Batman and Robin (1949, Spencer Gordon Bennet), Chapter 7: The Fatal Blast

Shockingly, there is actually a blast in The Fatal Blast. Sadly it seems unlikely to be fatal enough, as there are eight more chapters to go. Not even halfway through Batman and Robin.

After the cliffhanger resolution, which is yet another boring one, everyone thinks–as always–Batman and Robin are dead. Even butler Alfred (Eric Wilton), which gives Robert Lowery the chance to tease him.

Then Lowery and Johnny Duncan, out of costume, go visit police commissioner Lyle Talbot–apparently as concerned citizens (again, why doesn’t Jane Adams ever wonder why Lowery cares so much about law enforcement when he’s just a layabout blue blood). That meeting with Talbot just leads to everyone again suspecting Rick Vallin of being the masked villain, the Wizard, but the serial makes sure to throw some suspicion William Fawcett’s way.

Adams does finally ask Lowery–in costume as Batman–why he’s driving Bruce Wayne’s car. Lowery doesn’t have a good answer, so he steals Adams’s keys. But she outsmarts him. She’s got a spare.

There’s more bumping into one another–but not bumbling–thugs, some Batman climbing around outdoors (his only apparent skill in the serial), and then the cliffhanger. With that (sadly non-fatal) blast.

It’s beyond tedious.


Directed by Spencer Gordon Bennet; screenplay by George H. Plympton, Joseph F. Poland, and Royal K. Cole, based on characters created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger; director of photography, Ira H. Morgan; edited by Dwight Caldwell and Earl Turner; produced by Sam Katzman; released by Columbia Pictures.

Starring Robert Lowery (Batman / Bruce Wayne), Johnny Duncan (Robin / Dick Grayson), Jane Adams (Vicki Vale), Lyle Talbot (Commissioner Jim Gordon), Don C. Harvey (Henchman Nolan), Lee Roberts (Henchman Neal), William Fawcett (Prof. Hammil), Leonard Penn (Carter), Rick Vallin (Barry Brown), Michael Whalen (Private Investigator Dunne), George Offerman Jr. (Henchman Jimmy), and Eric Wilton (Alfred Beagle).


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