Brace Yourself for the Billion Dollar Debut of Bat-Girl!

The dazzling debut of Bat-Girl!, from "Batman" No. 139.
The dazzling debut of Bat-Girl!, from “Batman” No. 139.

It just had to happen.

Batman gained a female counterpart in 1956 in Batwoman, just in time to head off these freaky academics who were convinced Batman and Robin were P-Town buddies.

Readers had to wait five years for the next obvious addition to the Bat-Family.

In “Bat-Girl!” in “Batman” No. 139, cover date April 1961, written by Bill Finger and drawn by Sheldon Moldoff, the Bat-Family has been cornered by those dastardly fiends, the Cobra Gang.

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Meet the Ant-Man! Not him. No, not the other one. DC’s Ant-Man!

The Ant-Man strikes
What lies beneath the mask of the pint-sized peril?

He’s the mighty mite, a six-inch dynamo with the weight and density of a full-grown man, the small scourge of crime everywhere.

He’s …. the Ant-Man!

You’re probably thinking of Marvel Comics’ Hank Pym right about now.

No, it’s not him.

Or maybe you’re guessing it must be his successor, Scott Lang, who recently received the big-screen treatment and was hilarious.

Sorry. This is DC’s Ant-Man – a character who made but one appearance in “Batman” No. 156, cover date June 1963.

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When Batman Faced his Greatest Fear

"Robin Dies at Dawn" - and the unforgettable cover to "Batman" No. 156.
“Robin Dies at Dawn” – and the unforgettable cover to “Batman” No. 156.

My favorite era in “Batman” comics – actually all of DC – is the late ’50s and early ’60s.

Oh, these weren’t the comics I grew up with.

By the time I came along, Batman was already years into his “New Look” – the artistic reboot that pushed for realism, jettisoned most of the Bat-Family and made for a dull crime-fighter.

Over the years, I have gone back and tried to collect as much as I can – not much, all things considered – of “Batman,” “Detective Comics” and “World’s Finest” during this era.

The stories are just so much fun.

Many comics fans – and certainly DC itself – disagree.

Continue reading “When Batman Faced his Greatest Fear”