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"Blackhawk: "The Doomed Battalion"": A cobbled-together airplane crash-lands on Blackhawk Island. From it, Blackhawk pulls a small, noisy, Chinese man in colorful coolie costume. The new arrival tells the Blackhawks that Nurse Ann has set up a haven for crippled soldiers in Jugoslavia. She h


Quote1 ... but me, Chop Chop, smart fella ... fix blusted planes and fly fo' help ... Quote2
Chop Chop

Military Comics #3 is an issue of the series Military Comics (Volume 1) with a cover date of October, 1941.

Appearing in Blackhawk: "The Doomed Battalion"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Nurse Ann

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Maxim, freedom fighter (Dies)

Locations:

  • Jugoslavia (spelled thus in the story)
    • Drina Valley

Vehicles:

  • Blackhawk modified fighter-bombers
  • German fighters and fighter-bombers

Synopsis for Blackhawk: "The Doomed Battalion"

A cobbled-together airplane crash-lands on Blackhawk Island. From it, Blackhawk pulls a small, noisy, Chinese man in colorful coolie costume. The new arrival tells the Blackhawks that Nurse Ann has set up a haven for crippled soldiers in Jugoslavia. She has made an enemy of a price gouging merchant by giving away food for free. The Nazis bombed the haven but the wounded soldiers shot down two of the enemy planes. Chop Chop, as the Chinese man calls himself, used the wrecks to build the plane in which he arrived. He's come for help as Nurse Ann's haven will soon be overrun by 10,000 Nazis.

The Blackhawks fly off to the Drina Valley in Jugoslavia. The Blackhawks organize the locals and develop a plan of defense, but Markov, the food merchant, betrays them to the Germans. Blackhawk himself protects explosives at the base of the dam they plan to blow to drown the Germans, after first getting a tearful embrace from Nurse Ann. Andre reluctantly triggers the explosion since that was Blackhawk's order. The dam blows, flooding the valley and wiping out most of the Nazi invaders. Andre and the others all believe him dead but, somehow, Blackhawk very narrowly escapes death, and leads everyone in a fight to finish off the enemy. The Blackhawks take to the air and smash the Nazi fighters, in an amazing display of flying skill. When everyone is back on the ground, the German commander tries to shoot Blackhawk in the back, but Andre pushes him out of the way and is wounded in his place. Andre, knowing he is dying, rolls down a mountain to start an avalanche that traps the remaining Nazis in a cave. The last that is seen of him is his hand sticking out of a pile of boulders. The Blackhawks drop Ann and her nurses by parachute into England and then return to Blackhawk Island to face an irate Chop Chop.

Appearing in The Blue Tracer: "The Burma Road"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters: Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Yang Fu (Single appearance)

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for The Blue Tracer: "The Burma Road"

Over the Burma Road, the Blue Tracer is fighting a Japanese bomber. Its guns jam so "Wild Bill" Dunn rams the bomber, smashing it into pieces. The Blue Tracer comes through without a scratch and lands near a railroad. The local mandarin, Yang Fu, warns them of approaching Japanese Army forces. They make a plan to use the Blue Tracer against them but the plan is overheard by Yang Fu's servant, Sin Fang, who is a Japanese agent. The servant stabs Yang Fu after Dunn and Jones leave. Jones chases Sin Fang over a cliff and the agent dies. The Blue Tracer's crew organize the local Chinese into a defense and then they fly ahead to destroy a railroad trestle, as an enemy troop train is crossing it. The Chinese guerillas finish off the few troops who survived the plunge into the valley. Bill and Boomerang are thanked by Yang Fu.

Appearing in Loops and Banks: "Light in the Fog"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • carrier C.O.

Other Characters:

  • Lt. Darwin, pilot
  • Lt. Jones, pilot
  • Lt. Parks, pilot

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for Loops and Banks: "Light in the Fog"

On a training mission, one of three Curtiss SBC Helldiver two-place scout bombers crashes on a Pacific Island. Acting against McCann's orders, "Banks" Barrows lands his Helldiver to rescue the downed flyers. He gets away with it by succeeding in the rescue, and when the question comes up later, McCann covers for him. Meanwhile a dense and dangerous fog rolls in. "Loops" McCann uses an experimental lamp to light the carrier's deck, and Barrows safely lands despite the thick fog.

