"Superman: "War in San Monte"": Alex Greer tells Superman that his boss (who is trying to start a war) is Emil Norvell, the munitions magnate. Superman pays a visit to Norvell's Lexington Park estate. After dispen
Synopsis for Superman: "War in San Monte"
Alex Greer tells Superman that his boss (who is trying to start a war) is Emil Norvell, the munitions magnate. Superman pays a visit to Norvell's Lexington Park estate. After dispensing with Norvell's guards, Superman tells Norvell that he has to join him on a ship headed for San Monte, or suffer the consequences. Also on the boat are Lois Lane and mysterious traveler Lola Cortez.
When they arrive in San Monte, Superman forces Norvell to enlist in the local army. Norvell's plan to enlist and then escape later is foiled when Superman joins the army as well. They get sent to the front lines, where Superman sneaks into the enemy camp and takes a picture that he sends back to the newspaper.
Meanwhile, Lola Cortez plants a document that she stole from the military in Lois Lane's room. It is discovered and Lane is placed on trial. She is found guilty and sentenced to death by firing squad. However, Superman saves her in the nick of time. He also stops a man from torturing prisoners before he leaves Lois, telling her to return to America.
When he returns to the army camp, he finds it being attacked by an enemy aircraft. He jumps onto the plane, causing it to crash. Norvell pleads with Superman to return him to America. He promises never to manufacture munitions again. But before they leave, Superman kidnaps the leaders of the two armies, and tells them to fight each other. They discover that neither army knows why they are fighting, and so they make peace.
Appearing in Superman: "War in San Monte"
- Alex Greer, lobbyist
- Emil Norvell, industrialist (Single appearance)
- Lola Cortez, spy (Single appearance)
- General of San Monte army
- General of enemy army
Synopsis for Scoop Scanlon, Five-Star Reporter: "The Shipwreck"
While a yacht party is taking place off the coast, a storm approaches, whose strong winds and wild currents pull the yacht loose from its mooring and out into the open sea. The captain is unable to steer the ship, and so it crashes against a rocky outcrop near a cliff. An S.O.S. is relayed to the shore, and is picked up by the Bulletin's radio. The paper's editor sends Scoop Scanlon and Rusty James out to cover the story. They ride along with the Coast Guard, as they deploy to rescue the yacht passengers. A buoy is set up with a line, but only four are rescued before the storm picks up again and the buoy disappears beneath the waves. Scoop tells the Coast Guard to fire a line from atop the nearby cliff to get a better angle, and it works! All are rescued, or so it's thought, until a female cry for help is heard. The storm is too heavy now for the line to be used, so Scoop removes his jacket and tie, and dives into the churning waters, swimming over to the crashed yacht. He reaches the girl, but a wave sweeps out of nowhere and carries them off. The cutter's crew drops a lifesaving device for the two of them to grab onto, and pulls them to safety. Rusty takes a few pictures and Scoop replaces his jacket, ready to go back to shore and call the story in.
Appearing in Scoop Scanlon, Five-Star Reporter: "The Shipwreck"
- Rusty James
- unnamed woman
- yacht (Destroyed)
- U.S. Coast Guard cutter
Synopsis for Pep Morgan: "Glass Arm"
Pep Morgan is on the baseball team. The problem is, he broke his arm months ago while playing, and though the doctors were able to fix it, Pep was left with a "glass arm", he is unable to throw the ball very far.
His coach puts him in the outfield for the next game, but when the ball comes his way, Pep can't toss it to the second baseman and his team loses. Determined to overcome his handicap, Pep practices every day, impressing the coach enough to give him one more shot. During the next game, Pep again catches the ball, but this time he manages to race to the base to tag the runner out. The crowd cheers, and his team congratulate him on overcoming his "glass arm."
Appearing in Pep Morgan: "Glass Arm"
- Coach (Single appearance)
- Conrad (Single appearance)
Synopsis for Elmer the Eel: "Keep Off"
Elmer steals a salami from the butcher, and the police chase after him, and catch him.
Appearing in Elmer the Eel: "Keep Off"
- Elmer the Eel (Single appearance)
Synopsis for "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part II of XVII)"
The Barrari tribesmen are defeated by the efforts of Marco Polo and his half of the expedition. The Polos take the survivors hostage. While climbing down the cliff face, Marco nearly falls to his death but manages to keep his hold and makes his way down. One of their hostages happens to be the son of the Barrari chieftain. They use the prince to gain safe passage through the mountains. The party reaches the lands of the Ogudu tribe, and they must use Barrari prince as their guide through hostile territory. Wary of any attackers, the expedition travels until nightfall and pitch camp. The night is total darkness, and an enemy could lurk anywhere.
