Tuesday, February 17, 2009

PYROMAN: "The Case of the Disappearing Japanese!"

Pyroman made his debut in AMERICA'S BEST COMICS #3 (Nov 1942), although he was likely supposed to have had his first appearance in STARTLING COMICS #18 (Dec 1942), as that's where the character and his origin were introduced.

Although "pyro" means fire, and Pyroman glows as if aflame, his actual powers are electrical in nature. Dick Martin had been wrongly charged with murder and sentenced to the electric chair. For unknown reasons, instead of being fried, Dick became the electrically charged hero, Pyroman!

Pyroman appeared in AMERICA'S BEST COMICS #3-8, #10, #12, #13, #17-22, #24, #28-#29 (Nov 1942-Jan 1949) and STARTLING COMICS #18-26, #28-43 (Dec 1942-Jan 1947).

Read more about Pyroman at Toonopedia and Wikipedia.

STARTLING COMICS #37 (January 1946)
story and art by ?; cover by Alex Schomburg

Notice how all the natives on the cover are wearing masks -- except the one getting punched, who apparently has horns growing out of his head!! And why are most of them wearing scary masks, while the one on the top left opted for Daffy Duck?
Seems Alex Schomburg had some trouble deciding if Pyroman's glow should be in front of or behind his parachute straps!

You gotta love this "evil-twin" splash page which has, oh yeah, nothing to do with the story!

Luckily, they just happened to have an electrical generator with a loose wire lying around!

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