Reed, Calnan and Blaisdel brings “Where Were You on the Night Batman was Killed” to a clever conclusion in Batman 294 (Dec. 77).
The trial has been drawing a lot of Batman’s lesser known villains. Captain Stingaree, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, the Getaway Genius, the Cavalier, Killer Moth and Cluemaster all have cameos in this final issue. Not to mention the jury of the Mad Hatter, Scarecrow, Spook, Poison Ivy, Signalman and Mr. Freeze, and Ra’s Al Ghul as the judge. The Joker testifies in this issue, and as it’s the final chapter, it’s fairly clear that his testimony will have an importance than none of the others had.
The Joker tells a story about Batman foiling a robbery one night. The Joker returned to the same location the next night, and was surprised to find Batman there again. This time, Batman was no match for the Joker, who killed him, and used acid to destroy his facial features. Two-Face demands some proof of this, and the Joker states that he has a picture of Batman’s face before he used the acid on it.
The Joker leave to get hi proof, to the cheer of the other villain. But then the tory take a major tit, a Two-Face remove his diguie. He was really Batman all along.
He follo the Joker, and they have an enjoyable fight scene, with Batman subjected to a hallucinogenic effect during the battle. He still manages to win, of course.
At the end, Batman explains the whole story to Commissioner Gordon. The real victim was a man who liked to dress up as Batman, and re-enact his feats. That was why he went to the location of the robbery the following night, and fell prey to the Joker. Batman had Two-Face put into solitary, to take his place and set up the trial, to root out whoever it was that committed the murder.
A clever and fun story, providing many minor villains with, in some cases, their only appearances during the 70s.
Tagged: Batman, Captain Stingaree, Cavalier, Cluemaster, Commissioner Gordon, David V Reed, DC Comics, Getaway Genius, John Calnan, Joker, Killer Moth, Mad Hatter, Mr Freeze, Poison Ivy, Ra's Al Ghul, Scarecrow, Signalman, Spook, Tex Blaisdel, Two-Face