parker touched on what we can expect with this series as well as if there are any villains besides the one we’ve seen in the art he’d like to use.
Batman may not have been able to get rid of the bomb, but DC dropped a big one when they announced Batman ’66. Could you tell us a little bit about how that came about and how you came onto the book?
That might be a good one for the editors, I just know that once things started coming together with the rights for the show someone rightly figured that new comics would be a good draw for the digital arm of DC. I assume that was Hank Kanalz, as he’s pretty smart that way. I also assume someone noticed I’ve done a fair amount of all-ages material like with the Marvel Adventures comics a few years ago. But really, you might try to track down editor Jim Chadwick about that.
The Adam West series spans generations. Everyone is at least familiar with it. Were you a big fan? Have you been going back and watching it recently to nail down that fun, kind of campy vibe?
I was a huge fan as a kid, and yes I have been watching the episodes again to get the feel. I was surprised how much I remembered. And how well the show holds up, it’s still very entertaining.
Jonathan Case will be drawing the series. He seems to have perfectly captured the series, down to Romero’s mustache. What were your thoughts seeing the art we’ve seen at least and what has it been like so far getting into the creative process with him?
The great thing is that I knew Jonathan would kill on this and he already has. He loves retro cool stuff and as I hoped to do, plays up what’s great about it rather than make fun of it. His likenesses are so full of life and spirit, which any artist will tell you is really tough to pull off. He also is good at the color design of it all, which was an important part of the show. Batman, like Star Trek at the same time, really took advantage of color television becoming popular.
I know you have to play this one close to the vest for now, but is there anything you can tell us about what we can expect story wise? Anything you can tease, maybe a full surfing Batman issue?
We’re not surfing… yet. In fact, its probably important to stress we’re not going to re-cover ground that the original series did by retelling stories. They’ll feel right in the universe of the show, but new plots and situations. Bigger ones too, as we’re going to treat it as if the show had an unlimited budget.
Will you be trying to get as many of the classic series rogues in there as possible? I know we can look forward to the Riddler, Catwoman, and the Joker. Are there any other characters, villains or otherwise, you’re itching to use?
Well I do like King Tut!
We want to thank Mr. Parker for talking with use and shedding a little light on the upcoming series. This is one series I’m really looking forward to. We’ve covered a lot of the toys and other merchandise coming out featuring Adam West, Burt Ward, Cesar Romero, and the rest of the gang’s likenesses, but a full fledged comic book expanding on the show is almost too good to be true. Case‘s art seems to get a good grasp on the characters and feel of the series, so we should be in for a treat. You can check out Jeff Parker’s website where I’m sure he’ll post some interesting Bat-things between now and the release. What do you think about the comics being as if the show had an unlimited budget? Any villains you want to see pop up?