Superheroes just standing around not doing their jobs during an emergency is nothing new to comics. Green Lantern did it during an attack on that stupidly-named city Nightwing lives in. Spider-Man and the Hulk twiddled their thumbs while loved ones who took action were being crushed to death. The Avengers and Daredevil do it all the time (I don’t blame them, really though. I guess it’s hard to get moving into action after 15 pages of thoughtful introspection).
So it should come as no surprise that Batman also did it in World’s Finest #243 (Feb-Mar 1977).
In that issue the dynamic duo is investigating an alien incursion and of course, Monkey-Wrench Boy screws up. While an impetuous Robin gets mercilessly tortured by the invaders, Batman hides behind a big rock. Eventually the aliens get bored of watching Robin sizzle so they kidnap and take him to deep space, probably to make sure they have privacy for a good probing. You know how much aliens like them some probing.
It’s only after the scene is once again free of danger that the Darknight Detective springs into action by impotently shaking his fist at the departing spacecraft. Good plan!
Later on, a disgusted Superman takes all of about 8 seconds to save everyone…as usual.