"The Joker Meets the Cat-Woman": The Joker has miraculously survived his apparent death-by-knife-wound (*1), during his last encounter with Batman in Batman #1. He is taken to a hospital, wounded almost to death. Batman briefly plans to abduct the Joker and take him to a fam
Batman #2 is an issue of the series Batman (Volume 1) with a cover date of June, 1940. It was published on July 19, 1940.
Synopsis for "The Joker Meets the Cat-Woman"
The Joker has miraculously survived his apparent death-by-knife-wound (*1), during his last encounter with Batman in Batman #1. He is taken to a hospital, wounded almost to death. Batman briefly plans to abduct the Joker and take him to a famous specialist who can fix his brain, but instead, Crime Syndicate, Inc., a criminal gang in need of a leader, and a better brand-name, kidnap him from the hospital, hoping to obtain his help in stealing the priceless Pharaoh Gems. First they force some doctors, at gunpoint, to operate on the Joker, which draws Commissioner Gordon and a whole lot of cops to cordon off the building, but the gangsters (led by "Weasel") lure the police away by having a Batman impersonator attack them. The impersonator kills two cops and leads many of the rest away in pursuit; after a battle at a barn, the bogus Batman is shot dead and unmasked as "Circus Charlie," a wanted criminal.
--- The Joker is brought back to health, and sets about double-crossing his saviors right away. Meanwhile the real Batman, and Robin, arrive at the hospital and find the Catwoman outside. She also has a plan to steal some jewels, but gives Batman some information about the Joker, and he lets her go free, without telling her that the floor of his 1939 Cord (*2) is coated with a radioactive material which she now has on her feet. Batman equips Robin with a special flashlight and sends him to track the Cat's movements, then he personally busts up the Crime Syndicate.
--- The Catwoman visits the owner of the Pharaoh gem (E.S. Arthur), who lives in a castle with a tower, but she finds Arthur murdered by the Joker (*3), who is still there, and who sticks her up. Robin swoops in, another fight ensues. Joker manages to knock Robin out. The Catwoman trades the Pharaoh to the Joker in exchange for sparing Robin's life. Batman soon comes and has a sword fight with the Joker, who wins and knocks Batman out the window. The Joker then tries to kill Robin and Catwoman with flaming arrows, and sets the tower on fire in the process. Suddenly Batman arrives and he battles the Joker before knocking him out. Batman is forced to leave the Joker behind in the burning building in order to carry Robin into the Batplane. Catwoman evades Batman once again by leaping from the Batplane into the water below.
- 1 The Joker appeared last in Batman #1. He appears next in Detective Comics #45. This is his third appearance.
- 2 Batman drives a powerful, expensive car, but has not yet built his first Batmobile.
- 3 Joker's Body Count = 16.
Appearing in "The Joker Meets the Cat-Woman"
- Crime Syndicate, Inc. (Single appearance)
- Weasel (Single appearance)
- Circus Charlie (Only appearance; dies)
- Gotham City Police Department
- E.S. Arthur (Appears only as a corpse)
Synopsis for "Wolf, the Crime Master"
Adam Lamb is a museum curator for Cyrus Craig's private museum. One night, while Lamb is making his rounds, he trips on a rug and strikes his head on the ground. Dazed he glances at a bat portrait and his mystery novel "The Crime Master" while a clock chimes midnight. After a few hours he wakes up and heads home. The next night when the clock strikes midnight, his personality changes to that of Wolf, violent master criminal. Every night after, he commits crimes until he attracts the attention of Batman and Robin. One day Craig is showing Bruce Wayne around the museum. After another encounter with the crime master, he remembers Lamb's car looks like that of his alter-ego Wolf. Bruce decides to visit the museum. That night at the museum Lamb turns into Wolf while helping Craig and tries to kill him. Batman and Robin jump in and save Craig. Lamb becomes confused when he notices Batman's emblem. Batman and Robin follow the Crime Master's car to the waterfront, where they attack his gang. Batman is shot in the shoulder(*1), and the Dynamic Duo use a smoke pellet to cover their trail and escape back to Bruce's laboratory, where it falls upon young Dick to surgically remove the slug from Bruce's shoulder.(*2) In their next encounter, Lamb is accidentally killed when Batman knocks him down the stairs (*3). Before his death he recalls, to Batman, Robin, and Craig what caused his transformations.
- 1 This is Batman bullet-wound #3.
- 2 There is no Bat-Cave yet, and no Alfred.
- 3 Batman punches Lamb, and THAT is how he falls down the stairs and breaks his neck, so technically Batman killed this guy. Bat-body-count > 23.
