"Firebrand: "Dr. Kruger's Hospital Horror"": At City Hospital, Dr. Kruger has been putting paralysis germs in the donated blood supply, and this is discovered by volunteer nurse Joan Rogers. Dr. Kruger tries to grab back the evidence of this, and threatens Joan with a scalpel; Joan hand-chops h
- I don't know how you do it but I do know it's wrong !!
- 1 Synopsis for Firebrand: "Dr. Kruger's Hospital Horror"
- 2 Appearing in Firebrand: "Dr. Kruger's Hospital Horror"
- 3 Synopsis for 711: "The Chikko Chirps Contract"
- 4 Appearing in 711: "The Chikko Chirps Contract"
- 5 Synopsis for Eagle Evans: "Captain Gruber's Sky Wolves"
- 6 Appearing in Eagle Evans: "Captain Gruber's Sky Wolves"
- 7 Synopsis for Chic Carter: "Veda the Cobra Woman"
- 8 Appearing in Chic Carter: "Veda the Cobra Woman"
- 9 Synopsis for Plastic Man: "Case of the Disembodied Hands"
- 10 Appearing in Plastic Man: "Case of the Disembodied Hands"
- 11 Synopsis for Steele Kerrigan: "They Stole the Commissioner's Car!"
- 12 Appearing in Steele Kerrigan: "They Stole the Commissioner's Car!"
- 13 Synopsis for The Mouthpiece: "Grud, Fifth Columnist"
- 14 Appearing in The Mouthpiece: "Grud, Fifth Columnist"
- 15 Synopsis for Phantom Lady: "The Autogiro Spies"
- 16 Appearing in Phantom Lady: "The Autogiro Spies"
- 17 Synopsis for Human Bomb: "The Black Vanguards"
- 18 Appearing in Human Bomb: "The Black Vanguards"
- 19 Notes
- 20 Trivia
- 21 See Also
- 22 Links and References
Synopsis for Firebrand: "Dr. Kruger's Hospital Horror"
At City Hospital, Dr. Kruger has been putting paralysis germs in the donated blood supply, and this is discovered by volunteer nurse Joan Rogers. Dr. Kruger tries to grab back the evidence of this, and threatens Joan with a scalpel; Joan hand-chops his neck and foot-sweeps him, and he hits his head on a bench for a knock out. Joan calls Rod Reilly's house, Slugger gets the call, leaves a note, and immediately drives to the hospital. Rod gets home, reads Slugger's note, changes clothes, and follows.
There's a confrontation at the hospital, and two burly orderlies slap some handcuffs on Firebrand to whisk him away. Rod plays along with this just long enough to get close to Kruger, then snaps the chains, and mops up the two orderlies. Kruger flings a jar of nitric acid at Firebrand's head, then he and henchman Rudolf escape down an elevator. Firebrand wrenches open the elevator door and slides down the cable, bursting through the steel top of the elevator car, which is already empty. He races through the hospital and reaches an operating room, where Kruger is preparing to do some quick and dirty surgery to both Joan and Slugger, who are strapped down on gurneys. Firebrand disrupts all this and locks Kruger plus two thugs inside an X-ray room, and frees Slugger and Joan. New problem: some of the contaminated blood has already been shipped to the Army's Camp Roberts.
While Rod and Slugger are speeding south to Camp Roberts, Kruger and his hench orderlies escape from the X-ray room, and start looking for Joan, to shut her up. While they scramble along a narrow ledge along the hospital's outer wall, Kruger turns on his assistants, Anton and Rudolf, and pushes them to their deaths.
At Camp Roberts, Slugger tells his story to the first doctor he sees, who turns out to be in on the plot. He prepares to murder the unsuspecting Slugger, with an injection of prussic acid, but is pounced on by the Firebrand and flung to the floor. Instead of getting up, the doctor injects himself with the acid, and dies. Firebrand and Slugger tell what they know to the hospital's duty officer, then jump into Rod's roadster and zoom back to town. They meet up with Joan inside the hospital, and Kruger has still got at least one gunman still working for him. This loser empties his whole clip, indoors, and still fails to hit him, then gets punched out. Kruger blunders onto the scene, then flees, is chased and cornered, then attempts to subdue the Firebrand with a big pressurized tank of nitrous oxide. Firebrand is barely able to turn off the gas valve, shakes off the dizzying effects, and soon rejoins Slugger. They chase Kruger to the furnace room, where Kruger shoots and wounds the watchman, who in turn shoots and kills Kruger.
Shortly later, Rod Reilly shows up at the hospital and pretends to not be Firebrand. Joan actually seems to be buying this act.
