Eclipso Pt. 8: The Brave & the Bold #64
Title: The Brave & the Bold
Issue #: 64
Cover Date: Feb/March 1966
On Sale Date: Dec. 23, 1965
Writer: Bob Haney
Artist: J. Winslow Mortimer
Editor: George Kashdan
Batman Versus Eclipso
We’ve matched ‘em all – DC’s heroes from A to Super – teaming up to battle baddies of every ilk! But get set for the big switch – as we present two costumed caperers battling each other.. the one and only Batman, tangling with the devilish, dastardly Eclipso! New we say more? No, but we will… it’s the most!
When Batman saves as old flame from the pointed end of an arrow…
He agrees to help her; however, it’s a set-up. When Batman’s photographed replacing the emerald, it’s then still missing. They think he stole it! Why would Marcia want him out of the way – in jail?
As Dr. Bennet prepares to send Eclipso right back into Bruce Gordon’s body, one of Queen Bee’s hench… bees (?) crashes through the skylight and whisks away Eclipso.
Later, in a top floor meeting room of the Apis Enterprises Building, aka the Hive (see Notes below), Queen Bee plots a Gotham City crime spree that, with Eclipso’s assistance, will "burst out like measles."
When Gorilla Grimes is released, Batman, with the help of his utility belt, releases himself and follows the criminal into the Hive. There, he’s ambushed and…
Batman is dumped in the river. When he rises to the surface, the police fire upon him… because he’s an escaped criminal now, remember. He’s then assumed dead when Bruce, Mona and Dr. Bennet arrive to offer their assistance to the police. Meanwhile…
The man from C.Y.C.L.O.P.S., the international, all-powerful crime syndicate, has just informed Eclipso and Queen Bee that their criminal services will no longer be needed – and this makes old “double face” real mad!
All is not as it seems. Not only is this agent really Batman in disguise, but…
Marcia explains that she had to cooperate with Cyclops to keep her father’s name clear and save him from death…
Oh, darling – please try to understand… I had no choice! Once caught in Cyclops’ web, there’s not escape! I hated doing it to you – the only man I’ve ever loved!
Marcia gives Batman the emerald and he lets her go, leaving him to battle Eclipso…
Bruce offers to help and joins the battle via hook-and-ladder. With a swift toss of a chemically activated plastic “grenade,” Eclipso is sucked back into Bruce’s body.
Later, Batman ruminates…
Marcia’s gone! Some day, she’ll have to pay for her crimes – and when that day comes, she’ll need all my help! Until then – farewell, Honey!
Oh, man, as you will see with my notes below, there's a lot in The Brave & The Bold #64 to love! First, let's be clear that the villainess in the story is not the same Queen Bee that debuted in Justice League of America #23. This is the only story in which Marcia Monroe appeared.
In a bit of history we've never seen, Batman was engaged to be married to Marcia. Yes, Batman... not Bruce Wayne. Hey, it's the 60's! She was introduced as a villain who was in reality trying to help Batman. When he first captured her... well, see for yourself...
I knew from the first look at Queen Bee that she was going to be Marcia.
When Apis Enterprises is revealed to be Hive, we see a fun cross section of the building with its simply named and clearly labeled floors:
With 1960s Batman comes his wonderful utility belt. It aids him not only with his escape from jail, but also this daring move:
When Eclipso returns to Bruce (Gordon's) body, it's during a fall in mid-air:
Finally, you've got to admire this plug for Eclipso's primary gig:
Batman Versus Eclipso is not only a terrific Eclipso story, but a fun Batman adventure. All in all, it's an example of The Brave & the Bold at its best!