"The Dead Yet Live": This story is reprinted from Detective Comics #471.
Appearing in "The Dead Yet Live"
- Dr. Hugo Strange (First appearance)
- Monster Men
- Magda (First appearance)
- Rupert Thorne
- Barney (Single appearance)
- Marko (First appearance)
- Bruno (First appearance)
- Doctor Phosphorous (Flashback only)
- Joe Chill (In dream sequence only)
- Martha Wayne (In dream sequence only)
- Thomas Wayne (In dream sequence only)
- Gotham City
Synopsis for "The Dead Yet Live"
This story is reprinted from Detective Comics #471.
In the aftermath of the crimes commited by Dr. Phosphorus, the chairman of Gotham City Council, Rupert Thorne has summoned an emergency meeting in which he informs the rest of his accomplices that they need to take action against the Batman, who poses a great threat to their activities. Unknown to them, Batman is listening to the conversation, but he is forced to leave the chimney he was using as a hideout, because some of the thugs notice a small noise coming from there. The truth is that Batman almost slipped and all because the injuries caused by his confrontation with Dr. Phosphorus have not been cured, instead they have worsened. Knowing that he can's keep going in that state, Batman decides to retire and goes back to his safe place.
Soon, Batman arrives at the Batcave II, where he informs Alfred that he needs to see a doctor in order to take care of his radiation injuries. Following the advice of his friend, Jerry Robinson, Bruce decides to go to Graytowers, a medical institution for rich people that provides secrecy about their patients. Before going however, he informs of his decision to Silver St. Cloud, the lovely lady he has been dating for a short time, which gives Alfred hope for Bruce's romantic future.
Bruce arrives at Graytowers, where he is greeted by the director of the insitution, Dr. Todhunter and his assistant and nurse, Magda. Bruce is soon taken to a private room, where Magda tells him to go to rest. Bruce finds the advice strange, since he is fully awake and the day had just started. However, Bruce soon finds himself weak and passes out as he deduces that Magda's perfume must've been a drug.
Bruce wakes after a terrible nightmare about the murder of his parents and finds himself stripped from his clothes and locked in a dark room. When he tries to open the door, a man on the outside tells him that he is locked inside an asylum and Bruce realizes the seriousness of the situation. Meanwhile outside, Silver decides to pay a visit to Bruce at Graytowers, but she is informed by Dr. Todhunder about Bruce's radiation injuries and she is forbidden to see him.
After a long day, Bruce has made sure that there are no security cameras in his room and has avoided taking the drugs they have provided him. At night, he takes his suitcase and opens a secret panel, where he keeps a spare Batsuit and he transforms into the Batman. Using a couple of acid vials from his Utility Belt, Batman escapes from his prison and notices that his room is next to the main building of Graytowers. As he climbs to the rooftop, Batman is confronted by a couple of Monster Men, but he defeats them without any trouble.
Batman soon finds the main chamber of the building, where Todhunter and Magda are gathered. Batman breaks inside the room with the intention of capturing Todhunter, but the Doctor realizes that something is missing, as Batman doesn't seem to know his real identity. Todhunter proceeds to remove his mask and underneath, the face of Hugo Strange is revealed. Batman is shocked to learn that Strange had survived their previous encounter and Strange reveals that he moved to Europe to avoid further confrontations with the Batman. However, he decided to return to Gotham not long ago and started his Graytower experiment to lure rich citizens and mind-control them.
Having heard enough about Strange's plot, Batman decides to capture the madman, but Strange is awfully confident, despite having apparently lost the fight. As Batman gets ready to capture Strange, he is bitten by a snake, whose venom is deadly. Strange provides the antidote, but the serum leaves Batman unconscious long enough for Hugo Strange to remove Batman's cowl and learn his secret identity as Bruce Wayne.
Appearing in "I Am the Batman!"
- Dr. Hugo Strange (Apparent Death)
Synopsis for "I Am the Batman!"
This story is reprinted from Detective Comics #472.
After learning the secret identity of Batman, Professor Hugo Strange has taken control of the Wayne Foundation, posing as Bruce Wayne and he also uses the Batsuit for his own amusement. Strange has captured Alfred and has taken him to the Graytowers building, where Alfred is locked in the same cell as Bruce, who is kept alive, but drugged to prevent complications.
Strange's ultimate plan is to bankrupt the Wayne Foundation and escape with all of Wayne's fortune, reason why he has taken over Bruce's office at the building. At that moment, Silver St. Cloud enters the room using the spare key that Bruce gave her. Silver tries to resume her relation with Bruce, but Strange is unable to recognize her and he dismisses her, pretending to break up with her. Silver leaves the building, hurt about the events, but she is determined to find out the reason behind Bruce's sudden change.
Silver goes to Graytowers, where Magda, Strange's accomplice, denies her any information about Bruce. Her efforts put the criminals under alert and they prepare something to eliminate her. Meanwhile, Silver calls Dick Grayson to ask him about Bruce's unexpected change. Dick tells Silver to forget the situation and move on, but he knows that something is amiss. After a quick change, Robin is ready for action and using his motorcycle he travels towards Gotham. Unfortunately, after her conversation with Dick, Silver is immediately attacked by some of Strange's Monster Men.
That night, Hugo Strange comes up with the magnificent idea of selling Batman's secret to the highest bidder in an underground auction. During the ceremony, three mysterious criminals give away their first bid of the night and Strange informs them that the auction would continue the next night, taking the money with him. However, as Strange leaves the building, he is attacked by one of the criminal's henchmen. The crime lord is Rupert Thorne, who wants to get Batman's secret from Strange, using violence.
At that same moment, Robin has finally found the cell where Bruce and Alfred are being held prisoners, thanks to the information provided by Silver. Robin breaks into Graytowers and defeats some of the Monster Men who are acting as guardians of the place. Magda realizes that their whole operation is in danger and she goes to Bruce's cell to inject him with monster serum, but Alfred confronts the evil woman and causes her to inject herself with the chemical, transforming her into one of Strange's monsters. Robin knocks her unconscious and he finally rescues Alfred and Bruce.
Moments later, at the basement of Gotham City Hall, Rupert Thorne has his henchmen torture and beat Hugo Strange to a pulp until he gives them the secret identity of Batman. However, Strange is not willing to give away such precious information and his determination is stronger than the pain inflicted upon him. After long hours and several beatings, Hugo is unable to keep going and he is apparently killed, but he takes the secret of Batman with him, saying that in order to learn such secret, one has to take it away from Batman himself, as he did.
The loyalty to his enemy is something Thorne did not expect from Strange, making him think that perhaps Strange himself was Batman.
Appearing in "Tales of the Great Disaster: A Canterbury Tail"
- James Temple-Smythe (First appearance)
- MacDoogle (First appearance)
- Scotch terrorists
- Giant Insect
Synopsis for "Tales of the Great Disaster: A Canterbury Tail"
This story is reprinted from Weird War Tales #51.
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