The cover of Detective 58 (Dec.41) is an entertaining composition, but has no connection to the important Batman story the issue contains.
The Penguin gets introduced, created by Bill Finger, Bob Kane and Jerry Robinson. Inspired by Raffles, the gentleman thief, this character would quickly become a staple in Batman stories.
Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson first encounter the villain at an art gallery, and Dick gives him the Penguin nickname before they have any reason to suspect him of anything. He uses his umbrella to conceal the stolen art, as well as other items he snags during the story.
He also uses the umbrella as a gas gun. It’s a good prop, many uses, and adds to his ensemble.
The one moment I do not care for in the story occurs when Batman has been captured by the Penguin. There is a cool cutaway of a communication device in Batman’s heel, but his excuse for using it, “tap-dancing sitting down.” is painful.
Robin frees Batman, and they take down the Penguin’s gang and recover the loot, but the Penguin himself escapes, hopping a passing freight. The story concludes telling us he will return, and he does, in the following issue.
Cliff Crosby heads to Canada in this story, taking Kay with him on a skiing vacation, and stumbling into a bizarre set-up.
A father refuses to let his daughter marry unless someone can beat him in a ski race. Cliff wins the race, by rigging the father’s skis.
Speed Saunders has his final adventure in this story. It’s called “The Cigarette Murder,” and Speed solves it by noticing the ashes left in an ashtray even though the butts were removed.
It’s late 1941, and it’s safe to say that at this point, Speed goes into the O.S.S. He does not return again until the late 90s, but is given that bit of backstory to his World War 2 days.