Bruce Wayne Casts Batman’s Shadow

Batman '43 Emblem

From the 1943 Columbia Pictures’ serial: “Batman”.

Chapter 9_title cardIn Chapter 9: “The Sign of the Sphinx” Bruce Wayne disguises himself as Chuck White, a former boxer turned petty criminal-for-hire, in order to infiltrate Dr. Daka’s group of henchmen. While the henchmen question him (trying to determine if he’s legit), Chuck (Bruce) briefly casts a shadow on the wall that amazingly resembles the very profile he’d cast if he were in his Batman garb.

Batman's shadowBatman's Shadow_detailI don’t think this was intentional, but it’s just the sort of thing that had been done in comic books many times: Clark Kent casting Superman’s shadow, Peter Parker casting the shadow of Spiderman.C Bale_BM ShadowBruce casts Bat's shadow

Just another one of those little gems that keep popping up in this series, and which keeps me coming back for more.

And now, just for fun, and keeping in my “tradition” of including a little animation: Batman desperately trying to take off.

Flapping-BM

You can find a more detailed description of the serial and this episode here (along with many other images):
Legions of Gotham (Serial 1943)

© 1943, renewed 1971 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved. © 2005 Detective Comics, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Additional images: © Nick Smith http://artnuggets.net/tag/the-dark-knight/, ©2011-2013 ~CABARETdelDIAVOLO http://cabaretdeldiavolo.deviantart.com/

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Batman Loses his Chesterfields

Batman '43 EmblemFrom the 1943 Columbia Pictures’ serial: “Batman”.

Prospector Ken Colton (Charles Middleton)

Prospector Ken Colton (Charles Middleton)

I’ve noticed quite a few things as I’m enjoying this serial. The actor (Charles Middleton)

Charles Middleton as the Commandant of the Foreign Legion in

The Commandant

who plays Ken Colton, a suddenly wealthy prospector who discovers a deposit of several tons of Radium in his mine (the very mineral that Dr. Daka is after for the purposes of fueling a scaled-up version of his Radium-Gun), tickled my recognition as the same actor who portrays the Commandant of the Foreign Legion in the Laurel and Hardy movie “The Flying Deuces“, as well as Ming the Merciless

Ming the Merciless

in the Flash Gordon serials.

I’ve noticed a couple of continuity errors casually as well. In the first chapter, inside Dr. Daka’s lair, there is an insert shot of a screen, blank when we see it, but from later context, it becomes clear that there was supposed to be a fluoroscope or x-ray image of the hand of his henchman outside the door seeking clearance for entry.

In a later chapter, there’s a fight scene with the Batman, and in one shot, his cape has fallen off, but in the next shot it has inexplicably returned on his person.

Poison Peril_title card

But the piece de resistance (and the one that had me rolling on the floor) occurs in “Chapter 6: The Poison Peril”. Towards the end of this chapter, while Batman and Robin are climbing down a fire-escape, an object slips from the folds of Batman’s cape. When I slowed down and magnified the image, it becomes clear that it is a pack of Chesterfields, which proceed to spill out onto the pavement below. Now: had the actor sewn a secret pocket into the cape, to have ready access to his smokes for a quick break between takes, or was this a particularly clumsy product-placement? Watch the animation I created from the frames and decide for yourself. (You can click the image to see the animation, or: click this link): Batman Loses his Chesterfields

Batman's-Chesterfields animation

Batman’s-Chesterfields (click to see animation)

You can find a more detailed description of the serial and this episode here (along with many other images):
Legions of Gotham (Serial 1943)

© 1943, renewed 1971 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved. © 2005 Detective Comics, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1943 Batman Raygun Clip

Batman '43 Emblem

From the 1943 Columbia Pictures’ serial: “Batman”.

In “Chapter 4: Slaves of the Rising Sun”, Batman climbs atop a moving armored car, containing two of Dr. Daka’s henchmen. Using the Radium-Gun captured from the Doctor, he blasts his way in.Batman - Chapter 4: "Slaves of the Rising Sun" (title card)

Besides the title card, I captured several others of the titles sequence, combining them in Photoshop to get a clean version of the emblem, which is surprisingly consistent with Batman emblems throughout the character’s history. I matched the font as close as I could, and if any person out there knows the exact font used in the titles, I’d really like to know what it is.

Evil Dr Daka

The Evil Dr. Daka

I originally captured these three frames from the sequence, because of the dramatic, low-angle lighting on Batman, the position he was standing in, and because of the rareness of him holding ANY gun, let alone a RAY gun). I intend to do an illustration based on them. I put them together here in a gif to make a short animation.

Bat Radium-Gun animation

 

 

 

You can find a more detailed description of the serial and this episode here (along with many other images):
Legions of Gotham: Serial 1943

© 1943, renewed 1971 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved. © 2005 Detective Comics, Inc. All Rights Reserved