To an entire generation Batman has been clad in black rubber armor but the reality is this was not the case until Tim Burton and Michael Keaton's blockbuster film hit screens in 1989, twenty five years ago this June 25th.
Batman the character celebrates his 75th anniversary this April but that means for his first fifty years anytime we saw Batman we thought tights and a cape.
The Burton film brought in costume designer Bob Ringwood who used the comics as reference but decided it made a lot more sense for a guy to go out and fight crime in bullet proof armor than in a pair of dance tights.
The Keaton Batman also marks the very first time a superhero was depicted as being clad in black rubber or leather, something that today seems old hat-- before this film superheroes wore spandex.
It's a monumental piece of Bat and Film History and you can see the actual costume worn by Michael Keaton on display at the Worcester Art Museum (www.worcesterart.org) during their KNIGHTS exhibit along with a copy of the very first comic book to ever refer to Batman as The Dark Knight as provided by the fine folks at Superworld Comics.
I've had the opportunity to walk the Knights exhibit and see the suit upclose-- it's remarkable to see its time worn battle weary self.
The exhibit opens March 28th.