""Superman Joins the Circus"": Clark Kent is being ribbed by fellow Daily Star employee, Curly, before his boss assigns him to interview the owner of the Jordan Circus. When he arrives, he overhears an argument between Mr. Jordan and Derek Niles. Mr. Jordan owes Niles money, and he only has
Action Comics #7 is an issue of the series Action Comics (Volume 1) with a cover date of December, 1938.
- 1 Synopsis for "Superman Joins the Circus"
- 2 Appearing in "Superman Joins the Circus"
- 3 Synopsis for Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 7)"
- 4 Appearing in Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 7)"
- 5 Synopsis for Pep Morgan: "The County Football Championship"
- 6 Appearing in Pep Morgan: "The County Football Championship"
- 7 Synopsis for "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part VII)"
- 8 Appearing in "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part VII)"
- 9 Synopsis for Tex Thomson: "Double Trouble, Part 2 (of 2)"
- 10 Appearing in Tex Thomson: "Double Trouble, Part 2 (of 2)"
- 11 Synopsis for Scoop Scanlon: "The Five Point Bank Holdup"
- 12 Appearing in Scoop Scanlon: "The Five Point Bank Holdup"
- 13 Synopsis for Zatara: "Zulu Diamond Mine"
- 14 Appearing in Zatara: "Zulu Diamond Mine"
- 15 Notes
- 16 Trivia
- 17 See Also
- 18 Recommended Reading
- 19 Links and References
Synopsis for "Superman Joins the Circus"
Clark Kent is being ribbed by fellow Daily Star employee, Curly, before his boss assigns him to interview the owner of the Jordan Circus. When he arrives, he overhears an argument between Mr. Jordan and Derek Niles. Mr. Jordan owes Niles money, and he only has two options. Come up with the money, or take Niles on as a partner. Unfortunately, the first option is unlikely. The Jordan Circus is playing to mostly empty crowds. Clark Kent decides that what his circus needs is Superman. As Superman, he approaches Mr. Jordan and offers to be his strong man. After several feats of super-human strength, Jordan hires him.
The next day, Derek Niles and Lois Lane both see the circus' ads with Superman in them. They both head off to the circus, where they see the packed crowds. The crowd demands to see Superman, and he gives them a show. Derek Niles, suddenly seeing his plan of getting control of the circus going up in smoke, plans for some accidents to befall circus performers and customers. Lois Lane, meanwhile, is trying to get into Superman's dressing room. After being refused at the front door, she attempts to sneak in, where she comes across Trigger, the man hired by Niles to perform some accidents. He subdues her, and then takes her to Mr. Niles.
At the next show, the accidents start to happen: the lion gets loose, the trapeze shatters, the tent pole breaks. Each time, Superman saves the day. He notices Trigger trying to leave, and forces him to tell him what he knows. Superman speeds towards Niles' office in order to save Lois Lane. When he gets there, Niles faints from fright. Both he and Trigger are put in jail, and the Jordan Circus is saved.
Clark Kent returns to the Daily Star to once again get picked on by Curly. Later, when Curly is in a room, someone reaches in and tears off all his clothes, much to his embarrassment.
Appearing in "Superman Joins the Circus"
- Derek Niles (Single appearance)
- Trigger (Single appearance)
- Curly (Single appearance)
- Mr. Jordan (Single appearance)
Synopsis for Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 7)"
Chuck is in a pinch when he is halted by two gunmen who recognize him from the WANTED posters. They don't listen when he tries to explain his innocence, so without any other options, he uses force to get past. He knocks one of the men to the ground, and rides Blacky past the other one. There is no time to dawdle if he was going to get to the Diamond-H Ranch before the raiders arrive. The day grows longer as Chuck finally reaches the edge of the ranch property. Gunshots are heard up ahead. He is too late. The ranchers were already under attack! Chuck makes Blacky run faster.
The Diamond-H's owner is being dragged on a lariat by one of the 4-G gunmen on a horse. Chuck shoots, cutting the rope and scaring the gunman off. To Chuck's surprise, the owner is the same man who held him up earlier down the road. The owner is confused by Chuck's heroics, but after Chuck tells him the truth, that he was acting in self-defense against one of John Burwell's hired gunmen, the owner's daughter, Virginia, tells her dad that she believes he can be trusted. Chuck covers them as they run into the cabin. Zebe, the other man from the road, meets them there, apologizing to Chuck for holding him up before. The two of them return fire from the porch, but they are still outnumbered. Chuck tells Virginia and Zebe that he's gonna try and lure the raiders away, and go to get help. Zebe continues firing off rounds in distraction as Chuck eases out the back door.
