Jaunts to the Past

–NOTE: In World’s Finest Comics #107 we learn that Batman and Robin go on “many” unspecified time traveling trips that are never shown in the comics, presumably in the latter half of Year One (1967) and throughout Year Two (1968). We simply have to imagine other time-trips listed in this section of the website. Of course, there may have been unspecified trips to the future in 1967-1968 too, but for simplicity’s sake, I’m imagining only backward treks.

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–Circa 150,000 BCE. Future site of Metropolis.
World’s Finest Comics #151
. 1972 Batman, evolved into an evil super-brained jerk by a Kryptonian “accelerator” machine, has left his home-time and gone to live in the 8,018th century. A devolved Superman goes to the 8,018th century, grabs Batman and flies him to the Prehistoric Era (Stone Age/Pleistocene Era/Middle Paleolithic Era). Plagued by mammoths and sabertooth tigers, Batman pleads for help. With his superior intellect, Batman instructs cave-Superman on how to squeeze materials into metal, which the Dark Knight then fashions into an exact copy of the “accelerator.” The evil Batman attempts to further devolve Superman, but Krypto—having traveled through time from 1972 to find his master—arrives and pushes the machine’s ray into Batman’s path, returning him to normal but devolving Krypto. Batman uses the machine to fix everyone. Superman then smashes the machine and flies everyone back home to 1972.

–Circa 150,000 BCE. Future site of Metropolis.
Action Comics #431 Epilogue
. 1977 Clark Kent—along with a few Metropolis citizens—time-travels to the Prehistoric Era (Stone Age/Pleistocene Era/Middle Paleolithic Era) on a Metropolis city bus. Clark’s ID as Superman is exposed while fighting the creature responsible for the strange trip: the Quakerer, a hyper-evolved chameleon from 420th century, who had been disguised as a man named Martin Thorpe. After battling his way back to 1977 with the bus in tow, and with the Quakerer lost into the time-stream, the Man of Steel now needs to go back and get the people he left behind in the Stone Age. Superman calls up Batman, tells him the score, and they get to work. Batman disguises himself as Thorpe and accompanies Superman on a jaunt to the Stone Age. Superman sneakily installs onto the bus hypnotizing windshield wipers, which, en route back to 1977, make everyone forget the entire ordeal, including knowledge of Superman’s secret ID.

–48,029 BCE. North America.
World’s Finest Comics #138. From 1971, Batman and Robin chase evil aliens way back to 48,029 BCE using the Carter Nichols method. Superman joins the Dynamic Duo in the distant past where they discover that the aliens have abducted a bunch of early humans. Batman, Superman, and Robin then disguise themselves—terribly, I might add. Batman and Robin tear their costumes to shreds and Batman puts on a fake beards made of animal fur while the Boy Wonder gives himself a mullet. Superman, for some unknown reason, actually carries a tattered Superman costume (since his is virtually indestructible) and dons it, also wearing an awful beard. Soon, our heroes learn that the aliens’ ray beams are used for mind-control, but only function on primitive minds, hence their attack upon Prehistoric mankind. Batman, Superman, and Robin play as though they’ve been controlled and are taken in a spaceship back to 1971 to the alien home world to be slaves. After defeating the bad aliens and turning them over to the good alien government authorities, Batman, Superman, and Robin fill a spaceship with the human captives and return them to 48,029 BCE. The trio then returns to 1971 Gotham via Nichols’ time-box return button.

–26th century BCE. Giza, Egypt.
Detective Comics #295. In 1970, Batman and Robin fight giant monsters and then jaunt back to ancient Egypt (post stone construction era, but prior to the completion of the Giza Necropolis), via the Carter Nichols method, to clear up the mystery of a ancient mural depicting them in action. In Ancient Egypt, Batman is instantly taken captive by time-traveling aliens from Nakor, who have already captured a local soldier Khau-Re. The Nakorians explain that they sent the two beasts to 1970 to test Batman, and then they show video of the battle to Khau-Re. Robin then frees Batman and Khau-Re, and in the process, learns that the aliens can’t see the color red. After meeting the pharaoh, Batman and Robin paint themselves red and defeat the aliens, sending them running and convincing them never to attempt an invasion of Earth again. Red Batman and red Robin then return to 1970 with an explanation for Nichols.

