Judo Chop!

In a bit of a belated April Fool’s Day post, I thought I’d do something a bit more on the silly side, but still in relation to the history of Batman. In the late 60s, Batman was very talkative while fighting. In fact, he was often known to call out martial arts moves—mostly judo, but some karate—while kicking ass. For your pleasure, here are some of the best “Batman calls out judo moves while fighting” moments of the late 1960s. Keep your eyes peeled for a second edition a little down the road too—this happened quite a bit!

NOTE: The image links on this post are permanently damaged. Sorry! Please click this link to my Twitter to see the images. Thanks.

Batman #191
judo batman

Batman #191
judo batman 191

Batman #196
Batman 196 judo call out

Batman #196
Batman 196 judo part two-do

Batman #197
judo batman 197

Batman #199
batman 199 judo 1

Batman #199
Batman 199 judo 2

Batman #199
Batman 199 part 3 judo

Batman #201
judo batman 201 part 1

Batman #201
batman 201 judo 1

The Brave and The Bold #77
brave and the bold 77 judo

Detective Comics #367
tec 367 judo

Detective Comics #376
tec 376 judo

Detective Comics #377
tec 377 judo

Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #111
superman's pal jimmy olsen 111 judo

Justice League of America #63
jla 63 judo chop

And for a little bonus, advertisers in the late 1960s were in league with DC Comics’ martial arts fun too…

Batman #204
batman 204 judo ad

Justice League of America #63
ketsugo ad jla 63

About Collin Colsher

Collin Colsher, the creator of The Real Batman Chronology Project and disCONTINUITY, is a writer, filmmaker, teacher, and comic book historian that currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He has lectured at various universities, libraries, and book fairs. Collin has also served on the jury for the Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize, which is sponsored by the US Library of Congress.
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6 Responses to Judo Chop!

    • Thanks, again! Haven’t read these either. I’ve been falling into a Reddit hole more and more lately. It’s quite something. Although, for every supposedly definitive statement that gets made on there, the polar opposite seems to echo through the chamber. It’s def a heated debate space—especially when it comes to comic books.

      • definativewillg says:

        As with any literary source, one may have to sift through a lot of chaff to come to the wheat. However, one can also find good answers or thoughts, perhaps even questions we had not considered in those heated debates. One thing about Batman, there’s 80 plus years of the source material, so someone can be right, just it depends which Batman they are discussing. It is like I have said, in each new version of Batman, we get one that what was true for one is not necessarily true for them all.

        Was it a gunshot or a weak heart that Killed Martha Wayne?
        Was Bruce Wayne the first Robin?
        Some Batmen started their careers employing guns, some would never touch them under all ut the most extreme of circumstances. Some haven’t quite given up killing. It just depends on which version of the character you encounter.

  1. definativewillg says:

    Also, I’ve always found the modern “MASTER of 127 martial arts” to be very suspect.

    Whilst I could believe he is a true master of a few but has a working knowledge of a lot more. Not a true “master” though.
    Here’s something more realistic and practical.
    http://maroonersrock.com/2012/10/the-martial-arts-of-batman/

  2. definativewillg says:

    In all seriousness, Collin, this would be interesting evidence to show which martial arts each respective Batman was adept in.

    I always hold the implication that “Batman is the master of all 127 Martial arts” to be not only waaaay too far fetched.

    Obviously a Google search or two would yield similar results but some articles I’ve found of interest are:

    https://www.bloodyelbow.com/2012/7/17/3164068/holy-mma-batman-martial-arts-dark-knight-part1

    https://www.bloodyelbow.com/2012/7/19/3164241/holy-mma-batman-martial-arts-dark-knight-part2

    https://www.bloodyelbow.com/2012/7/27/3171423/holy-mma-batman-martial-arts-dark-knight-part3

    • Amazing! I haven’t read any of these articles. Thanks for sharing. 127 seems improbable. (It’s likely that he studied all martial arts, but mastered a selection.)

      I’ve always found it interesting that, Golden Age Earth-2 Robin (as referenced in Justice League of America #123), struggled to master the martial arts. We learn that Dick still hasn’t quite perfected his karate skills even by the time he in his mid 40s.

      In the Silver Age, there have only been specific mentions to a handful of styles, notably—Native American wrestling, judo, karate, savate, boxing, kung fu, aikido, jiu jitsu, kyusho jitsu, taekwondo, and Sumatran pencak silat (aka silek). Notably, while training in boxing, Bruce studies Sugar Ray Robinson films.)

      The Modern Age is the most complex, with lots of contradictory lists of the styles he’s mastered. Scott Beatty says 127, but then lists 10 (in separate publications, both released in 2005). This hints at the concept of Bruce studying 127 but mastering a select few.

      In the New 52, we are told specifically that he learns around 14 different fighting styles. Seems more legit. It also jibes with Daniel Wallace’s Batman: The World of the Dark Knight (2012), which specifically lists Bruce’s mastery of fourteen martial arts. 

      And by the Rebirth Era, as per Scott Snyder, Batman is so pronounced in his fighting ability, that he even designs his very own martial arts technique (Bam Pow).

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