#23 on our countdown is “A Parole for Christmas,” from 1947’s Batman #45 by Bill Finger and Charles Paris.
The basic story turns on the EXTREMELY common conceit of 1940s, 1959s and even 1960s Batman and Superman stories, which is that there are exact doubles out there of pretty much every major DC Comics character.
In this instance, a crook out on 24-hour holiday is visiting his fiancee and her little brother (he has convinced them that he is on a secret Navy assignment) when he is attacked by some thugs. When Batman saves his life, he discovers that he is his exact double, so Batman decides to fill in for Eddie…
What if she wanted some, you know, PRIVATE time, Batman? I know it was the 1940s, but come on. Hopefully Batman would have come up with some excuse.
Anyhow, it turns out that the whole thing revolves around the fact that some crooks are tunneling out of the prison, but their route would disturb Eddie’s cell. He refused to go along with their plans, so their only resort was to kill him off so that his cell would be empty temporarily so that they could complete their digging. Batman, though, gets himself arrested so that he can foil their plans (it involves him having a complete copy of his costume that he can condense into a small little piece of plastic that he can hide in his hand). Batman stops them after they try again to kill “Eddie” and he beats them by aweseomly tossing a Christmas tree at them!!
The warden paroles Eddie for good and it is a Merry Christmas for everyone!
“Oh, Eddie, Batman kissed so much better than you.”
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