Appearing in "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part II of XVII)"
- Niccolo Polo, Marco's father
- Maffeo Polo, Marco's uncle
- The Barrari
- Son of Shahar
Synopsis for Tex Thomson: "The Sealed City (Part 1 of 3)"
Tex and his new friend Bob Daley outfit an expedition to find a city sealed by a volcanic eruption in the uncharted region of Yukatrama. Scouting ahead of their camp, Tex and Bob find the mark of the lost city: a Maltese cross within a diamond. A knife slams into a nearby tree with a note attached with the same symbol. The note says to leave now or consequences may follow. Examining the mark on the mountainside, Bob touches the center of the symbol, unwittingly opening a cave door. The two adventurers travel into the cave, walking through an area filled with trees. All the while they are observed by a one-eyed man who calls his servant, Doroka, to greet the travelers. Doroka confronts Tex and Bob, but they cannot understand his language. The servant pulls a knife and Tex kicks it away. Their fight is stopped by a beamed message, which leads them into a home. They are greeted by the one-eyed man who calls himself the Gorrah. He leads them to their rooms and invites them to dinner. The pair seat themselves at the dinner table, while the Gorrah declares this will be an evening they will never forget.
Appearing in Tex Thomson: "The Sealed City (Part 1 of 3)"
- Bob Daley (First appearance)
- The One-Eyed Gorrah (First appearance)
- Doroka, his servant
Synopsis for Inspector Donald and Bobby: "Vindication"
Young Bobby wakes up one morning to find that his father, Inspector Bob Donald, isn't anywhere around. He knows that his dad has been trying to get his name cleared after being suspected of drug smuggling. On the table is a note from his dad, telling him to go talk to Tom Faber at City Hall if he wasn't home by morning. Bobby goes to meet Mr. Faber about his dad's disappearance, and Tom proceeds to make a call to the police commissioner to ask for an APB to be put out on Inspector Donald's behalf. Something catches Bobby's eye during the exchange, causing him to leave the office. A trip to the police department to talk to his dad's partner, Tim Riley, yields no results. Tim Riley was out at the moment, according to one of the officers, who added that Bobby's dad probably just skipped town.
Bobby decides to take matters into his own hands. He disguises himself as a newspaper boy and goes out, pretending to sell papers while looking for any suspicious activity. A man who Bobby recognizes, from lying about his dad at the trial, passes by. Bobby starts to follow him. Eventually, they come to the docks, Bobby pauses and decides to try calling Tim Riley again. Luckily, Riley answers, and after everything is explained, he meets Bobby at the dock with two of his men behind him. The boy knows who the mastermind is, and Tim can barely believe his ears.
Inside one of the dock warehouses, Inspector Donald is bound in a room, where he is taunted by his captor... Tom Faber! Outside, Tim helps Bobby crawl in through a window while the two officers wait outside. Bobby finds his dad and unties him. The two of them then round up Faber's thugs, but Tom tries to make a break for it. He doesn't get far. Bobby circles around and hits him over the head with a wooden plank. Tim Riley helps with the arrest, and later, Inspector Donald and his son Bobby are commended by the commissioner for clearing Donald's name.
Appearing in Inspector Donald and Bobby: "Vindication"
- Inspector Bob Donald (First appearance)
- Bobby Donald (First appearance)
- Tim Riley (First appearance)
- Tom Faber (Single appearance)
- Police Commissioner Harry (First appearance)
Synopsis for Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 2 of 14)"
Chuck waits for the office door to open with both guns drawn, then hears the footsteps leave to go outside into the alley. When he attempts to look out of the window, Notch Logan appears, pointing a pistol into the window. Chuck notices a wooden bench under the window, then suddenly ducks, grabs the bench, and slams it against the window. As Logan shoots wildly, Chuck scoops a pistol off of the floor before leaving the sheriff's office.
Logan fires at Chuck as he dives behind a packing crate outside. Using a stick, Chuck holds up his hat to draw Logan's fire and then fires back, killing him. Hearing the gunfire, "Trigger" Holt attempts to assess the situation only to get punched in the face by Chuck and knocked out.
Also hearing the shooting, the sheriff returns to his office finding his deputy tied up and his prisoner gone. After the sheriff unties his deputy, John Burwell arrives and tells the lawman that Notch Logan is dead and that Chuck Dawson was responsible. Burwell leaves the sheriff's office and orders Holt and Butch to find and kill Chuck, noting that he can't go far with the rest of the gang in town and his horse hidden from him.
Meanwhile, Chuck eludes his pursuers behind a fence and makes his way to the shed where Burwell is meeting with his men. Chuck climbs to the roof, to lie in wait, only to have one of his spurs catch on a loose nail. Chuck falls onto a bed of thickly matted grass and is found by Butch. Butch is quickly subdued but "Trigger" soon arrives with his pistol pointed squarely at Chuck.
Appearing in Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 2 of 14)"
- John Burwell
- Notch Logan (Final appearance; dies)
- Trigger Holt
- Sheriff of Red Gulch
- Deputy Sheriff of Red Gulch
Synopsis for Zatara: "The Haunted Farm"
Driving with his master on a cross country road trip, Tong nearly hits a young woman crossing the street. She is saved by Zatara's magic, lifting her in the air just as his car passes underneath. The woman says she is Miss Hendrix, she and her father are staying at a hotel in town. Zatara gives her a ride back and bids her farewell, with a feeling that they will soon meet again.
Zatara and Tong have dinner at the hotel. When Zatara uses his magic to turn his friend's food into something more edible, a man takes notice and approaches them. Introducing himself as Adam Springer, farm owner, he confides in Zatara that he has a ghost problem. Zatara is intrigued, and agrees to follow Mr. Springer back to his farm. Adam tells them the ghost is of his grandfather, who committed suicide years ago. He believes the ghost disapproves of his handling of the family farm, and is sabotaging his every effort to sell it. A dead body is found inside the barn, with a warning from the ghost, posted on its chest. A police officer arrives to identify the body as Jim Hendrix. He was the father of the young woman Zatara had helped out earlier. He and Tong deliver the bad news to Miss Hendrix. Using his magic, Zatara helps ease her turmoil, then decides to stay in the hotel room with her, intending to keep a watchful eye over her until the strange case is resolved.
During a late night walk, Tong encounters a sheeted figure and jumps, thinking it to be the ghost. He tries to wake his master, but Zatara appears to have been doped. Worse still, Miss Hendrix is missing from her room! When Zatara comes to, he projects an astral body to track her back to the barn, where Adam Springer and some goons have got her tied up. Zatara rallies Tong and a police officer together to rescue her. Using his astral body, Zatara casts a sheet over himself to scare the thugs away, while Springer is captured. Once Miss Hendrix is untied, she tells them that her uncle, Adam Springer, wanted her father to sell his farm, claiming it was haunted and not worth the trouble of maintaining. So, Zatara thought, Springer lied to him about his ownership of the farm! He only brought him along as a witness for when they "found" Hendrix's body. The truth was that there was oil under the land Hendrix owned, and his brother was greedy enough to kill him over it.
Appearing in Zatara: "The Haunted Farm"
- Adam Springer (Single appearance)
- Ghost (First appearance)
- Jim Hendrix (Only appearance; dies)
- Miss Hendrix (Single appearance)
- Chuck Dawson:
- The Chuck Dawson story in this issue is presented entirely in black and white.
- Although the first part of the "Chuck Dawson" story (in Action Comics 1) has been designated "The A-G Gang" by several sources (most notably the Grand Comic Book Database), the name of the gang is the 4-G Gang according to this story.
- First issue for Inspector Donald and Bobby by Leo O'Mealia. This feature is absent next issue, then returns in Action Comics #4.
- Originally, Superman's adventures were set in Cleveland, Ohio. After the city was renamed "Metropolis", it was still meant to be an analogue for Cleveland. In this story, Superman sends his photograph of the San Monte military situation to the Evening News of Cleveland, Ohio.
- Three and a half years after this story, the U.S. was in the Second World War. If Superman ever had any second thoughts about putting an American munitions manufacturer out of business, the chronicles do not say.
- "Revolution in San Monte" is reprinted in Superman #1, Famous First Edition #C-61, Superman: From the 30s to the 80s, The Superman Archives Vol. 1, Superman: The Action Comics Archives Vol. 1, Millennium Edition: Superman #1, Superman in the Forties, Superman Chronicles Vol. 1, Superman: The Golden Age Omnibus Vol. 1, Superman: A Celebration of 75 Years, Lois Lane: A Celebration of 75 Years, and Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman: The Deluxe Edition.
- Tex Thomson:
- Bob Daley is introduced in a block of text in the first panel, along with the Sealed City and the entire weeks-long transoceanic expedition to the Yukatrama region.
- Very few clues are given for the location of Yukatrama, but palm trees grow there so it's in a tropical region.
- Thomson's prior adventure took place in England and his next one is set in Nestralia.
- Also appearing in this issue of Action Comics were:
- This early issue of Action Comics has a rare non-Superman front cover.
- Zatara writer/artist Fred Guardineer is also credited as "Gene Baxter" on his Pep Morgan story, in this issue.