Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Animated World of DC Comics: Super Friends vs. Dr. Fright (1977)

I think a case could be made that Dr. Fright, the villain of this Super Friends short from 1977, might have been an analogue for Batman's enemy, the Scarecrow, who'd make his H-B debut a year later in the Challenge series. Fright also used fear gas, but needed no costume. He was your garden variety misguided scientist of the period, and was never heard from again.



I should note that the Scarecrow would show up in the comic book version of the series during the winter of 1980. The only other Legion of Doom members to do so were Riddler & Cheetah (issues 1-2, pre-Challenge) and Gorilla Grodd (1979).

Rating: B+.

4 comments:

magicdog said...

Not nearly as menacing as Scarecrow, but Dr. Fright's intentions definitely paved the way to you know where!

Of course it made no sense to make everyone afraid of their own shadows in the name of peace! No one would ever build a sky scraper (perhaps never even venture near a toolbox!) or even look at their pets without thinking their Chihuahua was going to eat them!

I can't help but get the feeling this may have inspired the plot of the film, "Serenity", in which TPTB tried to make the population mellow by gassing them with "pax". If you've seen the film, you know where that lead to.

hobbyfan said...

Back then, writers didn't receive individual credit for each story, else I'd dig into who wrote this tale, which could be reconstructed now using Scarecrow instead. Then again, they may have done that on Batman: The Animated Series, but without the peace angle.....

magicdog said...

They did in fact. The ep I think was called, "Fear Itself". Scarecrow wanted to make quick money for chemicals and was placing sports bets with a bookie. He was using fear gas/powder on athletes and betting against them and winning big. He unintentionally contaminated Robin and he spent the rest of the ep getting over a fear of heights.

hobbyfan said...

Yes, I remember that fondly. I'm going to try to locate that ep on YouTube and see if I can put that up in the Archives.