Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of B.C. Boyer’s neglected 1980s superhero the Masked Man. For Part One click HERE
ECLIPSE MONTHLY Vol 1 #8 (May 1984)
Title: Phantom Man
Villains: The Architectural Terrorists
Synopsis: With Barney McAllister having withdrawn himself from his partnership with the Masked Man, our hero is instead out on patrol with reporter Dan Drekston as they search for the Architectural Terrorists who are plaguing the city.
Barney is back at the offices of the Daily Horn newspaper, where his boss J Judah Johnson (a pastiche of J Jonah Jameson) orders him to do an interview with Lenny Winchester (Denny Colt) aka the Phantom Man (The Spirit).
We’re told that Phantom Man was a famous superhero in the 1940s who fought crime in Middle City (Central City). Unlike the Spirit, who does not age thanks to Dr Cobra’s chemicals, Boyer’s homage figure Phantom Man is old and grey-haired now. His selfish son and daughter plan to send him to an old folks home if his interview with Barney doesn’t generate enough interest for a lucrative biographical book deal.
As if the Masked Man himself wasn’t already enough of a Will Eisner/ Spirit shoutout, B.C. Boyer lays on the pastiches with a trowel in this issue. Phantom Man’s late wife was Helen Doyle (Ellen Dolan), the daughter of Festus Doyle (Commissioner Dolan). His former sidekick was Blackie (Ebony).
As the story continues we learn that this hat, suit and tie wearing masked hero’s archenemy was the Cephalopod (The Octopus) and two other members of his Rogues Gallery were called Mr Maggoty (Mr Carrion) and Swyn’ll (P’Gell). Continue reading