134 – Worst Dressed of 1940

In his second appearance in All-American Comics #20 (September 1940), the Mighty Atom gets a costume, which is basically a blue blanket over his head, a tight yellow shirt showing off his man-cleavage, and high-cut brown shorts to show off his masculine legs. I thought he was tired of being made fun of?

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133 – Perry White

Superman #7 (September 1940), introduced a new Daily Planet editor, Perry White, replacing the previous editor (George Taylor). The character of Perry White was actually introduced in February 1940 when the Adventures of Superman radio show began. It’s interesting to see how the various media incarnations of Superman (comic book, newspaper strip, radio show, cartoons) […]

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131 – Bat-Silliness Begins

Robin’s dream story in Detective Comics #44 (September 1940), foreshadows what I consider to be the worst era of Batman story-telling. With the introduction of Robin to the Bat-mythos, the character deviated from his noir, grim and gritty feel towards silly, fantasy stories and stayed that way for the next 25 years.

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130 – The Mighty Atom!

The original Golden Age character, The Atom was introduced in All-American Comics #19 (August 1940). In his first adventure, Al Pratt was a short, meek college student who was tired of being bullied, gosh-darn it. He had Joe Morgan, a retired boxer, train him to the peak of physical perfection. In this first appearance, we […]

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128 – The Ray!

In Smash Comics #14 (July 1940), Quality introduces a new superhero in the form of The Ray. The Ray is “Happy” Terrill, a newspaper reporter who is exposed to radiation in a weather balloon experiment and gains fantastic radiation powers – at the cost of his pants. The Ray shows up in other versions throughout […]

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126 – Up, Up, and a Glide

By Superman #6 (July 1940), Superman is nearly flying. I say nearly because other stories in this issue use the term “gliding” and show him using his cape to halt his descent. By now, the DC universe has at least two characters that can fly: Hawkman and Green Lantern. It feels like Superman should join […]

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123 – A Wooden Heel

In All-American Comics #17 (June 1940), the Green Lantern story introduces the first example in comic book superheroes of an Achilles’ Heel, a specific vulnerability or weakness that could defeat the superhero. The Golden Age Green Lantern (Alan Scott) has a specific weakness to wood (non-metals). The Silver Age Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) would have […]

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122 – Johnny Thunder, More Clueless than a Locomotive

Still called Johnny Thunderbolt as of June 1940, it is revealed in Flash Comics #8 that Johnny Thunder probably lives in the same universe as Superman (or at least in a universe that knows of Superman’s exploits). It’s somewhat interesting though that Johnny Thunder, Flash, Hawkman and Green Lantern are all published by All-American Publications, […]

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120 – Green Lantern!

MartThe original Golden Age Green Lantern debuts in All-American Comics #16 (May 1940) and was created by Martin Nodell. Green Lantern is Alan Scott, a railroad engineer who discovers a mystical green lantern, fashions a ring out of it, creates a bizarre costume, and gets moving in the fashionable superhero business!

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