World’s Finest 70 – Superman and Batman solo stories end


World’s Finest 70 (May/June 1954) is the last issue to run 68 pages, and the last to contain solo stories of Superman and Batman.  The following issue would see the page length cut to 34 pages, and begin Superman/Batman team-up stories.


Al Plastino does the art on this complicated story, in which Superman fears that he has developed a split personality.


The situation is result of a combination of a kryptonite asteroid, hidden behind the Moon, and only affecting Superman periodically, and criminals taking advantage of the situation, with a hood impersonation him.


For a while, Superman himself is tricked by the con, but upon finding the asteroid, all becomes clear.


The Batman and Robin story in this issue, by Finger and Sprang, has Batman work with an unwitting media to frame another man as being Batman.  Jay Varden is an engineer, who Batman is certain is working with criminals, designing their plans, but cannot find proof.  He constructs a fake Batcave beneath Varden’s home, knowing that a construction crew will reveal it.


Varden finds himself unable to convince the angry mobsters he works with that he is not really Batman.


The whole point is to push Varden into confessing to save his skin.  It works, but it could just as easily have ended with Varden being murdered by the mob.



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