"Espionage, starring Black Ace: "Madame Doom"": Circa 1938-Dec, the threat of war looms between the USA and "The Orient." "And behind events sits the elusive, mysterious Madame Doom, directing destiny." She's returned from Europe to New York City, and in a luxury hotel suite is selling
- He's no good to me now, Bozo - - he's dead – er – ah - - Put him in the alley and I'll call the police.
Appearing in Espionage, starring Black Ace: "Madame Doom"
- Colonel Atwater
- Batu, telepathic valet
- Lieutenant Hayes (Dies)
- Agent O-12, British
- Agent B-5
- Madame Doom
- Agent K-61
- at least two more thugs
- New York City
- Washington, D.C.
- espionage agency's Headquarters
- Black Ace's apartment
- espionage agency's airfield
- East St. Louis, Illinois
- St. Louis
- Rocco Tavern
- Salt Lake City
- San Francisco
- British Consulate
- U.S. military coastal defense plans
- open-cockpit racing plane
- closed-cockpit scouting plane
- open-cockpit fighter biplane
Synopsis for Espionage, starring Black Ace: "Madame Doom"
Circa 1938-Dec, the threat of war looms between the USA and "The Orient." "And behind events sits the elusive, mysterious Madame Doom, directing destiny." She's returned from Europe to New York City, and in a luxury hotel suite is selling a set of coastal defense plans, which turn out to be fake, a decoy! Her Asian-looking buyers angrily leave.
At espionage HQ, Black Ace's boss, who now has the real set of plans, assigns Ace to convey them to California, plus to pick up three espionage agents from three different cities along the way. They have 24 hours, and they know that Madame Doom knows that the plans are on their way. Black Ace and Batu, in a racing plane, at 200 mph, are soon in Chicago. Meanwhile Madame Doom has been making phone calls and setting up some problems for them. The Chicago agent is dead, and a mocking note has been left by his body, addressed to Mr. Black Ace.
En route to St. Louis, in a different airplane, they have engine trouble, and Black Ace is barely able to safely land it in a field. Gunmen show up and abduct Ace at gunpoint and whisk him away in a car, but he is able to toss off the set of plans where Batu can find them. Black Ace meets Madame Doom, they have a flirtatious conversation and exchange misinformation. Batu meanwhile has found Agent O-12, amidst a bar fight, and brought him along; they show up and rescue Black Ace. Madame Doom also gets away.
En route to Salt Lake City, their unwieldy observation plane is attacked by a machine-gun-packing biplane, but Ace and Batu have brought some submachineguns along, and are able to shoot it down. They land, and link up with Agent B-5, and in a quick street fight vanquish Madame Doom's small entourage and re-steal the important plans, then get away. With three hours left, the allied agents fly to San Francisco and deliver the secret plans. An important international treaty is signed, and Madame Doom, stymied but uncaptured, quietly leaves the country.
Appearing in Clip Chance at Cliffside: "Rivalry With Ray Snort, Part 2"
- Coach Barr
- Ray Snort
- Cliffside College
- Cody College
Synopsis for Clip Chance at Cliffside: "Rivalry With Ray Snort, Part 2"
- Synopsis not yet written.
Appearing in Invisible Justice: "The Green Lizard"
- Winters, the butler, aka "Number Four", as the Green Lizard (First appearance)
- three thugs, "Baldy" et. al.
- John Blaine
Synopsis for Invisible Justice: "The Green Lizard"
In Florida, Kent Thurston's wealthy friend John Blaine is being threatened and squeezed for money by "the Green Lizard," and two of his rich businessman friends have already disappeared. Also unbeknown to Blaine, his servant Winters is secretly working for the extortion gang (as "Number Four"), and alerts them to Thurston's involvement on the case.
The next day Blaine drops off a suitcase full of cash at the end of the road into the swamp, and drives back to town, while Kent lurks in the weeds and waits for the gang, then gets invisible and follows them back to their hideout, in the swamp, on a small island, under a fake tree. Along the way a big green aquatic reptile attacks Thurston, who kills it with two shots from his handgun. The Invisible Hood sneaks into the bad guy den, and sets off an alarm in the process, but the sentry whose job it is to kill him sees nobody walking by, with footprints being left, and faints.
Meanwhile in another room, Blaine's two missing friends are still alive, but now the Green Lizard has decided to throw them to the crocodiles. The Invisible Hood steps into the room and talks smack at the Green Lizard, who points a pistol in his general direction, sets a 10-minute timer on a hideout-destroying bomb, and talks some smack back. Invisible Hood shoots him in the shoulder, but the Lizard accesses a hidden escape ladder, and flees. Hood gets the hostages out of the place, then pursues, catches, tackles, beats up, and unmasks the Green Lizard, then carries him unconscious to the pier. He and the still-unnamed businessmen escape in the Lizard's speedboat, just as the pre-set explosives blow up the Lizard's swamp hideout. It turns out that Blaine's servant Winters is not only "Number Four" but the boss as well, of this crime gang.
