4. Batman Turned Tut Into a Villain
Steve Martin was far from the only entertainer to capitalize on the popularity of the boy king in American culture. The creators of the 1960s Batman series turned him into a villain in one of the episodes. “King Tut” was the Yale Egyptologist, William Omaha McElroy. While at work one day, a student threw a rock during a protest and hit him in the head. When the professor regained consciousness, he was convinced that he was King Tut and that Gotham City was actually his ancient capital city of Thebes on the Nile River.
Professor McElroy, er, King Tut, had a mission to recapture his capital city. He did so by holding the mayor’s daughter for ransom, forcing people to drink a juice made from scarab beetles, and uncovering Batman’s secret identity as Bruce Wayne. Professor McElroy really got into character by lacing his speeches with lessons about Egyptian history and invoking the gods and goddesses in ways that may have been historically done by the ancient Egyptians. His sidekicks included a dim-witted “Nefertiti” who served as the voice of the Sphinx monument in Central Park, and “Cleo Patrick,” who spied on Commissioner Gordon.