I kinda started this tangent in the thread about the trailer for the new one. I think it would be better served by being in a different thread.
I think Burton’s Batman sucks. There is exactly one thing that he gets right, and that is the visual style and design of Gotham City and its contents. Jack Nicholson plays his one character and it’s a poor fit for the Joker. The best thing I can say about Michael Keaton is that he’s unremarkable. Burton apparently believes that one of Batman’s core competencies is getting shot in the chest a bunch, then standing up and scaring the crap out of the people who shot him, since this happens three fucking times over the course of this movie.
And then there’s Prince.
I honestly think the Adam West Batman is superior. To me, there are two directions you can take Batman. Goofy campy Batman reflects a lot of the classic comics, and it’s just fun besides. Dark brooding Batman is also awesome and represents both the original intent and the more modern take on it. The problem with Burton was that he made it plenty dark and brooding, he just forgot to make it Batman at the same time.
Also, for me the definitive Batman is the animated series. That’s partially due to the fact that it ran when I was a kid, but I still think it has the best visual style of all time and a good, consistent tone.