The legacy of Batman and Robin continued to grow in 1944 with the introduction of the Batcave in Detective Comics #83 released in January. The story, “Accidentally on Purpose,” written by Don Cameron starts out with the dynamic duo alerted to an alarm in the Batcave. Upon investigating, they find Alfred in the subterranean shelter working out in the gym. Bruce suggests that their butler take a vacation and get some rest. Alfred agrees and heads off to a little place in the country, leaving Batman and Robin alone.
The duo then witnesses the gang boss, Biff Bannister hit Henry Carliss with his car and speed away. A doctor appears and helps them take the wounded man up to his office where Bruce Wayne realizes that the victim is the owner of a large jewelry store.
Later that night, Batman and Robin catch Carliss trying to rob his own store. They manage to snap him out of the trance that he seemed to be under and take him home.
The next morning, Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson stumble upon another accident where scaffolding has fallen and knocked out John Kling, a stockbroker. Along with Bruce and Dick, the doctor is on the scene to help the injured man.
That night, Batman and Robin follow Kling as he robs himself and heads into the slums where he takes the goods to Biff Bannister. Robin manages to free Kling and get the cops but while he is gone, the doctor sneaks in and bashes Batman’s head with a wooden chair like he was a professional wrestler. The doctor gives Batman a special formula that will make him obey his commands.
Robin follows Batman as he breaks into a shop where jewelry is made. As Batman cracks open the safe, he snaps out of the trance, refusing to be a criminal. The doctor and Biff show up with guns to finish the job that Batman wouldn’t. A thinner Alfred then stumbles into the fray allowing Batman and Robin to get the advantage and arrest the criminals.
In Batman #24, released in August, Batman and Robin travel back in time for the first time in the story, “It Happened In Rome,” by Joseph Samachson. The story opens with Bruce Wayne walking down a street in ancient Rome where he sees trouble. He changes into his Batman cloak and helps the man, but is quickly surrounded by the guardsmen of Publius Malchio. They take Batman to the castle and lock him up in the dungeon.
In the present time, we find out that Bruce had been hypnotized by Professor Carter Nichols who would eventually have a major role in Batman #700. Dick Grayson sensing that Bruce needs help makes the professor put him under and send him back in time too.
In the dungeon, a jester that looks like the Joker from Batman’s time is thrown into the cell with Batman. Robin breaks them both out and they head to help the jester’s friend Gito who was being punished for not throwing a chariot race. Batman and Robin fight off the guards and rescue Gito who is too injured to race so Batman takes his place using makeup from his utility belt to look like the man.
After Batman wins the chariot race dressed as Gito, Malchio makes Batman fight his mightiest gladiator, Calvus. A swordfight ensues with Batman getting the better of the man. With the victory, Malchio is exiled and Batman and Robin are woken up in present time with the professor.
In Batman #25, released in October, Penguin and Joker team up for the first and only time in the Golden Age. “Knights of Knavery” by Don Cameron saw Penguin getting arrested by Batman and Robin while trying to steal an emerald from Mrs. Van Landorpf, the richest woman in Gotham City. Penguin is thrown into the Joker’s cell and the two men come to an understanding that whoever can steal the emerald will gain exclusive control over the Gotham City territory.
The crooks trick the guard into giving them a broom where they fashion a hook out of the straws to steal the keys to their cell. They escape and plan their next move to get the emerald. After hearing of their escape, Batman plans his next move on how to capture the crooks. He had Mrs. Van Landorpf announce that she will be wearing the emerald at a fashion show knowing that the two will see that it is a trap.
Batman and Robin wait at her house for the two thieves to show up. Penguin arrives first and is quickly followed by the Joker. They get into an argument allowing Batman and Robin to jump out of their hiding places and attack. Joker fires off a smoke bomb buying both him and Penguin enough time to escape.
The two crooks agree to work together to put an end to Batman and Robin which begins with Penguin stealing a bag of money from a couple of guards and floating away on balloons. Batman and Robin see this and jump out the window of Commissioner Gordon’s office and float through the sky holding onto Penguin. They are shot down by the Joker’s men who catch them in a waiting net. Batman and Robin are captured and taken to their lair.
During another argument, Batman and Robin are able to escape from their binds and capture the criminals sending them back to prison in different cells ending the only team-up of Penguin and Joker in the Golden Age of comics.