The Translation of an American Icon: Bat-Manga!
In 1966 the original Batman television series found so much success in the U.S. that it was eventually exported overseas. When the show aired in Japan, the audience was so enamored by the Caped Crusader that the publisher of Shonen King, a popular boys’ magazine at the time, contacted DC Comics to license the rights to the Dynamic Duo. They would go on to create their own original Batman stories interpreted through the lens of Manga. Though the run was short-lived, lasting for only one year, the comics presented an interesting twist on the Batman paradigm, offering entertaining glimpses into the ways culture gets co-opted and consumed abroad. Even with a larger-than-life icon, some nuances inevitably get lost in translation.