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World's Finest Comics 161
"The Caveman From Krypton!"

COVER IMAGE NOT FOUND (80 Page Giant #28) "The Caveman From Krypton!" October, 1966

Story: Unknown Art: Unknown

When Krypton exploded years ago, the man of steel survived and became a hero on Earth! But now, another survivor has arrived -- and he, too has super-powers, as well! With these abilities, the visitor may become a threat to Earth! It is up to Superman, Batman, and Robin to battle this powerful prehistoric foe they've ever met... "The Caveman from Krypton!" On the splash page, the boy wonder warns the caped crusader and the man of steel that the caveman has gotten loose again, but surely Batman and Superman must be aware of this... especially since they are being thrown around by the self-same caveman!

Outside of Metropolis, a meteor plunges from the sky, and falls onto a farm! The farmer alerts the observatory, sure that the astronomers won't believe this find! When the scientists arrive, they see that the meteor has burst open -- and inside, there's a man -- a caveman! A caveman from outer space! (Holy Flintstone, Batman! I didn't think he came from the town of Bedrock.) One of the scientists listens to the caveman's heartbeats, and sees that the outer space visitor is in some sort of suspended animation. While on their routine air patrol, the caped crusader and the boy wonder have seen a crowd gather, and upon landing, they, too come face-to-face with the caged caveman, who still slumbers... At the Daily Planet, mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent has received a new assignment from Perry White... Hearing from the editor about the caveman who landed at Barry's farm, Clark decides to change to the man of steel, in case of trouble. At that moment... the caveman begins to move...

The caveman manages to bend the bars of his cage, while Batman and Robin charge him, armed with bat-ropes to bind him! Before the dynamic duo can reach him, the caveman swings his right arm, causing the two heroes to fall back from the wind's force! In the air, Superman has arrived at super-speed... he is intent on swooping down and binding the caveman with the bars of the cage! It is the man of steel who is surprised when his headlong charge into the caveman fails to budge him! The battle begins... with the caveman hurling a tractor at Superman, and the man of steel sees that his foe also possesses super-strength!

The caveman roars, then leaps at Superman, who watches as the caveman is sent a half-mile away! In surprise, the caveman crashes into an oil tank, with the man of steel aware of the danger if the oil catches fire --! As the caveman leaps from the wreckage, he stares at it, causing the oil to catch fire with the heat of his x-ray vision! Fearing the flames, the caveman soars away, with Superman staying to put out the fire before it can spread! The dynamic duo arrive, and use fire extinguishers from the Bat-plane to put out the small fires, while Superman deals with the main one. The man of steel borrows a silo and fills it with vinegar and baking soda...

The mixture produces the same foam found in fire extinguishers! With his super-breath, Superman blows foam over the entire area, and smothers the flame! With the danger gone -- Batman and Superman stare at the bent-barred cage, with the caped crusader wondering where the caveman came from, and where he got the same powers as the man of steel? Superman suggests that they examine the meteor for clues, then sees that it's composed of the elements native to Krypton! Batman wonders how a caveman could still be alive -- and inside of a meteor! The man of steel imagines that long ago, the caveman must have been trapped in a lava pit, where the chemical reaction of the combined elements produced a strange gas which kept him in suspended animation... After a million years... life evolved on Krypton -- until the planet exploded -- and the hard core of lava containing the caveman was hurled into space! The caped crusader theorizes that the caveman must have been adrift in space before being drawn into Earth's orbit. Since he's from Krypton, the caveman has super-powers on Earth, just as Superman does! The prehistoric survivor from Krypton must be stopped before he becomes a threat to Earth!

Newspapers report on the caveman from Krypton... while the man of steel and the dynamic duo have split up to search the city. Superman comes upon two terrified elephants stampeding at the zoo! He uses a wastebasket to make a strong lasso, and loops it around the elephants' legs, so that they can be returned to the zoo! In another section of the city, Batman and Robin spot the caveman robbing a jewelry store! The caped crusader believes that he can handle the muscular crook, with the boy wonder calling out to him to stop!

Batman lands a solid punch and staggers the caveman! The brute turns and flees from the caped crusader, with Robin wondering how a caveman who wasn't budged by Superman -- could be floored by Batman! The pursuit ends in the Natural History Museum's outdoor exhibit of dinosaur "fossils" -- which are cement models... The caped crusader warns the boy wonder that the caveman has a gun! The next moment finds Batman executing acrobatics from the jutting horn of a triceratops! Robin sees that this is not the real caveman -- but a thug in make-up! The caped crusader had seen the mark around his wrist -- made from a tight wrist watch band! (Holy Timex, Batman!) The criminal knew that his disguise would scare away the jewelry store security so that he could rob it! Unfortunately for the dynamic duo, the real caveman has arrived!