Appearing in Secret War News: "School Children Defeat Hitler"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Historic and Honorable Society of Komitadji
    • General Simovich, Yugoslav Air Force
    • Colonel Knezivich, Yugoslav Air Force

Antagonists:

Locations:

Items:


Vehicles:



Synopsis for Secret War News: "School Children Defeat Hitler"

March 1941: In Yugoslavia, schoolchildren went on strike, and were arrested for it by the stooge occupation government, which provoked the Komitadji to undertake a guerrilla war against them. The Yugoslav military mutinied against the Cvetkovic government, and arrested all of its ministers. King Peter II took over the government and appointed General Simovich to be Premier.

Appearing in Yankee Eagle: "The Noah's Ark Destroyer"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Senator Noble

Antagonists:

  • Smeel's unnamed Axis sponsor
  • Captain Smeel (Dies)
    • his crew

Other Characters: Animals:

  • Sam the eagle

Locations:

  • California
    • isolated volcanic isle off the coast (1 hour flight time away)
    • San Diego
    • Jerry Noble's Ranch
  • unnamed South American country
    • secret anchorage, along a lonely shore, artfully concealed from the open sea

Vehicles:

  • Smeel's submarine (captured)
  • two more pirate submarines (one destroyed, one unaccounted for)
  • four U.S. freighters (Destroyed)
  • Jerry's private motor launch
  • DD-343, Jerry's obsolete destroyer (Destroyed)

Synopsis for Yankee Eagle: "The Noah's Ark Destroyer"

A foreign-sponsored pirate submarine, operating off the California coast, sinks a series of cargo ships and methodically massacres the survivors. Jerry Noble finds out about this from Sam, his eagle. His extremely influential Senator father puts a fully stocked destroyer at his disposal, anchored at a secret location in a foreign country. Jerry enlists a crew of sea lions and monkeys to "man" an old destroyer. This takes one week.

After several more days of searching, Sam the eagle finds the pirate sub, which now has been joined by two more subs. Sam leads Jerry's destroyer to their position, and the monkeys destroy one sub with a depth charge. The other two subs shoot torpedoes at the destroyer from both sides, and three or more of them are hits. The destroyer begins to sink, while its gunfire damages one surfaced sub, rendering it unsubmergeable. Sea lions sweep the human crewmen from the topside area, while Jerry and a swarm of monkeys board the exposed vessel; mayhem ensues. The monkeys rampage belowdecks while Captain Smeel dukes it out with Jerry Noble above. Smeel falls into the ocean, sinks, and does not resurface. Noble then commands his monkeys to coerce the crew to sail the sub into San Diego, and surrender.

Some days later a squadron of Navy dive bombers, led to their target by a bald eagle, destroys the pirate submarines' base.

Appearing in Shot and Shell: "The City of Stranded Men"

Featured Characters:

Antagonists:

Locations:

Items:

  • Shot's worthless bombsight invention

Vehicles:

  • German 2-engine bomber (stolen)

Synopsis for Shot and Shell: "The City of Stranded Men"

Stranded in Lisbon, Shot and Shell dupe a gang of Nazi agents, travel to Berlin, dupe the Nazi High Command, steal an airplane, and escape from Europe.

Appearing in Miss America: "The Forged Defense Bonds"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Jasper, exasperating co-reporter
  • Chief, editor

Antagonists:

  • Sampson, engraver
    • his counterfeiting gang

Locations:

Synopsis for Miss America: "The Forged Defense Bonds"

Reporter Joan Dale tracks down a gang that is printing fake war bonds. She uses her powers as Miss America to stop them.