Appearing in Captain Cook of Scotland Yard: "Attack of the Anarchists"
- Inspector Keene
- gang of hooded anarchists, numbers "One" through "Twelve"
- small bottle of nitroglycerin
Synopsis for Captain Cook of Scotland Yard: "Attack of the Anarchists"
A gang of anarchists are setting off bombs in London. Captain Cook and Inspector Keene infiltrate the gang. Posing as "Number Twelve", Cook is assigned to blow up the Bridge over the North River. He sets up a dud bomb, which gets him in trouble with the anarchist gang, who try to throw him into a quicklime pit. He and Inspector Keene outsmart the gang and subdue them with teargas.
Appearing in Hugh Hazzard and his Iron Man: "The Submarine Disasters"
- Lugar (Only appearance; dies)
- Hanz (Only appearance; dies)
- Leon (Only appearance; dies)
- Amos Dobbs (Only appearance; dies)
- Admiral Hull (Single appearance)
- Commissioner Hunt (Mentioned only)
- Naval Base at Mussel Bay, not far from New York City
- U.S. submarine
- outlaw biplane dive-bomber
Synopsis for Hugh Hazzard and his Iron Man: "The Submarine Disasters"
In one week, four submarines, two of them American, are lost at sea, mysteriously. An FBI agent, Amos Dobbs, shows up at Hugh Hazzard's very upscale apartment building, and the front desk sends him up, and Hugh greets him at the door, (hiding a pistol in one hand). Dobbs tells Hugh about his investigation into the world-wide submarine sabotage ring, and his misadventure of getting captured by the gang, then escaping as a big explosion destroyed the gang's hideout. Here's the problem: the Navy's newest and most modern submarine is set to be launched the next day, at noon, and Dobbs is certain that the bad guys have it targeted. Hazzard knows the armed forces to be riddled with spies, but the one place where there are none is of course the Naval Academy at Annapolis, so Dobbs should persuade Admiral Hull to recruit his submarine crew from there, and Hull goes along with that plan.
Meanwhile across the street, a seemingly-random rooftop gunman shows up and takes a shot at Hugh Hazzard's window, but mortally wounds Dobbs instead. Hugh runs up to the roof of his building, which is where Bozo is stored, and sends the robot leaping and sprinting after the fleeing gunman. The gunman deliberately and fatally throws himself off the side of the building, then Bozo follows him to the sidewalk and, quite robotically, carries the dead guy back to Hugh.
The next day Hugh drives out to the Naval Base to look over the new sub, but is escorted off the base by an armed sentry. Reassured but dissatisfied, Hazzard calls in Bozo, who flies there, and lands, unseen. As the submarine is launched, a biplane dive-bomber shows up, drops a big bomb, and barely misses the sub. It loops back for a second attack, but by this time Bozo the Iron Man is airborne, and intercepts the next dropped bomb, flinging it directly back at the biplane, to fatal effect. Watching from the ground nearby are Hanz and Leon, two spies, whose priorities have just now been changed. They have got to get control of that robot, at any cost. They stealthily approach Hazzard's position, as Hugh is sending the robot back home, then ambush him and knock him unconscious with a stout stick, and carry him back to their boss, Lugar.
Hazzard is lashed with a whip, and is offered millions of dollars, but he doesn't reveal Bozo's location. But the bad guys also have kidnapped Hugh's girlfriend Pat, so Hugh agrees to help Lugar after all, while Lugar foolishly allows Hazzard to put on his shirt and jacket; the control panel is still concealed under one lapel, and he calls in his giant robot. But first the gang throws Hugh and Pat into a big glass shark tank. Bozo's very dynamic arrival results in the tank being busted and the sharks getting loose into the bad guys' hideout. All the bad guys get killed, and Hugh almost does too, before Bozo smashes one big fish against a wall, and soon afterward Pat and Hugh are back at Hugh's place reviewing the events.
Appearing in Abdul the Arab: "The Shammar Ruby"
- Jahib, expedition deserter
- Forrest, English brigand (Dies)
- his desert raiders (all die)
- Sir John Lansing (Dies)
- his desert expedition (all die)
- Ronny (Dies)
- his desert expedition (all die)
- British police
- Whistling Dunes
- the city
- High Wall Pass
- Shammar Ruby
Synopsis for Abdul the Arab: "The Shammar Ruby"
- Synopsis not yet written.
Appearing in Chic Carter: "Carter and the Pirates"
- Daily Star Editor (via telegram)
- Red Brannigan, pilot (Final appearance)
- Chinese pirates (many die)
- British Marines
- S.S. Quincy
- three seagoing tugboats
- smuggler yacht
- British destroyer
Synopsis for Chic Carter: "Carter and the Pirates"
- Synopsis not yet written.
