Then Tim Burton resurrected the franchise with the 1989 film, and it's been an unstoppable box office juggernaut ever since. Mostly.
The Original Version:
Turns out there's an older live-action version of Batman that DC Comics understandably doesn't like to talk about.
With the black and white, there's always the uneasy feeling that those legging might not be leggings at all.
Why? For starters, in this low-budget 1943 Batman serial, the costumes were crappy, the Batmobile was a regular car, and the Batcave was ... well, a cave. An empty, bat-infested cave where Batman drops criminals to terrorize them.
Also, it's kinda racist. In this version, Batman is actually a government agent fighting against the "shifty-eyed Japs" -- that's his entire origin. No traumatic witnessing of his parents' murder as a child, just "the government asked him to put on a bat costume and punch Asians" (the CIA had to stop doing that in 1957). This Batman truly didn't give a f**k: When he wasn't letting innocent window cleaners fall to their deaths or losing his cape and mysteriously regaining it, he was stashing cigarettes in his costume:
And not bothering to reshoot the scene after dropping them.