Monday, March 12, 2018

Number 2153: Mr Scarlet and...uh... “Pinky”

This is the first Pappy posting featuring Mr Scarlet and Pinky. An oversight, I guess. They were mainstays of Fawcett’s Wow Comics.

Mr Scarlet was created by France Herron and Jack Kirby, and was a second banana hero during the early forties. Pinky, like Robin and who-knows-how-many before and since, was the grown man’s “ward.” Pinky is a really bad name for a sidekick, especially a young male sidekick. Pinky is a moniker that would make the youngster a targets of bullies. “Your name is...snort...guffaw...Pinky? When I’m done laughing I’m gonna pound you into next week!”

All imagined scenes of bully brutality and carnage aside, the Grand Comics Database has no guesses for writer or artist for this tale from America’s Greatest Comics #4 (1942).


Daniel [] said...

Alright, it's one thing to have Pinky Butler use “Pinky” as the name of his alter ego; however, for Pinky, adopted son of the prosecutor, to infiltrate the Crime College under then name of “Pinky”, within hours or days of interfering with them as … uhm, Pinky, is just too much.

(I note that Pinky Butler made his first appearance before that of Bucky Barnes. Is there any earlier case of a kid side-kick using the same name in and out of disguise?)

Until some time in the '60s, very few of the creators of comic books imagined most of their work as having any sort of lasting interest. That's one of the reasons why they surrendered rights so readily, and one of the reasons that the construction of characters and of histories could be so sloppy. (Later, of course, they got used to the idea that they could retcon d_mn'd near anything.) Herron and Kirby probably laughed at the idea of a side-kick named “Pinky”, who'd perhaps be around for a year or less. Evidencing a lack of seriousness, in later stories Mr Scarlet and Pinky were depicted as being so successful qua vigilantes that the Butlers were routinely hungry, as there wasn't much call for a prosecutor in their city.

I think that one could produce a fair-sized volume of nothing but comic-book stories about colleges for crime in which the trappings of more ordinary colleges were adopted or imitated.

Kirk said...

I like the snappy dialogue in this one. At least I give them credit (even extra credit) on the liberal (or liberal arts) use of scholastic jargon during the fight scenes.

Brian Barnes said...

One thing I notice about a lot of 40s heroes is how much they rely on blind luck. Our hero gets saved twice in one sequence by two different kids, one who somehow escaped a locked closet and -- somehow -- found our hero!

Then the bad guy shots the guy about to blab instead of just shooting our hero, and ending the story there!

The art is pretty good for a 40s comic, it's dynamic and clean. I like it!

BillyWitchDoctor said...

In the splash panel of Archie Andrew's very first appearance, the narrator informs us that Archie hates his given name and prefers to be called "Chick." So maybe Pinky wasn't considered so awful for boys or lab mice back then.