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Comic Legends: Were Robin's Parents Almost Killed by Nazis?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and eighty-fifth installment where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

Click here for the first part of this week's BONUS legends.

NOTE: Well, the the CSBG Twitter page hit 10,050 followers, so I agreed to do a BONUS edition of Comic Book Legends Revealed during the week that we hit 10,050. So three more legends! Let's say we'll keep the bit going, though. Every 1,000 followers of the CSBG Twitter page, I'll do a bonus Comic Book Legends Revealed that week.

COMIC LEGEND:

In a proposed Batman and Robin radio series, Robin's parents were going to be killed by Nazis.

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STATUS:

True

In the early 1940s, Batman and Robin joined in with pretty much every other superhero in the comic book industry to punch as many Nazis as they could, as the United States went to war with Nazi Germany.

However, fascinatingly, for a time there, Robin's origin was actually going to be changed so that Nazis played a major role in his origin!

You see, in the early 1940s, one of the most popular radio series on the air was the Adventures of Superman, which basically ran long enough so that it transitioned into the Adventures of Superman TV series (Kellogg's sponsored both the radio series and then later the TV series).

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Batman and Robin guest-starred on the series on a bunch of different occasions...

They appeared enough and they were popular enough to get their own movie serial that it makes people wonder, why wasn't there a Batman and Robin radio series, as well? Wouldn't they translate really well to radio?

Well, sure enough, they actually DID almost have their own Batman and Robin radio series, as well.

As Old Radio Shows notes, the show even began development in 1943, with at least one script still left standing, and a notable change in the storyline for the Dynamic Duo was to tie Robin in with World War II by having the Nazis be responsible for his parents' death!

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There was development work and scripts written for a Batman radio program beginning in 1943, but only the premier episode script survives. Significant to the Batman universe back-story is that the script called for Dick Grayson’s (secret identity of Robin, Batman’s long time side-kick) parents, who were FBI Agents, to be killed by Nazi spies rather than by gangsters as occurred in print.

Honestly, that's such an interesting twist on the origin, I suspect that had the Batman and Robin radio series made it to market, that there was a very good chance that that origin would have been adapted into the comic books, as well, just like how the Superman radio series brought Jimmy Olsen, Perry White, the Daily Planet and kryptonite into the Superman comics of the era.

Check out my latest TV Legends Revealed - Did NBC prevent Star Trek from having a 50/50 Male/Female crew on the Enterprise?

Check back later for the final part of this week's BONUS Comic Book Legends Revealed!

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