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"Blackhawk: "Trapped In The Devil's Oven"":


Quote1 You SADISTIC SCREWBALL!! What's the big idea? THAT ISN'T ANDRE'S FACE!! Quote2
Blackhawk



Appearing in Blackhawk: "Trapped In The Devil's Oven"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Dr. Fritz von Rath
  • Barbara von Rath

Antagonists:

  • Baron von Ziefh (Only appearance; dies)
    • German Soldiers (Some or all die.)
  • Abul El Hadoun (Only appearance; dies)

Other Characters:

  • British Fort Garrison
    • British Army detachment: Ronnie, Iggy, others (All die.)
  • British Reinforcements

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for Blackhawk: "Trapped In The Devil's Oven"

Despite Blackhawk's solo rescue of a famous plastic surgeon from a concentration camp, Andre's situation remained hopeless. Dr. Fritz von Rath was insane. At the infirmary on Blackhawk Island, he attempted the surgery anyway, and Andre's face had to remain completely bandaged up for two weeks afterward.

When the bandages are removed, the team are stunned to see that Andre now looks exactly like Baron von Ziefh, the Nazi official who had arrested, tortured, and imprisoned old Dr. von Rath, and who forced the doctor's daughter Barbara to marry him!

Meanwhile in Libya, Nazi-allied Arabs were overrunning a British position at the "Devil's Oven" oasis. When they're wiped out, Sheik Abdul el Hadoun props up eight bodies onto donkeys, with insulting notes pinned to their backs, with knives, and sends them walking toward a British fort. The message is received and the fort's commander radios for help. On Blackhawk Island, Chuck gets the call. The Blackhawks learn that the joint German-Arab force is commanded by Sheik Abdul el Hadoun and, of all people, Baron von Ziefh.

Seven specially-modified Grumman Skyrockets soon take off, fly across Europe, and the Mediterranean Sea, to Libya, where the desert fort is now beseiged. Blackhawk machine guns inflict a heavy toll on the attackers, but soon they have to land and enter the fort on foot. Inside they find the garrison all but annihilated. For some time, they are able to prop dead bodies at the battlements and circulate among them, firing intermittently to give the impression of having greater numbers. It works for a while, but when night falls, El Hadoun sends some swordsmen over the wall.

Meanwhile Andre sells Blackhawk on a plan where Andre exploits his new resemblance to the German commander, to sneak into the enemy's camp and replace him. Andre speaks German. Once he's in place, he summons all his officers to his quarters, where he accuses the Arabs of double-crossing the Germans, and thus instigates some fratricidal knife-fighting right there, then slips out amid the melee, leaving the real von Ziefh behind to catch the blowback from that announcement. About then the British reinforcements arrive, with bayonets fixed, expanding the battle, then the Blackhawks run into the fight, from the fort.

Complicating all this is the presence in the German/Arab camp of Frau von Ziefh, nee Barbara von Rath, battered wife of the newly dead Baron. She understandably mistakes Andre for von Ziefh, and tries to murder him with a big knife. Blackhawk stops her and tries to talk sense to her but she's really way too mad for that to work. Eventually they have to stuff her in a laundry sack and pack her aboard a Skyrocket, then take off.

They return to Blackhawk Island, where father and daughter are reunited, and sanity is restored, surgery takes place, and two weeks later, Andre looks just like his old self again. Then he and Barbara announce that they're betrothed.

Appearing in The Sniper: "The Story of Signor Barezzi"

Featured Characters:

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • series of refugees (Dies)

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • leaky rowboats
  • two bobsleds

Synopsis for The Sniper: "The Story of Signor Barezzi"

A Fascist-collaborating swindler murders a series of refugees seeking to flee Italy into Switzerland across a lake. The Sniper shows up, plays cat-and-mouse with him for a while, then sets him up to drown in one of his own rowboats.

Appearing in Loops and Banks: "Mission For Stalin"

Featured Characters:

  • Capt. Loops McCann, U.S.M.A.C.
  • Lieut. Banks Barrows, U.S.M.A.C.

Supporting Characters:

  • Colonel, their C.O. in Russia

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Russian Airmen (some die)
  • British Soldiers
  • British Dignitaries

Locations:

Items:

  • Stalin's Papers

Vehicles:

  • Russian Martin B-26 Bomber (bright red) (Destroyed)
  • German Heinkel Fighters (mixed green)
  • German Dornier Bomber (mixed green)
  • British Spitfire Fighters (camouflage)

Synopsis for Loops and Banks: "Mission For Stalin"

Captain McCann and Lieutenant Barrows have been serving as technical advisors to the Russian Air Force, but their new orders are to report to Premier Stalin, receive from him some crucial documents, and fly those to England. They soon are en route to Britain in a Russian bomber, when a squadron of Heinkel fighters pounces on them, and a gunman shows up inside the fuselage and announces that he's killed all the rest of the aircrew. The fighters are there to escort this plane to Germany. Loops McCann finds a match on the deck, and starts a fire in the cockpit, creating a distraction, enabling him to punch out the Nazi agent. McCann takes the controls and sends Barrows back to man one of the gun stations, except the Nazi gunman isn't quite unconscious after all, and he manages to sever a critical control cable, making the bomber unflyable. It falls out of the sky and crashes in Europe, somewhere behind the German lines. Fortunately Banks Barrow speaks German. They take out two soldiers and steal their uniforms, then find the nearest encampment, and report the crash site of their own bomber. This gains them an audience with the camp's commander, and with his distinguished visitor, Adolf Hitler!

