Thursday, November 30, 2017

When Super-Girl Had A Hypen!

Not "our" Supergirl, of course...this Super-Girl:

About 9 months before Kara Zor-El debuted, Superman #23 (1958) featured the arrival of a very similar yet different Girl Of Steel.

It's not hard to imagine that, given the similarities in costume and appearance, that this Super-Girl went over pretty well with readers, and inspired DC to create a permanent,albeit hyphen-less, version.

We begin with the boilerplate "oh, my life is too dangerous for me to ever take up with a mere mortal" spiel from Kal-El.

Well, Jimmy gets his chance, when he and Superman rescue a trapped archaeologist.

Quite a racket you have going there, Superman: "I'll rescue you if you give a priceless artifact to my pal as a 'souvenir.'"

And it really is priceless, because...

Well, this is the Silver Age DC Universe, so of course the legend is true!!


Then the titans meet:

Look, I know it's sniggery and low-hanging fruit, but that panel just said that Jimmy wished a beautiful young woman into being by rubbing his magic totem last night. Wertham was right!!

Kal-El continues to be quite shy about his heterosexuality...

And it turns out that every time Super-Girl tries to help out, it backfires!






And then poor naive Super-Girl unveils Clark Kent's secret identity!

To see how Kal-El got out of this one, check out how he emotionally manipulates Lois!

Geez, no wonder he made Kara hide herself when she got to Earth--female super-heroes are nothing but trouble!!

Until, of course, Superman needs her, when some crooks throw some kryptonite at him while he's trying to save a train.


"Must...use...all my remaining strength!"

Thus endeth the brief life of Super-Girl. We'll get a new one soon, but Superman will still treat her like crap...

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Dial E For Eternity--Render Unto Caesar!!

And then there was the time people from the past showed up, and Kid Eternity wasn't the one who summoned them!!

Wait, what was that?

Great, we're back to "Kid actually changes into the character," rather than just summoning them. Someday we'll get this all settled,

We begin the story by adding to the goofy-ass cosmology of this series. Kid and Mr. Keeper, as per usual, are just hanging around doing nothing constructive...

...when it's time to meet a key player in the afterlife!

Now, I'd love to tell you that this was the same Father Time who was head of S.H.A.D.E. and interacted with the rest of the Quality/former Earth-X characters in the Freedom Fighters mini-series a few years back.

Nope, can't do it. Morrison created him out of whole cloth, and that Father Time has nothing to do with this fella. Which is just fine, because this Father Time is awesome!

So, heaven, Father Time uses a mechanical device to keep time from being "all jumbled up"??

Well, this sounds like a job for Kid!

In modern comics, this premise would have been the set-up for a Zero Hour-type "everything exists at once" tale...or at least a good Kang story.

Nope. Our creators are focusing on just one time-displaced group of characters!

It's Julius Caesar and his legions!!!

But these are New Yorkers...and they don't take crap like this seriously!


Oh, no!! It's time for Kid to summon become...


Well, that puts a slight crimp in Caeser's invasion, so Kid heads back to Eternity to check up on Father Time.

Man, I love this guy!!

Meanwhile, back in the Big Apple:

It would be churlish to interrupt this tale to wonder about such prosaic questions as, "How did Julius Caesar learn English, " or "How did they pay for a billboard, or rent Yankee Stadium?" So I won't.

Dude, "modern people" have cars and tanks and bombs and should be no contest!

But Kid is right--New Yorkers are like big fluffy bunnies when faced with a centurion or two!

Wow. New of weaklings! 

Still, they do enjoy complaining!

Let the games begin!

Volunteers? Fuggedaboudit! 

Now, in fairness, this is at the height of WWII, so a large portion of the able-bodied males were engaged elsewhere at the time. Still, this is a pretty weal lot.

Fortunately, Kid Eternity is on hand!



Jim Jeffries?!?

Two things to note. First, this is the 3rd straight story in which Kid calls upon a boxer--and it's the 3rd different boxer!! It probably goes to show the hold boxing still held in the public imagination at the time.

Secondly, and perhaps most importantly, Jim Jeffries was very much alive in 1943!! Sure, he had been retired for a few decades...but Kid Eternity is summoning living people!! Or, perhaps just as likely, the author thought Jeffries had passed, given that he had been out of the spotlight so long, and would have been 68 at this time.

But then there's wrestling...


This one took some research, and my best guess is Kid means Stanislaus Zbyzko, two time World Heavyweight Champion wrestler. Less likely, they could have meant Stanislaus' younger, less famous wrestling brother, Władysław.

Here's the thing though--they both lived until the late 1960s!! So we have pretty clearly amended Kid's powers to "summoning live people"!!!

Oh, and "Zybisco" wins easily.

Caesar has had enough!!

Kid can't stop him, because it's time for...

...the good old "blow to the head causes amnesia" chestnut!!

But in the nick of time--literally!!

So we have one of the more literal deus ex machina stories ever!!

Pshaw, it was nothing!!

After 6 adventures, our count stands at:

Achilles 1
Antony, Marc 1
Barry's father 1
Blackhawk 1
Columbus 1
Corbett, Jim 1
Hercules 1
Holmes, Sherlock 1
Houdini 1
Jeffries, Jim 1
Leander 1
Napoleon 1
Noah 1
Nobody 1
Pheidippides 1
Robin Hood 1
Samson 1
Solomon 1
Sullivan, John L. 1
Vercingetorix 1
Zbyzko, Stanislaus 1

Next time...tilting at windmills!!

From Hit Comics #30 (1943)