Episode 107: Holy Specie!: September 11, 2023

Louie, the Lilac (don't forget the comma)
October 26, 1967
"Louie the Lilac has cornered the flower market in Gotham City, hoping to gain control over the entire "flower generation." He kidnaps the organizer of their planned flower-in, Princess Primrose, and brainwashes her with his Stupefying Aromatic Spray. Batman and Robin follow a clue to the villain's lair only to be captured by Louie and fed to his giant man-eating lilacs. With the Caped Crusaders out of the way, Louie heads back to the flower-in to continue his evil plan. Alfred, meanwhile, has been alerted to Batman and Robin's situation, and goes looking for Batgirl to aid in the fight."
66 minutes

RD: Wants to Watch N by NW. Vince has not seen it. 

Narrator: "Another brisk bright day blossoms in Gotham City. But is day the only thing that's blooming, or isn't blooming?"

In the Office, the Undynamic Duo express concern that someone has bought all the town's flowers (specifically lilacs) just before "the flower children in Gotham City are ready for their fancy flower-in" in the park.
O'Hara: "There's gonna be trouble at that flower-in with no flowers, begorra."

Hard cat to Louie (the Lilac) in a 20's style suit smoking a cigar in his lair: "Plenty of trouble." This is part of his plan to control the country's future leaders of the flower generation, i.e. hippies. "To the Flowermobile!"
He and his goons go to capture one of them (named Princess Primrose) in which he gets his own theme which sounded like that of North by Northwest. 

Narrator: "While at the flowerless flower-in..."
This prompts another new song, with some rather repetitive lyrics. (:10) One of the hip flower children named Dogwood plays a flute as Primrose dances out of a wicker basket like a snake. Barbara walks by, this time in a light green and yellow dress with white gloves, knowing Primrose when she formerly went by the name of Thelma Jones.
Primrose: "I think we'll call you Hyacinth."
Barbara: "I think you've flipped a petal or two."

Up comes Louie in the Flowermobile, which is violet and has some plastic flowers glued all along it. He has more plastic flowers, lilacs in particular, that he throws to the bystanders. Vince finds it cool that he saves his actual flowers for more important things and people.
Louis then incapacitates Primrose to join him with the power of low budget by twisting the flower on his lapel. The only way we know it "works" is it makes an alarm.
This of course harsh outs Dogwood, who responds stereotypically. Cue titles.

After a quiet scene of Primrose being brought to the lair we cut back to the Office, where Barbara tells her "Daddy" on the kidnapping. Of course neither man bothers to try and help.
Gordon: "Barbara, a good librarian is a calm librarian."
So she waits for them to leave her unattended in the room so she can call on the Batphone red phone.
RD: "Why have they changed this?"
Barbara: "I probably shouldn't have used this phone, Batman. I hope I'm not disturbing you."
Batman: "Not at all. Robin and I were just putting a flower decal on the Batmobile.We're to be guests of honor at a flower-in this afternoon."
Barbara: "That's what I wanted to talk to you about, the flower-in."

Narrator: "And in Louie, the Lilac's isolated greenhouse, which, in turn, houses his humid hothouse..."
Of course it's just another warehouse with props scattered about.
Louie: "Flower-ins aren't of prime importance to me, Primrose. It's the flower children, and you're their princess."
Primrose: "Sometimes I think I'm too much of a ding-a-ling."
She drops Barbara's name, which gets Louie thinking. He "zaps" her and has a goon drag her into the "hothouse" and tells his other goon to find Barbara. "I'm going down to police headquarters. The  Batmobile's usually parked in an alley nearby. This may be my big chance."

Meanwhile back at the flower-in, Dogwood is still not finding Primrose's departure cool, man. "I mean, flower people try to do good, you know, and spread joy-pollen." He gets some of his fellows to "make a little rumble down at fuzztown" and they all pile into his one pickup truck. 

RD kept getting distracted by Dogwood sounding like David Spade. I'm more distracted that his actor (Jimmy Boyd) was once married before this appearance to...Yvonne Craig. 

Back in the Office Gordon shows his displeasure to the Duo that Barbara did his job for him by using the Batphone red phone: "It precipitated the first real argument we've ever had." (:24) Batman states he will check the Batcomputer for more information on Louie. Vince was distracted by seeing a stain on the costume. RD was more distracted by Robin's goatee stubble: "What's the deal with Robin's Fu Manchu?"
Bonnie calls in to tell her boss that he has some hip flower children to see him.
Batman: "We'll go out the window. Otherwise, we'll be mobbed."
Gordon: "Mobbed? In police headquarters?"
Robin: "The flower children think we're cool, man. We turn them on, you know."
Batman: "Yes, please, be gentle with your visitors, Commissioner. Although it may not be understood by more literal minds, in their own way, they're doing what they can to correct the world's woes with love and flowers."
Gordon: "Brace yourself for some nutty nosegays, Chief O'Hara."