Appearing in Firebrand: "Dr. Kruger's Hospital Horror"
- Joan Rogers, Rod's fiancee
- Slugger, ex prizefighter, Rod's manservant
- Dr. Kruger (Dies)
- Rudolf (Dies)
- Anton (Dies)
- 3rd gunman
- Army Doctor accomplice (Dies)
- furnace room watchman
- City Hospital
- U.S. Army Camp Roberts
- "paralysis germs"
- Rod Reilly's open-top roadster
Synopsis for 711: "The Chikko Chirps Contract"
Word gets around Westmoor Prison that convict Lush Chikko is about to try to squeal his way to a lighter sentence, and he suddenly has lots of deadly enemies. Convict #711 undertakes the task of keeping Chikko alive. Elsewhere, at his hideout in the city, "Big Boy" Bern undertakes the task of bumping off Chikko; he has already paid off one prison guard ($5000 !) to give him and his hoods (3 of them) access to Chikko's cell, that very night.
This plan works out pretty well, the four of them get to Chikko's cell, head-konk him unconscious, carry him down to the prison's dock, and tie some weights to his feet, and toss him into the harbor. 711 charges onto the scene, slightly too late, and the bad guys get away while he dives into the water after Chikko. He completes this rescue, then sends Chikko to the Warden, with a message, while #711 pursues the gangsters, in his secret motorboat. 711 arrives at Bern's secret base ahead of Big Boy and his boys, hides, eavesdrops, ambushes, and punches his way through Big Boy's gang, until all are vanquished.
Appearing in 711: "The Chikko Chirps Contract"
- Westmoor Prison's Warden (Behind the scenes)
- "Big Boy" Bern, Czar of the Underworld
- his gang
- many convicts
- one corrupt guard
- Lush Chikko
- Westmoor Prison (on an island in the harbor near a big city)
- 711's outboard-motor boat
Synopsis for Eagle Evans: "Captain Gruber's Sky Wolves"
Free-lance fighters Eagle Evans and Snap Smith volunteer to ferry a long-range bomber from the U.S. to Bathurst, in British West Africa. Snap radios in a bogus position report, in a successful attempt to misdirect an eavesdropping Luftwaffe fighter squadron. Half of the German squadron still intercepts the lone bomber, and attacks it; at least two of them are shot down. The fighters withdraw, but their leader, Kapitan Gruber, radios an order to his secret agents in Bathurst, to ambush and kill the arriving bomber crew.
After landing and reporting to the base commander, Snap and Eagle, and a hired guide, take a canoe into the local jungle to do some wildlife photography. Gruber's spy observes them arranging this, and Airman Andrews, from the bomber crew, notices as the spy's minions get their orders from the spy. Some sneaking and stalking ensue, and soon there's a violent confrontation, with the first spy getting punched out and carried back to base by Eagle and Snap. Only later, when Snap has developed his wildlife shots, does he notice that one flash photo shows their ally Andrews, betting punched out by the second spy. Eagle Evans gets ready to beat some directions out of the captured spy, who blurts out the location of a secret airbase, 30 miles up the river. Acting without orders, and in broad daylight, Eagle and Snap steal a Grumman Skyrocket, and fly off to the rescue. Bad luck for them, this plane's guns aren't loaded.
Approaching the German base, Evans is attacked by a swarm of Messerschmitts, but Evans' adroit piloting, and the climbing advantage of a two-engine aircraft, leads two of them to crash in the jungle. He lands at the hidden airstrip, and soon he and Snap have got Andrews about halfway rescued, when a German rifle-grenade blows up their getaway fighter. They run away on foot, but soon encounter a detachment of Royal Marines, who then attack the enemy base.