Before Loops or Banks can do anything about this, their erstwhile hijacker shows up at the base, and rats them out. A melee ensues, during which Loops is able to grab a luger in one hand and the Fuhrer in the other, and take control of the room. At gunpoint he has Hitler disrobe down to his lace undies, then locks him and his generals inside a small closet. Wearing Hitler's uniform, Barrows bluffs his way to the nearest airport, accompanied by only one bodyguard, McCann. They steal a Dornier bomber and fly it to Britain, and are intercepted by some Spitfires. Lacking a good place to land, they pancake into a haystack, thus surviving their second plane crash of the day. British soldiers arrest them, and with time and difficulty they are able to get their critical papers delivered to the British Government.

Afterward a big soiree is thrown in their honor, but Loops and Banks, after surviving so many desperate situations along the way to this place, slip on some freshly-mopped stairs and fall badly enough that they end up hospitalized.

Appearing in Shot and Shell: "Dummies and Mummies"

Featured Characters:

  • Col. Sam Shot
  • Slim Shell

Other Characters:

  • half-crazy archaeologist

Antagonists:

Locations:

  • Egypt
    • partially excavated tomb

Synopsis for Shot and Shell: "Dummies and Mummies"

  • Synopsis not yet written.

Appearing in Death Patrol: "King Hotintot and Prince Totinhot"

Featured Characters:

  • The Death Patrol
    • Del Van Dyne
    • Chief Chuckalug
    • King Hotintot (Apparent Death)
    • Boris
    • Frere Jacques (formerly The Patchwork Kid)
    • Mademoiselle From Armentieres
    • The Goucho
    • Prince Totinhot (First appearance) (Joins team)

Antagonists:

Other Characters

  • Totinhot's Troops

Locations:

Items:

  • RAF's experimental Mechanical Ears

Vehicles:

  • Death Patrol's unique customized warplanes

Synopsis for Death Patrol: "King Hotintot and Prince Totinhot"

King Hotintot's country in Africa is invaded by the Nazis, and his people call for his aid, via drumming, which is relayed across Europe, and reaches the Death Patrol at their Air Base via an experimental RAF listening device. The Death Patrol takes off.

Meanwhile in Africa, the unceasing drumming is working on the nerves of the occupying German troops, When they whip the truth out of some of the natives, and learn what message is being sent, they are filled with terror. King Hotintot will be returning! And he's now in the Death Patrol! They set an ambush, with rooftop machine gun nests covering the main square in Hotintot's home village, and the king's most valuable treasure piled up in the plaza. King Hotintot's most valuable treasure is his immense collection of pet bees, and a big pile of beehives is heaped in the town square.

Meanwhile out in the jungle is Prince Totinhot, King Hotintot's American-educated son, with his resistance fighters, getting defeated and captured by the better-armed and more numerous Germans. Totinhot gets away.

The Death Patrol arrive and land outside the main town, where they meet up with the Prince, and charge into the town. The ambush is sprung, and King Hotintot is mowed down by machine gun fire, while sheltering his son behind himself. Death Patrol members start flinging beehives onto the rooftops and rolling them at the advancing troops. Their unorthodox fighting style routs the Nazis, and the Death Patrol recaptures the town. Boris invites young Totinhot to join the Death Patrol and he accepts.

Appearing in Phantom Clipper: "Saving the Picardy"

Featured Characters:

  • Yankee Clippers:
    • Lieutenant "Tiger" Shark, USN
    • Captain Seth Perkins (has a peg leg)
    • Hook, First Mate (has a hook)
    • Erik, Engineer
    • Sea Biscuit, Bosun

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • American naval officer (Dies)

Locations:

  • Unidentified West Coast Port
    • Naval Headquarters
    • Hidden Cove

Vehicles:

  • Phantom Clipper (a Q-boat)
  • USS Picardy, passenger liner converted into troop ship
  • two U.S. destroyers
  • two Japanese destroyers (Destroyed)
  • Japanese battleship (Destroyed)

Synopsis for Phantom Clipper: "Saving the Picardy"

The U.S.S. Picardy, carrying 12,000 troops, departs from a port on the West Coast. But soon, near those docks, Lt. "Tiger" Shark finds a dying officer, who warns him that the sealed orders for the Picardy have been stolen by saboteurs, and substituted with fakes. The Picardy, expecting to meet up with some escort destroyers at sea, is actually sailing into a trap. Shark reports what he's learned to Naval Headquarters; he and a senior officer study some charts and calculate where the Japanese would most likely send the Picardy to be ambushed. Warning the Picardy via radio is useless; the ship is under sealed orders and thus is directed to ignore all contrary orders. The likely ambush area is great distance away from the port, and from the waiting destroyers, in fact, it's too far away for any ordinary ship to reach the Picardy in time.

