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"The Vigilante: "The Origin of the Vigilante"": This story is reprinted from Action Comics #42.

Secret Origins #4 is an issue of the series Secret Origins (Volume 1) with a cover date of October, 1973. It was published on June 7, 1973.

Synopsis for The Vigilante: "The Origin of the Vigilante"

This story is reprinted from Action Comics #42.

In the death house at State Prison, a tense assortment of officials and reporters, and the Vigilante, all bear witness to the electrocution of Killer Kelly. Before he's put in the chair, Killer Kelly vows to return from the grave and get revenge on the Vigilante. Soon he is pronounced dead. But Kelly and his gang have rigged the system; the doctor who administered the "fatal" jolt sent only 200 volts to the chair, then faked the death report, and soon would fake the cremation report too, due to being extorted by threats from Kelly's gang against the doctor's wife and children.

In Preston City, Killer Kelly and his gang and their tommy guns go right back into the bank-robbing business, and they gun down whoever gets in their way. Meanwhile Vigilante has resumed his ordinary identity as Greg Sanders, singing cowboy. One day at a rodeo a dangerous steer gets loose, and Greg deftly brings down the charging beast with a lariat, then claims that he'd only gotten lucky. Sanders has his own radio show and is dating blues singer Betty Stuart. She of course thinks he's a big phony and wishes he could be more like the Vigilante.

Sanders learns that Kelly is mysteriously back in the robbery racket, and gets a hunch. That night, in that town, the very wealthy Van Ardsley family will be holding a costume ball; this would be a likely robbery target for Killer Kelly's gang. The Vigilante shows up at the ball, disguised as the Vigilante. Killer and his gang show up, disguised as pirates. Lariat mayhem ensues. Betty Stuart has also shown up, mostly as her own gorgeous self in a domino mask, and she gets grabbed by Kelly as a hostage, to cover his escape. He makes it to his convertible, punches Betty hard, and peels out. Vigilante pursues, on the running board of a commandeered taxi, and leaps onto Kelly's open car, but Kelly's still packing a pirate cutlass, and repels this boarder with a knockout smack to the head.

Vigilante recovers consciousness, tied up, in a basement, while Kelly explains how he survived his "execution," then exposits about how the room will soon flood with deadly gas. Then Kelly leaves. But luckily a bucket of water is nearby, and luckily Vig is tied up with rawhide thongs which, as all westerners know, expands and softens when soaked in water. So Vigilante gets himself untied, and the gas turns out to be flammable, so he applies a match to it and neutralizes that threat. Then "Slats," one of Kelly's hoods, shows up to make sure that Vigilante is dead; down goes Slats. Then the phone rings, and it's Kelly, telling Slats to hurry up and get to their next crime scene, a safe-cracking at J. R. Rockrich's office. So Vigilante hurries over to that address, and climbs in through an upstairs window, engages the gang, lassos Kelly and flings him out the window, followed by two more thugs, all of whom land on some telephone wires, many feet above the street. Vigilante calls the police to come collect them.

The next day Greg Sanders is back at the radio studio signing autographs, while Betty Stuart looks on in mild disgust, wishing again that this drugstore cowboy could be more like the Vigilante.

Appearing in The Vigilante: "The Origin of the Vigilante"

Featured Characters:

  • Vigilante (First appearance) (Flashback and main story)

Supporting Characters:

  • Betty Stuart, blues singer (First appearance)

Antagonists:

  • Killer Kelly (Single appearance)
    • his gang, "Slats", others

Other Characters:

  • Mr. Van Ardsley
  • Sheriff Sanders (First appearance) (Flashback only)
  • Greg's unnamed grandfather (Flashback only)
  • prison doctor (Single appearance)

Locations:

  • Preston City

Items:

  • Vigilante's Lasso


Synopsis for Kid Eternity: "The Origin of Kid Eternity"

This story is reprinted from Hit Comics #25.

A boy and his grandfather are killed in a U-boat attack on a civilian steamship, but when the lad reaches the Pearly Gates, his name is not on the list to have died that day. So Mr. Keeper, who was responsible for this clerical error, brings back the boy's spirit into his body, and the lad lives again, and is endowed with great powers, including invisibility and intangibility. But most important: by speaking the word "ETERNITY", the boy could call upon any person in mythology or history, to aid him in any given situation.

Appearing in Kid Eternity: "The Origin of Kid Eternity"

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