–336 BCE. The Mediterranean and Egypt.
World’s Finest Comics #107. In 1970, a giant alien fire monster that has been dormant and hidden on a small Mediterranean island for 2000 years, comes to life, prompting Batman to seek a long lost alien weapon to defeat the creature. Batman and Robin visit Professor Carter Nichols, who sends the Dynamic Duo back to 336 BCE when the weapon was delivered to Earth but subsequently lost. In 336 BCE, our heroes learn that a merchant sailor named Sethy took the weapon from the Mediterranean to Egypt as a gift for Pharaoh Khababash. Batman and Robin make it to Egypt, steal the weapon from the Pharaoh, and bury it inside one of the Great Pyramids. Then they attempt to go back to 1970 via their return-button time box belts—(a new addition to Professor Nichol’s time-traveling method)—but the boxes are broken, trapping them in the past. A safeguard on the boxes activates an alert in Professor Nichols’ lab, which allows him (from 1970) to view their actions in 336 BCE. Nichols calls Superman, who then uses his unbelievable speed-powers to break the time-barrier and rescue his friends. In Egypt, Superman fixes the time boxes, forming a “time-field” that takes the trio back home to 1970 where they defeat the monster.

–circa late 5th century CE. Britain.
World’s Finest Comics #162
. An alien (disguised as Sir Lancelot) forces Batman and Superman to time-travel from 1973 to Medieval England, where they heroes find themselves standing before a bunch of aliens in disguise as King Arthur, Sir Gawain, Sir Kay, Sir Bohart, and Merlin. “Arthur” explains that alien doppelgängers expelled the Knights of the Round Table from Camelot and, in desperation, Merlin was able to send Lancelot to retrieve the “greatest heroes of all time” for assistance. In actuality, the aliens have failed to capture Camelot and are tricking Batman and Superman into helping them do it now. Batman, Superman, and the evil aliens storm the castle gates and defeat Arthur and his knights. Later, fake Arthur slips up, revealing himself as an alien. Batman and Superman switch sides to fight alongside the real Arthur, Merlin, Lancelot, Gawain, Kay, Bohart, Bors, and Galahad. The aliens pack back into their UFO and Superman hurls it into deep space. Arthur knights Batman and Superman before they return to their 1973, presumably via Merlin’s magick.

–March 6, 522 CE. Norseland (Scandinavia).
World’s Finest Comics #135. In 1971, Batman and Robin visit Carter Nichols and jaunt to Norseland circa 522 CE in search of time-traveling criminal Rak Durr. In Norseland, the Dynamic Duo are captured by vikings that have been tricked into allying themselves with Durr. The Norse god Thor (or someone pretending to be Thor, as Batman oddly assumes despite having met the real Thor before) then demonstrates the power of his mighty hammer Mjölnir, which Durr steals before returning to 1971! Batman notes that Mjölnir’s power comes from a meteor before then activating his time-return button and scooting back to 1971 with Robin.

–1415 CE. Agincourt, France.
The Brave and The Bold #144
Thanks to the machinations of the Gargoyle (Bromwell Stikk), Batman and Green Arrow time-travel from 1979 to to 1415 CE. In Medieval France, Batman faces-off against medieval knights and the Gargoyle. Meanwhile, Green Arrow gets swept into the Hundred Years’ War’s famous Battle of Agincourt. Merlin himself greets Green Arrow and creates a magick arrow just for him! On the battlefield, the Gargoyle runs amok, siding with the French army and stunning King Henry V and his soldiers. Green Arrow takes-down the Gargoyle with the magick arrow. Batman and Green Arrow then escape back to the 20th century.

–1479 CE. Florence, Italy.
World’s Finest Comics #132
. In 1971, crooks Denny Kale and Shorty Biggs best Batman and Robin, learning their secret IDs in the process, before time-traveling to 1479 Florence, Italy. After Superman is captured by Kale and Biggs in 1479 Florence, Batman and Robin rush to Professor Nichols’ lab and time-travel to the past to make a rescue. In 1479, the Dynamic Duo chases after the Kale and Bigs, who are dressed as a fake Dynamic Duo and have allied themselves with a bunch of bandits led by an alchemist. After rescuing Superman, Batman and Robin fight the baddies, causing a chemical spill that erases Kale and Biggs’ memories (including knowledge of any secret IDs). Using the “time box return,” everyone goes back to 1971.