Enraged, the real caveman leaps down, and Batman warns Robin to get back! The caveman believes the crook to be a fellow cavedweller! The crook has an idea to get the caveman to the boss so that they can use him for jobs! Using gestures, the caveman is soon led to a hideout... The faux caveman crook knows that the boss can use the caveman's super-strength for crime! Elsewhere, the caped crusader tells Superman that the crook may try to have the caveman commit crimes, and with the gun he dropped, Batman will check the fingerprints in the Bat-Cave. Using microfiles of known criminals, the disguised crook is identified as Pete Waller, a member of Jo-Jo Groff's Gang! In an area outside of Metropolis, the man of steel performs a mysterious task, as he re-shaped the environment...

As the sun sets, the dynamic duo head for the garage which Jo-Jo uses as a front for his criminal deeds! Robin knows that Pete and the caveman may be inside, but the next moment finds Batman and the boy wonder caught in the grip of the caveman! Jo-Jo smiles, as his new member's super-hearing detected their approach! Now tied, the two crime-fighters are imprisoned inside the garage... with the caped crusader wondering how Jo-Jo will be able to escape when the caveman has out-lived his usefulness! The boss has it all figured out, as the gang will use the caveman for one big haul -- and then he'll use what's inside the lead-lined box! Once the bank job is completed, Jo-Jo will hold the kryptonite near the caveman,which will finish both him and Superman, in case the man of steel should also try to interfere! Later, the caveman smashes his way through the steel doors of the Metropolis Bank... Jo-Jo and Pete go to fill their bags with money! Once that's done, the caveman carries the getaway car into the air, but then outside of Metropolis, he sees a familiar sight...

To the caveman's eyes, it appears that he has returned to pre-historic Krypton, which was what Superman's plan was all about! Now that he's caught the caveman off-guard, the man of steel figures that he may be able to subdue him! Watching the fight, Jo-Jo plans to take the kryptonite out of the car! Hurling the kryptonite at the combatants, Jo-Jo watches as both survivors from Krypton fall to the ground! At the garage, the caped crusader has made his way to a car with an open door... and clutches the lighter on the car dashboard with his teeth... The lighter burns through the boy wonder's bonds, and soon, the dynamic duo are free once more! Arriving at the area resembling pre-historic Krypton, Batman and Robin remove the green kryptonite from Superman and the caveman!

Once removed, the caveman pushes Batman and Robin at the man of steel! The caveman takes to the air, wtih Superman in aerial pursuit, and the dynamic duo in the Batmobile! The caveman soon overtakes the crook's car... with Pete aware that their new member knows that they betrayed him! Gripping the getaway car, the caveman hurls it downward... towards the rocks below! Fortunately for Jo-Jo and Pete, the man of steel catches the getaway car in time, and assures them that they'll be around for the trial! With the Batmobile on the scene, Superman sends Jo-Jo and Pete to the dynamic duo, while he prepares to finish his fight with the caveman!

To the man of steel's surprise... the caveman keels over... dead! Batman wonders how this can be, but Superman knows that in the years that the caveman drifted in space, he was exposed to cosmic rays -- and those rays, in combination with the kryptonite rays, finally killed him! The caped crusader knows that the caveman only wanted to return home -- but he couldn't have known that Krypton was destroyed years ago! The area which was prepared by Superman was made to resemble the caveman's home! They decide to make it his final resting place! Batman agrees that the caveman has found peace at last!

Even such a futuristic society as Krypton must have had its early period, and "The Caveman From Krypton" proves this point!

In the Silver Age, heroes from other ages have found themselves awakening from suspended animation, and finding themselves in our present!

Superman uses his head against the caveman, who is less than impressed by the challenge.

As in "The Batman Nobody Knows" in World's Finest #136, a fire keeps Superman busy, while the other character manages to make a getaway!

Interestingly, the meteor didn't turn to Kryptonite before arriving on Earth.

Batman proves that he is a master escape-artist.

Interestingly, when the caveman dies, the sun has gone down, and both characters are seen in shadow, with Batman's emotions at the loss unseen, but felt nonetheless.

This Review Is Dedicated To Bob Buethe

Steve Chung
"The Caveman From Review!"