- "Too many puzzles, Is that what did it, Batman?"
Not much is known of the Puzzler's background, only that he has obviously had extensive education in Shakespeare, one that rivals or perhaps surpasses Batman's own. He is constantly quoting a line from plays, often from Macbeth, his personal favourite. He also has an interest in flying, as most of his crimes have an aviatic theme.
Like the Riddler, the Puzzler likes to keep the Dynamic Duo baffled by his puzzling clues. His first clue was delivered to Batman via a remote-controlled toy plane and then by a balloon. He soon made plans to get his hands on a supersonic plane called "The Retsoor" owned by multimillionaire Artemus Knab.
The Puzzler first visited Knab to become partners with him in the puzzle balloon business. He subsequently steals all the guests' jewels at Knab's party by using his special Puzzle-Gas. The Dynamic Duo arrived too late to stop the puzzling criminal, who gasses them as well before making his getaway.
After solving the villain's latest baffling puzzle, Batman and Robin trace him to his hideout at the Globe Balloon Factory, only to be defeated and knocked senseless by two toy gliders. The Puzzler then leaves them in the basket of a giant hot air balloon which is scheduled to be jettisoned when the balloon reaches 20,000 feet. The Caped Crusaders escape his trap and go after him again. Puzzler then buries them in a balloon long enough for him and his gang to slip through Batman's fingers again. Putting the next step of his plan in action, the Puzzler visits Artemus Knab, drugging the millionaire and photographing the top-secret plans for the supersonic plane, the "Retsoor".
He finally attempts to steal it, but Batman and Robin catch up with him, defeating his henchman and sending the Puzzler to prison.
Weapons and Equipment
- Puzzle Balloons - The product of Puzzler's financial partnership with Artemus Knab. The plan was to sell the balloons as toys, but Puzzler used them to leave clues for Batman at the scene of a crime.
- Invisible Puzzle Balloon Gas - When certain puzzle balloons were popped, this gas would temporarily paralyze anyone in the area unlucky enough to breathe it in.
- Model Airplanes - Could be used to deliver clues from a distance, or could be armed with a needle tipped with sleeping potion.
Puzzler had a few people who assisted him in his crimes:
- Rocket O'Rourke (portrayed by Barbara Stuart) - The Puzzler's female assistant whose acting skills helped the villain in his schemes. Her dream was to become a movie star, and thought that working with Puzzler would somehow lead her to this end. She is also attracted to the jewels she receives as rewards for helping him. O'Rourke's most important task was to slip a sleeping potion into Artemis Knab's drink while pretending to be auditioning for a movie. She did not get a call-back.
- Blimpy (portrayed by Robert Miller Driscoll) - The Puzzler's First Henchman, his name is from the fact that he is round like a blimp.
- Glider (portrayed by Allen Emerson) - The Puzzler's Second Henchman.
- Ramjet (portrayed by Jay Della) - The Puzzler's Third Henchman.
- The Puzzler is a former rogue of Superman from the comic books.
- The Puzzler's first and only appearance in the Batman TV series was scheduled for the Riddler. But when Frank Gorshin no longer wanted to play the part due to salary disputes, the writers changed the story to star the Puzzler. Otherwise, the episodes would have been titled "A Penny For Your Riddles" and "They're Worth A Lot More."
- The Puzzler was unusual in he had a sense of honor. When asked if the plan was to sell the Retsoor to a foreign government, he rebuffed the idea on grounds he may have been a criminal but was loyal to the government. Also when captured by Batman and accurately corrected him on a Shakespeare quote, he was impressed and saluted Batman in respect.
- The Puzzler is briefly mentioned in the film Batman Forever, when Edward Nygma was looking for a new nickname after deciding to become a villain.
- The Retsoor jet that Puzzler tried to steal spelled backwards is Rooster.