147 – Fire + Water = Steamed Nazis

In Marvel Mystery Comics 317 (January 1941), the Human Torch and Namor appear together again, but this time as allies fighting the Nazis. The two still spar a bit with each other before they learn to cooperate. I had no idea this hallmark of Marvel Comics existed from the Golden Age!

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146 – Julie Breaks It Off

Sorry Bruce, but you’ve been hanging out with the boy too much and you won’t pick up the phone at night. Julie Madison breaks off the engagement to Bruce Wayne (Batman) in Detective Comics #49 (January 1941). This is the last appearance of Julie Madison in the Golden Age. Presumably she did well with her […]

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145 – Not Captain, but Mister

Speaking of super patriotic heroes, Action Comics #34 (December 1940) saw Tex Thompson transition into a superhero role by dying his hair black, donning a domino mask and red cape, brandishing a whip, and calling himself Mister America. This is the first time a regular adventure strip morphed into a superhero strip (I don’t really […]

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144 – Captain America!

Joe Simon and Jack Kirby have their first hit with Captain America #1 (December 1940). Captain America is the first character to star in his own comic book, not as a try-out feature in another book, and comes complete with a fully-fleshed out (and interesting) origin, a sidekick and an iconic villain (the Red Skull) […]

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143 – The First Bat-Cave

By Detective Comics #48 (December 1940), Bob Kane and Bill Finger are starting to develop the Batman back-story a bit, giving the dynamic duo a secret tunnel leading to a seemingly abandoned barn with their “supercharged” car, called for the first time: the Bat-Mobile!

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142 – The Justice Society of America

The Justice Society of America debuts in All-Star Comics #3 (November 1940). In its first incarnation it consists of a whopping nine characters across Detective Comics Inc and All-American Comics (still separate companies at this point): The Flash, the Atom, Green Lantern, Hawkman, the Spectre, Doctor Fate, Sandman and Hourman, with Johnny Thunder thrown in […]

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141 – A Little Privacy, Please

Lois Lane catches Superman changing into Clark Kent for the first time in Action Comics #32 (November 1940). Fortunately for Superman, Lois is under the influence of a fluid that makes her forget everything. Clark learns she will spend her days in a sanitarium so he tries super-hypnotism for the first time, which of course […]

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140 – For Starters, You Need Pants

I have yet to see an in-depth, well-rounded and firm journalistic exploration of the costume choices of the Golden Age Atom, Al Pratt. Decades before Wonder Woman was allowed to run around in basically high-cut panties, the Atom did it in brown ones. I’m trying to imagine the conversations between writer and illustrator to craft […]

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