Comic Books · Dc Comics · Golden Age

1952, October Part One

  • Action Comics 173
  • Adventure Comics 181
  • All-Star Western 67
  • Batman 73
  • Captain Marvel Adventures 137


So how does one become invulnerable to Superman? Red sun lamps? Kryptonite? No, his love of his people. The robot Ajax hid a bomb somewhere in Smallville, where not even the builder knew. The bomb would go off if anything happened to the robot, and would be triggered by X-rays, so our hero could not go looking for it. Despite the limitation Superman was able to recover all of the loot the robot went after. Finally A wealthy man said he was so sure that Superman could defeat the robot that he would pay 100,000 to the robot if he won. Superman accepted this challenge and told the man when and where to meet him. They made a big spectacle of it too, sold tickets and popcorn and the like. I wonder if they were disappointed the it only lasted one punch.

See most of the inhabitants of Smallville came to the battle, if it could be called that. He was able to remove the small number of people remaining without causing the panic an evacuation would have caused. And yes, there was some structural damage, but Superman was able to fix it before the citizens returned home.

Bill is sent to retrieve a valuable crown covered in jewels. But there has been a group raiding every caravan that passed out of the town with the crown had been raided for months now. So Bill decided to go out disguised with an small group of Arabs, who were the only people not being raided. When one of the ‘Arabs’ they were with killed a croc and just left it there Bill knew something was wrong. Crocodile meat is considered a delicacy to Arabs, and real ones would not have wasted the meat. So he had his companion turn back, and said he would lay a trail of coins for them to follow with reinforcements. However, the coins were spotted and picked up by one of the raiders. But it wasn’t the only trail Bill laid. When he hid the crown in a bag of grain he left a rip in the bag, and the birds eating the grain gave the reinforcements a perfect line to him. (reverse Hansel and Gretel Eh)

Tommy is sent to Mars because some of the Martians in the south desert were being rowdy. Turns out there was a human digging in an area the was taboo to the Martians, but the man did have a permit. He uncovered a base full of still moving machines, and it activated a screen where a Martian told them that his people had been sealed inside by the peace loving inhabitants of Mars, but that when the were unsealed the machines would head out to destroy the nearest Planet. Now MVEMJSUNP, with Jupiter being much further than us, that would make Earth closest. The Planeteers drew lots to see who would sneak into a machine and use it’s powerful rays against the others. At the last minute Tommy stops the man who was about give his life for Earth. Tommy had recalled that at the time the Martians were sealed up there was a planet closer than Earth, the lost planet of Apollo.

This one gang was running Vig and stuff ragged, they seemed to know everything that they are gonna do to catch ’em. After a very close shave Vig and Stuff enter the gang’s hideout. They find a couple of notes, a drawing of a bank, not too much to go on. But one of the notes mentioned that there was Vigilante Exhibit. Heading over in his secret ID he sees that it showcases many of his captures, showing off many of his skills and tricks. Thinking fast he comes back in costume and tells the proprietor about a fake catch he made, and knowing what the bandits were ready for now he and Stuff were able to show them their place.

Adventure Comics: Superboy, Aquaman, Johnny Quick, Green Arrow

No matter how powerful Clark is he cannot be every where at once. While he is busy with another potential tragedy a man saves Smallville from a fire near their gas mains. He says he doesn’t want his identity known, so the make him a mask to wear. Unfortunately, he gets mistaken for a few other people who are missing or in hiding. In order to protect his identity SB finds those that other believed to be the masked hero. In the end the masked hero was a man who had run from testifying in court for fear that he would be killed. But in being treated as a hero by Smallville inspired him to go back and make sure the murderer got what was coming to him.

A man was chosen for his amazing swimming abilities to be a fake Aquaman by some crooks. The said they had gimmicks that could it appear as though he had all of Aquaman’s abilities. The reason for this trickery was that Aquaman was asked to guard the treasure of a pacific isle. The fake showed up first and ‘proved’ he was Aquaman by staying underwater for hours ( a hidden sub gave him air) and swimming super fast (little rockets on his heels) but before he was given the treasure the real Aquaman appeared. So they were put to the ultimate test, controlling fish. The fake made a shark somersault ( a man in a suit) an Octopus give kids rides (a robot) and then it was Aquaman’s turn. And he failed. Jumping in the water he found that they had put fish repelling pellets there and he had the seagulls pull them out for him. Then he re-challenged the man, and tore up the fakes with his swordfish.

