It's a busy day at work, so I'll leave it to another fine comic book to entertain you.

Long before Law and Order, CSI and their various spin-offs liberally took inspiration for their plotlines from news headlines, another methodical investigator's stories were written the same way: Batman.

If you're too young to have heard of the "Paul is Dead" hoax surrounding the Beatles, here's the quick version: in late 1969, a rumour began to circulate that Paul McCartney had died in a traffic accident and that a look-alike had taken his place. For fans with an investigative bent, the Beatles are purported to have left clues all over their albums -- in their lyrics, in the album art and even in backwards-masked vocals.

A few months later, this Batman comic book hit the stands:


Doesn't the "World's Greatest Detective" have better mysteries to solve?

In the comic book, the Beatles are now the Oliver Twists, whose singles include a number called Pink Submarine (which, to the modern reader -- or someone like me, who's watched waaaay too much Beavis and Butt-Head -- seems disturbingly phallic, especially in light of the fact that we think Robin's more than just Bruce Wayne's ward). Paul McCartney's fictional doppelganger is Saul Cartwright, who dressed as if he's raided Magneto's closet:

Comic: Saul Cartwright, the Batman analogue of Paul McCartney.
I think Marilyn Manson has that cape too.

Saul always carries his "mini recorder" in case musical inspiration strikes. Ah, the clunky flair of 1970's technology!

Speaking of seventies clunkiness, check out this poor attempt at making Robin (who's in college at this point) sound hip:

Comic: Robin, from a 1970's 'Batman' comic asking 'But how did you groove it was a trap, Batman?'
I groove crappy dialogue when I see it.

Batman doesn't groove, Robin, he deduces.

Want to see what happens? Is Saul really dead? Did successful businessmen wear orange shirts with black oxford stripes paired with blue ties in the 1970's? Why do Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson "dress for dinner"? And why in the same room? And what's up with this...?

Comic: Bruce Wayne carries an unconscious Robin to the 'privacy of the Batcave'.
My bum clenched involuntarily after I read this panel.

Download the comic [4.1 MB .zip file]. If you have one of those programs that can read .cbz files (like CDisplay for Windows or FFView for Mac OS X), change the filename extension of the file from .zip to .cbz.