Wednesday, June 25, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Brave and the Bold #79

Brave and the Bold #79 (On Sale: June 25, 1968) has a wonderful cover by Neal Adams featuring Batman and Deadman.

Inside we have the classic Batman/Deadman team-up, "The Track of the Hook," by Bob Haney and Neal Adams. Deadman comes to Gotham to seek the help of Batman, the world's greatest detective, to locate Hook, the man who killed Boston Brand. Batman is involved with another murder case involving small-time racketeer Whitey Marsh who was also killed by a man with a hook. Batman decides to leave the case for the police, while he tries to find the identity of a syndicate leader known as the King. Deadman takes over Batman's body, then leaves a recorded message revealing himself and his story. He succeeds in gaining Batman's commitment to finding Hook.

The trail leads Batman to Max Chill, the brother of Joe Chill, the killer of Bruce Wayne's parents. Max wore a fake hook on his wrist to throw suspicion away from himself. Max dies trying to escape. Deadman realizes that his own killer is not involved in this case.

Crusader Carleton K. Kaine has been pressuring Batman and Commissioner Gordon to find the King. Batman believes it is Jack Le Sabre, while Gordon suspects Big Jim Coltrane. Batman traces clues found with Chill that lead him back to the crime syndicate and realizes that Kaine is the real crime boss. This classic has been reprinted in Super-Team Family #2, Deadman #5, Batman Illustrated by Neal Adams Vol. 1 HC, and Showcase Presents: The Brave and the Bold Batman Team-Ups Vol. 1 TPB.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

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