Appearing in Archie Atkins, Desert Scout: "Battle At Benghazi"

  • Cpl. Archie Atkins, Royal Australian Tank Corps (Final appearance)

Supporting Characters:

  • Sgt. Jack Bailey, Royal Fusiliers (Final appearance)
  • Pvt. Achmed, Sudanese Camel Corps (Final appearance)

Animals:

  • Mascot Billy, Light Battalion, a goat (Final appearance)

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham, Commander: British Mediterranean Fleet

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • British troop carriers, armored cars, tanks
  • German troop carriers, armored cars, tanks

Synopsis for Archie Atkins, Desert Scout: "Battle At Benghazi"

Archie, Jack and Achmed dress as German soldiers to stop a combined German and Italian attack on Benghazi. British forces strike from Benghazi to Sollum then recapture Fort Capuzzo

Appearing in Death Patrol: "The Stratosphere Bombs"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Colonel Rider

Antagonists:

Locations:

Vehicles:

  • Six Hawker Hurricanes (two are destroyed)
  • German dirigible/aircraft-carrier (Destroyed)

Synopsis for Death Patrol: "The Stratosphere Bombs"

Zazzy joins the Death Patrol, and waves off all warnings about how everybody who does that dies. Meanwhile the Luftwaffe attacks London, using a flat-topped dirigible, lurking in the stratosphere, as both a bomber and a flying airfield. Del van Dyne figures out what's going on, and leads the Death Patrol in an attack on this thing. Wearing special, heated, oxygen-supplied jumpsuits, they land their Hawker Hurricanes on the super-zeppelin's flight deck, and overpower the crew. The carrier's captain, (claiming to be disgusted by his superiors and by Nazism in general), tells them that this stratospheric bombing sortie is just a diversion, from a dirigible-mounted infantry invasion, from Calais to Dover, starting in two hours. Leaving Slick to guard the captured crew, Del and Butch and Gramps and Hank and Zazzy take off to attack this invasion. But one of the dirigible's crew manages to headkonk Slick with a thrown wrench, and soon they all are free. Plus the captain lied about the dirigible invasion, but now radios Calais to get some antiaircraft guns set up. The Death Patrol hits a hot welcome over Calais, but breaks off quickly and returns to the hovering carrier, which also has a hot welcome for them, but they shoot it down. Slick is still aboard at the time, and one big explosion also takes out Zazzy's plane. Zazzy parachutes to safety, but Slick is gone for good.

Notes

  • Last issue for Archie Atkins, Desert Scout by Harry Campbell.
    • Final panel shows the victorious Brits singing their regimental anthem, very much after the fashion of the Blackhawks.
    • Final panel cautions us not to miss the exciting next episode, but there is no next episode.
    • All of the fighting and traveling in these three episodes took place among real places with real names.
  • Blackhawk: The Doomed Battalion is reprinted in The Blackhawk Archives, Volume One.
    • Andre appears to die in this issue. He makes his triumphant return in Military Comics #9.
    • Per panel 6 of page 3, the new guy introduces himself (in his dialog balloons) as "Chop Chop" with no hyphen. In this story, Chop Chop is older, angrier, less comical, and much less spherical than he would be in later issues.
    • Nurse Ann was last seen in Military Comics #1.
    • The Blackhawk planes now have dual in-line engines, and a single rudder.
    • A final page is used to alert the reader to look for a full-color map of Blackhawk Island in the next issue. Here, Blackhawk and Chop Chop break the Fourth Wall, walk between the panels, and address the reader directly.
  • Last issue for Jack Cole on Death Patrol, replaced next issue by Dave Berg.
    • Unlike several other dead Death Patrol members, Slick Ward will not be coming back.
  • The extremely bright fog-penetrating lamp in Loops & Banks was invented and built by Loops McCann. It's based on an entirely new principal, according to Banks Barrow.
  • First issue for Tom Hickey art on Miss America, replacing Ed Wexler.
    • This is Joan Dale's last episode as a newspaper reporter; in the story's last panel, she quits the Daily Star.
  • Secret War News announces: "This is an actual story based upon inside facts gathered from British Information Bureaus."
  • Shot and Shell
    • At the end of last issue's episode, Shot and Shell were unemployed in Canada. We are not told how or why they have traveled to Portugal.
    • At the end of this episode, they believe they are on their way to Scotland.
  • Yankee Eagle:
    • Jerry Noble's senator father can safely send written messages to a capsule attached to the leg of Sam, Jerry's eagle.
    • Senator Noble was able to requisition an overage destroyer, fully stocked, and leave it anchored in a secret location. That destroyed got sunk by pirate submarines.
    • Three pirate submarines battled Jerry's destroyer: one was destroyed with all hands, one was captured, and one apparently got away.
  • Also featured in this issue of Military Comics were:

Trivia



See Also

Recommended Reading

Links and References

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