Spain’s Bootleg Robin Was a Gun-Toting Badass
On the off chance that today's discussion of Lord Death Man wasn't enough International Batman awesomeness for you, then brace yourselves, because the Internet has provided even more: the blog El Desvan Del Abuelito has uncovered a series of unlicensed Spanish Batman comics from the '40s in which Batman and Robin were just a little more violent that you might expect:
In "Robin y el Murciealgo" ("Robin and the Bat"), what originally started as an enterprising (if totally bootleg) translation of the Batman newspaper strip quickly turned crazy when the bootleggers grew bored with the fact that Batman and Robin didn't use guns, and decided to remedy that little problem by putting the emphasis on Batman's junior partner and making him a cold-blooded, steel-bar-bending gunslinger.
And I'm not gonna lie: It's pretty great.It's also pretty crazy, of course -- while Batman did carry a gun in his early appearances, he'd certainly mellowed out by the time Robin appeared -- but the inverted color scheme and the fact that Robin's constantly mowing down crooks while looking supremely bored makes me think of this guy as the prototype for the "Mirror Universe" Earth-3 version where the heroes are villains:
But while the emphasis was on Robin, Batman didn't go without his own ramp-up into ultraviolence. While El Dessvan del Abulelito doesn't show any pictures of Batman using guns, that seems to be less because of his vow against firearms and more because he prefers blowing people up with hand grenades:
If that guy was coming after me, I'd be superstitious and cowardly too.
Despite the obvious excitement involved, El Dessvan del Abulelito says that "Robn y el Murcielago" wasn't very successful. Which is pretty surprising, because if I'd seen this cover on a newsstand, I'd definitely want to know what the hell was going on in that story:
Either way, if these guys don't somehow manage to show up in "Batman Inc" as the insanely murderous Spanish versions of Batman and Robin, I will be both surprised and deeply, deeply disappointed. In the meantime, check out the site for more scans and, if you speak Spanish or have Google Translate handy, a brief history on how these stories came about!
"Shoot?" "Wait, Robin. Don't be impatient."