"The Return of Doctor Phosphorus": Dr. Phosphorus is incarcerated at a special power plant owned by Cadmus Research Laboratories. However, the facility is unable to contain him, and he breaks free, killing scientist Dr. Church in the process.
- If I've learned anything living in Gotham -- it's that only the good stay dead.
- — Batman
Appearing in "The Return of Doctor Phosphorus"
- Doctor Bell (Final appearance)
- Doctor Church (Final appearance)
- Doctor Dwight (Final appearance)
- Wachowski (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Return of Doctor Phosphorus"
Dr. Phosphorus is incarcerated at a special power plant owned by Cadmus Research Laboratories. However, the facility is unable to contain him, and he breaks free, killing scientist Dr. Church in the process.
That evening, Batman and Commissioner Gordon investigate the burnt ruins of the laboratory and come upon evidence linking Phosphorus to the crime. Batman leaves for Gotham Medical Plaza to interrogate one of the surviving scientists, Dr. Dwight. Dwight is horribly burned and is screaming in pain. Batman corners one of the resident specialists, Dr. Bell. He knows that Bell has history with both Dr. Phosphorus and former crime lord, Rupert Thorne. Bell is terrified, and more than willing to cooperate.
Dr. Phosphorus arrives on the roof of the building and attacks Batman and Dr. Bell. Batman attempts to distract Phosphorus by dumping a water tower on top of him, but this barely slows Phosphorus down and he severely injures Dr. Bell. Dr. Phosphorus appears to be stronger and more powerful than Batman remembers from previous encounters. His fiery touch even manages to burn through Batman's protective garments. Phosphorus departs, with plans on hunting down Rupert Thorne.
Batman returns to the Batcave to recuperate. Thanks to an off-hand comment made by Alfred, he realizes that bicarbonate of soda may be just what he needs to bring Phosphorus down.
Batman heads back out into the night and goes to Blackgate Island. As predicted, Phosphorus arrives, with plans to murder Rupert Thorne. Phosphorus holds Thorne partially responsible for his present condition, even though the aging crime-lord has been in prison for years. Batman reaches Thorne before Phosphorus can kill him, and douses the villain with baking soda. The powder creates a chemical reaction that temporarily snuffs out Phosphorus' powers. Batman knocks him out and arranges to have him returned to Arkham Asylum.
- This issue is reprinted in the Batman: Detective collection.
- Doctor Bell appeared last in Detective Comics #469.
- Jim Gordon mentions Ted Knight having killed Phosphorus. This happened in the Starman (Volume 2) #71.
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