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Who’s That Comic Character? – Polka-Dot Man!

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A Beginner’s Guide To ‘Polka-Dot Man’

The Reveal This Week

This week, unfortunately, no one was able to guess the character correctly. So instead of a shout-out, we are left with just the reveal itself. The correct answer this week, was Polka-Dot Man.

For The Previous Article In This Series, Click HERE

Character Bio

Polka-Dot Man, aka. Abner Krill, was created by Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff. He made his first comic book appearance in Detective Comics #300 back in 1962.

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.
The DC logo and all DC characters and related elements © & TM DC

Abner was as small time crook who appeared on the scene shortly after Batman. He was among a growing number of costumed criminals inspired by the caped crusader. Instead of aspiring to heroics, however, they mostly hoped to attract Batman and attempt to prove themselves his better.

Krill in particular, decided to go on a crime spree that was based on spots and dots. His reasons for this specificity are never really revealed. Inevitably, this lead to a showdown with Batman and Robin, which as you can imagine, didn’t exactly go his way.

Over the years his powers and abilities would change a bit. In the beginning, the polka-dots he utilizes as weapons we a part of his suit. He would be able to remove this spots and fashion them into anything from weapons, to full on escape vehicles. Eventually, DC Comics writers would alter these into interdimensional, weaponized polka-dots that can rip through enemies with deadly efficiency. Even with his boost in power and tech, he is still used as a side villain for Batman, and is often relegated to his “D-List” list of enemies.

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@jjs_comic_stuff

It’s time for the reveal video for this week’s edition of #WhosThatComicCharacter no winner this week, but the answer was #PolkaDotMan from @dc #nerdinitiative #crossovercomics #comicbooks #comictok #comicbooktiktok #dccomics #CreateWithoutFear

♬ original sound – JJ
Character Reveal For The Prowler From @jjscomicstuff On TikTok

Reading Recommendations

Unfortunately, Polka-Dot Man is never really used as anything more than a side villain in the comics. He makes random appearances here and there, attempting to either foil Batman or getting caught in the crossfire during larger battles. He is also known to team up as a member of the Suicide Squad on various different occasions.

With this in mind there are not many reading recommendations I can give that are specifically focused on Polka-Dot Man himself. What I can do, however, is give you 3 suggestions of great stories and funny moments, where Polka-Dot Man happens to make an appearance.

Number 1

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.
The DC logo and all DC characters and related elements © & TM DC

Detective Comics #300
Writers: Henry Boltinoff, Jack Schiff and Jack Miller
Artwork: Shedlon Moldorff, Henry Boltinoff, Nick Cardy, Joe Certa, and Charles Paris

The best place to start with any character is with their original appearance. The same can be said with Polka-Dot Man. For that, we have to go all the way back to Detective Comics #300 published in 1962.

The story here opens with Batman and Robin witnessing a group of criminals breaking into a carpet cleaning plant. After dealing with the first few thugs inside, we are introduced to their boss, Polka-Dot Man. Tearing off one of his suit’s spots, it turns to a large buzz-saw and he throws this to cut a large hanging carpet above the caped crusaders. This distraction allows him top escape for the moment, using another of his spots, which morphs into a flying saucer with which he and his henchmen make their escape.

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.

After a series of dot and spot related crimes. Batman and Robin eventually foil Polka-Dot Man’s plans. Discovering that the locations of his crimes connected to create… a stick figure around Gotham. The two heroes managed to stop the crime spree before the full figure could be completed.

This is classic, Silver Age goodness filled with campiness and silliness that the era was known for. If you want to see the original incarnation of the character, this is the best place to start.

Number 2

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.
The DC logo and all DC characters and related elements © & TM DC

Batgirl: Year One #5
Writers: Chuck Dixon and Scott Beatty
Artists: Marcos Martin and Alvaro Lopez

So, as I said earlier, there are not many stories out here at feature Polka-Dot Man prominently. On many occasions, his appearance is nothing more than a quick cameo or easter egg. One such instance is in issue 5 of Batgirl: Year One.

At this point in the story, we find The Moth complaining in a bar about being beaten, yet again, by members of the Bat Family. He is convinced that he should be given the same respect as his insectivore counterparts. They have masks, he has a mask. They have no super powers, and neither does he? He just can’t understand it.

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.

Polka-Dot Man makes his appearance in the background of this scene. We are shown an inebriated Polka-Dot Man banging on the bar demanding service. We’re not presented with any dialogue from our spotted felon, but the bartender has clearly had enough. He responds by delivering a baseball bat to the side of poor Polka-Dot Man’s head.

That, brief and unfortunate as it was, is Polka-Dot Man’s involvement in Batgirl: Year One.

Number 3

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.
The DC logo and all DC characters and related elements © & TM DC

Nightwing #104 (Nightwing: Year One Part 4)
Writers: Chuck Dixon and Scott Beatty
Artists: Scott McDamiel and Andy Owens

Here, yet again, we have another brief cameo appearance of Polka-Dot Man. This time around we are near the end of the Nightwing: Year One storyline from 1996 (Nightwing #104).

This story is a pretty big deal amongst DC Comics fans. It’s Dick Grayson’s first year as Nightwing. It’s also in this story where he meets Jason Todd, the new Robin for the first time in the comics. Grayson’s first year on his own is filled with trial and error with the new solo hero still trying to find his footing and figure out who Nightwing really is.

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.

After meeting another new hero for the first time, Batgirl, Nightwing takes her on a date. Instead of fancy dinner or a trip to the movies, they go on a crime fighting spree around the city. At one point during their “date night”, they find themselves in a bar. (Do you notice a pattern here?) Polka-Dot Man is, as usual, caught in the crossfire while in the bar.

© 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.

The first sight of him we get is him being thrown through the front window of the bar and into the street. Nightwing and Batgirl emerge out of the broken window, and Polka-Dot Man is knelt on the pavement holding his head. With police already converging on the scene, he’s pretty much ignored by the two young heroes as they discuss the next stop on their night of crime fighting.

Can You Guess The Next Character?

This is ‘Who’s That Comic Character?’, the series where I give you a silhouette of a comic book character, and you try to figure out who it is! The video posts to all major social media platforms, so no matter your preferred app, you can find this series!

Rules Of The Game

  • You only get one guess per person
  • Check comment sections to ensure your guess has not already been taken by another player. Only the FIRST person with the right answer on each platform will get the shoutout
  • Be specific with your guess! For example: If you guess “Green Lantern” you need to specify WHICH Green Lantern you mean. Hal Jordan? Alan Scott? John Stewart? Be Specific
The Latest Episode Of ‘Who’s That Comic Character?’

Check Out The Latest Episode Of The Comic Press Podcast

So always take a good long look at the silhouette provided, because they can get very tricky. The first person on any given platform to guess the character correctly, gets a shout out in the reveal video and the article that goes with it! 

Good luck everyone, and as always Be Safe, Be Kind, and Take It Easy!

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Jeremy Bowersock
Jeremy Bowersockhttps://linktr.ee/jjscomicstuff
Hi there, my name is Jeremy and I'm 32 years old from Ohio, and I LOVE comic books! I'm a content creator on TikTok. I also host two podcasts (Crossover Comics Podcast and The Comic Press Podcast). I'm so excited to have the opportunity to shar this amazing world of fandoms with the rest of the world. I want everyone to be able to enjoy and embrace their most nerdy self!

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