The Duo come to the Batmobile to find Louie's...left a business card for his flower shop.
Batman: "This bears investigation. I strongly suspect that this lilac-colored card could be a plant."
Louie watches them drive away, then calls his girl Lila to prepare for them some poison lilacs. "I'll be there shortly to help you dispose of the soon to be creped crusaders."

The Duo enter the shop, complementing Lila on the mass of flowers despite the city's shortage.
Lila: "My display is nice, isn't it? And I have some other very rare lilacs in the rear room, if you'd like to see them."
That's what she said.
Batman: "I'm always interested in the unusual of any specie."
That's what he said.
So they stand around as she "accidentally" drops the poison lilacs. Robin goes to catch them, Batman gets his breather, and Louie hits him with a vase.

Meanwhile Barbara has suspicions that someone is sneaking up to her apartment. Of course she is correct, and as she tries to call the police the goon tears the telephone cable out of the wall. Oh no. If only she could try to go to some other apartment to use their phone!

Narrator: " And while Barbara faces her vexatious visitor, what's happening in the hothouse of Louie's greenhouse?"
Robin (the Duo tied up in vines): "Man-eating lilacs? Holy purple cannibals."
Louie: "Exactly, Boy Blunder. A rare  just in from Brazil which I crossed with even more  carnivorous plants. (Emphasis mine, he too said it like that) And gusty gourmands they are. They got a hold of an explorer one day in the jungle and left nothing but his shoelaces. (To a goon) What happened to
Princess Primrose?"
Goon: "She's drying out in the office. Flower children wilt fast."
Louie: "She and her flower friends will do more than just wilt before I'm through with them."
Robin: "Gosh, Batman, what a way to go. Eaten alive by a lilac."
Batman: "Well, Robin, at least  it's a flowery finish."

Well hopefully the cliffhanger is not a bad one for next week's -

Wait, this is just the cliffhanger for this week. Never mind.  

Narrator: "With the Dynamic Duo being devoured whole by a strange specie of man-eating lilac, what  are we doing here in the Batcave? Maybe this call on the Batphone red phone will tell us." (:35)

Alfred tells a credulous Gordon that the Duo had not yet returned from visiting him.
Gordon: "If you hear from Batman, have him contact me. (He puts down the receiver.) Barbara's phone is dead, Batman is out. Nothing is going -"
O'Hara: "Now, commissioner, watch your blood pressure."
Unfortunately Ms. Patrick is not on hand with a helpful tray of pills.
Thankfully Alfred knows his way around the Batcomputer to find Louie's lair. 

Robin: "At least they're gentle about it. I haven't felt one bite me yet."
Batman: "Man-eating lilacs have no teeth, Robin. It's a process of ingestion through their tendrils."
Robin: "Batman, we've gotta get out of this somehow. Can't you get to your utility belt and signal  Alfred?"
Batman: "No, they've already consumed my utility belt, Robin. And my hands are entwined by these vicious vines."
Robin: "Holy Luther Burbank!"
Lila can't look. Princess complains so Louie does his invisible zapping. He decides to take her back to the flower-in, conspicuously leaving the Duo alone. 

Meanwhile somehow Barbara has persuaded the goon to wait for her while she changes into Batgirl powders her nose. Her appearance scares him off - just as Gordon enters - just as Batgirl leaves - just as Barbara enters.
Gordon: "Strange, that looked like Batgirl out on the terrace. (sees Barbara) Oh, Barbara, I've been
so worried about you. What was Batgirl doing here?"
He thinks she could go back home for her own safety. I think it's a bit too late for that. She assures him she will be fine, so he leaves after a hug. Vince was sure he saw him get a rather inappropriate hold of his acting colleague as he did so.

Then Alfred shows up. 

On the terrace. 

This is not helped by his looking three feet taller than his acting colleague. 

Anyway he gives her the lair's location. 

Coincidentally the flo hippie children at the flower-in listen to Primrose extol Louie just as his control is wearing off, as helpfully stated by the Narrator. The crowd immediately picks up on this.
Dogwood: "Now he's putting a period on Batman and Robin in his poisonous purple pad. He ought to
be called Louie, the Louse!"
Louie has to make a quick retreat in the Flowermobile before the crowd can stick some flowers in its exhaust or something. 

