Artist: "Jan and Dean"
Album: "Jan And Dean Meet Batman"
Reviewer: Max Burbank
Review: This was my first favorite album. I borrowed it from one of my first babysitters and never returned which I suppose means I stole it.
It was released in 1966, the heyday of the Adam West batman show. That would make me four at the time, but I stole my copy several years later. I was still too young to buy my own records, so it couldn’t have been all that much later.
Far more than a tribute to the show, it was an entity unto itself. It opened with a cover the fabulous Batman theme, introduced by a radio play style retelling of the moment the Bat crashes through the window at Wayne Manor inspiring young Mr. Wayne to become ‘a creature of the night’.
Following cuts trade between excellent surf rock songs about Robin, The Joker, Mr. Freeze, the Batmobile and... sketch comedy.
Yes. Sketch comedy starring Jan and Dean as Captain Jan and Dean the Boy Blunder. And they are pretty damn funny. Not content to parody Batman, there’s a riff on Captain Marvel thrown in as well. The boys’ origin reveals their magically based powers come from “The Little Old Lady From Pasadena” (a reference to their own classic hit). When they sing her name, they are transformed. The sketches seem influenced by Firesign Theatre, which is not impossible, as the Firesigns debuted on LA radio the same year this album came out. While campy enough, it’s far more anarchic than the TV show it’s spoofing.
Jan and Dean meet Batman has been re-released from time to time over the years, and I found it on eBay. Of course, many of you wouldn’t know a vinyl album if I beat you with it, but what the hell. Buy it and look at it. I’m sure it must be available for ‘download’ somewhere. My daughter has an iPod. I’ll ask her.
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)
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