Appearing in Eagle Evans: "Captain Gruber's Sky Wolves"
- Eagle Evans
- Snap Smith
- Luftwaffe Squadron One
- Kapitan Gruber
- eleven fighter pilots
- Kapitan Gruber
- corrupt mechanic
- second spy (Dies)
- Bathurst Base Commander
- Bathurst Marines
- United States of America
- British West Africa
- secret German airbase, 30 miles upriver from Bathurst
- one Lend-Lease Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress bomber
- twelve Messerschmitt Bf-109 fighters (at least 4 destroyed)
- one British Grumman XF5F Skyrocket fighter-bomber (Destroyed)
Synopsis for Chic Carter: "Veda the Cobra Woman"
The new, very exotic dancer at the Club Orientale is Veda, from India, wife of Peter Kane the Rubber Tycoon. Chic Carter, ace police reporter, hangs out at this club, and catches her act. She's sensational; she writhes like a snake; the men are enthralled; the women are creeped out. After her performance, she is hit on by the very drunk Peter Kane Junior, her stepson, they move to a secluded corner, she kisses him, he leaps to his feet, shaking like a leaf, staggers a few steps, and falls down dead, then immediately goes stiff and turns black. Veda has already slipped away but Chic saw her leaving with PKJ, and gives chase. He finds her dropped cigarette butt, with a brown stain on it, that he deduces is probably the poison that killed Junior. Monahan and his cops arrive; Carter tells Monahan what he knows and suspects, then leaves in a taxi, to visit Peter Kane Senior. PKS lives on a big, creepy estate. Inside, Veda is breaking the news of Junior's death to Senior, and they share a tender moment, then a creepy moment, then Chic Carter leaps into the room through a closed window, and yells for Kane to not kiss her. He tells Kane his theory about poisoned lipstick, and picks up the phone to call in Monahan. Kane Senior pulls a gun on him, so Chic clocks him upside the head with the telephone, knocking him half-unconscious. While Carter is on the phone to Monahan, Veda gives her stricken husband a cigarette and tells him it will make him feel better.
Monahan arrives abruptly, and tells Carter all about how completely wrong Carter's theory is. Kane Junior had died of nerve paralysis; no poison was found in his system; the stain on the cigarette butt was just Junior's own blood from a cut lip; and no narcotics or poisons were found in the butt itself either. About then Monahan notices Kane Senior, sitting on the floor, dead. Carter claims he didn't hit the old guy THAT hard, but Monahan has to hold him for manslaughter. Veda observes this through a window, and gloats that now all of Kane's millions are hers.
On the way to the precinct, Carter sucker-punches Monahan and jumps out of the car and runs away. Cops shoot at him but miss. He sneaks back into the Kane mansion, and searches Veda's room. On her make-up desk are camphor ice and mucilage. That tells him everything he needs to know! Suddenly a big cobra is in the room, Chic jumps back, whips out a gun, and shoots it dead. Veda walks in and is aghast; he has killed a god! Carter then spells out exactly what happened to Peter Kane Junior and exactly how she did it; she smirks, and stabs herself with a hypodermic needle full of cobra venom, and falls down dead.
Appearing in Chic Carter: "Veda the Cobra Woman"
- Veda Kane, the Cobra Woman (Apparent Death)
- Peter Kane, Jr.
- Peter Kane, Sr.
Synopsis for Plastic Man: "Case of the Disembodied Hands"
A bank night watchman is murdered, with his body left lying out in the street. The dead man has scrawled "those hands" on the pavement, using his own blood. Plastic Man is called in and notices some marks in the street, and follows them. The trail leads into an old house, and Plas peeks through the keyhole of an interior door, and sees "those hands" for himself. Chubby Rankin and two of his hoods are sitting at a table as a pair of disembodied hands drag a bag of loot into the room and dump it on the table.
Plastic Man breaks up this meeting, but Chubby has prepared for this situation. He pulls out an odd-looking weapon and sprays Plas with Adhesive Mesh, and his boys toss Plas down a deep hole, into a dungeon. There he meets a man with no hands, the former owner of the Stealing Hands, who describes the magical curse placed upon him years earlier, that his hands would never stop stealing. This remained true even after he severed both of his own hands, and his untrustworthy partner, Chubby Rankin, had figured out how to divert the hands' loot to himself. Meanwhile Plastic Man has been unable to extricate himself from the Adhesive Mesh, so he simply brings it along with him as he returns up the drop-pit, pops the trap-door, and again attacks Rankin. He entangles all three hoods in the mesh, and makes a deal with Rankin to release all four of them, then uses Rankins own weapon to recapture the three bad guys.
The disembodied hands are out again already, doing other crimes, and Rankin doesn't know where. He was never in charge of them, they just come and go on their own. Meanwhile and elsewhere, the hands are cracking a safe and gunning down another night watchman. Plastic Man intercepts the hands on their way back to Rankin's hideout, and the levitating hands put up quite a fight, but in the end Plastic Man snares them, and flings the squirming hands into the furnace of a nearby building. He then returns and sets free the elderly handless man, who is overjoyed to be free of his curse.
Appearing in Plastic Man: "Case of the Disembodied Hands"
- Chubby Rankin
- two henchmen
- 1st night watchman (Dies)
- 2nd night watchman (Dies)
- Tom, policeman
- man with no hands
- Stealing Hands (Destroyed)
- Adhesive Mesh spray weapon (effective against Plastic Man)
- Adhesive Mesh Solvent Vapor
Synopsis for Steele Kerrigan: "They Stole the Commissioner's Car!"
