Tag Archives: Golden Age Superheroes

KING OF DARKNESS: CENTAUR COMICS SUPERHERO

Everywhere you turn these days you see superhero movies and/or series. Balladeer’s Blog examines another neglected superhero from Centaur Comics.

King of Darkness 2KING OF DARKNESS

Secret Identity: Bruce King, radio engineer.

Origin: Bruce King’s experiments with ultra-short radio waves led him to some incredible discoveries. Utilizing his finds he built what he called a Black-Zero Transmitter, donned a costume and took to the skies to fight crime with his new inventions.

First Appearance: Amazing-Man Comics #24 (October 1941). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1942. 

Powers: The King of Darkness’ Black-Zero Transmitter enveloped him in a field of darkness – which he called “a queer pillar of darkness.” This field/ pillar which surrounded the King of Darkness enabled him to fly by negating gravity and to shoot black rays from his hands. Continue reading

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CENTAUR COMICS SUPERHERO PANTHEON

With superheroes continuing to flood movies, television and streaming media, Balladeer’s Blog takes another look at a neglected pantheon of heroes.

Air ManAIR MAN

Secret Identity: Drake Stevens

Origin: Drake Stevens’ father, Ornithology Professor Claude Stevens, was murdered and when the police were getting nowhere Drake donned a costume equipped with various technical gimmicks and set out to bring the killers to justice.

As always happens in comic books Drake decided to continue fighting crime under his new nom de guerre Air Man.

First Appearance: Keen Detective Funnies #23 (August 1940). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1941.

Powers: Air Man’s costume boasted feathers filled with an experimental anti-gravity gas as well as a jet-pack. In addition to that he sported guns plus a Chemical Belt loaded with cigar-shaped explosives. On top of that Air Man was highly skilled at unarmed combat and had Olympic-level gymnastic abilities. 

Comment: Air Man was one of those Golden Age superheroes who didn’t hesitate to kill off his adversaries when the situation called for it.  

Blue LadyBLUE LADY

Secret Identity: Lucille Martin, novelist

Origin: Returning from a trip to China on board a luxury liner, Lucille Martin was given a priceless statue by a Chinese woman named Lotus. She was told to guard the statue from some men who were pursuing Lotus and by way of payment the Chinese woman also gave her a blue ring.

When the men pursuing Lotus killed her, Ms Martin accidentally discovered that the ring gave her super-powers. She donned a costume, called herself the Blue Lady and brought Lotus’ murderers to justice as the start of a crime-fighting career.  

First Appearance: Amazing-Man Comics #24 (October, 1941). Her final Golden Age appearance came in 1942.

Powers: Accidentally breaking the blue-bird shaped gem on the Oriental ring released a gas which bestowed upon the Blue Lady the strength of ten men, invulnerability and the ability to teleport via blue mists. She could also generate those blue mists to hide in and to disorient her opponents. In turn, other gasses were the Blue Lady’s weakness.  Continue reading

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THE HOOD: HOLYOKE SUPERHERO

This superhero-crazed culture lets me know if I go too long without a blog post about this topic, so here’s another neglected hero from Holyoke Comics.

hood-holyokeTHE HOOD

Secret Identity: Craig Williams, FBI Agent

Origin: Federal Agent Craig Williams grew frustrated with the way too many slick criminals and supervillains were able to wriggle free from any legal charges. When faced with such dead-ends in the course of his duties he took to wearing a costume and calling himself the Hood. In that guise he brought down criminals who could not be brought to justice by conventional means.

First Appearance: Cat-Man Comics #5 (December 1941). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1945.

Powers: Continue reading

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CAT-MAN: HOLYOKE SUPERHERO

Per reader requests Balladeer’s Blog presents another overlooked superhero.

cat-manCAT-MAN

Secret Identity: David Merryweather, Private Investigator

Origin: As a child David Merryweather, his parents and his sister were traveling through the jungles of Burma when bandits attacked, robbed and killed all but David. Left to die, David instead bonded with his mystic totem animal – tigers – and survived. Over the years the boy was educated by Burmese villagers and learned to control the powers that his totem animals had granted him.

As an adult David Merryweather moved back to the United States, where he eventually became a Private Investigator. In order to battle criminals that were beyond the reach of traditional law enforcement he donned a costume and used his super-powers under the name Cat-Man.

First Appearance: Crash Comics #4 (August 1940). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1946.

Powers: Continue reading

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MISTER NOBODY: HOLYOKE SUPERHERO

Readers wanted more superheroes, so here we go:

mister-nobodyMISTER NOBODY

Secret Identity: None was ever revealed.

Origin: Even this enigmatic figure’s origin remained unknown, just like MLJ’s hero the Marvel (qv).

First Appearance: Terrific Comics #1 (January 1944). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1946.

Powers: Continue reading

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MISS VICTORY: HOLYOKE SUPERHERO

Balladeer’s Blog continues to shamelessly pander to our superhero-crazed culture with this look at another neglected Holyoke hero.
miss-victoryMISS VICTORY

Secret Identity: Joan Wayne, stenographer

Origin: Believe it or not the Golden Age Miss Victory was never given an origin story explaining how she gained her super-powers. She supposedly trained in the circus when she was younger but that would not explain her paranormal abilities. 

All that is known is that in Washington, DC, Foreign Trade Committee stenographer Joan Wayne grew tired of the corruption among politicians and government contractors so she donned a colorful costume and a mask to fight crime – and later, German and Japanese supervillains – as Miss Victory. This costumed figure worked for the FBI.  Continue reading

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BLACKOUT: HOLYOKE SUPERHERO

Balladeer’s Blog continues to feed the beast that IS our superhero-obsessed world with a look at another forgotten Holyoke Superhero.

blackout-holyokeBLACKOUT

Secret Identity: Jack Wayne, Berlin Correspondent for the New York Globe.

Origin: When America entered World War 2 on the Allied side Jack Wayne and his editor “Pop” Simms were seized by the Gestapo. Since Jack had been a Flying Ace for the Americans during World War One the Gestapo assumed he and Pop were spies and tortured them for information.

Pop was killed by the torture and Jack, though blinded by his interrogator’s whip, managed to escape. He was rescued by the Underground Society, a secret resistance group led by Dr Dismal who – despite his name – was not a supervillain. Dr Dismal ran his resistance group from a secret base far beneath Gestapo Headquarters and, noting that Jack Wayne’s optic nerves were not entirely dead, devised special glasses and a visor he could wear that allowed him to see in daylight OR at night.

Jack donned a costume and under the nom de guerre Blackout joined Dr Dismal’s band of rebels, terrorizing the Nazis by night.  

First Appearance: Cat-Man Comics #10 (May 1942). His final Golden Age appearance came in 1944.

Powers: Continue reading

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