"Newsboy Legion: "Prevue of Peril"": To help spread awareness of the conditions around Suicide Slum, the Newsboy Legion decide to make a movie. With a camera they borrowed from Jim Harper, the boys start filming scenes around the area. From people living in ramshackle homes, to kids having t
Star-Spangled Comics #12 is an issue of the series Star-Spangled Comics (Volume 1) with a cover date of September, 1942.
- 1 Synopsis for Newsboy Legion: "Prevue of Peril"
- 2 Appearing in Newsboy Legion: "Prevue of Peril"
- 3 Synopsis for Star-Spangled Kid: "Case of the Precious Peach"
- 4 Appearing in Star-Spangled Kid: "Case of the Precious Peach"
- 5 Synopsis for Tarantula: "The Menace of Steeplejack Stoll's Gang"
- 6 Appearing in Tarantula: "The Menace of Steeplejack Stoll's Gang"
- 7 Synopsis for Penniless Palmer: "Mystery of the Hiccupping Parrot"
- 8 Appearing in Penniless Palmer: "Mystery of the Hiccupping Parrot"
- 9 Synopsis for TNT & Dan: "Remember Yesterday"
- 10 Appearing in TNT & Dan: "Remember Yesterday"
- 11 Synopsis for Robotman: "Satan's Machine Shop"
- 12 Appearing in Robotman: "Satan's Machine Shop"
- 13 Notes
- 14 Trivia
- 15 See Also
- 16 Links and References
Synopsis for Newsboy Legion: "Prevue of Peril"
To help spread awareness of the conditions around Suicide Slum, the Newsboy Legion decide to make a movie. With a camera they borrowed from Jim Harper, the boys start filming scenes around the area. From people living in ramshackle homes, to kids having to scavenge for food in the trash, they capture it all on camera. Trouble finds them, though, when Big Words trips and falls through a skylight while filming on a roof. Three hoodlums in hiding get the shock of their lives when he lands on the table they sat around. They're about to pull out their gats when Scrapper yells down after him, scaring them off. Big Words managed to get the thugs faces on camera, and Gabby and Tommy find a bag full of money in one room. This makes them all a target. The hoods put on masks and come after the Newsboys! Luckily, Jim Harper comes along to see them getting attacked and steps in to their rescue. But one of the men lands a hit on Jim, knocking him down long enough so that they can run away with the bag of money and the film reel. What they don't know is that Big Words pulled a switcheroo, and the reel they got was blank. Jim Harper takes the film to develop it back at the precinct, hoping to use the images of the three thugs to aid in their arrest.
Later, the three hoodlums, realizing they've been tricked, drive up to the Newsboys on the street and point a tommy gun at them. The Guardian suddenly appears like a thunderbolt, crashing through the car window onto the gangster, knocking the gun from his hands! Big Words is excited to capture the Guardian in action on camera, as his friends cheer the hero on. The gang kick the Guardian out of the vehicle as they speed away.
Meanwhile the Newsboy Legion puts up posters all across town advertising a free block party, with a movie that features the Guardian! This also gets the attention of the three hoodlums. Many people of the upper and middle class community congregate together to see the boys' movie. Jim drops by to return the cannister, but he leaves before they turn on the projector. He knew they'd be disappointed. Because when Gabby flips the switch, the expectant crowd gazes at... a blank screen. Tommy and Big Words check the film to see that it is not the same one they gave to Jim. The crowd boos and jeers, just as a car comes rolling straight towards the Newsboys! Yet once more, the Guardian makes his appearance and causes the hoods to crash! This time they're out for good. The Guardian takes the stage next to the boys and proposes the crowd should notice the courage and hard work that the kids put into gathering everyone together tonight. True, their movie was a flop, but they succeeded in showing everyone the poor conditions people have lived in down here. The crowd changes their tune almost immediately, and promise to donate thousands of dollars to fix up suicide slum and make it more livable.
As the money comes in, Jim Harper returns to see how his are holding up. They still believe he is the Guardian, the cuts on his face from fighting and greasy hands from messing with the gang's car prove it. But Jim brushes it off, explaining he cut himself shaving this morning, and his hands are just a little dusty.
