Readers just cannot get enough superhero blog posts, so since it has been two weeks since I last did one of these, here is a look at the Lev Gleason pantheon of superheroes.
Secret Identity: Basil Brusilof, MD
First Appearance: Captain Battle #1 (June 1941)
Origin: Once, when Dr Brusilof was in the experimental lab of the Belgrave, Yugoslavia hospital where he worked, a Nazi bombing run blew up that lab. Basil gained superpowers from the accident and fought crime and the Axis Nations under the name Blackout.
Powers: Blackout’s body became coal-black from the explosion which gave him his powers. The mysterious black gases/ energies that his body generated gave him massive super-strength, invulnerability and the ability to fly by shooting the gases/ energies from his feet like thrust from rocket engines. Similarly, from his hands he could shoot concussive blasts of those same gases/ energies.
In addition, this hero could see in the dark and his blackened body provided perfect camouflage for night-time attacks on the Nazis.
Comment: This hero should not be confused with the Holyoke superhero called Blackout.
Secret Identity: Mark (Marc) Holmes, radio newscaster
First Appearance: Daredevil Comics #2 (August 1941)
Origin: While covering the Blitz, suave newscaster Mark Holmes decided that his fellow Brits needed extra inspiration to maintain their spirit of defiance against the Nazis. He adopted the costumed identity of London and battled Axis Agents plus criminals.
Powers: London was in the peak of human condition and excelled at unarmed combat. He also possessed the agility of an Olympic gymnast. In addition, this hero was a crack shot with the handgun he carried.
Comment: This superhero may SOUND run of the mill, but there’s just something about the name “London” plus the great font for the letter “L” on his forehead that makes him more appealing to me than other “regular guys in a costume” heroes.
On top of that, there’s the wartime morale appeal, especially with his Blitz-referencing catch-phrase “London can take it!” For my review of London’s first 10 adventures click HERE. Continue reading