Appearing in "Wolf, the Crime Master"
- Adam Lamb aka Wolf, the Crime Master (Only appearance; dies)
- Cyrus Craig (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Case of the Clubfoot Murders"
The story begins with Clubfoot (a large clubfooted man with a hook for a hand) murdering Harley Storme. Batman attempts to catch Clubfoot only to be dazed by a kick to the face. The next day Bruce Wayne and Commissioner Gordon go to the Storme Mansion. While they are there they find that the whole Storme Family hates one another and have only come together for Harley Storme's Will, read by Ward the lawyer. The family is only given envelopes with a piece of gold with the inscription "United we stand, Divided we fall." The family is annoyed, but Ward tells them all will be explained if they attend another meeting in 30 days at which time he will open a sealed letter from Haley. Later Tommy Storme tells his loan shark Varrick that Ward will read a letter at the end of the month, Varrick decides to pay Ward a visit the next day. That night Clubfoot kills Abel Storme in his sleep. The next day, after hearing the news of Abel Storme's death, Bruce decides to visit Ward. Upon arrival Batman is met by Varrick's men, who are quickly dispatched, at an abandoned powerhouse by the waterfront. The next night Robin searches the Storme mansion only to find Roger Storme dead. He is then ambushed by Clubfoot. Clubfoot is fought off and decides to make his escape. Meanwhile Batman is at Ward's home when he discovers the real Clubfoot Beggs. Beggs tells Batman how he was kidnapped and framed by Ward. Ward just arriving from his encounter with Robin, draws a gun on Batman. Ward tells how the scratchings on the tokens spelled gold mine when fully assembled, and that the gold mine was left to Harley's heirs. Since Ward was an heir he decided to kill the Storme family and take the mine for himself. At this time Robin burst into the scene and knocked the gun from Ward's hand. Ward makes a break for the stairs and is stopped by Batman and taken to jail.
Appearing in "The Case of the Clubfoot Murders"
- Ward (Single appearance)
- Varrick (Single appearance)
- Abel Storme (Only appearance; dies)
- Carl Storme (Single appearance)
- Clubfoot Beggs (Single appearance)
- Harley Storme (Only appearance; dies)
- Portia Storme (Single appearance)
- Roger Storme (Only appearance; dies)
- Tommy Storme (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Case of the Missing Link"
Batman leaps on to a train heading to Gotham and is attacked by some African pygmies. After fighting his way to Professor Drake's train car he finds that the pygmies are after a 15-foot-tall, white caveman called Goliath, whom Drake has captured and brought to the U.S. from Africa. Professor Drake claims that Goliath is a missing link, and plans to civilize him. The news of Goliath spreads rapidly. When Hackett and Sneed, owners of the circus, hear of Goliath, they put on tuxedos and approach Drake with an offer. If Goliath were put in their circus, all three men could profit. Drake becomes outraged by this proposal and has them thrown out. Batman appears again that night to talk to Drake. He tells Drake that Hackett and Sneed will do anything to get their hands on Goliath. Later that night a man named Grimes shoots the Professor and makes it appear to be a suicide. While patrolling Professor Drakes house Robin hears the gunshot. He arrives as Grimes and his men are leaving. While they are fighting Goliath breaks free and chases Grimes away, looking at Grimes's face as he leaves. Goliath walks back to Drake's office and finds Drake dead. A note was forged saying he would be given to Hackett and Sneed's circus. At the circus that night Goliath sees Grimes sitting in the audience and goes berserk. Goliath kills Grimes, but continues his rampage, setting loose the animals. Batman and Robin jump into the scene and wrangle all the animals. Goliath spots Robin and hurls him away toward the trapeze in anger. Robin escapes death, but Goliath goes after Robin in his fury and climbs up to the trapeze. Batman rushes to help Robin and ties up Goliath with his rope. Robin then takes his sling and knocks Goliath dizzy. Sadly, this causes Goliath to fall from the trapeze pole and takes Batman with him. Batman saves himself with the trapeze rope, but Goliath falls to his death. Hackett and Sneed are arrested for murder. Batman and Robin discuss what has befallen.
- Robin's body count = 4.
Appearing in "The Case of the Missing Link"
- Grimes (Only appearance; dies)
- Hackett (Single appearance)
- Snead (Single appearance)
- Goliath, the Missing Link (Only appearance; dies)
- Professor Drake (Only appearance; dies)
- This issue is reprinted in Batman: The Dark Knight Archives Vol 1 and Batman Chronicles, Volume 2.
- Batman and Robin both appeared last in Detective Comics #42, and both appear next in Detective Comics #43.
- Catwoman appeared last in Batman #1 using the name "The Cat." She begins using the name Cat-Woman with this issue. In later issues, her name is shortened to just Catwoman. Catwoman appears next in Batman #3.
- James Gordon appeared last in Detective Comics #42. He appears next in Batman #3.
- The Portia Storme who appears in this issue is unrelated to the stage name adopted by Bruce Wayne's ex-fiancee Julie Madison.
- Aside from the stories above, this issue contains:
- "Young Mr. Olds"
- "A Very Simple Case" by David Tree (text story)
- "Little Billy Pelican" by Hal
- "His Royal Highness" by Shermon