Tiger Shark drives from the Naval Base to a hidden cove, where the Phantom Clipper is moored, boards it and calls for Captain Seth to cast off. At sea, flying U.S. colors, the clipper encounters two U.S. destroyers, also racing towards the Picardy, and it effortlessly passes them. An hour later, the Picardy is sighted, but so are at least two approaching columns of smoke, denoting Japanese warships. The Yankee Clippers change course to intercept the Japanese, and when they are visible, Erik kills the main engines, leaving the Phantom Clipper under sail power only. The Japanese destroyers open fire on the clipper, and continue to approach. As they separate to pass the antique-looking ship on both sides, the Clipper opens fire with its six torpedo tubes. Both destroyers are caught by surprise, and are sunk, before the Clipper's two 8-inch guns can even be brought to bear.

A third enemy warship then comes over the horizon, and it's a battleship. The Yankee Clippers re-start the main engines, activate the fog generator, and launch the seaplane, piloted by Lt. Shark. The little bi-plane is armed with incendiary bombs and an extra-big supply of fuel. He starts a raging fire on the battleship's deck, and large-caliber ammunition starts to explode. This continues until an entire magazine detonates, and the battleship is sunk. The Picardy safely reaches its waiting escorts and continues its voyage. Rumors begin to circulate about the existence of this puzzling warship.

Appearing in Blue Tracer: "The Lady of the Island"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Boomerang Jones

Antagonists:

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for Blue Tracer: "The Lady of the Island"

Wild Bill and Boomerang make a forced landing on the island stronghold of the notorious "She-Wolf of the Java Sea", an American/Japanese pirate. She captures them, but Bill shows her some newsreel films of Japanese atrocities, from Nanking and Manila, and she decides to join the war and work with the allies.

Appearing in Atlantic Patrol: "U.S.S. Omaha"

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • USS Omaha
  • KMS Odenwald, disguised as SS Willmoto (out of Philadelphia)

Synopsis for Atlantic Patrol: "U.S.S. Omaha"

  • Synopsis not yet written.

Appearing in X of the Underground: "A Brother's Betrayal, A Daughter's Rescue Mission"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Jimmy Gray, New York Globe

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Elsa Larson, X's agent
  • Nils Larson, Underground leader

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • speedboat

Synopsis for X of the Underground: "A Brother's Betrayal, A Daughter's Rescue Mission"

  • Synopsis not yet written.

Appearing in Secret War News: "17 Plane Jap Armada Vs. Tiny Tender"

Featured Characters:

  • Lieutenant William L. Kabler
    • his crew

Antagonists:

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • USS Heron, seaplane tender
  • Japanese 2-engine 2-rudder bombers (one destroyed, two damaged)

Synopsis for Secret War News: "17 Plane Jap Armada Vs. Tiny Tender"

  • Synopsis not yet written.



Notes

  • Blackhawk: Trapped In The Devil's Oven is reprinted in The Blackhawk Archives, Volume One.
    • Olaf's hair is miscolored black on the opening splash page.
    • One Blackhawk is not clearly identified; he might be Stanislaus or Zeg or Boris.
    • Andre becomes engaged to Barbara von Rath at the end of this story.
    • The proper Grumman XF5F Skyrockets will be back in Military Comics #15. This issue continues the use of the single-rudder modified version.
    • Blackhawk Island is in the North Atlantic Ocean, now.
  • In Death Patrol, King Hotintot is killed. He will return in Military Comics #12.
  • In Loops and Banks, Bob Powell breaks the Fourth Wall, appearing seated at a drawing board (twice in the first page and once in the last page), and narrating the story, without introducing himself.
    • Banks Barrow is fluent in German.
  • Secret War News: "This is an actual story based upon inside facts gathered from U.S.N. Information Bureaus."
  • The Sniper breaks the Fourth Wall, at the beginning and end, and narrates his own story.
  • X, of the Underground now calls her ardent reporter friend "Jimmy Gray"; last issue he was "Bob Gray". Also, last issue Gray was captioned as an "ex-reporter"; this issue his dialogue indicates that is still a reporter.
  • Also featured in this issue of Military Comics were:
    • Inferior Man by Al Jaffee
    • "Fire Afloat" (true text story of the burning of "The Normandie")

Trivia

  • No trivia.



See Also

Recommended Reading

Links and References

Military Comics #10

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