18 July 2011

Don’t Let the Sidekick Drive the Steamroller

Silver Age Comics just featured this cover by Alex Schomburg from Exciting Comics, #35, published in October 1944. Even for wartime, it seems extreme.

The Black Terror was a mild-mannered pharmacist who developed superpowers after breathing a pharmaceutical concoction mixed with formic acid. His young sidekick started as his gofer, and then inhaled the same chemicals with the same result. That teen crime-fighter’s name was…Tim.

“Black Tim”? “Terrible Tim”? “Tim to Make Criminals Think They’ve Figured Out His Real Name But It’s Actually Something Else”? No, just Tim. The Black Terror and…Tim.

The Black Terror appeared in over a hundred magazines published by the Nedor company, whose properties fell into the public domain. So reuses are as legal as parodies, and the Black Terror has popped up repeatedly in the last few decades (almost always without Tim, or a steamroller).


Sam said...

That looks like a real steam powered steam roller, too. What's the top speed on one of those? 3 mph?

J. L. Bell said...

Tim apparently likes to savor his work.