|"Robin's New Boss!"|
|First Published:||February 1961|
|Previous Issue:||Batman #136|
|Next Issue:||Batman #138|
"Robin's New Boss!"Edit
Batman and Robin are scooped in their attempt to capture some thieves at an airport by Mr. Marvel, a new costumed crime-fighter, who uses futuristic gadgets and rides a sky-car. In a press conference, Mr. Marvel says that he is a scientist and that he believes Batman's crime-fighting methods are outdated, as lawmen should not have to use fisticuffs. As Mr. Marvel continues to make headlines, Bruce Wayne notices Dick Grayson seeming to hero-worship the newcomer. Finally, Robin packs up and announces he is leaving to become Mr. Marvel's partner. Batman tries persuasion, which fails, and then tells Robin that can stop him from leaving as his legal guardian. Robin replies that he would have to reveal his Bruce Wayne identity in court to do so, and that, after a trial period, he will have his features changed by Mr. Marvel to start a new identity. The two heroes make a strained farewell. Later, Robin mulls over the real reason he has joined Mr. Marvel: to save Batman's life. Earlier, Marvel had threatened to kill Batman if Robin did not become his partner, demonstrated his power by using a disintergrator ray-gun on a Batman billboard, and indicated that a device on his belt was tuned into "Batman's frequency" and would send a death-bolt to Batman if Robin did not team up with Marvel. Robin and Marvel continue their crime-busting, but Batman, recovering partially from the shock, suspects that Robin has not given him the true reason for his departure, and begins shadowing the pair. During another encounter with crooks, Robin breaks off the fight, slugs Mr. Marvel, and tears away his belt. Batman joins in the fracas and helps Robin put down the brigands, and, afterwards, learns the truth from Robin. Batman braces Marvel and unmasks him, revealing Marvel as an alien. The alien confesses that he and his partner had long observed Batman and Robin from their hovering spacecraft, and that Marvel had made a wager he could acquire Robin as a partner for ten days. He confesses that his belt had no power to tune in on Batman's frequency, makes a lame apology, and is whisked back into his ship by his partner. Batman muses that Robin was only his partner for nine days, so Marvel has lost his bet. The two heroes head for home, reunited again.
"The Bandit with 1,000 Brands!"Edit
A new villain, costumed as a masked western bandit, calls himself the Brand and announces his presence to Batman by firing a hot branding iron-arrow into the door of police headquarters as Batman and Robin are leaving. He informs Batman from a rooftop that he intends to leave clues in brands to his forthcoming crimes and challenges him and Robin to capture him, then leaves. Announcing he is disgusted with crooks who want to make a fast reputation by challenging him, Batman says that he is going to bring in the Brand quickly. In the days that follow, Batman has two encounters with the Brand. One clue, painted on a billboard, is the "Lazy S-and-O" cattle brand, suggesting the eye painted on a chines ship's prow from which the Brands steals a jade statue, escaping by knocking Batman and Robin off the ship with its boom. The second, a skywritten double-box brand, indicates two squares of the giant chessboard where championship chess players will soon play a TV match with giant robot chessmen; the Brand attempts to steal a golden cup and manages to delay Batman by hemming him in with the robots on the board. But the masked thief leaves a bit of mud from his boot and the two crusaders analyze it, discovering a bit of train-bed gravel in it and finding the soil is the kind found far below topsoil. Deducing that the Brand has been digging in a subway, Batman and Robin disregard a third, erroneous brand-clue and intercept the Brand as he is attempting an escape through a subway after tunneling into a bank and robbing it. The Brand, caught, confesses that he was after a $100,000 fund that Batman was keeping in the bank as contributions for a new youth center, to be removed from the vault at a special ceremony; his crimes were ruses to delay Batman until he could tunnel into the vault. Later, Batman observes the Brand wearing another kind of brand—a prison number.
"Teacher from the Stars!"Edit
Batman and Robin are plagued by the super-scientific pranks of three students from the planet Siga, led on an educational trip by their teacher, Blish. The alien kids prove difficult for even their instructor to restrain, and raise havoc in Gotham with anti-gravity rays, transporter rays, freeze rays, image projectors, light-ray distorters and magnetic repulsors. But, when the alien children repulse the guns from the hands of two policemen chasing bank robbers, Batman and Robin defeat the crooks and then asks Blish and his charges to leave. Blish confesses that he has made a terrible mistake; he was supposed to be visiting the planet Orla, where all lawmen wear masks, which caused him to believe Batman and Robin were his guides and that the crooks were actually policemen being pursued by gun-wielding criminals. The aliens take off in their flying saucer, and, later, send Batman and Robin a class picture.