Monday, September 24, 2012

Master Comics #74 (November 1946, "Nyoka and the Wild Woman")

This story takes Nyoka out of her normal jungle environment to work with a circus. Ever the good, self-sacrificing heroine Nyoka demands that her pay go to charity. Even though Lola Palooza tried to murder the Jungle Girl, Nyoka quickly forgives her and shares star billing with the veteran circus performer. Nyoka is very cool.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Master Comics #74 (November 1946, "The Fountain of Age")

This story presents a couple of re-occurring themes with Sivana Jr stories. One is his promises (which are never kept) of reform. The other is his ability as a master chemist to concoct solutions that cause chaos and havoc as distractions for his criminal endeavors. We see this in his first Captain Marvel Jr appearance in Captain Marvel Jr #36 ("CMJ Battles Sivana Jr") where he produces "Jitterbug" pills that cause teenagers to engage in non-stop dancing. This time it is an aging potion that disables his adversaries by making them too old to resist. He gets a dose of his own medicine in the end administered by the Blue Boy. Art is by Bud Thompson.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Captain Marvel Jr #14 (Dec. 1943, The Vest Pocket Levitator)

The idea of Gremlins doing mischievous things in the wartime industry is personified in this tale (page 2). Here we have a supernatural element showing up in the Fawcett universe. Also we see here Captain Marvel Jr dispensing justice without the aid (or in place) of the governing/legal authorities. A man just robbed a bank of $1 million and he is let to go free after he has returned it. Apparently the bank did not press charges. However a robbery was done and bank property was damaged. It did give CapJr an opportunity to moralize. Freddy writes in his diary, "Jonas Weatherby was never a real criminal, but for a moment he was tempted by too much power. But that power bought him only trouble, and in the end he lost that power! I'm sure he is happier and wiser now, where he is!" This is a theme that is repeated in other CMJ stories. A otherwise honest person being tempted to take a criminal short cut to riches.

Art: DC Comics reprints credit this story to Mac Raboy. It seems as if the artwork is composed of many Mac Raboy swipes/photostats but Raboy may have done some new work on this story (note Page 1, panel 2, pages 2 and 3). However the subsequent pages are very like the work of Fawcett staff artists.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Captain Marvel Jr #14( December 1943 -On Treasure Island)

On Treasure island

This is a classic lost-on-a-tropical island story. This tale has some of the same type of characters we will find in the 1960s Gilligan's island TV program—a movie star, wealthy business man, a professor and Spike is somewhat like (a crooked) Gilligan. The moral is "Greed for riches gets you nothing worthwhile. Freddy Freeman." Whenever the Blue Boy appears we get Mac Raboy photostats from previous stories, otherwise an unknown Fawcett staff artist (s) completed the artwork.