While Steele Kerrigan is reporting to his Parole Board, two gangsters steal the Police Commissioner's car right outside the Precinct House. Kerrigan's fiancee Annie witnesses this and alerts Steele who recruits Officer Kelly to rush out and intervene, but it's too late, the thugs are already driving away. In a squad car, with Kerrigan driving, the three of them give chase, but out in the country, a second car lurches directly between the speeding cars, and Kerrigan avoids the deadly crash by swerving into a telephone pole. The interfering car stops and three crooks pile out of it. One of them tries to out-shoot Officer Kelly, and thus gets shot dead, another one tries out out-fistfight Steele Kerrigan, and thus gets punched out, and the third one manages to shoot Kelly from behind, which gets him foot-swept and head-punched by Annie. Steele and Annie take the gangsters' car and resume the chase, which leads them to a taxi garage, with a sliding wall, where they see the Commissioner's car vanish inside. Leaving Annie in the car Steele, Steele enters the garage, pulls a gun on a mechanic, and gets inside the hidden workshop, where he encounters at least five more gangsters, who shoot at him. He scatters this gang by shooting the valve off an acetylene tank! He rounds up the shaken-up gangsters at gunpoint, while Annie leads the arriving police into the garage.
The Chairman of the Parole Board calls the Governor and recommends a full pardon for Steele Kerrigan.
Appearing in Steele Kerrigan: "They Stole the Commissioner's Car!"
- Steele Kerrigan
- Officer Kelly (Apparent Death)
- gang of car thieves
- cars and police cars
Synopsis for The Mouthpiece: "Grud, Fifth Columnist"
Officer Clancy is gunned down in a waterfront shoot-out, at night, aboard a moored freighter, and Bill Perkins is nearby, prowling the area. Bill ties on his mask and runs toward the shooting. The shooters recognize him as the Mouthpiece, and run away, while Clancy identifies them as Grud's sabotage gang, then dies. The gang scurries into the bad neighborhood around the docks, while the Mouthpiece visits Grud's known hangout, the "Flying Dutchman" bar, which is closed, but he lock-picks his way inside, and looks for clues. Grud watches, unseen, until the Mouthpiece steps inside the tavern's phone booth, then yanks a lever that opens a trapdoor that drops the Mouthpiece into the basement. His thugs capture the Mouthpiece, and leave him tied up in a rat-infested basement.
Mouthpiece rubs cheese on the ropes around his arms, so the rats chew through those first, then he frees himself, escapes the cellar, and sprints back to the docks. He sneaks aboard the targeted vessel, knocks out the lookout with a length of pipe, then fights Grud and the other thug belowdecks. The henchman is accidentally killed by Grud, with an axe, then the fleeing Grud is shot dead, in the back, by the Mouthpiece. Later on, the knocked-out sentry is arrested and squeals out the whole story to the police.
Appearing in The Mouthpiece: "Grud, Fifth Columnist"
- Grud (Dies)
- two henchmen (one dies)
- Officer Clancy (Dies)
- Flying Dutchman bar
- freight steamship
Synopsis for Phantom Lady: "The Autogiro Spies"
State Department investigator Don Borden brings a coded message home from work, and calls his fiancee Sandra Knight, and her father Senator Henry Knight, over to his apartment to help him decode it. But before they get there, two spies, Otto and Max, have already gotten into Don's place, tied Don to a chair, and are harshly questioning him about the coded message. Sandra and Henry are puzzled when Don doesn't answer the door, but Otto admits them, only to take them both prisoner. Max recognizes the senator, figures he may know about the papers they're looking for, and starts slapping him around. Sandra lunges into Otto and knocks him over a chair, while Max shoots at Henry and misses. Henry grabs a lamp cord and short-circuits it, which blows a fuse, which darkens the apartment. Sandra slips out of the apartment, and out of the building through a side door. As she expected, a third spy has been watching the building's front. She shoulder-throws him onto the sidewalk, head first, grabs his revolver, and leaves in her roadster.