Appearing in Flash Fulton: "Rudolf's Invasion"
- Flash Fulton (First appearance)
- Andy, pilot
- Gabby, newsreel boss
- Chancellor Rudolf imposter
- Chancellor Rudolf
- Rudolf's army
- Ceranian civilians
- armored truck
Synopsis for Flash Fulton: "Rudolf's Invasion"
Appearing in John Law, Scientective: "The Impossible Murder"
- June Carter
- James Rowan, the Avenger (Behind the scenes)
- Colin Grant, superintendent @ Reid Electric Corp.
- Mr. Carter
- Amos Reid (Dies)
- George Reid
- Mr. Lewis
- New York City Area
- Carter Mansion
- Sing Sing Prison
- 50-lb block of dry ice
- John Law's airplane
- unidentified armed plane
Synopsis for John Law, Scientective: "The Impossible Murder"
Mysterious super-criminal "the Avenger" is still at large, and is now threatening twelve wealthy friends of his original target, Mr. Carter, the air magnate. Carter calls on John Law for help. Amos Reid reveals to the Scientective that the assembled tycoons all owe their fortunes to an idea that they'd lifted, years ago, from Jim Rowan. Two days later, Reid is murdered, and his son George is framed for the crime.
John Law investigates, and acts as young Reid's defense attorney, but he is convicted and sentenced to the electric chair. On the eve of Reid's execution, Law examines the murder scene for seemingly the hundred-and-first time, and this time he figures out that an elaborate death trap was built into a lamp over Amos Reid's chair, rigged to drop a heavy block of dry ice onto his head. If he can show this to the governor, the execution can be stayed!
Flying his plane to the Governor's vacation cabin, Law is shot down by a mystery aircraft, but he has bought himself some extra time, by pre-arranging with an accomplice from Reid's own electric company, to black out the power at Sing Sing prison. The next day the Scientective demonstrates, to the Governor and the District Attorney, how the death trap operated, and they are convinced of George Reid's innocence.
Appearing in Wings Wendall: "The Missing Bombers"
- Military Intelligence
- Wendall's C.O.
- His Excellency (Apparent Death)
- Colonel Davis
- Seattle, Washington,
- extinct volcano, above the Arctic Circle
- Langley Field, southeastern Virginia
- squadron of USAAF 2-engine bombers (one destroyed)
- USAAF 1-engine scout plane (Destroyed)
Synopsis for Wings Wendall: "The Missing Bombers"
At a hidden base in an extinct volcano in Alaska, "His Excellency" is using an ultra-sonic engine-stalling antiaircraft weapon to steal U.S.Army bombers, and using drugs to recruit the bomber crews to his service. Wings Wendall is sent to investigate, finds the villain's secret base, disrupts his plans, and causes him to flee in a stolen bomber. Wendall uses the villain's own ray weapon to crash the fleeing plane into the villain's own arsenal.
- Captain Cook:
- In the 2nd panel of the 4th page of this story, in a dialogue balloon, he calls himself "Creig Cook of Scotland Yard!"
- Espionage, Starring Black X:
- Captions now refer to Imperial Japan as "The Orient"; the previous issue's captions named it "Japan".
- During this story, an alliance among three leading democracies (the "Tri-Power Pact"), to join their naval strength in the Pacific, was signed in Geneva on 10 December. Captions do not name the three nations. This treaty has no close analogue in real world history.
- This is the second appearance of Madame Doom, who will return in Smash Comics #8.
- Batu is an expert pilot. He also can make a ghostly image of himself appear wherever he wants it to.
- Black Ace's boss is not named in this issue, and still looks exactly like "Colonel Atwater", formerly "Major Murdock", formerly "Major Gale".
- First issue for Flash Fulton by Paul Gustavson.
- Hugh Hazzard:
- In this issue, Bozo the Iron Man catches a bomb and throws it at a plane in mid air, to fatal effect.
- Hugh Hazzard gets knocked unconscious for what might be the first time.
- Invisible Justice:
- The Invisible Hood is attacked, in a swamp in Florida, by a big green reptile. The caption and the hero both refer to this beast as a crocodile.
- Wings Wendall:
- The villain "His Excellency" has a foreign-sounding nom-de-crime and is described in one caption as the "mad professor"; no name and no nationality are established for him. Prior to this story's events he has extensively researched U.S. Military Intelligence, and knows who Wings Wendall is at first sight.
- His plane crashes into an arsenal; we don't see a body.
- At this story's end, His Excellency's ultrasonic antiaircraft ray is in the possession of the U.S. military.
- Also appearing in this issue of Smash Comics were:
- Will Eisner signed his Espionage stories as "Will Erwin" and his "Archie O'Toole" stories as "Bud Thomas".
- George Brenner signed his Clip Chance stories as "Scott Sheridan" and his Hugh Hazzard stories as "Wayne Reid".
- Art Pinajian signed his Invisible Justice stories as "Art Gordon".
- Discuss Smash Comics Vol 1 4 on the forums
- Cover gallery for the Smash Comics series
- Images from Smash Comics Vol 1 4