Episode Title: The Yegg Foes in Gotham
Original Airdate: October 20, 1966
If you recall, when we last left Gotham Bruce Wayne was strapped into a mind reading device by Egghead. The chrome-domed villain believes the millionaire may be Batman and intends to drain Bruce’s brain to find out. Let’s see what happens in this week’s episode, The Yegg Foes in Gotham.
It seems sure that Bruce is doomed, but his clever ward, Dick Grayson, hits upon an idea. He manages to adjust the voltage on the machine causing a short circuit. Before leaving, Egghead drops a sensitive egg bomb, but Bruce and the other millionaire’s manage to escape. Plus, Bruce safely triggers the bomb by shooting a grape at it as if a marble. Bruce was, after all, the Gotham junior marble champion when he was eleven. Even though our heroes escaped, they did not make the deadline to present the pelts to Chief Screaming Chicken. The lease to Gotham thus expires and Egghead takes over the city.
Crime soon takes over the city and Batman and Robin are barred from even entering the fair city of Gotham. But Batman still has a trick up his sleeve. As Bruce and Dick, the Dynamic Duo head back to Gotham and steal the town charter. Upon examination they find that the fine print states that no one who has committed a crime can own the lease on the land. They also determine that Egghead was not really after the city, but rather the contents of the city treasury. Egghead is now on the run, but Batman determines that he will want to pick up a fresh supply of eggs before skipping town. So they track him down to Old MacDonald’s Farm and a battle ensues with eggs serving as weapons.
Whereas part one of this story was pretty by the book, part two gets a bit wacky. When Egghead has control of the city he instructs the cops to let his criminal friends get away with all sorts of crimes. However, the good citizens of Gotham are cited for things like littering and not wearing their seat belt. It’s kind of funny considering seat belt infractions are commonplace today. The highlight of the episode, though, is the final battle at the egg farm. Heroes and villains alike pelt each other with eggs. At one point, Egghead even grabs an entire carton and dumps it over Robin’s head.
One thing, though, about the final fight: I’ve noticed in the last several episodes that it’s getting easier and easier to notice that stunt men are filling in for Adam West and Burt Ward in the fight sequences. West’s double seems quite a bit beefier than the series’ star and he has a tendency to grimace in strange ways. Ward’s stunt double is even more noticeable. The two have considerably different facial structures.
We do still have the somewhat squirm inducing character of Chief Screaming Chicken again, but he really doesn’t play a very big role in this episode. Picking up the slack, though, is this episode’s window cameo. Comedian Bill Dana peeks out of the window as his popular character Jose Jimenez. Dana played the character on Make Room for Daddy and his catch phrase, “My name is…Jose Jimenez,” become a part of the pop culture lexicon. He delivers the phrase in this episode. The popularity of the character even resulted in a spin-off series, The Bill Dana Show, which aired for two seasons. In 1970, just a few years after this episode aired, Dana became sensitive to changing attitudes regarding ethnic humor and retired the character, even holding a funeral for him.
Of course, Vincent Price is once again a delight as Egghead, even if his EGG-stream use of egg puns is a bit over-the-top. I can understand why he became a favorite villains for many fans of the show. Our next villain, though, may be one of the most bizarre casting choices in the history of the show. Get ready for Liberace as Chandell Harry in The Devil’s Fingers. Next week…same bat-time, same bat-channel (superhero).
Bat Gadget’s Used:
Note: The line “Holy Banks” is clearly and awkwardly dubbed. Robin’s lip movements come nowhere close to matching the line. I’m very curious to know what he actually said.