Super Friends Season 2, Episode 13, Storyline A – “The Man-Beasts of Xra”
Original Airdate – November 26, 1977
Introduction: “New Orleans, a city asleep before the dark hours of dawn, unaware of a terrifying presence.” – Narrator
The terrifying presence are these two, oh I don’t know, I guess I’ll call them “Man-Beasts,” deciding to tour the zoo after hours.
I found them more confusing than terrifying because they decided to jump the actual gate instead of just going to either side of it and hopping over the little wall like any smart man-beast would do.
Another in a line of extremely unsafe Super Friends zoos.
What kind of crazy unsafe zoo is this?
Did the elephant give his word that he wouldn’t trample over the little wall and the tiger promise that he wouldn’t walk through the bars?
So, as you’ve all guessed, the man-beasts take a bunch of the animals.
Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice
Maybe he was actually being projected onto the screen?
He tells the Super Friends that the animals are missing. This is a job for Batman, Robin, and Superman.
On the way, they pass a billboard, which has me completely stumped:
Which inspired this conversation with Tom:
Me: What do you think this is a billboard for?
Tom: Cigarettes? Pot?
Me: I GUESS it could be cigarettes but that seems odd for a kid’s show.
Tom: What did you think it was? Tampons?
Me: NO, I thought it was maybe a book and a piece of chalk.
Tom: “Buy a book and a piece of chalk!”
Me: Yeah, that doesn’t make any sense.
So your best guesses are more than welcome.
Later, after the narrator proclaims that they have “streaked” into the night yet again…
The animators had some troubles this episode. First, the leaking man, then they just couldn’t get Batman’s logo right. Apparently, it changes depending on his mood and/or the position of his arm:
There was also a moment where the poor animator was so sleepy and exhausted, he just couldn’t bother drawing the actual bat:
While at the zoo, Batman and Robin spy a Panther Man Beast and follow him to….
I’m starting to think this is the same mansion and all the villains just rent it.
Meet Dr. Xra, of “The Man-Beasts of Xra” title fame.
We finally meet our villain, Dr. Xra, who’s doing major genetic testing and modifications.
“By crossing the cells of humans and animals, I have created a half human-half animal mutation. Soon I will create the perfect being with the strength and cunning of an animal and the intelligence of a man.”
Where did Dr. Xra get her degree? Humans ARE animals. Stupid Xra.
Also, she likes purple:
The Super Friends arrive at the mansion and and like the polite superheroes they are, they ring the doorbell. Dr. Xra must also be a polite and gracious hostess since she tells Panther Man and Wolf Man to “take care” of her guests.
“Holy silent butlers.” – Robin
Robin is more surprised that a door opened by itself than the half man/half beast creatures roaming around.
Batman, Superman, and Robin then get in a big fight with the welcoming committee. Superman tells Wolf Man, “hasn’t anyone told you it’s impolite to interrupt?”
Interrupt what? Them wandering around in the foyer not knowing where to go or what to do?
Superman gets Wolf Man tangled up in a chandelier and then Batman and Robin dispense of Panther man by squeezing “Fast Drying Bat Superglue” on him. Batman instructs Robin, “and be sure to squeeze out equal portions.” What a bossy control freak.
Superman finds Dr. Xra in her laboratory and she releases the zoo animals, demanding that they attack him. Then there’s an homage to The Graduate,
and then Superman says to himself that he has to cage the animals without hurting them. Which he does by lifting up the floor while each animal conveniently slides into it’s own cage.
Dr. Xra is now on the run in the swamps of Louisiana.
They easily capture her and then take the animals to the “Justice League Computer,” where it reverses the process and makes them normal again.
Then, they visit the zoo and Batman gets his face eaten off by the wolf because of stupidity and wide bars.
Well, they don’t actually SHOW it, but obviously that’s what happens.
If you would like to see these shenanigans for yourself, Season 2 is available on DVD.