For those of you who aren't familiar with the format, Whitman's Big Little Books were small but thick storybooks for kids that featured a full-page black-and-white illustration for every (short) page of text. The line kicked off in 1933 with a wildly successful Dick Tracy book and over the next forty years, Whitman's strange format tackled stories with almost every major comic book super-hero, including one that I finally got my hands on over the weekend: Batman, in The Cheetah Caper!

Released in 1969, The Cheetah Caper reads like a script for the '60s TV series that was rejected for being too crazy, especially if -- like me -- you're too busy to actually read the story and just try to piece together a narrative by looking at the pictures. Each one tells an interesting story all on its own, which is why today, I've pulled out ten of my favorites.#1. Just a hot tip for anyone out there working at DC, I would love to write and/or pay good money to buy an entire book of pages where Batman just points out things that are or are not common wrestling moves:

#2. Bruce Wayne seems unreasonably angry in this panel -- and Dick Grayson looks absolutely terrified -- until you read the caption and realize that he's just angrily voicing his opinion on the debate that shut down the Source's comments:

#3. Believe it or not, this is not a metaphor.

#4. Neither is this one, although it's worth noting that the story page that goes along with the illustration features the line "He held the eight-foot monster up for all to see," which... You know, it's probably best if I don't get into it.

#5. "Come on, Batman! You'll have time to mack on that MILF later!"

#6. The modern interpretation of Gotham City has always been that it's overcome with a level of crime that no ordinary police force could contain. Back in the '60s, though, the crimes were actually more disturbing than they are today. I mean, mass clown murder is pretty scary, but there's really only one reason you'd find an empty jar of peanut butter at the zoo.


#7. And here's a little something... for the ladies.

#8. Look, cubs. Batman understands what it's like to be young, and he knows that when you're out with the pride, sometimes the pressure's a little too much and you want to have a few drinks. And if you do, he wants you to call him, no matter how late, so that he can push you home in a bizarre feat of strength.

#9. No caption for this one is necessary, as the one that's provided pretty much covers it. Incidentally, that's the Cheetah (not to be confused with the Cheetah), dressed as an orangutan.

#10. And finally, we have this one. I know I said that the pictures alone were insane and I think that holds true here, but the accompanying story page makes it even crazier.

Batman's greatest weapon is fear, but shouting "OPEN THE DOOR, COLLEGE BOY. I NEED TO PUT THESE LIONS IN YOUR CAR." and then he slowly starts smashing the car window is an entirely new kind of frightening.

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