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CSBG Archive

I Love Ya But You’re Strange – That Time Batgirl and Wonder Woman Both Fell in Love With Batman

Every week, I will spotlight strange but ultimately endearing comic stories (basically, we’re talking lots and lots of Silver Age comic books). Here is the archive of all the installments of this feature.

Today we take a look at Brave and the Bold #78, where Wonder Woman and Batgirl fight for Batman’s affection in yet another zany Bob Haney tale (this time drawn by Bob Brown)!

The comic opens with the introduction of a new supervillain, Copperhead, who cleverly distracts Batman while he is stealing the tiara off of a visiting queen….

What I love about Bob Haney is that he did not give even the slightest crap about whether people’s personalities were consistent or not, like when Commissioner Gordon just acts like a total jerk to Batman…

Soon afterwards, Wonder Woman shows up and is skywriting “I love Batman” in the sky. Then Batgirl shows up, as well…

Copperhead is paranoid, but he is right to be paranoid.

I like this bit about Batman’s birthday…

Also, I love that Batman totally starts getting into it…

You have to love the reporters commenting on the story. Also, Gordon continues his jerky behavior to Batman.

Anyhow, they eventually reveal that Wonder Woman and Batgirl were PRETENDING to be in love with Batman…

but Copperhead is still paranoid, so they have to pretend some more…

only this time, they FELL IN LOVE WITH BATMAN FOR REAL!!!

Haney just doesn’t give a crap about logic. It is awesome.

Batgirl also left her secret identity for Batman, including an odd way of phrasing it…

“The greatest gift a super-heroine can give.”

Sounds dirty.

Anyhow, they all eventually beat Copperhead (be sure to track this issue down to find out how – it’s a neat story) and then the farewell is hilariously matter of the fact…

Sorry about the whole “falling in love with you” thing, Batman!

Our own Mark Andrew recommended I spotlight this one. Thanks, Mark!

39 Comments

Batdickery at its finest.

As a child in the sixties, reading Bob Haney’s Batman stories in Brave and the Bold always left me scratching my head, disappointed and disillusioned. I couldn’t understand why they didn’t make sense, and didn’t have the same level of intelligence and consistency as the Batman stories in Detective and Batman’s comic.

The Haney Batman stories didn’t even seem like they were published by the same company. Haney’s stories were more on par with Archie super-hero stories like Fly-Man, or the Mighty Crusaders. They were more similar to Harvey super-hero stories like Jigsaw.

In fact, Haney’s nonsense had more in common with Richie Rich than with the rest of the DC line.

Fantastic. The older I get, the more I think Haney’s Brave and the Bold might be DC’s best book ever.

I must confess I’ve never found Batman’s cape particularly groovy.

i JUST LOVE THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD. IT HAS TO BE MY FAVORITE BOOK OF ALL TIME. AND THE OLD BATMAN TEAM UPS BY HANEY ARE JUST SO MUCH FUN TO READ.

That was one of the funniest things I’ve ever read. So many great lines, although it’s hard to beat “BATMAN IS FLATTERED.”

Why is Batman’s birthday public knowledge?

Why is Batman’s birthday public knowledge?

My guess is that it was not until Batgirl and Wonder Woman made it so. Which, seeing as how it was part of Batman’s plan, really was quite dumb.

Yeah, I also cracked up about “Batman is flattered!” and “Those two girls are turning your head!” But my favorite has to be “You mythological mimsy!”

Much like that statue of Batman, this is pure gold.

Copperhead sort of amazingly became a minor, but nonetheless well-remembered DC villain despite not really being distinctive or even central in his debut story. I suppose it’s all down to Gerry Conway liking his costume design and including him in the fist issue of Secret Society of Super-Villains.

Of course, the king of that sort of thing must be another Batman villain, the Mad Hatter, whose debut story is entirely about Vicki Vale debuting and behaving as a sort of knockoff Lois Lane while this goofy hat-themed villain runs around on the margins.

randypan the goatboy

February 3, 2012 at 7:55 am

Why use such a complex plan to capture a hapless jaboni like copperhead. Why is Batman refering to Jim Gordon as commish?Did Batman’s master plan involve a threesome in the Batcave to make sure the plan was sold well enough? and if it didn’t why the hell not? ” Batgirl, Wonder Woman…To the Batpole”

“Okay, okay! Can I help it if I’m irresistible to Wonder Woman and Batgirl?!” In this very special episode Batman learns that pimpin’ ain’t easy.

Haney’s Brave and the Bold is indeed one of the better books DC has ever made.

So… much… crazy.

That’s quite the bat-copter, to lift a life-sized solid gold bat-statue.

Wonder Woman, *you* may be immortal, but if you want your “words of love” to be immortal, skywriting is pretty much the worst possible medium.

Batgirl’s thought balloon reveals that she was using her own money– not a secret Wayne Foundation slush fund or something– to buy a new car and a diamond-studded utility belt. They paid librarians well on Earth-B.

I think it’s hilarious that Batman’s first concern after WW and Batgirl confess their love is how it’ll affect their crimefighting. The dude is pretty single-minded. As a fan of the Justice League cartoon I have to say I’d be ok with Batman and WW dating.

Best line was “Stay with me, caped conqueror of my heart.”

I think it’s time for me to buy some Showcase volumes and read some Silver Age DC comics.

speaking of love and bats, check out my review of the new Batwoman comic here

http://instituteofidletime.wordpress.com/2012/02/02/the-best-of-dcs-new-52-4-batwoman/

The Showcase volumes of the Batman B&TB stories are great. It’s like this all the time. I wish DC would continue the reprint series.

I really started reading comics in the late 70’s when I was a teen, but I had a stack my Ma had gotten for me somewhere, when I was a little kid. This comic was in it, I thought Copperhead was crazy looking, this really brings back memories. Two thumbs up for this one. later!

