World's Finest #160: "The Fatal Forecasts of Doctor Zodiac!" Part 2

BRAD: And here we are with Part II of "The Fatal Forecasts of Dr. Zodiac!" Raven, will you please give us a recap?


BRAD: Aw, why not?

RAVEN: What's to recap? A cheap crook finds a magic horoscope book and is giving grief to Batman. The. End.

BRAD: Not very gracious, but serviceable. Anyway, as Batman and Robin hurtle off a drawbridge, we begin "The Unholy Horoscopes!"

ROBIN: Batman! Punch the twin parachute release ––

BRAD: So labelled ––

ROBIN: Or we're dead pigeons! *Whew* Thanks to these nylon umbrellas, we'll drop to earth safely!

WALDO: Weren't they over water?

BATMAN: But meanwhile, Dr. Zodiac has made his getaway!

NARRATOR: As the police arrive––

COP: So if that drawbridge hadn't opened up, you would have stopped Dr. Zodiac from hijacking those rare animals? Tough luck, Batman!

RAVEN: The cops are so rough on these vigilantes.

BATMAN: Tough luck is right! I guess you can't win them all!

WALDO: In the Silver Age? Come now....

NARRATOR: Next day, in Dr. Zodiac's lair...

DR. Z: All this lovely moolah! The crooked animal-dealers paid us a fortune for those rare beasts.

BRAD: We only patronize the most reputable crooked animal-dealers.

DR. Z: That horoscope sure made a sap out of Batman!

HONEY: But will the astrology bit work on Superman? He's invulnerable, you know!

RAVEN: Doesn't astrology count as magic?

BRAD: It's a gray area.

DR. Z: This book will help me figure out Superman's unlucky hours, too... But I must know his birthday first. There's only one person who could possibly know that information...

RAVEN: Lois Lane?

BRAD: Lex Luthor?

WALDO: Bob Rozakis?

DR. Z: Jimmy Olsen, Superman's Pal.

RAVEN: Tee Emm.

HONEY: Olsen? Hmm... Leave him to me... But first I have a little shopping to do!

NARRATOR: That afternoon, in a department store...

CLERK 1: Imagine! A grown woman buying a complete teen-age wardrobe. She's even trying on a wig with a teen hairdo!

CLERK 2: It must be some kind of a gag... Or perhaps she's going to a masquerade!

RAVEN: Soooo... until the Sixties, middle-aged folks *didn't* cling desperately to every last trace of their youth?

BRAD: The phrase, "Mutton dressed as lamb," comes irresistibly to mind...

NARRATOR: "Masquerade" is right; next day, in Metropolis...

BRAD: Fresh from the Warner Store Going-out-of-business sale...

HONEY: My name is Honey Combs.

RAVEN: No wonder she turned to crime, with a stripper name!

HONEY: I'm mad for Superman! And, as his pal, *you're* my idol, too! That's why I want to join your fan club, Mr. Olsen!

RAVEN: Boy Scouts in bow ties.

JIMMY: Call me Jimmy! ... Sure, you can join! But first you'll have to pass an intitiation test: Where was Superman born?

HONEY: On Krypton.

JIMMY: What element is poisonous to him?

HONEY: Kryptonite.

WALDO: And more people know this than what HFCS stands for.

FAN CLUB MEMBER: How about that? She has Jimmy so charmed he's deliberately giving her easy questions!

RAVEN: It's called puberty. You'll find out.

JIMMY: You passed with flying colors, doll! We'll make you an official member at the next meeting!

HONEY: Gosh, thanks, Jimmy! But there's one fact about Superman I've always wanted to know! Can you tell me his birthday?

BRAD: She's aiming her dimples right at his freckles.

JIMMY: I'll look it up in the club scrapbook. Here it is. As Kal-El, he was born on Krypton...


JIMMY: The Kryptonian date corresponds to August 1st on Earth!

HONEY: Jimmy, you're sweet to look it up! 'Bye, now! See you  at the next meeting!

NARRATOR: Later, at a new hideout in Metropolis...

DR. Z: So Superman was born August 1st –– under the sign of Leo the Lion! Aha! His horoscope says he's due for a streak of bad luck at 8 o'clock tomorrow night!

RAVEN: This is what you call "Just-In-Time" skullduggery!

HONEY: And that's when we go into action!

NARRATOR: Next day, outside the world-famous Superman museum...

BRAD: A sign is hanging off the fist of a Superman statue: "Superman! I will commit a major crime high over Metropolis, tonight at 8 p.m.! The stars decree you cannot prevent it! Dare you try to stop me, or are you too superstitious? Dr. Zodiac"

RAVEN: Kiss kiss, hug hug.

