Hey, look, it's Uncle Milty! Milton Berle plays a Bat-villain in a role that does not count as one of his most memorable. Plus bonus tone-deaf portrayal of hippies! The Bat-Rewatch introduces "Louie, the Lilac."
Okay, I have a confession to make—I have never liked Milton Berle. I remember growing up and seeing him and Bob Hope and Johnny Carson and never understanding what the fuss was about. To be fair, I mostly saw them in the twilight of their careers, but even watching old clips, I was less than impressed. The only time I actually liked a Berle performance was when he appeared on The Muppet Show, specifically when he tried to do a standup routine and was mercilessly heckled by Statler and Waldorf. Of course, the whole routine is predicated on the fact that Berle isn’t funny... (Amusingly, one of the inspirations for Statler and Waldorf was Sidney Spritzer, a character played by Irving Benson on Berle’s variety show who heckled Berle from the balcony.)
So I’m not particularly predisposed to this episode anyhow, but even the biggest Berle devotee wouldn’t find a lot to like here. For one thing, aside from puffing on a cigar, there’s none of Berle’s trademark bits here, nothing that stands out aside from the comedian’s rather distinctive face.