It was with great sadness to learn of the passing of a great and inspirational man, Adam West. Tributes have since poured in from all over the world as a mark of respect to him.
I myself felt a sudden sense of loss to hear of his passing. My thoughts immediately turned to the memories of when I was a little boy and how every afternoon me and my little brother would sit down with our mother and watch ‘KaPow!’, ‘Bam!’ and ‘Pow!’ appear on our screens and that the man who had a hand in this had passed on.
Which is why I wanted to dedicate this article on the works of Adam West. A tribute and dedication to the work he was involved in and the joy it brought everyone.
Image From: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Adam_West_1961.JPG
The Early Years
A quick search on IMDB will show you that West has been accredited for a staggering 193 roles. He started his career back in the early 50’s where he had numerous guest appearances on various TV series such as Maverick, Colt .45 and 77 Sunset Strip.
It wasn’t until the early 60’s that you could say West received his first major role. The Detectives which ran from 1959-1962 was a TV series about an elite squad of detectives in a US city who were more determined on bringing down crime than having personal lives.
West didn’t come into the show until the final season but starred in 30 episodes as Det. Sgt. Steve Nelson.
Shortly after The Detectives came to an end West appeared in a few more TV series but in 1964, he also appeared in the science fiction movie retelling of the Robinson Crusoe novel Robinson Crusoe on Mars. West starred as Col. Dan McReady.
It was only two short years after that, that the beginning of what can easily be said is his most iconic work began. Batman: The Movie came out in 1966 with West starring as Batman/Bruce Wayne.
If you have never seen the 1966 Batman movie or any other works of West’s Batman then I highly recommend it. However, do not expect it to be anywhere near the same tone of movie as the Dark Knight series.
The movie was cheesy. There is no denying that. But, that is one of the things that made it great. It was filled with cheesy lines, cheesy jokes, loud costumes, over the top bad guys and best of all the sound effects were just awesome. Frequently seeing ‘Zip and ‘Pow’ appear on your screen during a fight scene was just awesome.
Image From: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKh2qSjCaLg
What began as a movie spanned into a 120 episode TV show. The show ran from 1966-1968 and was still showing reruns in the 90’s.
I can’t tell you how good it was watching that show every afternoon with my little brother, We loved nothing more than Batman and Robin chase the bad guys down and ‘KaPow’ them.
West continued to appear as the iconic Bat in many variations throughout the decades. In the mid 70’s an animated series ran The New Adventures of Batman where West played the voice of Batman and then again at the end of the 70’s in Legends of Superheroes.
The 80’s were no exception either. In SuperFriends: The Legendary Super Powers Show and The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians the voice of Batman was played by, you guessed it, West.
The Later Years
After the Bat-Era had been and gone West still appeared on TV regularly and was certainly not short on any work.
He had a steady string of work throughout the 90’s and into the 00’s mainly as a voice over actor in both Movies and TV. That continued well into his later years as he starred in roles for Family Guy, The Fairly Odd Parents, Chicken Little and more.
Best of all, many of his roles as a voice over actor were as a fictional character of himself. For example in Family Guy West played the role of Mayor Adam West.
Image From: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_jP2vrRFy8
He course did other work in his later years rather than just voice work. He also starred in The Big Bang Theory, 30 Rock and The King of Queens to name a few.
A Dedicated Sole
Adam West can certainly be described as a dedicated actor who was committed to his roles and everything that it entailed.
From his early days in acting as a TV guest star, to his first major role in The Detectives to his infamous role as Batman which he carried and maintained for decades, to his final years in voice acting Adam West was certainly nothing but dedicated to his profession.
He will be missed by many and certainly by myself. Now, when I watch an original episode of Batman or an episode of Family Guy it will both bring a smile but also a slight sadness.
What is your most memorable moment of Adam West? What was the first show or movie you seen him in?
Leave a comment below to let us know your thoughts.
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Author: Callum Gunn
Writer and Social Media Manager at FanNews, Callum is a self-proclaimed geek/nerd who loves TV and Movies and everything that comes with it.