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"Plastic Man: "The Brain of Cyrus Smythe"": "Many years ago when London was in its infancy" there lived a scientist named Smythe. One of his maddened creations broke his neck and caused a chain reaction that burned his house down, but somehow his brain remained alive in a lifeless body. Smythe w

Police Comics #11 is an issue of the series Police Comics (Volume 1) with a cover date of September, 1942.

Synopsis for Plastic Man: "The Brain of Cyrus Smythe"

"Many years ago when London was in its infancy" there lived a scientist named Smythe. One of his maddened creations broke his neck and caused a chain reaction that burned his house down, but somehow his brain remained alive in a lifeless body. Smythe was buried but tortured by being alive while trapped in a coffin, eventually vowing to destroy mankind in the madness of his confinement.

In 1942, a G.I. named Tad Wilkins is deployed to London, and by a quirk of fate the top of his head is blown off by the same enemy bombardment that unearths Smythe's brain from its grave. Mistaking Smythe's brain for Wilkins', they rush him to medical, which manages to successfully implant the brain into Wilkins' body. With a new body (albeit paralyzed from the waist down), Smythe is shipped home and plays along with his family thinking they're his son while he pushes to finish his experiments. Then, one day, he succeeds.

A report comes into the police that a man's gone mad, and Plastic Man's assigned to look into it. He follows a series of strange giant handprints, which he finds were made by a gigantic Smythe, walking on his hands because his legs are still paralyzed. Plastic Man lures him out to Devil's Canyon where he goes over the edge, but survives. A pair of gangsters suggest Smythe use his enormous power not to destroy, but to rule, to get him along with their outfit as muscle. Tagging along in disguise as a regular hood, Plastic Man sees Smythe tell off a floozy, Smythe hating immodest modern women.

Tad Wilkins' girlfriend shows up in old-timey clothing, and Smythe loses his mind with lust and agrees to go off with her to be married immediately. The justice of the peace turns out to be Plastic Man in disguise again, who drops Smythe down into a narrow chamber hoping he can't expand. This proves not to be the case, and Smythe swallows the hero, then tries to drown him by swallowing a lake. Plastic Man extends himself into Smythe's windpipe and expands until the giant can't breathe, killing him by suffocation. The villain's buried, and unknown to anyone Smythe's brain is still alive, vowing vengeance again, Father Time appearing to promise that eventually Smythe will rise again.

Appearing in Plastic Man: "The Brain of Cyrus Smythe"

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Antagonists:

  • Cyrus Smythe
  • Si Ray and his gang
    • Valda

Other Characters:

  • Father Time (Cameo)
  • Tad Wilkins (Dies)
  • Mr. Wilkins (Dies)
  • Mrs. Wilkins (Dies)
  • Shirley

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Synopsis for 711: "The Runt"

Midget crimelord the Runt deliberately gets himself arrested so he can silence some of his former henchmen before they can reveal too much about his operations. He does so by simply slipping sideways through the bars of his cell, then knocking out the guards and killing his former employees with concealed gas capsules. 711 catches him on the way back to his cell, and in chasing the Runt along the upper wall, the dwarf trips over an unseen phone wire and falls off the wall to his demise.

Appearing in 711: "The Runt"

  • Appearances not yet listed

Synopsis for The Human Bomb: "The Flute of Destruction"

Hoimen Schtrugmeyer plays his flute, but causes a nearby building to start collapsing. Fortunately Roy Lincoln is on hand, and when he pursues the felonious flutist, changes to his masked form when Hoimen tries to collapse another building on him to discourage pursuit. Seeing the superhuman crimefighter after him actually delights Hoimen, who'd been hoping for a confrontation with the Human Bomb. He lures the Bomb to a prepared site where a trapdoor opens, dumping Bomb into a room coated with rubber cement that isn't set off by his explosive touch. It seems to be the end of the Human Bomb.

