Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tales From The Quarter Bin--That Weird Simon/Kirby Shield Reboot!

In the late 50s, Archie Comics asked Joe Simon's studio to recreate/relaunch the good old MLJ heroes, to catch some of the DC Silver Age zeitgeist that was out there.

Which is where this came from:

Note that he's not actually refereed to as The Shield on the cover, and only so sparingly on the innards of the book:

This guy was completely divorced from the origin identity of the original Shield. See, snoopy scientists are investigating some weird stories they'd heard about fellow scientist Malcom Fleming...

Well, they threaten to have the boy taken away, and at the same time the less-squeamish commies plan to kidnap Roger for themselves. Stuff happens, there's a car crash in the mountains, and everyone dies except Roger...who's found by a hillbilly couple:

Thank God her name is Martha, in case he ever has to fight Batman!!

So, Roger Fleming gets raised as Lancelot Strong (!!), and just about at the point his powers emerge, he's drafted!! And so, for two issues, we get the adventures of a super-powered Gomer Pyle!!

As I said, weird stuff, man.

From The Double Life Of Private Strong #1 (1959), as reprinted in Blue Ribbon Comics #5 (1984)

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