Monday, October 18, 2021

Number 2566: My brother, the super dead hero


Captain Triumph, singular, is actually two characters, one dead. Lance and Michael Gallant (appropriate last name for a super hero) are identical twins. They even share a birthmark on their wrists. Michael gets blown up by some Nazi saboteurs, and Lance swears vengeance. He is visited by the ghost of Michael, who tells him when there is some derring-do what they will dare to do to get vengeance against Nazis. Lance just rubs the birthmark and voila! Lance now has Michael's powers, bequeathed to him by “The Fates of Greek Mythology” and becomes a superhero with the name Captain Triumph. I'm showing the origin story here, so you can see how it works. I notice that Michael doesn't get a funeral. He is dead, yet quick to reveal himself to Lance, explaining the new super hero job, and there is no mourning or a pretense of grieving for a dead brother.

Captain Triumph appeared in Crack Comics for a few years, originally drawn by Alfred Andriola. Andriola’s career was resurrected a few times. He began as an assistant to Milton Caniff on Terry and the Pirates, then got the job of doing the Charlie Chan comic strip. Charlie Chan was a popular detective character of the time, but the comic strip only lasted a short time and if I’ve got this right, was cancelled after Pearl Harbor. Perhaps it was like today, when people don’t distinguish Asians from each other. Andriola then became an assistant on the Dan Dunn comic strip, which ended a year later. The day after it ended Andriola was back with Kerry Drake, a comic strip character in the Dick Tracy tradition that went on in newspapers until Andriola died in 1983.

The origin story of Captain Triumph is from Crack Comics #27 (1943):



Daniel [] said...

It's a shame that this story was so carelessly slapped-together. It's hardly exceptional in that regard, but I could imagine a well-constructed Captain Triumph having had a greater commercial and cultural significance.

The idea somewhat anticipates Wonder Man (1945), a film starring Danny Kaye as each of two twins said to be “super-identical”. One is murdered, and his ghost empowers the other. Of course, I'd not be surprised if both stories drew upon some prior work.

I'm curious about the weapon in the sequel described in the final narrative pane.

The heroes of popular adventure fiction have, when given military ranks, had many. But captains seem to be wildly over-represented. My guess is that the origin of that bias originates in stories about ships' captains.

Not only was the Charlie Chan strip ended, but Fox stopped making movies about Charlie Chan after 1942. However, Sydney Toler then purchased the rights, and made many more, released by Monogram. It wasn't that American audiences were too stupid to recognize that a Chinese character were not Japanese. Executives in the entertainment industries were the problem. (And how little changes!)

BDsCOMICs-WORLDs said...

Thanks a lot

Rick said...

Holy stereotypes! So Lance disguises himself so Ratter (nice name, not too obvious) will think he's a German agent and does so by wearing a fake monocle. Very effective because as we know all Germans wear monocles.

Pappy said...

Daniel, Wonder Man is not a Danny Kaye movie I have seen. Thanks for the information.