Blatant Sexism! I know, I know, 1952, but seriously Johnny? Still at least it was written in a way so that the story doesn’t seem sexist, just Johnny. Joanie Swift stumbles across the formula, and decides to become partners with the king of speed. Johnny figures if he runs her ragged she’ll want to quit. Well, Joanie not only doesn’t tire, but she shows remarkable intelligence though the entire story. At one point Johnny decides it’s hopeless to try to get rid of her, and thinks she might end up the better of the pair. He does end up forcing her to quit, for he switches the formula when she forgets it after being scared by a mouse. Now, it may seem that she wasn’t cut out for crime fighting if a mouse scared her, but may I remind you that everyone has their fears. Indiana Jones’s fear of snakes is legendary, and my father fears chickens, and my mother and I are wary of rabbits. So don’t be a dick Johnny she really could have helped.

Most criminals lack discipline, and this makes them sloppy and much easier to capture, so a group of military trained crooks are actually a very tough bunch. Even after capturing two, all they would say were their ‘names’ ranks and serial numbers. Kudos to instilling that much loyalty in your troops. They must truly believe in you. However one of the POWs had a note on him that GA was able to translate into low and high tide times, and knew they would be pulling a water crime. Knowing this they are able to form an ambush and take down the leader of the military force. When he was perfectly trapped his own composure fell apart. You would think some of his training would have helped, but he had nothing to put his faith in like his men.

All-Star Western

I have an inclining about what you may be thinking; wasn’t Johnny Thunder the man with the lightning genie? And you would be right, this is another Johnny Thunder, John Tane, who was born of a sheriff and a schoolmarm. John promised his Ma he would never use guns and followed on to become a teacher like her. Later he was forced to break his promise, but like the Black rider he felt he wouldn’t really be breaking his promise if he took a different identity while doing so. Rubbing coal dust in his hair and somehow not being recognized by his own father he fights injustice in the wild west.

Now here’s this tale: So this guy rides into town, planning on having this big ol’ protection racket there.The sheriff is like dudes ‘that’s what the law if for I want you to clear out’ and that night the sheriff is ambushed. Not hurt bad but he’s got a bandage around his head. Then Johnny appears and the sheriff lends him his badge, saying that he’s gotta catch the bastard breaking the law. So Johnny waits and when he see the dude throw an apple in the street he tries to pull him in for littering. Now his boys didn’t like that, thought it would decrease his power. So they fought back, When Johnny killed them it was perfectly within the law as they did shoot first.


The commissioner calls up Batman and Robin about how even if they capture crooks, they can’t find the guns they used in their jobs. While heading home Batman and Robin manage to catch two criminals themselves. But their guns were unknown- even to the highest of experts. Batman decided that he should go under cover, so he makes up an identity of ‘Slug’ a former con with a large knowledge of firearms. So a few days later he is taken into an underground arsenal(twitch, no, no red head here), and after a few tests is given a job there. Apparently they rent out different guns for different jobs, including guns the renter had designed himself.

Batman tripped himself up by appearing at places he knew were about to be robbed, and as he was the new guy- he was instantly suspected. He switched clothes, only to be trapped in a cage like security measure. The Renter, really the gun expect from the police department took the gun he had designed to kill batman off the wall and aimed. Batman grabbed the fob-watch gun that one of the other employees had and shot the release latch. Once on even footing it was easy to take them all out.

Oh Vicki, it’s not that I don’t like you, but I don’t feel Bruce could ever be honest with you. Unlike Lois, I don’t trust that you won’t broadcast a secret identity for a scoop. Like in this very story! Vicki comes to Wayne Manor in tears! saying that she has put her life in danger, refusing to say anymore. So Bruce and his ward go to Vicki’s apartment, and find a picture which shows a criminal with the moniker ‘keys’ sneaking into an abandoned stage. So they go there and find that yes, it is rife with criminals. Batman and Robin are defeated, (a trapeze hit Batman on the head) and left tied up in an artist’s room, meanwhile it cuts to Vicki. She’s not upset at all, she’s long suspected Bruce of being Batman, and feels like her actions here have the same effects as giving the pic to the police, but also will give her proof of Batman’s identity.