Sandra finds a cop, who recognizes her, and she tells him about the enemy agent on the sidewalk, but nothing else, then slips up a side street and changes clothes. She climbs to the roof of the Arnold Apartments, then slides down a rope to Don's apartment window, slips inside, and shines her Black Light into the room where the spies are working Don over. They drop a flask of mustard gas and flee, up the stairs to the roof. Phantom Lady frees "Mr. Borden" then pursues them, but when she gets to the roof, a fourth agent arrives, in an autogiro. From its open cockpit, the pilot throws a lasso over Phantom Lady and yanks her into the air, but her hands are free so she climbs the rope, reaches the cockpit, and clocks the pilot over the head with her Black Ray lantern. She takes the controls and gets the aircraft under control, then sees Don and Henry on the roof, fist fighting with Max and Otto, and losing. Phantom Lady shines her Black Ray onto the fight, causing enough confusion for Max to blunder off the edge of the roof, while Don punches out Otto.
Phantom Lady lands the autogiro on the roof, ducks behind a water tank, changes clothes, then rushes over to aid her boyfriend and her dad. Don is puzzled to find Sandra on the roof, until she tells him about the third spy, and the gun and the code book that she swiped from him. Don is sure he can now decode the message, but say, did Sandra see Phantom Lady around here just now? Why yes, according to Sandra, the Lady jumped from the autogiro and just disappeared.
Appearing in Phantom Lady: "The Autogiro Spies"
- autogiro pilot
- Washington, D.C.
- Don Borden's apartment @ Arnold Apartments
- Sandra's roadster
Synopsis for Human Bomb: "The Black Vanguards"
The Black Vanguards stealthily leave a warning note on Roy Lincoln's desk, at the U.S. Navy Laboratories, ordering him to stay away from the lab that night. Roy orders everybody else out of the building, and stays behind to find out what's going on. Jean Adams has also stayed behind, and confronts Roy, in his guise as the Human Bomb. Jean seems to be beginning to suspect Roy's double identity. Human Bomb scoops up Jean and almost carries her out of the building, just before the whole structure is knocked apart, as if by an earthquake. They don't make it out, but he does stash Jean inside a steel testing compartment, just before the Black Vanguard charge into the room and shoot him with a flame gun. This is useless against Lincoln's Fibro-Wax outfit. Human Bomb knocks down all the henchmen with some floor shocks, but their boss is a much more impressive wrestler. As the fight goes on, Jean is endangered, and Roy employs a new tactic: he drips a chemical liquid from a valve in the wrist of his costume, and hurls the liquid at the saboteur. The spray explodes on contact, knocking him out of the fight, while the Bomb acrobatically rescues Jean from a dangerous fall; they land in the basement, outside the laboratory's vault. Many more Black Vanguards are on the scene, stealing shipping charts and other secret documents. The Human Bomb blows up their giant vibrating machine and traps a bunch of the bad guys inside the vault. Jean leaves to call the cops while Roy changes identities and runs upstairs to meet her. Soon he's back to pretending not to be the Human Bomb and she's back to seeming to believe him.
Appearing in Human Bomb: "The Black Vanguards"
- Jean Adams
- The Black Vanguards, about 12
- U.S. Navy Laboratories
- Fibro-Wax Suit
- Giant Vibrator, a building-demolition weapon
- Chic Carter:
- One of two things is true: 1/ Monahan forgot to confiscate Carter's handgun when he took him into custody. Or 2/ Carter grabbed Monahan's gun in the scuffle when he escaped the police car.
- We only have Veda's word for it that the hypo contained Cobra Venom, and we don't actually see her body go stiff or turn black.
- Elsewhere in this same issue, one of Firebrand's villains also uses a hypodermic needle in committing suicide.
- Eagle Evans: British warplanes have bright blue bodies and yellow wings; German warplanes are green.
- Some time early in his career, Slugger's last name changes from "Shea" to "Dunn". In this issue's story, Slugger's last name is not used at all.
- Rod Reilly can snap the chains of heavy manacles, and can wrench open an elevator door with his bare hands.
- Plastic Man: "Case of the Disembodied Hands" is reprinted in Plastic Man Archives Vol. 1.
- Plastic Man breaks the Fourth Wall, addressing the reader directly, at the beginning and end of the story, to lobby for an expansion of his 6-page feature to 9 pages.
- "Adhesive Mesh" was effective against Plastic Man, at least this one time. Hopefully Plas confiscated that stuff, and the solvent, too.
- Steele Kerrigan:
- Officer Kelly gets shot; it's not clear whether he's killed.
- Six or more gangsters get blown up with an acetylene tank; four or more of them survive.
- Convict #711 has a motorboat, concealed under the wall of Westmoor Prison.
- In his closing conversation with Lush Chikko, 711 lets slip a remark that might very easily lead Chikko to speculate accurately about 711's double identity. He does this, a lot, in his brief crime-fighting career.
- Also featured in this issue of Police Comics were:
- Paul Gustavson signed his Human Bomb stories as "Paul Carroll".