Before I get started this week, I wanted to make sure all of Fire-Breathing Dimetrodon Time’s Batman fans know that there’s another blogger covering the 1966 series. Over at Comic Alliance, a writer called Chris Sims is writing these up, one a week, with a lot more detail and illustration than yours truly, and is up to episode 31. They’re very entertaining, and you should check them out. I say that even though I’m horribly jealous that, months before I did, Sims figured out that the TV show’s producers got access to the comics that inspired stories three and four from a contemporary reprint volume. I was really happy about making that discovery, but he beat me to it by seven months!
Anyway, back in the present, and here’s the first example in FBDT of the condition that one of Doctor Who‘s producers, John Nathan-Turner, used to call “Memory Cheats.” I’ll come back to this with a bit in Pufnstuf next month, but there are times where the mind plays tricks on us, and my big example from Batman comes from this episode, the first to feature Victor Buono as the nefarious King Tut.
Tut is by leagues the most successful of the created-for-TV bad guys. He makes five appearances in the show (Egghead is second-best with three), and he’s also possibly the only one to get a proper explanation of why he’s a villain. Batman reminds the police, who are really exceptionally alarmed by Tut’s reappearance, that King Tut should be pitied. He was once a mild-mannered professor at Yale who was hit on the head during a student demonstration. He woke up thinking that Gotham City was Thebes and he was the reincarnation of King Tut.
The thing is… I remember seeing that happening. I distinctly remember Buono playing that part and getting conked on the head, but it doesn’t happen here. Maybe he gets back to normal and gets whacked again later in the series? I’m very keen to find out, but I seriously thought “The Curse of Tut” was an “origin” episode for the villain. Guess not!
Daniel has been a little wild and crazy today, but he found a new ally in his own war against crime today. We finally moved an old toybox into his bedroom today, and he found a few new treasures in it, including some Battlemech-type robot with cannons for arms. It stands about six inches tall, and he went into action as the Dynamic Duo faced off against five of King Tut’s minions in Gotham Central Park, blasting “ptchow! ptchow!” at the villains.