“THE ZODIAC MASTER!” Batman and Robin battle the Zodiac Master, a criminal who claims to be able to predict accidents and uses zodiacal symbols as weapons.
The Zodiac Master!
The Zodiac Master warns the passengers, and crew, of an ocean liner, that if the ship sets sail it will meet with disaster. Deemed a crackpot, the Zodiac Master is escorted off the docks, by members of Gotham City's finest. As predicted, the ocean liner crashes into a tanker, just outside Gotham harbor. Days later, the Zodiac Master turns up again, this time at the Gotham City airport. Racing out onto the runway, he blocks a plane from taking off, and predicts that if it does, it, too, will meet with disaster. When the pilot refuses to heed the Zodiac Master's warning, the star gazing prophet hurls a giant ram's head through one of the engines, grounding the plane. By chance, Batman and Robin are on hand for the Zodiac Master's latest prediction, and give chase to the costumed vandal. The Zodiac Master hurls a scorpion, that entangles the Caped Crusaders in a wire net, giving him time to escape. After a thorough check of all the plane's systems has been completed, a damaged wire is discovered, one that would have caused the plane to crash, had the Zodiac Master not stopped it from taking off. The Zodiac Master lays low for several days. Batman and Robin note an escalation in the amount of crime occurring in Gotham City. Alerted to a robbery in progress at a race track, the Dynamic Duo race to intercept the crooks. In an effort to escape the Caped Crusaders, the criminals flee back into the arena, and commandeer several horses. Batman and Robin's equestrian skills are greater, however, and they quickly run the criminals down, riding horses of their own. A stray comment from one of the crooks tips Batman off to the Zodiac Master's possible involvement in the crime wave.
For 25% of the profits, the Zodiac Master has been providing Gotham City's underworld with favorable predictions for crimes yet to be committed. If the crime happens to go awry, the Zodiac Master ducks accountability by claiming that the stars were simply out of alignment. Batman goes undercover as a lowlife hoodlum in the hopes of connecting with the Zodiac Master. In short order, he is brought before the costumed astrologer. Batman immediately reveals himself to his foe, quickly taking out the Zodiac Master's criminal contact. The Zodiac Master fires a giant jet arrow at Batman, that pins him to the wall. This gives the Zodiac Master time to leap through the maw of a giant lion's head, mounted on the wall, that leads to an escape tunnel. The lion's jaws snap shut behind the Zodiac Master, preventing Batman from following. Searching the criminal's lair, Batman comes across a favorable prediction for a crime that the Zodiac Master himself was planning to commit. Batman and Robin decipher the clue, leading them to stake out a Cretan Bull exhibit at the Gotham City Museum of Natural History. Suddenly, a flying crab is thrown into the room, which snags a bejeweled golden bull. Batman hurls a batarang at the crab, but it catches the weapon in it's free pincer. The crab delivers the bull to the Zodiac Master, who then hurls the sign of Gemini at Batman and Robin. The Dynamic Duo narrowly evade the burning twin spears. Next, the Zodiac Master fires an enlarged, goat head, battering ram at the Caped Crusaders. Batman deflects it with a shield, torn from it's mooring on the wall, and reflects it back at the Zodiac Master, felling him. The theft thwarted, the Zodiac Master is turned over to the Gotham City Police Department.
The Hobby Missions!
J'onn J'onzz, the Manhunter from Mars, has agreed to provide the prizes at a charity auction. Three winners are selected, from among the largest donors, via a spinning wheel. Each of the three men are allowed to give the Martian Manhunter one task, to retrieve their heart's desire. The only stipulation is that the task cannot provide monetary gains, nor imperil anyone. Famed horticulturist, Dick Rumson, requests the procurement of a rare Tibetan violet. The Martian Manhunter journeys to Tibet. Flying high over the Tibetan mountain peaks, the Manhunter from Mars spies a group of wild men menacing several mountain climbers. J'onzz merely removes the part of the mountain the wild Tibetans are occupying, and moves them off to a safe distance from the mountain climbers. J'onzz then retrieves the violet. The next winner, Jim Stone, requests the figurehead from the sunken sloop, S. S. Vengeance. Down to the bottom of the sea dives the Martian Manhunter. J'onzz locates the sloop and gently breaks the figurehead off. Suddenly, several sharks descend on J'onzz. The Martian Manhunter spins around at great velocity, generating a repelling current that drives the sharks away. The final winner, Tom Clay, requests an ancient Incan mask, that he once laid eyes on in the jungles of Peru. The Martian Manhunter approaches the chief of the tribe that possess the mask, but the tribesman refuses to part with their sacred mask. The Martian Manhunter assists the tribe with clearing out an area of the jungle, but still the chief refuses to part with the mask. It is only when the Martian Manhunter rescues a small boy from an attacking jaguar that the chief relents and turns the mask over to J'onzz. The Martian Manhunter, in turn, turns the mask over to Clay.
The next day, Clay, wearing the mask, robs a bank vault. The Martian Manhunter is called in to take Clay down, but Clay vanishes as J'onzz closes in on him. This leads the Martian Manhunter to the erroneous belief that the mask grants it's wearer the power of invisibility. The Manhunter from Mars spends the next 24 hours scouring the city with his penetrating Martian vision, searching for Clay. He finds him in the midst of a jewelry store robbery. Thinking himself prepared, the Martian Manhunted drops a collapsible cage over Clay. The mask, however, does not grant it's wearer the power of invisibility, as J'onzz believes, but rather the power of teleportation. Thus, Clay easily escapes the Martian's cage. A quick check of Clay's bank balance confirms that his fortune is, indeed, intact. He has no need of the valuables he has been stealing. This fact suggests a different avenue for the Martian Manhunter to investigate. In truth, Roger Hawkins, the man who organized the charity benefit, has kidnapped Clay, and has been wearing the mask himself to commit the crimes, to replace his lost fortune. Hawkins rigged the wheel in Clay's favor, knowing that Clay would ask J'onzz to retrieve the mask. Once the mask was in Clay's possession, Hawkins knew that all the crimes he committed wearing the mask would be pinned on Clay. The Manhunter from Mars catches up with Hawkins at a remote cottage. Turning invisible, the Martian Manhunter steals the mask right off of Hawkins head, then crushes it to powder. Clay's name is cleared, and the Manhunter from Mars escorts Hawkins into police custody.