Friday, September 23, 2011

The Batscholar on Episodes 23 & 24

By Joel Eisner

Of all the Riddler episodes this one, is my favorite. A straight forward plot for one. Every crime he commits leads to a central conclusion. He has completely planned out his entire crime from beginning to end. The best part is that Gorshin is now completely insane. Who could not love his self guided tour of the instruments of torture for the benefit of his gang members.

The plot follows a straight line, he uses the wax statue of Batman to smuggle the universal wax solvent into the country. He then steals the statue and melts it down to recover the wax contained inside. He uses the wax (which only is dangerous when exposed to a flame, it can be handled without any danger when in a cool state). to burn through the library safe door to obtain a rare book on the Lost Treasure of the Incas. (He also uses the wax to burn a large hole for himself and gang in the safe wall in order to make his escape). Using the knowledge he locates the treasure among the relics contained at the local museum. The relics are currently in storage until they can create a special airtight case for the Inca Mummy, Meanwhile, finding the musuem closed, Robin climbs up to a small window to gain access (Batman was too big to fit) but before he can let Batman in, he is discovered by Riddler's men and is subdued on the torture rack, while Riddler and his men search for the sarcophagus. Batman (who should have used his Bat Pass Key or at least shot out the lock with his laser) uses the Batram on the batmobile to break down the back door, finds Riddler and captures the gang and saves the mummy before the wax solvent eats through the sarcaphagus. Later, we all get to see the mummy and the jewels when Aunt Harriet, Bruce and Dick visit the new exhibit at the muesum.

Riddler's gang is much smaller than in past episodes, but they are all in tune with the wax plot. Matches played by Michael Greene, at almost six foot six, he towered over the rest of the cast, and like Tata had a waxy yellow tan, while Linda Gaye Scott as Moth was quite pale and ghostly).

Greene had a long steady career as either heavys or cops. He did have the lead role in a bizzare sci film entitled the Clones, in which he plays a scientist trying to stop foreign powers from cloning famous scientist. The main villain is Stanley Adams, (Cyrano Jones from the Tribble episode of Star Trek and Tybo the Carrot Man from Lost in Space).

Joey Tata was a Fox regular appearing Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Time Tunnel (as Napoleon) Lost in Space, and many more. He is best rembered from Beverly Hills 90210 as Nat the owner of the Peach Pit. He returned to aide the Penguin when he ran for mayor and King Tut when he broke into the Batcave.

Tata remembered his time working with the Riddler “Gorshin and I stole the Batmobile once. We had this running shot, where we would get into the Batmobile and just take off. That was the cut, but we kept going and kept laughing. Frank says, ‘Do you believe this? Where are we going to go with this?’ I said, ‘Why don’t we use all of the lines? You’ll say, “Hi, park this.” No one will question us because you have question marks all over your green underwear and I am walking around with this pasty look on my face.’ But we never did leave the studio.”

Linda Gaye Scott is the real mystery, A very uneventful career in show biz. She also appeared along side Tata on Lost in Space and in the fina two part episode of the Green Hornet. She never gave much to the part of Moth, She looked great in the costume but the makeup gave her a ghostly look. Some how she made Moth come off as the sort of dumb blonde character, in fact the henchmen aren't too bright either. Matches sort of reminds me of Eb the farmhand on Green Acres. What makes her so bizzare is that she is one of the heirs to the Scott Paper Company fortune. She dropped out of sight in the 1970's and hasn't acted since. No one knows what happened to her.

Another interesting point of note, there is a different mayor of Gotham City, Mayor Linseed, does not appear in this episode. The mayor is just the mayor no specific name and never appeared again.

One of the more fun moments is when Batman traps Riddler and his gang with the ancient torture devices. Of which is the wheel of death, onto which the Riddler is attached and spun around as sort of an ironic twist of fate when you consider the way he treated Batman and Robin in their previous encounter. You know I was never quite sure if it was Gorshin or his double attached to that spinning wheel, but it wasn't any dummy.

Next The Joker returns in one of his more humorous adventures (loaded with plot holes and another Superman guest villain).


  1. The Bat-Scholar on Linda Scott: "… she is one of the heirs to the Scott Paper Company fortune. She dropped out of sight in the 1970's and hasn't acted since. No one knows what happened to her." Looks pretty obvious to me. She inherited millions, probably married millions, and enjoyed her golden years in plastic surgery—all recovery assisted by Scotties facial tissues, naturally.

    "Matches sort of reminds me of Eb the farmhand on Green Acres." I don't want to think about a henchman referring to the Riddler as "Dad."

  2. The last thing I recall seeing Linda Scott in was an episode of Columbo - the one with Janet Leigh.
    Linda Scott played the maid for Leigh and Sam Jaffe; she was married to the butler, played by Maurice Evans, who had to be at least 20 years older than she was (have to look that up).

  3. Devoted fan and owner of both Batbook editions here...

    Out of curiosity, do you have any idea which episodes Gorshin submitted tonthe Academy for his Emmy nomination?

  4. Considering the year, it's hard to see that third photo and not think of Paul Revere and the Raiders. It's like looking ahead to "Hizzoner the Penguin."

  5. Linda Gaye Scott was apparently corresponding with her fans on IMDb (as "lscott-16") up to 2008. A Facebook account with a couple of pictures of her exists under her name, created in 2010.

  6. Did anyone notice a cardinal error by Batman near the end of the episode?
    As he releases Robin from the rack, and Robin complains of his discomfort, Batman says something like "Don't worry, Aunt Harriet will provide you some nourishing soup when we get home". Now he says this quite audibly next to Moth sitting in the torture bathtub. Now Moth, with her obvious Harvard background, could mention this snippet to the Riddler and he might potentially devine Robin's true identity, and therefore Batman's, with this piece of information.

  7. Do I see Linda Gaye Scott as one of Khan's crew in the Star Trek original series episode "Space Seed?" No dialogue but I think she is one of the women dressed in skimpy costumes doing pseudo-yoga after waking from suspended animation.