Sunday, June 05, 2011
Needlenoodle needles Black Hood
Today and tomorrow I'm showing the two parts of the last issue of the 1940's Black Hood. They're from issue #19, 1946. The Black Hood gets his secret identity exposed, so he drops his costume and goes into business as a private detective. And that villain, Needlenoodle! To form his skull into such a monstrosity his parents must've used a vacuum cleaner hose on his head every day from birth.
A lot of comic book costumed heroes weren't selling after World War II, and the comic book industry was changing. The company known as MLJ Comics became Archie Comics, and replaced its original MLJ logo with the Archie Comics colophon on issue #17.* It could be that MLJ/Archie was trying to save the Black Hood comic by dropping the costume, and perhaps introducing villains that wouldn't be out of place in the Dick Tracy comic strip. If that was the plan, then despite the try it didn't work. Black Hood dropped out of sight for about 20 years.
This is part 1 of the story. I'll give this tale credit for energy in its storytelling, and also for the artwork by Irv Novick, who went on years later to draw war comics and Batman for DC. That's also another story.
Come back tomorrow for part 2.
*Black Hood became Laugh Comics with the next issue, #20.
I showed the Black Hood's origin in Pappy's #382, and his second story in Pappy's #467.