104 – Bat-Night-Vision

The “gadgeting” of Batman continues in Detective Comics #37 (February 1940) with Bruce adding a night-vision device to let him see in the dark. Note that this is only a couple months after Germans started experimenting with nightvision goggles in World War II!

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96 – Bat with a Gat

In Detective Comics #35 (December 1939), Bob Kane decided to show the provocative image of Batman holding a smoking gun in the splash page of the story, even though Batman never uses a gun in the story itself! But more importantly… wtf is going on with Batman’s body below the belt?!? Also, the cover of […]

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88 – Batman and Not The Question

In Detective Comics #34 (November 1939), Bruce Wayne meets up with a woman whose brother had his face burnt away by a terrible ray… those pesky terrible rays. The mad is not The Question, but I thought he looked similar enough to the character created thirty years later that I would include it here. While […]

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86 – Become The Bat

In Detective Comics #33 (October 1939), the Batman is finally given an origin story – and wow, what a powerful page and half that is! Apparently Bill Finger wrote this part of the story (the rest being written by Gardner Fox) and the words combined with the iconic imagery of Bob Kane continue the dark […]

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76 – The Batarang!

The Batman introduced two new gadgets in Detective Comics #31 (August 1939): The Bat-Gyro and the Bat-arang. It is also revealed that Bruce Wayne has a fiance named Julie Madison who is hypnotized by the second villain in Batman’s rogue’s gallery: The Mad Monk. In just five issues, Gardner Fox and Bob Kane have done […]

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73 – Ol’ Long Ears

By the fourth Batman story in Detective Comics #30 (July 1939), Bob Kane had lengthened the cowl’s ears and straightened them, giving The Batman a more streamlined and deadly appearance, despite the stiff, winged-looking cape. The comics from the 1980s and early 1990s featured a return to the look of this cowl and I loved […]

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70 – Batman’s Gadgets

In June 1939, Detective Comics #29 is the first story to feature The Batman‘s use of gadgets. This much longer story (10 pages) featured Batman’s first “arch criminal”, Doctor Death and lots of action: Batman swinging around the city on his rope, Batman scaling a building, Batman getting shot, and finally vanquishing his foe. I […]

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63 – The Bat-Man!

In April 1939, Bob Kane (and Bill Finger) published the first story about The Bat-Man in Detective Comics #27, bringing DC what would be its second big hit. Certainly his dramatic appearance had something to do with the character’s success, but I thought the first story was interesting by keeping him mysterious: He was not […]

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46 – Ginger Snap

I usually avoid humorous comic strips, because this blog is mostly supposed to be documenting interesting superhero moments, but I couldn’t resist this panel of “Ginger Snap” from More Fun Comics #31, April 1938 by Robert Kane (future creator of Batman).  This looks like the first thing that Bob Kane created for DC Comics. Speaking […]

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