–Late 1770s CE. Salem, Massachusetts.
World’s Finest Comics #186-187. Wanting to solve a mystery of how a bust of Batman was made in Colonial Times, Superman whisks himself and Batman from 1974 back to late 1770s Salem, MA! There, Batman and Superman come face-to-face with hostile American general, Mad Anthony Wayne (Bruce’s ancestor), who mistakes them for British agents. After fighting Batman to a stalemate, Anthony gallops away. Soon after, our heroes are come upon by a mob of colonists. The duo explains their superhero duds by saying they are a part of a traveling theater. Soon after that, they rescue a supposed witch, Sylvia Ward, from being drowned in a pond (an act that includes Superman using his super teeth to gnaw through some wood). Batman takes advantage of the graciousness of the saved victim by making-out with her and then taking her out to the local pub! Superman, affected by a legitimate demonic force (an afreet), becomes insanely jealous and later accuses Batman of witchcraft, setting him up to get convicted. Batman is arrested, put in a pillory, and tried before the court of public opinion. Superman himself convinces the crowd to vote for a death sentence. As night falls, who should pass by but Benjamin Franklin himself, who vows to free Batman. Ridiculously, Franklin attempts to free Batman using a kite and a lightning rod, but Superman secretly thwarts him. The next morning, Batman prepares to meet his final fate via burning. Despite the protestations of Franklin, who produces an anti-witch hunt petition backed by all the signers of the Declaration of Independence, the pyre is lit. Batman begs for one final wish, which gets the locals to put out the flames. The Dark Knight is able to prove that Superman has super-powers, which causes the crowd to turn on the Man of Steel, throwing the latter into a rage. Freed, Batman and Sylvia go to meet Anthony. Meanwhile, the still demonized Superman joins forces with the British Army at a nearby encampment. Superman then kidnaps both Batman and Anthony and forces them to fight one another. Thankfully, foot-soldier Robby Douglas (who is implied to be Dick Grayson’s ancestor) arrives and is given a Kryptonite pebble from Batman. Robby shoots Superman in the head, which knocks the demon out of him. Back to normal, a pissed-off Superman defeats an entire British division all by himself. Afterward, Superman explains that Anthony had been possessed by an afreet, which jumped to Batman, then to himself, causing him to lose his marbles and turn evil. Sylvia pulls a perfect impression of Batman’s face from a mud bog, showing it to the heroes, thus explaining the existence of the bust in the future. Superman and Batman then return to 1974.

–August 28-29, 1862. Prince William County, Virginia, USA.
The Brave and The Bold #171. First and foremost, note that writer Gerry Conway unveils a seemingly new and contradictory take on the Nichols time-traveling method in The Brave and the Bold #171, having Bruce say that it’s pure scientific hogwash and merely illusory. Nichols always utilizes a few different means of sending folks through time—hypno-induced chrono-travel, astral avatar projection, and time machines. However, all the Nichols-backed time jaunts are 100% real. Hell, after Nichols leaves Gotham in 1972, Bruce even tries (and fails) to adapt Nichols’ scientific breakthroughs at the Alfred Foundation science lab. So, when Conway tries to retcon this, we should probably ignore. When you time-travel with Nichols, you legit time-travel, son. A possible fanwank: Bruce comes to believe that Nichols’ time-traveling abilities are bunk only because he is unable to replicate them. After all, it’s not very often that Bruce fails at something. I kind of like that idea, but it’s up to you how you wrap this around your own headcanon. Anyway, 1981 Batman time-hops to 1862 where he joins Kiowa warrior Scalphunter (Ke-Woh-No-Tay aka Brian Savage) to save Martha Jennings from some Confederate States Army soldiers. Batman, Scalphunter, and Martha join-up with members of Brigadier General John Pope’s Union Army platoon and watch the Second Battle of Bull Run from a safe distance. When Batman attempts to fight some of the rebels, he is captured and strapped to a cannon. Batman soon escapes and helps Scalphunter and Martha take down more rebel soldiers. Impressed by Batman’s valor, Martha says she will sew a special Bat-symbol campaign patch in his honor. Batman then returns back to 1981.

