Friday, May 8, 2020

CoronaVirus Crime Comics ADVENTURES INTO THE UNKNOWN "Eternal Fires"

A "clever" criminal making a deal with the Devil!
What could possibly go wrong?
(If you asked that question, you've obviously never watched The Twilight Zone...)
Written by editor Richard E Hughes, penciled by Dick Beck, and inked by Art Gates, this tale from ACG's Adventures into the Unknown #49 (1953) was relatively-mild for the 1950s "Seduction of the Innocent" era of horror and crime comics!
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Monday, April 13, 2020

CoronaVirus Crime Comics JUSTICE INC "Monster Bug" Conclusion

Art by Jack Kirby and Al Milgrom
The terrorist named Sodom, having barely survived a battle with The Shadow, now matches wits with The Avenger as he plots to use a virus that mutates humans.
Disguising himself as a scientist Sodom tried to kidnap, The Avenger proceeds to an auto show, hoping to lure Sodom out into the open.
The plan works, but Sodom, when cornered, uses some of the virus to turn innocent show visitors into mindless monsters...
Written by Denny O'Neil, illustrated by Jack Kirby and Mike Royer.
Unlike the first two issues, this was an original tale rather than an adaptation of one of the 1940s pulp stories, giving a different version of how Mac, the chemist, joined the group.
(Fergus "Mac" MacMurdie joined in the first pulp story, which was adapted in DC's Justice Inc #1, without his character!)
Trivia: Strangely, all three issues of this series drawn by Kirby featured the villain falling to his death from a great height!

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Justice Inc: the Avenger

Monday, April 6, 2020

CoronaVirus Crime Comics JUSTICE INC "Monster Bug" Part 1

The terrorist General Sodom had been defeated by The Shadow...
...but, the now-Colonel Sodom returns with another plan to spread terror and horror, this time using disease...
Is this...The End of The Avenger?
Since Sodom was a freelancer, why did he give himself a reduction in rank from General to Colonel?
(The same writer, Denny O'Neil, created Sodom and penned both stories, so it's not like a scripter unfamiliar with the character made a boo-boo!)
In the original 1940s pulp series, Fergus MacMurdie was introduced in The Avenger's origin story "Justice Inc", but since the 1970s comics adaptation of that tale was only 17 pages, Mac and his back story were cut from it!
As a result, he made his comics intro in this all-new tale!
BTW, he's a chemist, not a bio-chemist!
The never-reprinted DC's Justice Inc #3 (1975) was also the first of several crossovers involving the Street & Smith characters The Shadow and The Avenger (who never met in the original pulp magazines).
The two heroes themselves met in DC's The Shadow #11 (1976) as shown HERE!

You may be asking, why was the comic called "Justice, Inc." instead of "The Avenger", especially since the then-current paperback reprints...
1970s paperback reprint
...of the original pulp series (which was called The Avenger) were also titled The Avenger?
Because of trademark law!
Marvel Comics had been publishing a comic book called The Avengers (note the "s") since 1963.
Since two comics called "The Avenger" and "The Avengers" could be confusing to consumers, DC decided to retitle their comic based on the pulp/paperback Avenger character "Justice, Inc.", after Benson's crime-fighting organization.
Bonus Trivia: When Gold Key Comics did an adaptation of the 1960s Avengers tv series starring Patrick MacNee and Diana Rigg, it was titled "John Steed and Emma Peel".
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Justice Inc: the Avenger

Friday, March 13, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics MYSTERIES WEIRD AND STRANGE "Death in the Night"

What if a pandemic was deliberately-created?
This never-reprinted story from Superior's Mysteries Weird and Strange #3 (1953) provides a possible answer!
The concept of a criminal deliberately-attempting to infect an entire city (in this case, New York City), isn't exactly new, but this tale does add an entertaining, sensationalistic spin on the concept!
Note: This is part of an on-going series throughout the entire RetroBlog line featuring disease/epidemic/pandemic tales!
Check out the other RetroBlogs on the left of this page for more such stories!
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