Per reader requests Balladeer’s Blog presents another neglected superhero.
Secret Identity: Tom Kenny, farm hand
Origin: While working the fields on a farm in the mid-western United States, Tom Kenny was scooped up and carried aloft by a freak cyclone. After several hours of exposure to the elemental windstorm the man finally dropped into a town he did not recognize.
In addition to granting Tom superpowers the mysterious storm caused him to lose much of his memory outside of his first name. He could not recall where he was from or who his relatives were or if he had known anything about the odd cyclone. Adopting the last name Kenny the amnesiac wandered from town to town and city to city trying to learn about his past.
During his quest he would battle any evils that he came across under the superhero name Tornado Tom.
First Appearance: Cyclone Comics #1 (June, 1940). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1941.
Tornado Tom, the Human Whirlwind, was endowed with incredible super-speed. He stands out from other super-speedsters in comic books in that it was understood from the beginning that super-strength was a necessary side-effect of his super-speed powers.
Tornado Tom had the strength of 12 men, which enabled his body to survive the rigors of moving at super-speeds. This hero’s main weakness was the indoors. Too much time away from the elements would sap his powers but – even if he just opened a window – he would return to full power.
Comment: I like the novelty of a superhero who doesn’t have a particular city as their base of operations and who wanders the country. The added intrigue of his amnesia provided a lot of potential that just never got the chance to be fulfilled in his short run.
That storyline could have yielded many twists, deceptions and surprises about both Tornado Tom AND the mysterious storm that gave him his superpowers.
FOR THE REST OF THE HOLYOKE SUPERHEROES CLICK HERE
FOR MY ARTICLE ON THE MEMBERS OF INFINITE HORIZON CLICK HERE
FOR THE AUSTRALIAN SUPERHERO PANTHEON CLICK HERE
FOR MORE SUPERHEROES CLICK HERE: Superheroes
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