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CSBG Archive

I Love Ya But You’re Strange – That Time Batman’s Moron Friends Thought He Was an Alien

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. Feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com if you have a suggestion for a future installment!

Today, we take a look at the time that Batman’s moron friends were tricked into believing Batman was an alien.

1958’s Detective Comics #251, by Sheldon Moldoff, Charles Paris and an unknown writer, opens with Commissioner Gordon and Vicki Vale both seeing what appeared to be an alien space ship and then Batman with his mask off, revealed to be an alien!

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First off, there’s likely a good reason that the writer for this issue is unknown. Whoever it was, he/she wrote Batman as sitting down. Clearly they didn’t know anything about Batman and therefore their name should be forgotten by history.

Anyhow, Batman’s friends luckily aren’t TOO gullible…

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but something weird with his blood test? Obviously he’s an alien! Batman says he’s not an alien, but why would he tell the truth? You can’t trust an alien superhero! No one would trust an alien superhero! Next thing you know, Batman might be hiding an S on his chest or something!

Also, “of course an alien would get a young Earth lad to help him” is so awesome, reasoning-wise.

The rest of the story mixes in various stories by the Commissioner, Vicki and other Gotham cops about instances where Batman did things no human could do…

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Batman naturally figures out that this is a plot by the mob to make people not trust him, which it is…

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I love how the writer (who didn’t even know enough not to show Batman sitting down) throws out the explanation for the crooks’ plan like it is totally logical for a helicopter to work that way. Also, you have to love the public’s paranoia.

But how does he prove it?

I love this bit here where Batman suggests that it is a bad guy plot, but as Gordon notes, that’s just what an alien would say!!

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The best thing about all of the stories is that while the rubber-suited one honestly did not have an ready-made explanation, EVERY OTHER ONE had a rational explanation that Batman told them at the time. But you can’t trust that guy, ya know?

In the end, Batman wins the day by pretending to BE an alien, thus making the crooks doubt the guy they hired, so they end up confessing to everything…

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They faked the blood test results by sneaking into the doctor’s lab earlier and putting chemicals into the instruments used for blood tests. I wonder how many other aliens were discovered before Batman uncovered this clue? “Your blood! It has chemicals it shouldn’t! Alien!!! And you! Your triglycerides are good, but otherwise, you’re an alien, as well! Alien!!”

30 Comments

My word, this methadone clinic is positively crawling with aliens!

Could some one explain the ‘Batman sitting down’ joke please?

A Horde of Evil Hipsters

June 11, 2013 at 4:46 am

kdu2814, I’m sure there’s more to it than that, but apparently some unnamed editor told Paul Jenkins he doesn’t “get” Batman, because Batman “never sits down”. Unsurprisingly, Batman has sat down quite a few times over the decades.

Every time Batman sat down, it was an alien posing as Batman.

Or a doombot.

And wow, this would have fit so well in Morrison’s Batman run. “You’re the Devil Dr. Hurt? Well I’m the goddam Alien Batman!”

Oz the Malefic

June 11, 2013 at 5:54 am

@kdu2814, The link regarding Batman sitting:

http://www.bleedingcool.com/2013/06/07/when-batman-sits-down/

@Brian, best title for an article ever.

Actually recruiting a human boy as a cover would be a logical move for the alien. Admittedly that doesn’t help the story.
One thing I do enjoy about 50s Batman is the way they’d squeeze in extra action (or pad-out stories if you prefer) by recounting past exploits. It works well with some ideas (gimmick batarangs, special-use costumes) but it doesn’t help this one.

The flashback scenes of Bats wrestling with a giant beartrap and bowling a giant bowling-ball suggest that this is a Bill Finger script.

interesting take by the baddies lets have people believe batman is an alien and then freak when batman turns the tables on them. just shows that dc was way back then willing to try any thing no matter how nuts in the bat books even.or the writer was confusing super man being an alien with batman.

Okay, the “Batman sitting down” jokes are starting to get kind of tiresome now…

I think I need to take a load off and sit do—D’OH…

Actually recruiting a human boy as a cover would be a logical move for the alien.

I KNEW there was a reason I never trusted that ET!

The flashback scenes of Bats wrestling with a giant beartrap and bowling a giant bowling-ball suggest that this is a Bill Finger script.

I tend to agree with that guess.

It must be very awkward for Batman. Driving the Batmobile, standing up, I mean.

Written by Ed Hamilton, who i believe was the first creator to have Batman sit down. Perhaps a “When We FIrst Met?” Here is an archive of what has been featured so far: http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2010/10/05/when-we-first-met-archive/

Thanks for the info, David!

Technically we only see Bruce sit down, which when you think about it is a really clever ruse.
As for the driving… I gues we have to decide to believe it is an act fundamentally different from sitting that happens to involve certain elements of that activity (which Batman never does, but being the Über man that he is, he would have made a thorough study of).

In a nutshell, the New 52 editor for Batman is an idiot who knows very little about Batman history, and thus stupidly told Paul Jenkins that because he had Batman sitting down (which, being a human, he of course does from time to time), it meant Jenkins “didn’t get” the character. Sadly, Jenkins left the title and the idiot editor is still employed.

There’s a great shot in (of all things) an early Sleepwalker issue where guest star Spider-man is about to be unmasked, and they take the mask off and it’s Sleepwalker under there instead. Really really creepy, thinking that maybe Spider-Man never was human and the full-body suit hides the alien ugmo.

Batman knew that signal was out that window; he was merely testing robin

robin, i’m just gonna sit here and read, didja notice anything outside or should we stay in and have father/son time?

wait so how did he superhumanly hold that bear trap open?

the average person sits hundreds of hours each month, batman only sits for 1

Jenkins must have though he was still writing Spidey, who frequently does sit on rooftops, NOT BATMAN

>Actually recruiting a human boy as a cover would be a logical move for the alien

Indeed. Just ask Brainiac how well that would work.

Travis Pelkie

June 11, 2013 at 5:14 pm

Batman’s on the cutting edge of health. He knows that excessive sitting can lead to heart disease and other problems.

This story is great. Gee, maybe he IS an alien! Of course that must mean he’s got a secret plot and all this “crime fighting” stuff is a bunch of hooey!

Vicki Vale was wondering if she might get some alien VD….

The timing’s wrong, but I still can’t help but wonder if this story is an allegory for McCarthyism.

Travis Pelkie

June 11, 2013 at 7:18 pm

Sounds like something a Commie would say, Michael P ;)

Brian, any chance of seeing Superboy #101 show up in one of these features? Specifically the story entitled “The Handsome Hound of Steel!”, which very well may be the single most batshit insane story in all of the Silver Age. It features Krypto undergoing a sex change and becoming pregnant AND THEN THEY KILL HIS PUPPIES AT THE END BY ERASING THEM FROM EXISTENCE.

Keep in mind that Chuck Norris sits a lot less than Batman. No-one on Earth sits less than Chuck Norris.

Batman never poops and smile at the same time. You didn’t expect that one, did ya?

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