Fortunately, Bomb finds a matchbox sitting in the rubbery morass and uses that to blast his way out. He confronts Hoimen, who takes grave offense to being called an Axis rat. He's an American patriot, first, last, and always! In fact, he's already packed his bags to fly to Japan and level it with the flute he invented. When asked by the Bomb why he destroyed parts of Washington while running his experiments with the flute, Hoimen replies he had to pick on Washington: "I'm a died in the wool republican!"

Appearing in The Human Bomb: "The Flute of Destruction"

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Antagonists:

  • Hoimen Schtrugmeyer

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Synopsis for Steele Kerrigan: "Tire Thieves"

Steele drops Anne off at a yacht party, but can't join it himself what with being out on parole. Going back to get his car, Steele finds that all the cars in the lot have had their tires stolen by guys from his old cellblock. He pursues them on a bicycle, the only thing around to still have its wheels, to an old house. Overhearing that the crooks' boss is on the same yacht as Anne, Steele pinions the two by throwing the stolen tires over them.

Stanton, owner of the yacht, is overheard talking to his gang by Anne, and has her captured, along with Steele when he sneaks to the yacht to help Anne. Steele escapes by lighting a wastebasket to fake a fire, then jumping the crew when they come to investigate. Steele finds out Stanton's been delivering the loads of rubber to a German vessel, but commandeers the radio and reports it to the Coast Guard, who destroy the foreign ship.

Appearing in Steele Kerrigan: "Tire Thieves"

  • Appearances not yet listed

Synopsis for Manhunter: "The Laughing Gas Crimes"

Professor Hooker invents an extremely potent form of laughing gas which he plans to turn over to the government to be used to raise troop morale. However, Uriah Heap, his assistant, calls in some gangsters to steal the gas for criminal purposes. They kill Hooker when he resists, then kill Heap when he asks for his money.

After the gang goes on a crime spree using the laughing gas to hold off police and security, Manhunter hides out in a food warehouse, figuring the gang will try to steal sugar from there with war shortages going on. He's right, and gets blasted with the gas when the criminals show up. A whiff from an onion brings Manhunter back to normal, causing him to figure out how he can protect himself for next time. Manhunter cooks up an onion gas and unleashes it on the gangster, causing them become despondent and eager to turn themselves in.

Appearing in Manhunter: "The Laughing Gas Crimes"

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Supporting Characters:

Antagonists:

  • Uriah Heap, corrupt lab assistant
  • Matelli and his thugs

Other Characters:

  • Professor Hooker (Dies)

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Synopsis for Spirit: "The Origin of The Spirit"

Reprinted from The Spirit Section, (Register and Tribune Syndicate, 1940).

Appearing in Spirit: "The Origin of The Spirit"

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Antagonists:

  • Dr. Cobra
  • Pokey
  • Gimp

Other Characters:

  • Central City Police Officers
    • Officer Kelly
    • Officer O'Rourke
  • Happy the Coroner

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Synopsis for Chic Carter: "The Monster of the Swamps"

Popular Miami radio personality Peter Miles reports a bizarre story of a swamp monster that ate a live alligator, then soon after announces his intentions to go to the location in the nearby swamps and do his next broadcast from there. Meanwhile, the swamp monster does indeed appear and confront a thug and his moll trying to find the location of stolen loot.

Chic Carter, who happens to be in the area, listens in on Miles' broadcast. Carter investigates when the monster does appear and Miles screams for help, only to find Miles dead. Not far away, the thug looking for the buried loot finds himself face-to-face with an old partner in crime, Rocky, who'd been waiting for him to get out of jail to tail him to where the loot was hidden. Carter finds Rocky's hideout and sends him running, only for the monster to appear soon after. After trading a few punches with Carter, the monster goes down, and is revealed to be Rocky in a costume. He came up with the scheme hoping to use it to scare his old accomplice into revealing where the loot was hidden. In fact, Rocky devised the idea after hearing Peter Miles' broadcast about the legend of the swamp monster, leading Carter to comment on the irony of Miles creating a monster that led to his own demise.

