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"The Minstrel's Shakedown/Barbecued Batman?"

Aired September 21/22, 1966

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The Minstrel, a new villain, has appeared in Gotham City and he's holding the Gotham City Stock Exchange hostage with his extortion demands.  The Caped Crusaders are on the case, but it turns out that the Minstrel is Batman's intellectual equal when it comes to technology.  Can Batman outwit the Minstrel with the aid of his latest Bat-device, the Bat-Drone?


Joining John to talk about The Minstrel and the lost potential in what should have been a recurring villain is Gotham City 14 Miles editor, Jim Beard.


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A native of Toledo, Ohio, Jim Beard was introduced to comic books at an early age by his father, who passed on to him a love for the medium and the pulp characters who preceded it. After decades of reading, collecting and dissecting comics, Jim became a published writer when he sold a story to DC Comics in 2002. Since that time he's written official Star Wars and Ghostbusters comic stories and contributed articles and essays to several volumes of comic book history.


His prose work includes GOTHAM CITY 14 MILES, a book of essays on the 1966 Batman TV series; SGT. JANUS, SPIRIT-BREAKER, a collection of pulp ghost stories featuring an Edwardian occult detective; MONSTER EARTH, a giant monster anthology; and CAPTAIN ACTION: RIDDLE OF THE GLOWING MEN, the first pulp prose novel based on the classic 1960s action figure.

Currently, Jim provides regular content for, the official Marvel Comics website, and is a regular columnist for Toledo Free Press.





Click on the image to get your copy of Jim's collection of essays on the Batman 60s series from Amazon.

In 1957, Johnson starred in The Pied Piper of Hamelin as the title character.  He wore outfits similar to what he wore in the Minstrel episodes and sang as well.  The Pied Piper would be a theme seen in a third season Batman episode.

"Programmed for Death" was the third episode of The Green Hornet.  It aired on Friday following this two-part Batman story.

This issue of the Jerry Lewis comic was on sale September 20 of the week this episode aired.  Lewis had appeared in a window cameo earlier in the year.

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