Batman #11 - Story 3
April 15, 1942
"Bandits in Toyland"
We have a busy story here in that there are a couple of elements going on at the same time. Do they come together? Let's fine out.
The story opens with Batman and Robin working out when they read about the rash of robberies of toys. "Muscles" Malone's gang is the main suspect. It's a strange case and Batman is about to get involved when Bruce receives a summons to immediately appear for jury duty. I guess they know how to find people in a hurry what with Bruce being an idle playboy. Dick wants to look into it himself, but Bruce feels it's too dangerous and Dick has to tend to his studies. It's a nice moment as it shows that the two have a life outside of their adventures.
At the trial, Bruce listens to the testimony of a department store employee accused of stealing jewels from a safe. It looks bad until Bruce reads the lips of two spectators, members of the Malone gang, who say their boss will be happy with the frame up working so well. In the jury room, Bruce holds out that the man is innocent, forcing the jury to be sequestered for the night.
He changes to Batman and sneaks out of his hotel room, knowing he only has the night to prove the man's innocence. But meanwhile, bored with his studies, Dick dons his Robin costume and heads out to investigate the toy robberies. Robin catches up with Malone as his boys are robbing a house, looking for a particular toy. He engages them, but is quickly brought down.
Meanwhile, Batman hides in the truck of a car belonging to Malone's gang when he hears them talking about the toys as they drive to a park where they meet up with Malone who has Robin. Batman frees Robin and the two fight the gang who make their escape. Batman overheard the men talking about two targets that night. The two split up.
Batman goes to Grandma Drew's (no relation) home. She's an eccentric with a large doll collection. She has a room rigged with lights and sounds that simulate a village for her "children" to live in. Malone shows up and takes a Betsy Ross doll. He leaves two of his men behind to take care of Batman. They are startled though when one of Grandma's programmed voices call out. It distracts them, allowing Batman to capture them. He learns where Grandma buys her toys from and heads off.
Are these the kind of childhood memories that set people on the path to bondage fetishes?