Meanwhile Batman and Robin get out of their bonds and launch a surprise attack on the criminals and round them up nicely. Since Keys didn’t know about the picture, or Vicki they figure out she’s pulled a fast on on them.They go home and they’re like- oh yeah, I called Batman. Then she reveals that she had recorded her place while they were inside. Robin was all worried, but Bruce had seen the mic when they first entered and placed a running fan in front of it. Later, while Dick was heading home Bruce returned and said a few words to throw Vicki off.

Inspired by Batman the Joker decides that he should have own belt, full of tricks and gimmicks.


He said from the beginning that the cork in the last pouch would be the end of the Batman. Now, I was impressed with the way he used his tricks, and very confused at one point when he covered Batman’s belt with a fake, like how did Bruce not feel that? Anyway, so he swaps the cork out with the one in a bottle that Batman was gonna use to christen a ship. Batman notices that the paraffin used to seal the bottle wasn’t the right color and switched bottles, but fate made one of the revelers set of the gas bomb in the original bottle after all. Unconscious the Bat and Bird were taken to the Joker’s hideout and Robin was forced to run on a conveyor belt or be thrust into fire. Batman was able to sneak his hand into the Joker’s belt and he took our the snake pelts. He was able to explode them in the gears and save Robin. Than the boys took the Joker’s belt, and captured him with his own tools.

Captain Marvel Adventures

Billy is walking along thinking how great it is to have a boss and generous and kind as Mr. Morris, when he hears an explosion in Mr. Morris’s office. so he heads in to make sure the he’s okay. Completely unhurt Mr. Morris docks Billy’s pay, and that of all the others that work for him. Stunned and sad he head down to see some of his other friends and find Doc Quartz angry and hateful, and Dexter a total sloth! His quick mind realized that the strange goings on all have to do with increased sin, and heads down to see Shazam. Shazam tells him the King Kull had awakened the seven gods of sin, and that they were planning to destroy Earth by dropping sin bombs across the world.

Captain Marvel finds Kull as he is dropping the last of his bombs on Fawcett and sneaks after him. Once he has found the HQ of the gods of sin Billy charges in about to say his word, but slips and is caught by one of the sins. King Kull then tries to shoot Billy with a ray that would turn him to stone! But Billy doesn’t give up and kicks out at Kull, knocking the gun from his hand and biting the sin that held him. He cried out his word and used the ray gun to turn the sins back into statues, and for once Kull actually went to jail.

It starts of with Mr. Tawny taking a culture quiz and getting a low-brow result. (Dude, you are a tiger. Learning to talk, working in a museum? Literally now one expects you to be more cultured than that.) Anyway he starts going to a culture club, and acting like a total snob. Billy and Cap are unable to convince Mr. Tawny that the people he is hanging with are not in his best interest through his regular means. So he suggests that Mr. Tawny have his friends over. and the brutes smash a Beethoven record, and tear out the pages of a collection of Shakespeare! Horrified that they are destroying his things, he throws them out, deciding that, well I don’t know exactly what he decided, but I know that not everybody is alike. I’m not gonna hate on someone because they don’t like comics or something. I mean, I might act aghast, but I’m not gonna be a douche.

Oh Billy. There is a guy that looks exactly like Billy. His name is Tommy, and like Billy doesn’t know his parents or origin. So when people come to kidnap Tommy, they get Billy instead. They tell him that he is really their lost king, Alfreed. Yes, two e’s. Looking at a picture of Alfreed’s dad he wonders if it’s true. But the prime minister is planning on killing the king, so he would inherit the crown. Figuring this out Billy orders his guards away and heads to bed. Later the PM takes the boy and tips a large statue over the gagged kid. Captain Marvel swept in and saved Tommy from inches of death, and Tommy was really Alfeed, and Billy went home.

Fav issue this section: Action Comics

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