Narrator: "And shortly, back with the semi-digested Duo."
Robin: "One of these monsters is nibbling at my ear, Batman."
No response.
Batman: "I heard you, Robin."
He managed to loosen one foot, which he uses to kick a flower pot through some glass, just as the villains appear before the crowd. They take a moment of respite before the still fully formed Duo step out.
Louie: "Aah! They're not even chewed up a little."
Batman: "Nor will we be. A word of advice, Louie. One blast of cool air kills these blooming cannibals far quicker than they can devour any human repast."

Cue a fight with the stunt doubles while Berle just sits in a chair watching. Batgirl enters just in time.
Batman (lustily): "How did you get mixed up in this?"
Batgirl: "Maybe some other time and place we can have a question-and-answer session, Batman, but not here."
She picks up a can of "flowery mildew" just laying around.
Louie: "Don't use that spray! Anything it touches molds and decays!"
So of course she sprays it point blank into his face. He falls to the ground, surprisingly not looking too hot.

Louie: "Maybe mildewed and wilting and molding and decaying on the outside, Lila. But inside I'm still Louie, the Lilac. And somehow, some day, I'm going to control the flower market of the world. And with it, the entire flower generation!"

The crowd has managed to track Louie to the lair, so he tries running away suicide via deadly lilacs.
Batman: "Don't worry, Robin. That cold blast of air put those lilacs in a torpor. Go back outside and
calm the flower children."
Robin: "- They'll mob me!"
Batman: "...Groovy."
RD is sure Batman just wanted some alone time with Batgirl, who of course is no longer there.
Lila: "She's gone, Batman. She knew when to get out of here. Smart dame. Who is she?"
Batman: "I don't know. I never have, perhaps I never will. But I wish I did."

Cue shot of Batgirl on her Batcycle as her theme plays, if by "shot" you mean a green screen while Craig sits on a stationary bike with a look of total confusion on her face. (:52)

Robin comes back into the shop to tell him the police have arrested Lila and handled the crowd. All off screen of course, we have a budget to maintain! He is answered by the sound of a galloping horse, so they look outside.
Robin: "Holy hoofbeats."
Batman: "Exactly, Robin. And if I'm not mistaken, a band of Bessarovian Cossacks just rode by."

The cause is Anne Baxter as Zelda The Great a lady named Olga on a horse. Beside her is Egghead, and of course he is on a donkey. 

Robin: "What do you suppose he's doing back in Gotham City? And that woman. She looked like a real Tartan princess."
Batman: "I predict that Batman and Robin will soon be getting a call on the Bat red telephone. But first let's rescue Louie, the Lilac, from those clinging vines."
Narrator: "Be sure to watch the next episode for what Egghead and a Tartar princess named Olga have in store for the Caped Crusaders!"

For some reason RD reads a year incorrectly, giving Lila's actress Lisa Seagram (born Ruth Browser) 10 extra years. Vince is at least accurate in his age guessing; he guessed 32, off by a year. Her career was mostly in the 50s and 60s TV including an appearance on Bewitched. She sadly passed away in 2019. Vince gives her a "very middle of the road" 5 Batpoles. He thinks she did some work on her nose. RD gives her 4.
Princess "Thelma Jones" Primrose was even younger at 22 (Vince has 28). Skye Aubrey (also no longer with us since 2020) may have been more active in the 70s, but she is more known for once being briefly married to Ilya Salkind, producer of the first Superman movie. In fact her mother (actress Phyllis Thaxter) played Martha Kent. RD is unsure what to rate she he gives 5.5. Vince has a "real generous" 6.

Neither Bro thought much of this episode, especially as Milton Berle really didn't do much. And yes, he will return. 

Vince asks about Reuben Like The Sandwich's Arcade. The King of Arcade is still to be held on the 16th. The contestants are playing for a Tempest Arcade1Up machine. RD brags about being better than the challengers regardless.
Vince: "Bro, I've had Space Invaders sitting here for about two years now and I've never gotten past the first screen."

Next up for RD to write about: Samoa Joe in TNA. Vince puts the blame on Eric Bischoff trying to get Jimmy Snuka. RD wonders how he would have done anything at his age. "Please to explain."


  • Special Guest Villain: Louie the Lilac (Milton Berle)

  • RD Time Outs:  1 (Real Quick) 
  • Screen Shares: 1. RD
  • Specie: 1. Necesse comma

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