"The Boy Who Adopted Batman": Danny Benson's father is dead and his mother works days, so when he gets lonely--which is often--he goes and talks to another father-figure, the statue of Batman in a Gotham Park. One day Batman and Robin,
Appearing in "The Boy Who Adopted Batman"
- Danny Benson (Single appearance) (Flashback and main story)
- Slim Miller (Single appearance)
- Gotham City Police Department
- Officer Ryan (Single appearance)
- Ms. Benson (Single appearance)
- Gotham City
- Gotham Park
- Bat-Bicycle (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Boy Who Adopted Batman"
Danny Benson's father is dead and his mother works days, so when he gets lonely--which is often--he goes and talks to another father-figure, the statue of Batman in a Gotham Park. One day Batman and Robin, taking a shortcut through the park to their Batmobile, overhear Danny telling the statue about his wish for a bike so he can get a delivery job to help his mother with the bills. The next day Danny finds a very special bicycle beside the statue, a black-painted job with Batwings streaming from the handlebars and a "Bat-signal" headlight, with a tag reading "To Danny" looped about it. The next time he comes to the statue, Danny tells it (and the real Batman and Robin, hiding nearby) about a strange thing that happened to him recently. He startled two men badly by shining the Bat-signal on a wall nearby them, so that one dropped his black notebook. Danny picked it up the notebook to hand it back to them, noting some strange markings in it. The owner of the book grabbed it back and ducked into the nearby laundry with his friend. Realizing something is afoot, Batman and Robin reveal themselves to the astonished Danny, and get him to tell exactly where he saw the men.
Through detective work, Batman and Robin track down the men and their boss, "reformed" ex-con Slim Miller, who is using his button factory to produce counterfeit transportation tokens. Danny helps in their detection, and fittingly Slim Miller's car slides and crashes into the same Batman statue that Danny has always confided in as it cuts through Gotham Park. Miller draws a gun on Batman, but Danny, at the scene, shines his Bat-signal light in the crook's face and blinds him long enough for Batman to take him out. A day later, Danny and his mother receive a reward check for bringing in the mobsters, from the hands of a policeman who shyly asks Ms. Benson out to dinner.
Some days later, Danny makes a last visit to the Batman statue. His mother is getting married soon, he says, and he won't have time to spend there with a real father to help him. But he promises never to forget Batman. And the real Batman and Robin, watching him go, promise not to forget him, either.
Appearing in "Robin Falls in Love"
- Vera Lovely (Single appearance)
- Ben Keefe (Single appearance)
- Paul Garvey (Single appearance)
- Roddy Dale (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "Robin Falls in Love"
Batman and Robin take in a rehearsal of the "Ice Capers" show they will make an appearance in for charity. While there, Robin swings down and rescues Vera Lovely, a beautiful teen-aged skater, from crashing into a ring of fire blown out of position by a fan. Vera insists on rewarding Robin with a kiss, which a photographer snaps a shot of, and Robin begins to fall in love--hard--for Vera. Batman points out that the photographer never took his lens cap off. The photographer, who had earlier remarked that he wanted to see Vera's first-ever pair of skates, was told by her press agent Paul Garvey that they were in a bank vault until they could be auctioned off at the performance for charity. Robin begins dating Vera, and begins cutting corners, on his crime-fighting with Batman. But Garvey, intent on following his boss's orders for a publicity romance, keeps Robin and Vera separated by various ruses so that she will be forced to go out with Roddy Dale, Miracle Pictures' latest teenage idol. Both Robin and Vera, misunderstanding, are less than happy.
The night of the performance, Robin convinces Batman to show up an hour early to watch Vera skate. Batman notes the phony photographer again at the press box, finds out that none of the other pressmen know him, and describes him on the phone to the police. By that means, he learns that the man is actually Ben Keefe, wanted on suspicion of heisting $50,000 in jewels. The detective deduces that Keefe has hidden the jewels in Vera's first pair of skates. Keefe, disguised as a skater, snatches the skates away from their new owner after they've been auctioned and tries to escape across the ice, but Robin stops him by bringing a sandbag down and spilling it in his path causing him to slip and fall. Afterward, Robin and Vera get together, compare notes, and find out how they have been gulled, and the P.R. man repents his error. On their way home, Robin confides to Batman that he intends to keep his mind on crooks from here on in, not girls.
Appearing in "The Grown-Up Boy Wonder"
- Frankie the Fence (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Grown-Up Boy Wonder"
When Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson examine a box which Superman found floating in outer space and left with them until he returned from a current mission, Dick accidentally causes it to open and spew forth a gas that ages him to a young adult. The two are unsure of what to do in Superman's absence, but the Bat-signal draws Batman away to a jewel robbery in Gotham being committed by the Daredevils, ex-acrobats turned to crime. Batman vetoes Dick coming along as a second Batman, saying that he has a lot of mental growth to do yet. But Dick sneaks on the "Owlman" costume that Bruce had stored away for a masquerade party, grabs a lift on the back of the Batmobile, and hurries away with Batman to the scene of the crime. Batman angrily thinks that he'd spank Dick, if he wasn't so big. The Daredevils manage to make a getaway, and Owlman, misgauging his weight, almost falls to his death when a flagpole breaks in his hands. Batman, saving him, angrily berates him for "acting like a kid--still rushing ahead without thinking!"
Dick begins to see the disadvantages of living in an adult body, such as his sudden separation from all his young pals and virtual isolation from the outside world. But, still confident he can fight crime as a man, he becomes Owlman again, tracks the Daredevils to a prominent fence's lair, and promptly knocks himself out by not ducking under a low ceiling beam. The crooks unmask him, but cannot place his adult face. Dick admits that he still has a lot of growing up to do, and Batman allows that if he can admit that, he isn't a kid anymore. Batman and Owlman go outside, tear into the three Daredevils, and bring them down. Shortly after the crooks are carted off, Dick faints, and awakens in the Batcave as a boy again, the effect of the gas being temporary. The Daredevils, in jail, vow to find out who the Owlman really was, not knowing they have a long wait ahead of them. And Dick Grayson returns to school, eager to get back with his friends.
The Grown Up Boy Wonder is reprinted in Robin, The Boy Wonder: A Celebration of 75 Years.
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