Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Dial E For Eternity--SHOWBOAT!!

Now this is more like it! A rollicking, sprawling, crazy-ass story. To bad about the racially insensitive bits at the end, though...

Kid and Keeper are wandering along the Mississippi River, when they find a young couple very much in love!


Holy moly!!  Pa is right upset!

So upset he goes after Kid!!



Kid does his due diligence, and follows up with the young couple...

Oh ho, the plot thickens!

Wait, wait, you were kissing and canoodling with Gail before she was "of age"?!?!

Well, it turns out that "Pa" and Sam Slye have deeper (and eviller) ambitions!

$20,000! Land O Goshen!!

First, they try a dirty trick to make show the showboat has no acts:

Then they hire a gang to help them kidnap Gail!

Stephen Decatur?!?

Certainly, he was a great naval leader...but I can't find a lot of support for calling him "the greatest hand-to-hand fighter in naval history." 

Still, he was more than enough to drive off the ruffians.

But Sam uses the confusion to grab Gail and head of to find a cooperative justice of the peace!

They head down a tiny channel--how can a big riverboat follow?!?

John W. Cannon!!

But he can't do it alone, so...

Mark Twain!!

Well, they catch up to the varmints, and as a wedding present, Kid let's Todd finish off the bad guys himself!!

So we get a wedding!

But there's one big problem remaining!

Well, it's time for Kid to play "the final presentation at the end of Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure" again!

Oh, boy!!

Fate Marable was one of the earliest and most influential jazz greats (and he was still alive when this story was published!!). As near as I can tell, he never performed with the Levee Serenaders--their only known work was with Jelly Roll Morton--but it's certainly possible (plus there were lots of bands who used variations on that name).

Most excitingly, they were all African-American...which means this is the first time Kid Eternity has summoned black legends to help him!! Quite a moment in comic book history, and--


Anyway, there's more!

The Cherry Sisters!

It's true, you know...the Cherry Sisters' act was renowned for being terrible, one of the first "so bad it's good" pop culture phenomenon.

Lillian Russell!

Harry Houdini, in his second summons...but I'm pretty sure he never pulled a rabbit out of a hat...

And, finally...

So, you have an authentically historical important group of black performers, and you can't show them as black...BUT YOU CAN SHOW A GODDAMNED M&^%*#-f&*#@# MINSTREL ACT IN FULL BLACK-FACE?!?!?!?!?!?!?! WTF?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

I'm very, very disappointed in you, Kid Eternity!

Oh, yeah, Lew Dockstader was real, all right...

Anyway, now Todd is set for life!

But the Kid hates to stand around and be praised, so...

Sigh...and such a fun story until that nonsense...

Anyway, after 18 stories, our summoning table looks like this:

Achilles 1
Antony, Marc 1
Atlas 2
Barry's father 1
Bernhardt, Sarah 1
Bertillon, Alphonse 1
Blackhawk 1
Boone, Daniel 1
Bunyan, Paul 2
Byron, George Gordon 1
Canary, Martha “Calamity” 1
Cannon, John W. 1
Cherry Sisters 1
Clancy, Patrick 1
Cody, “Buffalo” Bill 1
Columbus 1
Corbett, Jim 1
Custer, George Armstrong 1
de Leon, Ponce 1
Decatur, Stephen 1
Dockstader, Lew 1
Don Quixote 1
Emery 1
Galahad 1
Griffiths, Albert 1
Hercules 1
Hickok, Wild Bill 1
Holmes, Sherlock 1
Houdini 2
Hyer, Tom 1
Jackson, Andrew 1
Jeffries, Jim 1
Kidd, William 1
King Arthur 1
Leander 1
Marable, Fate 1
Mercury 3
Murphy, Charles 1
Napoleon 1
Nation, Carrie 1
Noah 1
Nobody 1
Osceola 1
Paddock, Charley 1
Pheidippides 1
Pinkerton, Allan 1
Plastic Man 1
Porthos 1
Prometheus 1
Robin Hood 1
Russell, Lillian 1
Samson 2
Sandow, Eugen 1
Schleyer, Johann 1
Solomon 1
Sullivan, John L. 1
Tell, William 1
Thor 1
Thurston, Howard 1
Tiglath IV 1
Tut-ankh-amen 1
Twain, Mark 1
Vercingetorix 1
Washington, George 1
Webster, Daniel 1
Zbyzko, Stanislaus 1

NEXT--The Kid tries the dark side!!

From Hit Comics #39 (1946)


Erich said...

Well, that's unfortunate...can't really say more than that. I'm really hoping that it was just a case of the colorist being unaware of Fate Marable's ethnicity.

George Chambers said...

Using the miracle of the internet, I determined that $20,000 in 1946 dollars equates to a shade over $251,000 in 2017, so it ain't hay.

anthrax2525 said...

This was ridiculous even before the minstrelsy.