–1880 CE. Plain City, Utah, USA.
Batman #99 Part 2. In 1968, reporter Jack Farr finds an old half-torn newspaper clipping that shows a picture of Batman and has a headline that reads “Gila Bill, Wanted Outlaw, Shot and Killed by Town Marshal Bat Ma—”. Farr accuses Batman of having been a gun-toting marshal out West before appearing in Gotham. Thus, Carter Nichols sends Bruce and Dick back to the Wild West. In Plain City, Batman and Robin take down bandit Pecos Pete, which earns Batman the job of interim Town Marshal. After Pete escapes, Batman disguises himself as Pete to flush out his boss, Gila Bill. Batman, in his Bat-Stagecoach, chases down Gila Bill, who is then gunned down by new state-appointed Marshal Bat Masterson. The headline makes sense now and Bruce brings a complete copy back to 1968 with him.

–1896 CE. Gotham City, USA.
World’s Finest Comics #181. In 1974, Batman receives word from Superman that a terrible threat is coming for both of them. Hoping to temporarily erase himself from the timeline to avoid the threat, Batman turns to time-travel as a means of escape. Unfortunately, in 1974, Carter Nichols isn’t around anymore. The only means available to Batman quickly lie in the Wayne Foundation time-travel machine, which is based on Nichols’ physics, but doesn’t work very well. (It can indeed send people through time, but only randomly and only for random trip durations.) Nevertheless, heeding Superman’s warning, 1974 Batman uses the funky machine and winds up in 1896. He is in 1896 long enough to lay down some roots and get a job as a circus performer, meaning we can assume he is in 1896 for at least a week or so. Eventually, Superman appears along with the supposed threat they were running away from—a cosmic stranger named Kralc and his alien bloodhound, Kyr-2, who are actually highly-evolved future versions of Bizarros. The heroes are then taken back to 1974 by Kralc.

–early 1940s CE. Kryptopolis and Bokos, Krypton.
World’s Finest Comics #191. In 1975, Batman and Superman witness Superman’s parents discussing committing a crime! Jor-El and Lara fade away as Batman and Superman approach them. The World’s Finest Heroes decide to investigate the Jor-El and Lara thing by going back in time to Krypton before it exploded! Superman flies himself and the Dark Knight to early 1940s Krypton where they suppress a student riot in Kryptopolis before meeting and getting dinner with Jor-El and Lara! After trailing Jor-El and Lara to a secret cave, the heroes witness them teaching criminal techniques to students. They soon learn the lessons are for a mission to the backwards island nation of Bokos, where one must constantly commit crimes or be banished. Jor-El and Lara hope to infiltrate Bokos and steal the petrified body of Calox, an alien Jesus Christ-like superhero figure that ruled over Krypton during the planet’s Stone Age. On Bokos, Batman switches costumes with Calox, pretending to be a revived Calox himself. Meanwhile, Superman sneaks the real Calox out of Bokos. Back in Kryptopolis, Batman and Superman fade-out and find themselves back at the Southwestern US military base in 1975. Pentagon intelligence chief General Hill greets the heroes, explaining that his scientists have created an experimental time vortex machine, which caused Jor-El and Lara to briefly appear in 1975 on Earth and which also caused the heroes to return as well.

–August 13-16, 1942 CE. Washington DC and Germany.
World’s Finest Comics #250. When Green Arrow activates a damaged Transmitter Cube in 1979, he accidentally causes a massive localized time anomaly, re-writing history so that no superheroes ever came into existence on Earth-1. Green Arrow and Black Canary, caught in the Bleed, are spared. As are Superman and Batman, thanks to being off-planet. Eventually, Green Arrow, Black Canary, and Earth-2 Wonder Woman (from 1942) wind-up on Earth-1—August 13, 1942. There, they meet with a US Government official named Professor Ronsom to get an experimental time-travel device. However, as Ronsom talks to them, top Nazi super-soldier Agent Axis II (himself displaced from Earth-2) shoots him. Hoping to save Ronsom, Wonder Woman activates the time-device, which turns him into an energy being known as The Ravager. Superman and Batman (from 1979) soon arrive August 14, 1942 to join them. There, the heroes meet with a bewildered President Franklin D Roosevelt and explain that the Ravager is frantically bouncing back and forth between 1942 and 1979, bringing things back and forth with him and tearing-up time and space as he goes. Agent Axis captures the Ravager, Batman, and Green Arrow, prompting Black Canary and Earth-2 Wonder Woman to make a successful rescue. During the battle, a giant chronal energy explosion sends a time distortion wave across the planet. Green Arrow shoots a neutralizer device at the Ravager, destroying him and resetting time itself. The heroes return to their correct Earths and times. Only the 1979 heroes retain memories of the events that have transpired here.

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