Thursday, April 26, 2007

Number 123

Jet Powers and The Man In The Moon!

This is the second story from the 1950 ME Comics Jet Powers #1. For the folks who care about such arcane trivia, the cover says the title is Jet, subtitled Jet Powers and Space Ace. The indicia on the inside front cover says the book is Jet Powers #1, (A-1 #30). Jet Powers was a series within the larger A-1 series, much like the Dell Four Color Comics, which published hundreds of one-shot issues and series comic books under the Four Color umbrella. I'm not sure what all was published under the A-1 designation, but for this title at least everything was further confused when Jet Powers became American Air Forces with #5, featuring Jet Powers as an American pilot fighting in the Korean conflict. Whew! I hope you're paying attention to all of this because it may appear on a test at the end of the semester.

But that has nothing to do with this story. In the first story, which I posted in Pappy's #121, we are introduced to Jet, Su Shan, who is the villainous Mr. Sinn's beautiful Asian "assistant," (wink wink, nudge nudge) and Mr. Sinn himself, a green-faced caricature of an Asian man. Despite being green, Mr. Sinn solidly represents an era of American pulp literature which used the Yellow Peril as a theme. "Orientals," according to the Yellow Peril-styled stories, were evil, sinister, inscrutable, criminal-minded, crafty and prone to spouting Confucious-like aphorisms. Luckily for us, at least Mr. Sinn doesn't sound like a Chinese fortune cookie. He doesn't have time or space to do that, since he's usually talking out loud, explaining his evil plans to us.

Mr. Sinn is the first man to orbit the earth in an artificial satellite. From space Sinn watches the President of the U.S. on his "visibeam screen," which works because it "warps light." He can find out American national secrets because he can read lips!

Su Shan is also shown to be pretty tricky in her own right, pretending to have amnesia, but soon in this series she comes around to Jet's side. Just thought I'd mention that so you won't worry.

The story ends on something of a cliffhanger, but the storyline isn't picked up again until the next issue.

Click on the thumbnails for full-size images.

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