ONLOOKER 5: That challenge is like a stab in the back to Superman! Will he take the dare?

BR&W: What do *you* think?

NARRATOR: That night, as swank cars crowd the parking area of a small Metropolis airfield...

RICH GUY: Hurry, Watkins! We mustn't be late for the take-off!

CHAUFFEUR: We'll be at the tower in a moment, sir!

RAVEN: Well, you don't keep the Donald waiting!

NARRATOR: In the sky above, a spectacular sight...

BRAD: A big blimp with the legend, "Sky-High Casino Club: Chips for Charity."

RICH WOMAN: Isn't it fantastic? An airborne gambling club... The most exclusive casino in the country. All the proceeds go to charity!

SECURITY: Take-off time at 7:45! Have your credentials ready, ladies and gentlemen!

WALDO: Maybe we'll see the Rocketeer!

NARRATOR: Among the notables is Dr. Zodiac, disguised as a wealthy Oriental!

BRAD: Traded in the turban for a fez.

CHECK-IN: $100,000... The minimum stake required by the club! Your credentials are in order, sir! The elevator will take you aloft!

DR. Z: (vo) Ha, ha! The loot from my last haul is my ticket into this swank joint!

RAVEN: He didn't think to use counterfeit?

ATTENDANT: All aboard! Lift-off time! Unwind the cable!

ANOTHER RICH GUY: The law says gambling isn't permitted within three miles of Metropolis City Hall! But that cable allows the casino to float just above the three-mile limit!

WALDO: Seems like a lot of trouble for a Las Vegas Night...

HONEY: Look at that lettuce! There are millions aboard this flying Fort Knox!

RAVEN: Who's she supposed to be, Lawrence of Arabia?

DR. Z: We've got to time this job perfectly, baby! First, I light your cigarette!

HONEY: *Puff**Puff* The pressurized knock-out gas released by this cig is working like a charm!

BRAD: One little cigarette contains enough gas to put an entire zeppelin to sleep. Sure.

DR. Z: Quick, use these nose-filters, before it starts working on us.

BRAD: And he sticks it up his nose.


DR. Z: (vo) By inserting the special nasal filters, we neutralize the gas and keep wide awake, while it kayoes everyone else!

WALDO: Hope none of the guests are on oxygen.

BRAD: That's a remarkably young and fit set of plutocrats.

DR. Z: Every second counts! Help me clean out the cashier's cage! Then we'll go for the passengers' jewels!

HONEY: This is a cinch! They're all in slumberland!

WALDO: Searching for the Princess...

NARRATOR: But in the Radio Room, one man is still semi-conscious...

SEMI-CONSCIOUS MAN: Sky-High Club to Tower Control! Emergency... Mysterious fumes...

GROUND CONTROL: We'd better contact Superman at once!

BRAD: See, he's busy checking out all the other potential crimes high above Metropolis.

NARRATOR: Alerted, the Man of Steel streaks to the rescue...

SUPERMAN: Don't worry! I'll haul in the mooring cable and bring the dirigible down to Earth!

GROUND CONTROL: Nice going, Superman! The people aboard may need medical attention!

WALDO: Why doesn't he fly up and capture Zodiac first?

HONEY: I thought you said Superman's horoscope predicted he'd have an unlucky hour! There he is, pulling us down! We're trapped!

DR. Z: Relax, kid! The stars never fail! Look what's coming our way!

BRAD: That's "DIG what's Coming," capital D, capital C...

NARRATOR: Yes, blazing down from the night sky comes...

HONEY: Great Guns! It's a space capsule zooming out of orbit. It cut the mooring cable... exactly at 8 o'clock! It's uncanny!

DR. Z: Didn't I tell you my horoscope couldn't miss? Now to give Superman a final warning!

BRAD: Gee, if his horoscopes are this good, why doesn't he skip the life of crime and take over from Jeanne Dixon?

DR. Z: Superman, this is Dr. Zodiac! I've taken over the craft! According to the stars, your unlucky hour has just begun. Try to stop me, and I'll blow up this ship and everyone aboard!

SUPERMAN: I can't risk the passengers' lives! I'll leave!

RAVEN: If Superman can't do anything, maybe Gladstone Gander?

NARRATOR: At dawn, in a remote area...

WALDO: They had till dawn? So much for, "Every second counts."

BRAD: It's just a *lot* of seconds.

DR. Z: It was all written in the stars! We got away with millions in loot and Superman couldn't stop us!

BRAD: As they parachute into a fogbank...

HONEY: By releasing the valves, we're causing the zeppelin to settle to earth miles from here!

NARRATOR: Meanwhile, in Metropolis...

TV NEWSMAN: The odds against a space-capsule shearing that slim mooring cable are more than 100 billion to one! Do you still doubt Dr. Zodiac can predict the future?

