I also didn't know that The Phantom was the first superheroic character to wear a skintight action outfit like that. He was also the first to use the mask that disguised even his eyes. He didn't have any superpowers beyond knowledge and training. Much like Batman, he was a detective first and foremost.
In 1996, I wasn't the pulp enthusiast I am now becoming, though I had enjoyed several stories of that sort. I'm not sure I even knew the term for it. I guess I've always been drawn to stories that intermix fantastical and more realistic elements, humor and drama, action and philosophy. After seeing this film, I began to seek out more of these kinds of stories. So, my thanks to Mr. Falk for creating such an inspiring and intriguing character. He brought me one of the great joys of my life.
Don't forget to check out my own superhero stories: