Sunday, October 18, 2009
In order to show you this Green Turtle story from Blazing Comics #3, I had to go back into my own archives to read what I said in 2007 when I showed you the Turtle story from Blazing #1. You can read Pappy's #221 yourself. Or I can tell you that Green Turtle was a hero by a Chinese-American artist, Chu Hing, who wanted Green Turtle to be Chinese. The publishers felt differently, so Chu hid the character's face from us, instead showing us a weird shadow with eyes. That bit of symbolism is odd enough to be attention-getting, even if the story seems to be routine World War II fare.
Blazing Comics was short-lived, and thus died the Green Turtle's comic career. He's an interesting character if only for the circumstances surrounding his creation. I don't know if artist Chu Hing continued on in comic books or not. I wonder how many Asian artists worked in the industry in its early days. I can think of prolific letterer Ben Oda; There was artist Bob Fujitani, who was half Japanese. The Filipino artists made their marks in the 1970s. In recent years there have been many more opportunities for artists, but at one time, with rare exceptions, comic books were a white boys' club.