When artist Karl Heitmueller Jr. was a kid, he drew a completely off-the-wall interpretation of Batman that had absolutely nothing to do with bats. Upon discovering this illustration as an adult, he knew that it was ripe for revisiting:

While going through a pile of old childhood artwork, I found this bizarre drawing I did of "The Golden Age Batman." I'm not sure how old I was, probably around 8 or so (just a guess), old enough to know of the concept of The Golden Age of Comics, but not at all aware of what 1940s design looked like. Because this groovy Batman costume is something better suited for a 1970s Blaxploitation film than anything caped crusader-related. Those name-checked bell bottoms!

Heitmueller expanded upon this 1940s-meets-1970s aesthetic by coming up with similar costumes for Robin (macrame and gym shorts) and Catwoman (Farrah Fawcett's swimsuit, more absurd monogramming, and denim gloves), basing Batman's new logo on his eight-year-old scrawl, and tossing various aspects of Golden and Bronze Age comic design on the cover willy-go-nilly. ("Heck, nothing about this makes sense, so why not," admits Heitmueller.) The fruits of this creative experiment are sweet indeed.

[Benjamin Heitmueller Jr. via Project Rooftop]