Adam West, the man who was most closely associated with Batman for decades until Tim Burton’s 1989 film revived the character, has passed away at 88. He reportedly passed away peacefully on Friday, surrounded by family in Los Angeles, after a short battle with leukemia.
As Bruce Wayne/Batman on the original 1966-1968 TV series, West was a cultural icon who defined the campy take on the Caped Crusader for decades to come. The colorful series was noted for its absurdity, as was the 1966 Batman: The Movie, which included now infamous sequences including West’s “shark-repellent bat spray” and “Sometimes you just can’t get rid of a bomb!” He was suave, funny and at all times, effortlessly cool. We at Paste have always been fans of the series—we even ranked all 34 Batman ‘66 villains last year.
In the years that followed, West unsurprisingly struggled with typecasting after having been in such an iconic role, but he made memorable supporting appearances in scores of B-movies, and even appeared prominently in Zombie Nightmare, a film featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000. In more recent years he came into something of a career renaissance, first parodying his old role on shows such as The Simpsons before nabbing a popular supporting role as Mayor Adam West on Family Guy, which he played for years.
Fare well, Mr. West. May you dance the Bat-tusi in heaven.