Old School Americana & Nostalgia


‘Batman’: How Robin’s ‘Bulge’ on the Classic 60s Show Had Network Execs Sweating

‘Batman’: How Robin’s ‘Bulge’ on the Classic 60s Show Had Network Execs Sweating

Holy costume malfunction, Batman! It seems network execs found themselves befuddled over Robin’s pronounced bulge on the classic series. The 60s TV series was a cultural phenomenon. It featured colorful action, camp humor and was packed with celebrity guest stars.

In 1965, Burt Ward secured a leading role in the primetime television series during his very first audition. Ward portrayed Robin, The Boy Wonder, the caped apprentice to Adam West’s Batman.

However, even with its campy and lighthearted nature, Ward’s depiction of the Boy Wonder caused a significant stir within the studio when it managed to offend the Catholic League of Decency.

According to Ward the tights he had to wear for Robin in the Batman television were too snug, causing a bulge that made jaws drop and tongues wag. “They thought that Robin had a very large bulge for television,” Ward told Page Six in 2020.

The Batman Star Claims He Was Prescribed Pills to Shrink His Robin Costume Bulge

Eventually, the situation grew to a length where the studio could no longer overlook the hard feelings and had to take action. As a result, executives decided to send Ward to a doctor, to explore the possibilities of modern medicine to address the growing concern.

The bulging Boy Wonder left with potent pills promising to “shrink me up,” as Ward put it. “I took [the pills] for three days,” Ward recalled. However, the young actor grew concerned over possible side effects. “I decided that they can probably keep me from having children. I stopped doing that and I just used my cape to cover it,” he recalled.

Batman fans are probably wondering why there was only concern for Robin’s prolific bulge. However, Ward was quick to point out how a tight crotch wasn’t a concern for Adam West. “They put Turkish towels in his undershorts”, Ward joked.

Despite his young age, charisma, and apparently packing serious heat, Ward didn’t spend his evenings pursuing romance in Hollywood. The boy wonder was a serious square. “You must understand I never smoked, drank, or did drugs so I never went to a bar in my entire life,” he insisted.

“It’s not to say I didn’t go out and have a good time but I never went out and did what you think Hollywood [celebrities] do,” he added. “I was a straight-A student at UCLA. In fact, the Dean at UCLA was upset with me when I left in my third year to do Robin because she said I should have been a nuclear physicist.”