"The Web of the Spinner": Batman and Robin encounter a new costumed villain, the Spinner, whose metal uniform is overlaid with spinning discs, and who utilizes a spinning buzz-saw gun, tops, and giant fans in
Appearing in "The Web of the Spinner"
- Spinner (Single appearance)
- Peanuts Gilson (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Web of the Spinner"
Batman and Robin encounter a new costumed villain, the Spinner, whose metal uniform is overlaid with spinning discs, and who utilizes a spinning buzz-saw gun, tops, and giant fans in his arsenal of tricks. The heroes are dazzled by the reflected light of the sun from the Spinner's colored-glass fan and thus are unable to stop the gang's escape, but a slang word used by the Spinner common among Joliet Prison inmates gives Batman a clue to his identity.
In the meantime, Kathy Kane is checking out a Swami Ymar who runs a racket finding lost valuables for wealthy people. He proves unable to see that Kathy's brooch is in her jewel box, but can see that another woman's diamond ring is on the powder box in her bureau. Kathy judges him master of a racket in which a henchman steals things and hides them, then, for a fee, the Swami pretends to find them. The Spinner has another encounter with Batman during a payroll robbery, but fends off the heroes with a giant top. He drops a glove, which proves to have peanut oil and salt on it. From this, and the Joliet Prison clue, Batman deduces that Peanuts Gilson, an ex-con, must be the Spinner, though he doesn't seem bright enough for the role. At the Swami's studio, a reporter nudges the Swami into revealing the Spinner's hideout, at a windmill outside of Gotham. Batwoman, outside the Swami's window, gets the news even before the reporter phones police headquarters, and thus precedes Batman and Robin by a few seconds--and gets caught by the Spinner and tied to a giant fan. Batman disables the fan controls with a pitchfork, and he and Robin easily defeat the gang. The Spinner, unmasked, proves to be Gilson. But when a freed Batwoman accuses him of other crimes, Gilson exclaims that he is not really the Spinner, who gave him this costume and asked him to stand in for him while he is out. Suspecting a trap--correctly--Batman gets all of them out of the windmill before a booby trap blows the structure to bits.
Batman, Robin and Batwoman return to the Swami's studio and captures the real Spinner--Swami Ymar. Ymar admits to using the slang and dropping the gimmicked glove as false clues, and was planning to have Gilson, in the Spinner costume, die in the blast, so that Ymar would be clear to retire safely with his loot from the robberies and the reward for The Spinner's capture. Batman leads him away, telling him the only one caught in the Spinner's web was the Spinner himself.
Appearing in "The Man from Robin's Past"
- Sando (Flashback and main story)
- Art Colby (Single appearance)
- Boss Zucco (Flashback only)
- Andy Sando (Flashback and main story)
- Flying Graysons (Flashback only)
- Jack Haly (Flashback only)
Synopsis for "The Man from Robin's Past"
Batman and Robin, passing by a circus on the outskirts of Gotham, notice two thieves wanted for a jewelry robbery in Midville duck into the tent of Sando, the Strongman. Robin recognizes Sando, as the kindly man who was his friend in the Haly's Circus before Dick Grayson became Robin. They go after the thugs, but a glancing shot frees a tiger from its cage and forces them to break off battle. Sando himself lifts a cage and heaves it over the tiger. Soon, Batman finds a diamond from the store loot in Sando's tent, and the strongman, refusing to answer questions, is jailed on suspicion. Robin believes that he might talk to his old friend, Dick Grayson.
Dick is allowed to see Sando the next day, and is welcomed with open arms. The scene reminds Dick of his playful tugs of war with Sando when he was a child, and of the night that gangsters rigged a fatal accident for his trapeze-riding parents to force Haly, the owner of the circus, to pay protection money. On that night, Dick Grayson first met Batman, who trained him to become Robin, and fought alongside of him to bring his parents' murderers to justice. Back in the present, Dick asks Sando if he should be allowed to tell Andy, Sando's son, of his whereabouts; Sando emphatically refuses to let him do so. Batman and Robin, wondering if Sando is covering for his son, goes to Midville, where Andy is attending college. There they discover that Andy Sando is hanging around the Green Anchor nightclub, owned by gangster Art Colby. They find Andy there, bitterly accusing Art Colby of pulling the robbery after first going with Andy to meet his strongman father, and then hiding the diamonds in Sando's tent, knowing he feels his son--incorrectly--to be involved.
Andy threatens to go to the police; Colby directs his men to grab Andy; and Batman and Robin, emerging from hiding, attack Colby's men. But Colby brings down the huge anchor-trademark in the heroes' path, and flees behind a locked steel door with Andy as hostage. Sando, out on bail and suddenly appearing, hefts up the huge anchor and smashes in the door with it. Then he enters and nabs Colby and clobbers his goons in a single motion. Colby points out that without any physical evidence here, Batman still has no case against him. But the masked hero discovers a letter obviously to a fence of stolen goods, with the date written day first, month second. Realizing that Englishmen put the day first in their dating, Batman goes after transplanted Britisher Limey Lou, and finds the diamonds and the rest of the gang in Limey's lair. Later on, Sando vigorously pumps Batman's hand, and tells him he doesn't know how to thank him. Batman suggests he stop crushing his hand, for starters.
Appearing in "Merriweather Jones -- Crime Prophet"
- Merryweather Jones (Single appearance)
- Red-Hot Regan (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Merriweather Jones -- Crime Prophet"
After being struck on the head by a deflected lightning bolt, Merriweather Jones develops the power to predict where a crime will be committed when a gong-like sensation is felt in his head, by "some strange kind of telepathy!" He proves this by signaling a cop to investigate a crime in progress, which, inadvertently, Batman and Robin were also foiling. Jones is suspected of collusion, but is released after questioning. He thwarts a second crime at the Atlas Signal Device Company by ringing an alarm that summons a passing Batman and Robin to apprehend the burglars, and, after hearing how Jones got his powers, Batman drives him home with a warning to stay under wraps until Batman visits the police.
The Gotham force agrees to try out Jone's ability, but someone is also interested: "Red-Hot" Regan, a gang chief, who kidnaps Jones and attempts to force him to predict robberies, so that he can hijack the thieves' loot. From two pennies with Lincoln heads left on number 10s, Batman and Robin deduce that Jones has left them a clue: the Lincoln Bank is to be robbed at 10:00. Batman and Robin use plainclothes cops to stage a fake robbery, and, when Regan and his gang, with Jones in tow, try to seize the swag, Batman and Robin intervene and beat the daylights out of the thugs. Jones reveals that his power is now gone, but Batman and he each keep one of the pennies left as a clue, as memoirs of one of the strangest escapades in their lives.
- "The Man from Robin's Past" was reprinted in 80-Page Giant #8, More Secret Origins Replica Edition and DC Universe: Secret Origins.
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