His horse is still tied to the tree where Chuck left him. Taking a few loose casings, Chuck builds a fire and throws them in. The resulting shots make it sound as though a posse has arrived, and the 4-G gunmen are fooled and stop firing. But the distraction doesn't last, and after a quick check around the area, the gunmen make their way back to the rancher's cabin. Chuck mounts his trusty steed and makes way to the top of a ridge so that the gunmen can get a good look at him. It works, they forget all about the farm and give chase, wanting to get hold of that reward money for Chuck's capture. He dodges and weaves his horse down the terrain, but something goes wrong when he turns too sharply, causing the horse to stumble and tossing him off his saddle.
Appearing in Chuck Dawson: "The 4-G Gang (Part 7)"
- Blacky (Chuck's horse)
- John Burwell (Behind the scenes)
- Virginia (First appearance)
- Diamond-H owner
Synopsis for Pep Morgan: "The County Football Championship"
Pep Morgan is the star quarterback for the Ardale Bulldogs. Because of him, the team is the current favorite for winning the county championship the next day. Later that night at the coach's house, Pep and the coach are talking strategy for the big game. Two men are lurking in the shadows outside. They have put up a lot of money against the Bulldogs, who would surely lose if Pep didn't play tomorrow. So when Pep comes out of the house, he is hit from behind with a blackjack, and thrown into the trunk of the gamblers' car.
Pep wakes up, his arms bound, inside a hotel room. One of the kidnappers is there guarding him. He tells Pep it's the day of the game, and as long as he doesn't struggle, they'll let him go when it's over. Pep fakes sleep to get the captor off guard, all the while silently freeing one of his hands from the bindings Pep lunges at the man, knocking him out cold.
Meanwhile at the game, the Ardale Bulldogs are losing ten to seven, without Pep's skills to help them. Luckily, Pep makes it back, and is swapped in by the coach with only four minutes left to go. With his knowledge of all the plays, the Bulldogs soon hit back hard. By the time they secure a tie, there are only seconds left on the clock. Pep manages to score one final time with a field goal, winning the game! Pep later explains to the coach what had happened, and the coach responds that next time he'll just kidnap Pep himself so that no one else will be able to.
Appearing in Pep Morgan: "The County Football Championship"
- The Ardale Bulldogs (football team)
- Ardale's Coach
Synopsis for "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part VII)"
Marco carries the girl back to his inn room and sets her upon the couch. When she awakens, he asks her who she is and why the bandit was attacking her. The girl, Shela, explains that her father and the bandit leader are sworn enemies. Her group was the one being attacked outside. When her father was wounded in the battle, she had run into the inn to hide. But the bandit leader found her, and surely would have killed her if Marco hadn't intervened. It's a fine thing that if the bandits see their chieftain's body, it will put everyone at the inn in danger, so Marco and Shela hide the corpse under the couch. Then they go to Marco's father, Nicolo, to discuss what to do. There is no way they can fight off the bandit group on their own, but Shela offers another way. If they could send word to her father, he'd surely send reinforcements.
Wearing the clothes of the dead bandit leader, Marco climbs out the window, and down to the street. He manages to make it to the stables and mounts the chief's horse. Two near-drunken guards notice his departure, thinking he's their chief. But something seems strange, because the chief wouldn't leave them on their own, and besides that, where was the girl he was supposed to capture? Suspicious, the bandit lieutenant investigates at the Inn. The innkeeper tries his best to make up a cover story, but unfortunately the bandit soon discovers the body of their leader.
Everyone at the inn is rounded up, while the burning oil and whipping rods are prepared. Niccolo whispers to the others that they can't wait for Marco to return. It is time to take the fight to the bandits!
