Episode Title: How to Hatch a Dinosaur
Original Airdate: November 9, 1967
If you recall, last time we visited Gotham, our heroes had to face not one but two villains in the form of Egghead (Vincent Price) and Olga, Queen of the Cosacks (Anne Baxter). However, they both managed to get away. We didn’t really get a cliffhanger, but we were promised their return in the next episode. Well, here they are with a brand new scheme which has nothing to do with last week’s story. Get ready for How to Hatch a Dinosaur.
As we begin, Egghead and Olga show up at the Gotham City Radium Center to lift two pounds of, as Olga calls it, “Hot Stuff.” In other words, Radium. A short time later the two crooks show up at the museum to steal a giant Neosaurus egg being studied by Professor Dactyl. In fact, Barbara Gordon is acting in her official capacities as a librarian delivering a book to the professor when the crime happens. Of course, she reports the theft to her father while the Caped Crusaders just so happen to be paying a visit to police headquarters.
Batman and Robin head back to the Batcave to try and figure things out. Meanwhile, Barbara (aka Batgirl) starts doing some research on her own. At the same time, each of heroes realize that Egghead may be trying out something written about by one professor Grimes in the Southeastern Journal of Applied Radiology. Unfortunately, the Gotham Library had to cancel their subscription to that periodical due to budget cuts. However, millionaire Bruce Wayne is a subscriber. In fact, Batman has already sent Alfred to find the title of the article. At the same moment, Barbara calls Alfred to find out the same info. The article is called “Revitalizing Fossil Forms by the use of High-energy Radioactive Energy Sources.” It seems that Egghead is planning on hatching a Neosaurus of his own.
At Egghead and Olga’s lair, they begin hitting the egg with radiation. Meanwhile, each of the heroes has fashioned a radiation detector so they can locate the baddies. Once the source is located, Robin and Batgirl bust in and fight with Olga’s cosacks. But then, something amazing happens. The egg begins to hatch and a Neosaurus begins to emerge. The beast takes just a few steps toward Egghead and all the villains run outside, straight into the waiting paddy wagon of Chief O’Hara. Moments later, we see that the dinosaur is actually Batman in disguise.
As I said earlier, this episode has absolutely nothing to do with everything that transpired last time. It’s a bit of a head-scratcher as to why the producers even made this, technically, a two-parter. Why not just use this story later on in the season? It’s not like the previous episode gave us any information vital to understanding this one! In the end, I think that last week’s episode should’ve just been our heroes battling Olga, and then this episode would’ve stood alone as an Egghead story. It would’ve made much more sense that way.
All that aside, this is actually a pretty strong episode, even if the ending gets a bit silly. Though our two villains are both very entertaining, what makes this episode fun is following two separate superhero camps as they both try to figure out what Egghead and Olga are up to. This all culminates in what may be one of the funniest sequences in the whole run of the series where Alfred has to juggle phone calls from both Batman and Batgirl seeking the same information. Alfred holds a phone receiver in each hand and goes back and forth between the two, trying hard to make sure he doesn’t accidentally reveal anyone’s secret identity to the others. Alan Napier proves to be quite a skilled comedic actor in this sequence.
Now, the end of the episode is a bit goofy. For one thing, you can see it coming a mile away that Batman is the one playing the dinosaur. To boot, the dinosaur costume is very cheesy. This thing wouldn’t even cut it on Land of the Lost. The episode, though, never addresses how Batman was able to get inside the egg. The epilogue even brings up that this is a major plot hole, but the characters all just laugh it off.
Speaking of the epilogue, we need to reveal who next week’s villain is. Well, we see Barbara get a phone call from a male friend inviting her to join him down at the beach for some surfing. Then, we see a strange looking roadster arrive at the beach carrying none other than the Joker. You’ve probably seen the memes created from this episode floating around on Facebook and Twitter. It’s time for the one where Batman and the Joker surf! Join us next time for Surf’s Up! Joker’s Under! Same bat-time, same bat-channel (superhero).
Bat Gadgets Used: