Batman 337 – the Snowman debuts, and Robin begins

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Batman faces a new villain in issue 337 (July 1081), and Robin begins a new back-up series in this issue as well.

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Garcia-Lopez and Steve Mitchell have some beautiful art on this Rozakis and Thomas story, which introduces a villain capable of freezing people, but with a bit more style than Mr. Freeze.

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It’s really obvious that the Snowman is the same person as Klaus Krispin, an albino champion skier, currently in Gotham.  In fact, the one real weakness to this tale is how short it is.

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Batman breaks into Klaus’ room, and reads his dead mother’s diary.  We discover that she was lost in the Himilayas, and got into a hot romance with the Abominable Snowman, having his child.

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Klaus is that boy, able to transform his appearance from human to Snowman at will, killing to support his posh lifestyle.  He and Batman fight briefly, before Klaus goes over the edge of a cliff.  I liked this character, and would happily have read a two-part introduction, rather than this quick one.

The Snowman does return for one further story, a few months down the road in the pages of Detective Comics.

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Robin starts a back-up series with a story by Gerry Conway, Don Newton and Larry Mahlstedt, which sees him head to the circus most commonly seen in the Deadman series.

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Waldo Flynn, a clown he knew back before his parents were killed, who had appeared a few months earlier in DC Comics Presents, is now working at Hill’s Circus, and Vashnu, Tiny and Cleveland Brand all get small roles in this tale, with only Lorna Hill having a major role.  All were last seen a couple of years earlier in the Deadman series in Adventure Comics.

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When Cleveland gets injured, Dick Grayson is more than happy to climb up and hit the trapeze, which means he is right on the scene when a rival for Lorna’s affections gets shot, seemingly by Waldo.

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Robin knows Waldo could not be the killer, but the only other suspect appears to be Lorna herself.

The story concludes in the next issue.

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