Appearing in "The Adventures of Marco Polo (Part VII)"
- Nicolo Polo (Marco's father)
- Kasan Bandits
- Maffeo Polo (Marco's uncle)
Synopsis for Tex Thomson: "Double Trouble, Part 2 (of 2)"
Mistaken for the evil Captain Diablo because of their identical looks, Tex has been thrown in jail. One of the prison guards arrives to take him to the Chief of Staff, and Tex responds by knocking out the guard, and escapes. Unfortunately, the alarm is sounded, and Tex is quickly recaptured. Meanwhile, Bob Daley is at the American Consulate, attempting to obtain information about his friend. The Consul decides to visit the airport with Bob and try to sort out the situation. When they arrive, "Captain Diablo" is being taken back to his cell. Bob intervenes, recognizing the prisoner as his friend Tex. This is not enough for the Chief of Staff, and Bob returns to the hotel to find evidence that the captured man is Tex. Obtaining the evidence, Bob shows the chief pictures comparing the men. Realizing his mistake, the Chief of Staff releases Tex. Tex then joins the army to fight Captain Diablo. Bob and Tex set out for the La Trysola.
Diablo learns that Tex has been released. Furious, he decides to go to the La Trysola to relax. The Chief of Staff, still unsure, decides to tail Tex and Bob. In the club, Tex is mistaken for Captain Diablo. The real Diablo arrives and begins forcefully flirting with a dancer. Unable to ignore a lady in distress, Tex gets in a fight with Diablo's guards. Diablo attempts to flee with Tex hot on his heels. Tex tackles Diablo and the timely arrival of the chief of staff insures the villain is captured for good. Tex's name is now cleared, and he and Bob set out for new adventures.
Appearing in Tex Thomson: "Double Trouble, Part 2 (of 2)"
- Captain Diablo (Final appearance)
- his henchmen
- Chief of Staff (Final appearance)
Synopsis for Scoop Scanlon: "The Five Point Bank Holdup"
A bank robber is loose in the city, his two partners murdered at his hand. Scoop and Rusty track him down by his license plate and follow him into the mountains. The robber's car crashes over the steep roadside, giving him amnesia. He stumbles away just as Scoop hikes down the mountain path. The stolen money is found and returned to the police station, but the robber is still at large.
Several days go by, with "WANTED" posters having been posted all over the neighborhood. The bank robber, still without his memory, sees his face on the poster. His memory comes back to him! Meanwhile, Scoop gets an idea. If they return to the scene of the crash, the robber may be there looking for the money stash.
The plan works, the criminal is there, confused that the money wasn't where he left it. Scoop and Rusty ambush the man, holding him at gunpoint while the officer arrests him. The story of the bank robbery comes out during interrogation, and Scoop is allowed to write the story for the paper.
Appearing in Scoop Scanlon: "The Five Point Bank Holdup"
- Rusty James
- unnamed robber
- Scoop's Car
Synopsis for Zatara: "Zulu Diamond Mine"
On a boat to South Africa, Zatara is talked into playing a game of cards by Harold Faomes, one of the Tigress' henchmen. Harold attempts to brand Zatara is a cheat, but the magician foils the plan. Tong believes the man was plotting to steal diamonds. This idea is confirmed by the chief of police, who recognizes Foames as a known diamond smuggler. The pair head deep into the country to the Zulu mine, one of the most profitable operations around, and meet the manager, Bill Coxe.
While in town, they notice Foames sneaking around. Following him, they discover that the smuggler has paid the local Zulus to attack the mine. They quickly race to warn Coxe of the raid but are too late. Zatara transforms himself into the likeness of a famous Zulu chief and prevents the tribesmen from attacking. In the meantime, Coxe has been attacked and later recognizes his assailant as Harold Foames, who has also stolen the diamonds.
Zatara reaches the Zulu village, and the chieftain informs him that Foames has continued into Bantu territory. In the middle of the night, Zatara and Tong are captured by Foames and the Zulus, who sets them up to burn at the stake. Zatara uses his magic to escape the trap, but Foames escapes into the jungle. Responding to the tribe's betrayal, the magician awes the Zulus into searching for the criminal. The smuggler is quickly found and reveals that the Tigress has the diamonds and is preparing to leave Capetown. The men are too late and see the Tigress' plane flying away. Using his magic, Zatara forces the plane to land and captures the criminals.
Appearing in Zatara: "Zulu Diamond Mine"
- Tigress (her 4th appearance)
- Harold Foames (Single appearance)
- Bill Coxe (Single appearance)
- Gonula (Single appearance)
- Published by Detective Comics, Inc.
- Also appearing in this issue of Action Comics were:
- Zatara writer/artist Fred Guardineer is also credited as "Gene Baxter" on his Pep Morgan story, in this issue.