SUPERMAN: Gentlemen, I refuse to believe in such superstitious poppycock!

WALDO: And so does the Spectre and Dr. Fate!

NARRATOR: As Dr. Zodiac enjoys his ill-gotten loot...

HONEY: Talk about luxury! Now you've got a penthouse, a maid and a $50,000 computer to help you figure out those whacky horoscopes!

WALDO: Talking like that in front of the maid? Is she deaf?

RAVEN: If she knows what's good for her.

DR. Z: Don't knock astrology, baby! Right now, I've got this gadget planning the Crime of the Century!


RAVEN: Is this a computer or Jack Benny's Maxwell?

DR. Z: WOW! This combined horoscope for Superman and Batman predicts they're destined for the worst hard luck of their careers! This is my chance to pull the greatest crime caper in history!

BRAD: Why doesn't he just win the Lotto?

NARRATOR: Soon, a TV bulletin announces...

SKULL-HEADED TV GUY: Attention, Superman and Batman! A note from Dr. Zodiac boasts that he will steal the greatest treasures of two cities tomorrow at midnight. Try to stop him and the stars predict you will DIE!

TV VIEWER: *Ulp!* Dr. Zodiac's forecasts haven't missed yet!

BRAD: It's all in the rep...

GORDON: You've heard about the warning! This Dr. Zodiac is infallible! Let the police handle him!

SUPERMAN: No, Commissioner, he's too dangerous. This is a job for us!

WALDO: I'd pull your badge if you had one.

NARRATOR: The next night, at the Superman-Batman museum in the State Police Building...

RAVEN: I don't see Superman letting Batman have part of *his* museum...

RUBBER-SUITED MINION (1 OF 8): Ha, ha! The museum guards don't dream you had us hidden under those alien plants that were delivered today, Dr. Zodiac!

BRAD: One speech balloon doing the work of at least four panels.

DR. Z: Get moving! Let's collect those super-valuable souvenirs of Superman and Batman's joint adventures!

WALDO: The World's Finest Loot!

BRAD: They stand in front of three statues bearing this inscription: "These onyx sculptures of the Superman-Batman-Robin team are valued at $200,000! The money was contributed by the people of Metropolis and Gotham City."

DR. Z: Space jewels, rare precious metals... we'll take them all, but our biggest prize will be those two statues!

RAVEN: Man, even Robin's *statue* doesn't count!

NARRATOR: But, abruptly...

BATMAN: That's what you think, creep!

RSM(1o8): Those aren't statues! They're the real thing! Beat it!

DR. Z: No, wait, They can't stop us! My horoscopes never fail!

BRAD: And he grabs a display Batarang.


DR. Z: Beaned by a Batarang! Ironic, eh? And wait till you see what's in store for you, Superman! Ha, ha!

BRAD: He grabs a sample of Green Kryptonite.

DR. Z: Have some Kryptonite! I warned you about your black hour!

RAVEN: If this is the State Police building, where's the Police?

WALDO: In a state.

SUPERMAN: AGGG! The pain! I feel the strength draining out of me!

NARRATOR: As the fatal element completes its work...

RSM(1o8): Superman dead! And Batman and Robin are our prisoners! The underworld will never believe this!

DR. Z: They will, when we show 'em the evidence! Let's go. Open your tank valves and let the helium fill your inflatable suits!

WALDO: The Michelin Man Brigade!

RSM(1o8): This escape gimmick tops them all! The helium is turning us into human balloons!

DR. Z: That dirigible job gave me the idea for airlifting our loot... including the body of Superman.. and the Dynamic Duo!

NARRATOR: Next day, the underworld swarms to an abandoned nightclub...

HONEY: Yes! Superman's dead! And today you'll see the execution of Batman and Robin! To celebrate, Dr. Zodiac is giving each guest a sweatshirt with his horoscope sign! Name your birthday, pal!

BRAD: You can get nicer ones from Cafe Press.

DR. Z: Here they are, gents... the Caped Crime-Fighters. Now, I'll turn on the valve that will flood Batman's execution chamber with deadly cyanide gas!

MOOK: Haw, haw! Terrific!

RAVEN: Give the audience what they want...

BATMAN: *Gasp* Cough*

DR. Z: HA, HA! Ain't it a beautiful sight?

BRAD: Psst! You forgot to take off his mask!

DR. Z: That's that! The Masked Manhunter is kaput!

MOOK 2: First, Superman. Now, Batman! Hooray!

RAVEN: And next, Wonder Woman gets a revamp.

MOOK 3: A toast to Dr. Zodiac!

DR. Z: Now before we finish off Robin, I'm going to auction off the horoscopes of the country's leading lawmen! What am I bid for the details of J.Edgar Hoover's unluckiest hour?

