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Batmen of Luna
Batmen

Real Name

N/A

First Appearance

Space Busters #2 (Fall 1952)

Original Publisher

Ziff-Davis

Created by

John Prentice

Origin

The year is 2103. Lieutenant Steve Halden, is on duty at the "magnetoscope space scanner" with his fiance, "code analyst" Kara Lane. Steve tells her his two-weeks of leave is approved, which pleases Kara so the two can be married.

Steve points out an odd 'batship' to Kara as the spacecraft enters the Earth's atmosphere. He reports this to his superior, who orders the Lieutenant to, "Alert every proton-powered, anti-gravitator vessel available," before reporting to the aged Captain Dane Bartok.

Bartok sees the enormous bat spaceship. The craft releases several smaller ships otherwise identical in appearance.

Halden plans to attack, but Bartok wants to run from the fight. Captain Bartok relinquishes responsibility and action to Lieutenant Halden. The batships are chased back to their mothership by the Earth forces. Meeting with an expert in extra-sensory perception, the earth forces manage to speak to a batman prisoner captured in the fight. The Batman says they are from Luna and want to kill all the humans and take over the Earth, but their Chief was killed in the first fighter craft. Missing its leader, the Mothership has given up the expedition and returned to Luna.

Captain Bartok has been charged over his failure in such a crucial moment in history. He is asked to explain himself, but says he will not and expects no mercy.

The next day, Lieutenant Halden and Kara Lane tour an "All-Earth Air Force" rocket. Halden feels bad for Bartok, whom they see on the tour. Eschewing talking to the Captain, Halden encourages Kara to go be nice to Bartok. Bartok mentions that he designed a release for the engine room on the ship if it was necessary to release it because the rockets heated up.

On the retired rocket, the "Bat-Ship from Luna" returns. Bartok tells the Lieutenant to contact headquarters, but the Bat-Ship scrambles the signal and it cannot get through. Lieutenant Halden decides they must take the rocketship and run for it to get a message out. The Bat-Ship tries to capture them. The men manning the engine room don't think the engines can take much more, as they are dangerously heating up as it is. Captain Bartok comes down to the engine room and sends the men away. Once the men are gone, he sits down at the controls. He says, "I designed these babies! I ought to know how to make them behave!"

The rocket dives at the Bat-Ship with its guns blazing. Over the communicator, he wishes Kara and Steve goodbye, saying his actions are his wedding gift to them. Steve realizes Bartok plans to cut the "tube room" loose. Steve hopes the "seat ejector" still works. It did work, and Bartok is thrown clear of the unattached tube room. The tube room crashes into the Bat-Ship and destroys it. "Emergency rocket power" affects the ship's landing, and Steve and Kara alight safely.

Steve and Kara go to Bartok's apartment, where Kara finds a document saying Bartok's wife died the day before the attack from Luna. They think it explains his odd behavior. They go to the hospital to visit Captain Bartok, who is receiving salutes from several pilots on their arrival. Kara and Steve talk with Bartok. The Captain thanks them for their friendship with tears in his eyes.

Public Domain Appearances

  • Space Busters #2

See Also

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