ByDash Finley, writer at

While the internet might still be crowing about Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice, you don't have to plunk down a chunk of change at your local multiplex to get your fill of Superhero action. In fact, some of the very first superhero media ever produced is available for free on YouTube right now. Though some of these picks are more curiosities than they are masterpieces, they're all interesting-- and little-seen-- pieces of comic-book history.

The Batman Serial (1943):

20 years before Adam West hit TV screens as the Caped Crusader, Lewis Wilson donned the mask for this strange series of black & white adventures.

The Fleischer Studios Superman Cartoons (1940s):

This beautifully animated, lyircal series transitioned the nascent Superman character onto movie screens during the heyday of the Greatest Generation.

Captain America Serial (1944):

Very few fans have ever seen Cap's earliest iteration; a classic Republic romp starring Steve Purcell as the hero.

Adventures Of Captain Marvel (1941):

In reality, Captain Marvel was the most popular superhero of the 1940s, outselling even Superman. You can see why with this swashbuckling serialized adventure.

The Shadow (1933):

The Shadow may have fallen by the wayside in recent years, but in many ways, the masked avenger was the granddaddy of all super-heroes-- appearing an among the earliest comic books ever released. It all goes back to this, folks:


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