Batman 256 – the comic that turned me into a collector

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Batman 256 (May/June1974) features a new Catwoman story, by O’Neil, Novick and Giordano, and reprints featuring stories of the Batcave and trophy room, including the tales that introduced the dinosaur and giant penny.  When I was about 11 or 12 years old, I had to choose between buying this book, and another 100 pager, Justice League of America 113.  I picked the JLA issue, intending to come back the following week and get this one.  By the time I returned, it had been sold.  And so I began visiting comic book stores, hoping to find it. It took 20 years before I found a copy, in a store in Victoria. Needless to say, by that time I was a full fledged comic geek.

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Robin gets a role in this one, performing with a circus, where he suspects something shady is going on.  He writes to Batman about this, which brings him into the case.  Just in time, as it turns out, as Robin almost gets killed while performing a stunt.

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It’s really not difficult to figure out that the tiger loving Nelias is really Selina Kyle, the Catwoman.  But it’s a bit more surprising to find that she isn’t really the villain of the story.  She is, however, a wanted felon, so Batman still tries to bring her in, and they fight.

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But the one who tried to kill Robin is really doing so out of love for Catwoman.  He even killed his brother, thinking that she was in love with him.  While Batman faces down the murderer, Catwoman takes the opportunity to flee, returning a year down the road.

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