This was a ridiculous story… as to whether it was “mind-boggling” or “campily hilarious” I suppose depends on one’s personal tastes. But I do have to point out that the cover to B & B #78 (which Mr. C unfortunately failed to include in this article) was quite striking. It definitely made the viewer want to read the comic.

On a thoroughly unrelated note, does anyone out there recall a Supergirl anti-drug comic? I have vague memories of one from possibly the mid- to late- 80s, but unfortunately cannot recollect any details.
Apologies for heading off into left field with the question!

Modern comics are so dreary and humorless.

Wait, is Batman jumping out of the Batmobile while it’s still moving?

The Commish was just stressed out over possibly losing his job.

Batman may have been napping for real. He usually patrols all night, and doesn’t tackle too many crimes in broad daylight.

And it shows. In one panel he was sitting under a tree. Probably thinking, “The crooks are all asleep, so what the heck do I do now? Is there a stray cat stuck in a tree somewhere?”

Since Wonder Woman can fly, why did Batman have to catch her?

WW turned into a hip chick soon after this story.

I bet Catwoman eventually topped Batgirl’s “greatest gift a super-heroine can give.” Multiple times.

Wonder Woman, Batman, and Batgirl have almost enough brains and brawn to tackle someone like Mongul. They certainly could take on Sinestro, Gorilla Grodd, or Lex Luthor. But they need this contrived plan to capture a minor leaguer like Copperhead? Because he’s as tough as the Cheetah, the Joker, and Killer Moth combined? Wild!

I think DC’s heroes used to celebrate their birthdays in public. Remember how Superman would invent some wacky mystery for Batman to solve as his present? Lois, Jimmy, Robin, and others would be in on the plot.

This is the kind of Silver Age silliness Alan Moore addressed in “Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?” For instance, the idea that Lex Luthor or Mr. Mxyzptlk would halt his nefarious plans to salute Superman on his (public) birthday. Which I believe happened at least once or twice.

DC was doing these types of stories?

It’s a minor detail, but I LOVE the slightly off-model Batman mask with the exposed nose. That book was like the Wild West; your standard rules didn’t apply.

Actually, I seem to remember Copperhead made his first appearance in the Golden Age. I think he was the villain in the very first Batgirl (Betty Kane) story.

love how bob mange to just do batman the way he wanted and not care about keeping batman follow a set pattern as the character plus also found it hilerious that what started out as a trap to capture copper head backfired on batman when batgirl and wonder woman both really fell for him. even revealing their i.ds just proving that when bob did batman every thing was fair game.

Actually, this story seems consistent with Batman’s appearances in WORLD’S FINEST, Superman’s appearances in LOIS LANE and JIMMY OLSEN, and similar books. Probably Batman’s appearances in BATMAN and DETECTIVE before O’Neil/Adams, too. I don’t think Bob Haney was way out in left field here.

That must’ve been a different Copperhead, OverMaster. I’m pretty sure this was the first appearance of this Copperhead.

I enjoyed Haney’s stories, but none of the Brave and the Bold comics seemed to fit in w/ the rest of the Batman Family. Which is fine. Batman and Detective had those great Infantino covers and boring interior art (unless by Infantino) by Sheldon “Bob Kane” Moldoff. And Joe Giella’s inks sucked the life out whoever he inked for. Guess Sid Greene came later. Now that was inking that complimented the pencils.

As I recall the story, the whole thing was a set-up to “smoke out” the Copperhead. Though its really no secret that Batgirl was sweet on Batman. Wonder Woman had agreed to play along with the “catfight” butg Copperhead was almost successful. Kerin

“I want him so bad, I can taste it”
Why nobody ever wrote such song before?

Wonder Woman couldn’t fly back then — they called what she did “riding air currents”; basically, gliding. If she got waylaid or had to stop for any reason – she fell. That’s the reason they gave then for the invisible plane. It wasn’t until after Crisis that they just said, “F*** it; she flies.”

Interestingly enough – she has yet to fly in the latest Nuboot books — s who knows if she still can?

“The plane’s on automatic – and I’m on the smooch beam!”

Well what’s the difference with WW chasing after Batjerk who had no time for her for a date in this era? Some 30 years from now we will be laughing at Blackest Night Wonder Woman so hard…and wondering seriously what were they thinking.

This would have made a friggin’ wonderful episode of Batman: The Brave and The Bold. It’s right up there with that level of lunacy.

Batman says “I want him so bad, I can taste it!” about Copperhead? I didn’t even know they were dating!

A lot of great/ridiculous dialogue here (as several commenters and Mr. Cronin have pointed out), but I think my favorite is the reporter’s reaction to Batman getting into it:

“What a switch in the story!”

It’s like Haney’s own meta-commentary on just how great of a twist he’s written. “Man, I am so GOOD. Batman getting into his own con? I am a genius!”

Nope, OverMaster, that was the Cobra Gang in Betty Kane’s first appearance (I’m surprised Morrison never connected them to Kobra…), no relation to Copperhead!
amazingamazon: Early Batgirl was clear (though maybe in a ‘she doth protest too much’ way) that she was NOT sweet on Batman! TPTB didn’t want to make the mistake with her that had been made with her predecessors and have her as a romantic interest, thus placing her between, age-wise, the dynamic duo. This was as clearly out of character for her as it was for Diana.

As Kenn said, zero romantic interest. In fact one of the letters responding to this one complained that it ignored a previous Bat-story in which Catwoman attempts to prove herself the better woman and discovers Batgirl was never a rival.
This reminds me why I rarely liked B&B stories as a kid, despite the team-up concept (which did appeal). As an adult, the sexism is cringe-inducing.

Loooool

Funniest comic ever.

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