Tuesday, 9 October 2012

POW! annual 1971 - #7 - The Phantom

About time i returned to this countdown and i think this takes the Number Seeven slot not for the hero, but the bad guy of the tale - a wall climbing, dart-firing villain called The Bat, sporting a cape Batman would be proud of and in the habit of leaving folk his calling card - a picture of a bat with "The Bat" over the top of it - in case folk didn't realise who'd robbed them. Anyway, our story centres on Jim Maguire, crime reporter, who - stand by for yet another bizzarro plot/device/set-up that makes these stories so special - needs to stake out a chemical factory where he thinks the Bat will appear, but has to attend a fancy dress ball, sneaks off while still in his natty outfit, gets to the factory, is chased by the Bat's men, falls into "electronic equipment", survives that, tumbles into a "huge drum containing a chemical powder" and emerges super-strong, glowing in the dark, and is mistaken for The Bat.
Anyway, he captures The Bat in a real humdrum tale and sets off on his new life as a crimefighter. Humdrum just about sums it up - The Bat is the only reason then and now for reading it as visually he's really neat. But now, as an adult, i can see the European artist was completly lifting from European superhero villain, Diabolik:

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