Episode 86: Holy Ralph Nader!: April 18, 2023

Legends of the Superheroes (1979)
"A teamup of some of DC Comics' greatest superheroes together, for 2 specials: a race to stop the united supervillains' plot to destroy the earth, then later a roast in tribute to all of the heroes hosted by Ed McMahon."
The Challenge
The superheroes only have one hour to find Dr. Silvana's Doomsday Machine before it destroys all life on Earth. Their only leads are clues left by the arch villains, each one of which might be a trap."
66 minutes

RD does not have a title because he is live in studio, the first time the Bros have met in person. (He was in the area for his actual working job.) Vince gives him a chair that makes him half a foot shorter. 

RD: "It's what Mr. Potter did in It's A Wonderful Life. I feel like George Bailey."

Vince has no idea about today's entry, a TV variety special with some of the more well known DC superheroes and villains. With the Dynamic Duo's case they had the Riddler, once more played by Frank Gorshin even if 11 years after the show's cancellation. 

RD knew about the other superheroes to inform Vince. This includes Green Arrow's Black Canary who had rather different powers here than the norm, and Helena "Huntress" Wayne, daughter of Catwoman (and Bruce). 

RD only found out about the specials from DC Universe (before some of its content shifted to HBO Max) and watched them with Mrs. Deal. (:06) He didn't expect much, and it didn't disappoint. Vince didn't much want to see people making an appearance just for the paycheck.

Vince makes sure his Dave Meltzer soundbite machine works. RD is both impressed and depressed. "Someone's a little obsessed." 

RD had to rewatch the specials during the layover flight from Las Vegas to Denver, unlike Vince who only saw the first. 

We first meet our Justlice League of America superheroes (:16): Captain "Shazam" Marvel (Vince doesn't think he's a superhero despite utilizing the fury of the gods), Green Lantern (ditto despite his "lame" power ring), Hawkman (who has a bird call among his arsenal), the fairly new Huntress (with "beauty, cunning, and physical prowess" as well as a crossbow), the Flash (RD could not understand the Narrator's description about his superspeed), and Black Canary (who also has a bird call among her arsenal).
"Robin: With his reckless grin, devil may care courage, and incredible gymnastic skills." Cue a stunt double constantly flipping.
"Batman: His symbol a frightening creature of the night, his disguise strikes terror in the criminal heart."
Everyone stands around in a semi-circle. Vince sits closer to the screen, dwarfing RD. 

Narrator (obviously different from our regular series one): "Somewhere in a secret hideout, the archenemies of the superheroes are coming up with a diabolical plot to destroy the entire world."
Their leader of this Legion of Doom is Mordru (the Merciless), who wants to get rid of everyone else so they can...boss themselves as the sole survivors or something.
RD: "It'd be like we destroy the world and it was just me and you. ... I'd find a roof to jump off of."
For some reason Mordru's shooting off of fire and lightning from his hands triggers the laugh track and Vince's befuddlement. He leaves the roll call of their group to Riddler and his slightly different outfit which threw Vince off. There's Sinestro (who uses his power ring to shoot at Riddler), Weather Wizard (enemy of the Flash, making his live action debut being played by a young Jeff Altman by throwing snow at Riddler), Giganta (enemy of Wonder Woman and originally a test subject ape, who tries wrapping a pipe around Riddler), Solomon Grundy (who tries throwing a boulder at Riddler), and Doctor Sivana (enemy of Captain Marvel). He wears a really bad bald cap while running their world destroying device.

Walking through Vince's house full of stuff made RD realize why Vince always thinks there's a warehouse somewhere of Batman props and sets. 

The supervillains need some way to "trick" the JL to come to them, which for some requires riddles. Unfortunately Riddler is only given an hour to make up one. He just needs two seconds.

Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice Heroes, Batman says a few words. (:32)
"Fellow Superheroes or, in deference to the ladies, Super Persons, we are gathered here tonight to pay tribute to one of our former colleagues, and perhaps the greatest superhero of all. When many of us were, ahem, still in short leotards, this man was saving the world virtually single handedly. Lets have a warm, super welcome for: Retired Man."
Retired Man reclining in a rocking chair was once called Scarlet...Something...Cyclone. RD found Vince's 92 year old father to be more lively.
Vince can't find much on some of the cast on IMDB for some reason. 

Vince took RD to Mile High Comics which he greatly enjoyed, including the life sized Jar Jar Binks statue. (:37) Vince almost bought a LJN Luscious Johnny Valiant figure. He plans to take RD to an Italian buffet. He'd rather talk about that.

Anyway Batman tries to gift Scarlet Something which summons a riddle off-screen. Robin the Boy Wonder Teen Thunderbolt ran off to get it without bothering to put on his leggings first, causing Batman the still Dark Knight to call his underwear-clad ward a "laddie boobie". The riddle gives them 50 minutes (out of 60) before their world destroying device goes off. 

So the League splits up to solve it. The Duo get in a rather odd looking Batmobile (not noticing Sinestro tinkering with it beforehand) and ask the others to meet them at a nearby gas station. 

At their Lair Grundy disguises himself by wearing a hat, then gets to the gas station where the Batmobile coincidentally has engine trouble (which has nothing to do with how cheap it looks). In a phone booth a "wacky mama" (as RD wrote) played by a young Marsha Warfield, is telling the other end about what is going on: "there's a pointy-eared guy that just showed up, and a guy in hot pants and leprechaun booties." Grundy starts attacking the Batmobile so Batman charges at him - and loses, due to not having his stunt double or speech bubbles. 

So the Duo just run away. 

Riddler writes the next riddle on a stone, leading Green Lantern in very tight tights to a fortune teller in a park. (:48) The teller has Lantern write something to determine that he is in fact a superhero. "Give my regards to Tonto," the teller requests of him. From this Lantern figures this is Sinestro's doing, so it's their turn to fight with their power rings. Lantern prevails and sends Sinestro's stunt double flying in a flip. 

Vince wonders why NBC didn't hire actual actors like they did on the show. RD: "Because they had 47 characters on here. ... You have the temerity to say that Ruth Buzzi isn't top level talent?"

Weather Wizard takes his turn in a disguise as the Duo visit him at Honest Al's Used Cars. He offers them a Volkswagen Beetle. Batman wants to make sure the vehicle is road worthy, despite Robin's impatience: "Holy Ralph Nader!" "Al" tries to help by making the driver side door fall to the ground. Unfortunately Batman only has $50 on him, which barely covers a budget Batcycle. 

Back at the gas station Hawkman flies in to fight Grundy. Woman in phone booth: "I ain't coming home for dinner!" Grundy overpowers the hero and ties him to a hydraulic lift. Vince reads more diversions on IMDB and accidentally hits the rimshot button.

Anyway the Batcycle splits cleanly in two and goes in different directions in the split of the special, as RD has to explain his joke to Vince.
Narrator: "Will the Caped Crusader and the Teen Thunderbolt fall victim to the villains' plot? The world is at stake! Stay tuned!"

Vince decides to watch it afterwards, particularly as it is now when Black Canary arrives. 

Vince now reads the articles on WrestleCrap. RD: "I'd like to think I'm friends with everyone."

The Bros swap spaces so RD can finally have his chance at being huge. Then he has to end the recording.


  • Special Guest Villain: The Riddler [6+1] (Frank Gorshin) [5+1]

  • SPEAKING OFs: 1. Parking out the door
  • Entertain The People:
  • Screen Shares: 1. Vince
  • RD Time Outs: 1
  • Window Celebrity: 2. Jeff Altman, Marsha Warfield

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