Here’s more of the world’s FIRST superhero team – DC’s Justice Society of America – for this superhero-crazed world. FOR PART ONE CLICK HERE
I will review the original issue and then detail how I would “script-doctor” the story for modern audiences.
ALL STAR COMICS #18 (September 1943)
Title: INSECTS TURN TO CRIME
Heroes: DOCTOR FATE, WONDER WOMAN (Original), SANDMAN, THE ATOM (Original), STARMAN, THE SPECTRE, HAWKMAN (Original), DOCTOR MIDNITE, JOHNNY THUNDER
Villain: KING BEE & HIS INSECT-MEN
Synopsis: A supervillain called King Bee (Elmer Pane) has his biochemically-created Insect-Men use their super powers to wage a criminal reign of terror on land, at sea and in the air. He’s even captured and transformed Johnny Thunder into a Fly-Man (no loss).
The JSA sets out to fight King Bee and try to save Johnny.
The Justice Society of America battles King Bee’s Hornet Men and Fly Men as they prey upon airplanes, his Water-Bug Men as they prey on yachts and his Termite Men, Snail Men, Ant Men, Spider Men and Grasshopper Men as they carry out land-based crimes.
In the end Starman discovers how to break King Bee’s control of his human/ bug hybrids. The JSA locate the supervillain’s laboratory headquarters and defeat him. They restore all the biochemically mutated humans to normal, including – unfortunately – Johnny Thunder.
How I Would Revise It:
A. For my revised lineup of heroes this time I would rotate the original Superman back in as this issue’s replacement for the unbearable Johnny “Jar Jar Binks” Thunder. And I would always use Hawkgirl instead of Hawkman.
B. As usual I would also have Wonder Woman actively taking part in the adventure instead of the absurd way they had her serving as the JSA’s secretary.
C. I would, as always, keep the heroes together AS A TEAM instead of separating them for individual adventures like in the real story.
D. Since the name King Bee is awkward I would make the supervillain be a female mad scientist instead and go by the name Queen Bee (Elvira Pane).
E. PART ONE – The JSA would thwart the flying Queen Bee as she leads her Termite Men in robbing various banks and then her Grasshopper Men in pulling off jewel robberies.
F. PART TWO – Days later, when Queen Bee resumes her criminal raids our heroes would split up into two groups. Superman, Hawkgirl, Doctor Fate and Starman would battle her Hornet Men as they prey on airplanes, both commercial AND military. Spectre, Wonder Woman, Sandman, Doctor Midnite and the Atom would fight the Water-Bug Men as they prey on shipping. While the Justice Society was thus distracted Queen Bee would rob enough chemicals to make an enormous number of additional hybrids.
G. PART THREE – Locating Queen Bee’s headquarters the JSA would attack only to be met by the Queen’s freshly-created army of Ant Men and Fly Men. Hawkgirl, Doctor Fate, Spectre, Starman and Superman would battle the Fly Men in the air while Wonder Woman, Atom, Sandman and Doctor Midnite would battle the Ant Men on land.
H. PART THREE CONCLUSION – Starman would figure out and break Queen Bee’s control of her mutated subjects. The Justice Society would then defeat them AND her and restore the hybrid humans to normal.
I WILL REVIEW THE NEXT JSA STORY SOON. KEEP CHECKING BACK FOR UPDATES.
FOR MY EXAMINATION OF THE 13-PART BLACK PANTHER STORY TITLED PANTHER’S RAGE CLICK HERE
FOR MY ARTICLE ON THE LIST OF ATLAS/ SEABOARD SUPERHEROES CLICK HERE
FOR MY ARTICLE ON THE MAIN LIST OF CENTAUR COMICS 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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