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Tony Marino


Real NameTony Silipini

Birthdate - 4/20/31

5’9” 235 lbs. - Rochester, NY

Athletic Background - Bodybuilding

Teacher(s) - n/a

AliasesTony Silipini, Dino Lanza, Devil Blue, Battman, The Caped Crusader

Peak Years - `66-`73

Place in HistoryWhen pro-wrestling tries to pick up on pop culture trends it can lead to some unexpected results.  In 1966, ABC premiered the Batman television show and it became an overnight sensation. Tony Marino, a barrel-chested Italian with a few years under his belt, saw his opportunity.  He purchased costume that he could wrestle in, added a “t” to his name, found a Robin to be by his side and The Battman was instantly a hit. Bruno Sammartino saw him and brought him into Pittsburgh to be a top babyface.  For a few years, Battman was a meaningful and effective star for “Studio Wrestling” in the Steel City. He used his “Bat Rack” (Abdominal Stretch) to vanquish villains like George “The Animal” Steele, Baron Mikel Scicluna and Bulldog Brower.  Batman was cancelled in 1968 spelling doom for Battman as well. Marino kept it for a while longer, but eventually shed his costume. Paradoxically, under that suit, Marino had one of the best physiques of the era and had shown personality in the role, but was unable to maintain a top spot.  In the WWWF, he did enjoy a tag team title reign with Victor Rivera, but he was never as used as strongly as Domenic Denucci or Tony Parisi (Pugliese). He stayed on working in the Steel Belt with the NWF and became a regular in the Detroit market as well. He was a middle of pack wrestler, often working in tag teams most notably with Bobo Brazil or Flying Fred Curry.  Both teams had a long rivalry with Kurt Von Hess and Karl Von Shotz. Marino had maintained his body, but was entering his fifties and was working smaller shows and even dusting off the Battman occasionally.