RAVEN: Too late! That was when Luciano caught him in the men's room.

MOOK 4: $50,000 bucks!

MOOK 5: I bid a hundred grand!

NARRATOR: But suddenly...

BRAD: Crashing through the wall...

HONEY: Batman, Robin and Superman! They're alive!

DR. Z: It can't be! I killed them myself!

WALDO: You let the stars get in your eyes.

BRAD: Batman knocks Doc Zee into the piano – piano?! – with a BRRONNNGG!

BATMAN: Maybe we came back to haunt you, Zodiac! Come on, let's play the Prisoner's Song!

SUPERMAN: Too bad I can't let myself go, as you fellows can! If I hit these guys too hard, I'd kill them!

RAVEN: Oh, boo hoo hoo for Big Blue.

NARRATOR: After the police arrive...

DR. Z: This is impossible! These horoscopes never fail!

SUPERMAN: They didn't fail! It was all a hoax to lure wanted criminals out of hiding! I borrowed that book from a museum and added a faked translation with false horoscopes!

WALDO: So why didn't you fake the whole book, instead of letting a cheap grifter manhandle a museum exhibit?

SUPERMAN: The sheriff at the carnival deliberately escorted you to the county line where those crystal balls lured you into a curio shop. The shopkeeper was ME in disguise.


SUPERMAN IN GRAY WIG: (vo) He swallowed the bait! He's sure to use the horoscopes I worked out! I know he'd never be able to resist taking that book!

WALDO: No wonder the storekeeper was remarkably unwrinkled!

SUPERMAN: Then I used my super-vision and super-hearing to tune in on your plans... When you checked on our birthdays....


BATMAN: I was born April 25th. (vo) A phoney date for a phoney gypsy!

JIMMY: Superman was born August 1st! (vo) That's the fake date Superman told me to give her!

BRAD: See, Superman can't give the fake birthday himself, because he can't lie. But he can make others lie for him.

SUPERMAN: Thus I knew exactly the "unlucky hours" the horoscopes would predict, and what crimes you cooked up...


BATMAN: The info Superman gave us was perfect... Right on the nose! The Captain of that ship passed under the bridge exactly at the time we arranged!

WALDO: Can you say "entrapment," boys and girls?

SUPERMAN: And when I eavesdropped on your horoscope plans for me...


DR. Z: The Sky-High Club can't miss, if we time it for 8 p.m. That's when Superman is due for his unlucky hour!

SUPERMAN (vo) So that's his scheme.

BRAD: Great wall treatment, with Superman spread-eagled on a zodiac wheel.

SUPERMAN: The evening of the robbery...

SUPERMAN (vo): I'm hurling this object into a super-accurate orbit that will bring it down just in time to cut the dirigible cable at the start of my "unlucky hour!"

SUPERMAN: My super-aim brought the capsule down at precisely 8 p.m....


DR. Z: Didn't I tell you that horoscope couldn't miss?

SUPERMAN (vo) That should convince Dr. Zodiac that his horoscopes will enable him to get away with any crime in the books!

RAVEN: That should convince Metropolis' richest citizens to hit you with a class action suit.

[end flashbacks]

DR. Z: But if I didn't kill you, whom did I kill?

SUPERMAN: Nobody! These are lifelike plastic androids, which I programmed to put on an act. We switched them for our statues. This one was chemically treated to turn green in the presence of Kryptonite!

WALDO: Except they forgot to tell the colorist...

BATMAN: We figured you'd try to sell horoscopes of lawmen to other crooks... and that every public enemy would come out of his rat-hole to buy them after your predictions came true.

BRAD: Hey Tony Soprano, nice sweatshirt!

SUPERMAN: I've kept tabs on all your hidden loot. It'll be returned to its owners!

WALDO: Face it, Doc, they played you like a two-dollar ocarina!

SUPERMAN: And now we're going to read *your* horoscope, Dr. Zodiac!

BATMAN: We predict that, according to the stars, you will spend your next 20 years in jail! Ha, ha!

DR. Z: Bah!

RAVEN: The end. You know, Brad, for a brighter, more innocent time, the Silver Age sure had some messed-up messaging.

WALDO: Yeah, you had Superman and Batman greasing the way for Dr. Schmo-diac to steal millions of dollars.

RAVEN: And it was only by sheer luck that no one got killed from ten hours' exposure to knockout gas.

WALDO: And DC can't make up it's mind as to whether astrology works or not.

BRAD: I know, I know. Just tell yourself it's the Camp Era, that excuses a multitude on sins. Anyway I can't stick around here.

RAVEN: Why not?

BRAD: Gotta finish taking my Myers-Briggs.