Appearing in Chic Carter: "The Monster of the Swamps"

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Supporting Characters:

  • Detective Monahan

Antagonists:


Synopsis for Firebrand: "The White Gardenias"

Rod and Slugger are on leave, and patriotically spending their off-time in the gallery of the state legislature, about to watch Senator Barrow open an investigation into an insidious masked group of anti-democracy extremists that calls itself the White Gardenias. While going to make a phone call, Rod overhears Senator Beep making a call to someone to have Barrow snatched before he can "shoot his mouth off". Rod makes to follow, and has Slugger tail Barrow, convinced trouble's afoot. He turns out to be right, as hooded men in white robes spring out of a car to capture Barrow, and proceed to try to lynch him and Slugger when he tries to come to the senator's rescue.

Slugger isn't the only one who followed the kidnappers, and Rod shows up as Firebrand to interrupt the violent murders. After pounding the kidnappers around, Firebrand and Slugger pile into his car to make sure Senator Barrow makes his hearing. Senator Beep's planning to shoot him, but Joan spots the gun in Beep's pocket and whacks him on the head with her umbrella. Firebrand finishes the job, punching Beep out and handing him over to the FBI.

Appearing in Firebrand: "The White Gardenias"

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Antagonists:

  • Senator Beep
  • The White Gardenias

Other Characters:

  • Senator Barrow

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Synopsis for The Mouthpiece: "The Murder of Malcom Munsey"

A knife-wielding home-invader breaks into Bill Perkins' wealthy friend's house, and murders the owner. From the condition of a pack of matches found at the scene, D.A. Perkins deduces that the killer is Greaseball Bulloni, and also he calculates (from an FBI tip) that Bulloni will be out at "Green Corpse Point," meeting up with his suspected partners. Perkins changes identities and drives out to the meeting place as the Mouthpiece.

The tip was good, there he finds Greaseball, signalling to a surfaced submarine, just off-shore. Mouthpiece creeps up and head-konks the big thug with a pistol butt, then puts him in his own car, for safekeeping. The sub, meanwhile, has dispatched a small landing party, and Perkins impersonates Bulloni, and thus gets close to their surfaced U-boat. Mouthpiece brandishes his handgun, and the boat crash-dives, to escape him, but he grabs one hatch cover and keeps it from closing. The sub floods and sinks, while the Mouthpiece swims away. Back on the surface, he finds and captures the first two two submariners, and their rubber liferaft. He instructs them to turn themselves in, and gives them directions to the nearest Coast Guard station. They comply.

Afterward D.A. Perkins personally arrests Bulloni, who is soon tried and found guilty and executed.

Appearing in The Mouthpiece: "The Murder of Malcom Munsey"

Featured Characters:

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

  • Major Malcom Munsey, the airplane inventor (Dies)
  • Mrs. Munsey
  • Coast Guard Sentry

Locations:

  • Green Corpse Point

Vehicles:

  • Perkins open-top roadster
  • U-boat 17 (Destroyed)

Synopsis for Phantom Lady: "The Spy Ring Murder"

A German spy posing as a cabbie shoots a member of U.S. Intelligence who'd been looking into plans to destroy an American refueling station. Phantom Lady happens upon the body and investigates the group of 5th columnists. She manages to trap them and hand them over to police, then listens to the news of her latest caper in a bubble bath.

Appearing in Phantom Lady: "The Spy Ring Murder"

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Supporting Characters:

  • Lieutenant Bob Forbes, U.S. intelligence (Dies)

Antagonists:

  • Nazi spies

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Notes

  • Firebrand:
    • "The White Gardenias" is reprinted in The Quality Companion (TwoMorrows Publishing, 2011).
    • The Order of the White Camelias was a true-life branch of the KKK.
    • Captions now refer to Slugger as Ensign Reilly's shipmate.
  • Manhunter now wears a new costume without a mask, red armlets or chest symbol (which has moved onto his belt).
  • Mouthpiece single-handedly sinks a submarine.
    • The villain Bulloni gets the electric chair, on panel.
  • Plastic Man:



See Also


Links and References

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