Appearing in Newsboy Legion: "Prevue of Peril"
- Three hoodlums (Unnamed)
- Tony the fruit seller (First appearance)
Synopsis for Star-Spangled Kid: "Case of the Precious Peach"
While driving the Rocket Racer along a city street, Sylvester and Stripesy see a little girl get hit by a car! The car keeps going, but the little girl needs help first. They take her to an apartment building and lay her in bed for a doctor to look her over. In her weakened state she can only utter one thing: "15... Peach". The doctor believes that getting the girl what she wants will raise her spirits, although just one peach should suffice. It seems something weird is going on... Every grocer the American avengers visit becomes nervous when asked for a simple peach. One accuses the Star-Spangled Kid of being a spy for someone called Smiley Malone. Then, the Kid and Stripesy come across a store clerk being beaten up by two men! They come to his aid, their fists meeting faces until the thugs are sent running. The shopkeeper tells his saviors why he was attacked; there was a new racket forcing shops around town to pay protection, and he had refused. The peach farmers weren't even able to get their product into the city because they wouldn't pay the mob, either.
Disguised as peach growers, Sylvester and Pat drive out to the mob-owned farmer's market. They get stopped, as expected, and told if they want to sell peaches they needed to pay the fee: One-thousand dollars. Feigning outrage, Sylvester refuses. He and Pat let themselves get attacked without offering much resistance. By doing this, they are taken to meet the boss, Smiley Malone. Kid gives the signal, and he and Stripesy take off their disguises. Smiley gets a right hook to the face, while his mob are tossed in the pig pen with the livestock. Before the police mop up the operation, the Kid makes Smiley tell him where to find some peaches. They still needed to get one for the little girl, after all. The only place that was able to get some sent through was the gangster den, the Happy Hour Club.
The Rocket Racer is able to get the duo to the club faster than a regular car, but they switch it back to its limousine appearance before knocking on the door in their plain clothes. No need to cause trouble just yet. Sylvester introduces himself, and it is by coincidence that his last name "Pemberton" happened to be the password to get in. When he and Pat enter, they discover an illegal gambling den. At a different time, they'd bust the place as their superhero personas, but there was a goal they needed to achieve today. Over on the table, a lone peach. The last one. Sylvester moves to grab it, but another hand snatches it up first. Freehand Finnegan, owner of the Happy Hour, shoos Sylvester like he were a pesky gnat. This makes Pat angry enough to punch the man. Now they had to fight, but first a quick change. Sylvester and Pat disappear outside, and moments later the Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy appear, and start taking the place apart, fighting any gambling crook who gets in their way. The Kid and his pal catch up to Finnegan as he gets to his car. Stripesy grabs the peach from him in triumph. But the Star-Spangled Kid sees something that makes everything click into place. He tells Stripesy to grab Mr. Finnegan and get back in the Racer. They needed to get back to the girl.
In her borrowed bed, the girl is awake and feeling better. She's offered a peach by Stripesy, but she says she doesn't like peaches, much to Pat's surprise. Sylvester brings Freehand Finnegan in and holds up his license number to show the girl. She nods and confirms that he is the one who hit her. It was a Florida plate, otherwise known as "The Peach State", with 15 being the license number.
Appearing in Star-Spangled Kid: "Case of the Precious Peach"
- Smiley Malone (Single appearance)
- Freehand Finnegan (Single appearance)
- Little girl (Unnamed) (Single appearance)
- New York City
- The Happy Hour Club
- A Peach
Synopsis for Tarantula: "The Menace of Steeplejack Stoll's Gang"
Steeplejack Stoll has taken a young boy hostage. Thanks to the Tarantula, the boy is returned to his wealthy father, Kip Van Warne, and Steeplejack is tied up in strands from the crimefighter's webgun. Kip makes an offer to Tarantula, to work for him and be his full-time bodyguard, an offer that is refused. But Van Warne doesn't want to take "no" for an answer.
The radio station broadcasts an alert, that Kip Van Warne is himself now being targeted by the criminal underworld. The story is a fake, called in and paid for by Kip, who is hoping it will attract the Tarantula so he can be hired. But Steepejack's gang hears the announcement as well, believing it to be real. They invade the home of the socialite and hold him at gunpoint. The Tarantula swoops in and saves the foolish Van Warne from certain death. A lesson is learned, Kip Van Warne will hire a proper bodyguard instead. Money doesn't buy everything.
Appearing in Tarantula: "The Menace of Steeplejack Stoll's Gang"
- Steeplejack Stoll (Single appearance)
- Barty (Single appearance)
- Kip Van Warne (Single appearance)
- Van Warne's son (Single appearance)
- Meadows (Single appearance)
- Piggy (Single appearance)
Synopsis for Penniless Palmer: "Mystery of the Hiccupping Parrot"
Penniless Palmer and his friends, Bunny, and Oxie, find themselves out on the street when the landlord kicks them out. With every check he's received thus far going to charity, he had no money left to pay the rent. A voice rings out as they ponder their predicament. A parrot stumbles at their feet, seemingly drunk. Bunny holds the poor bird in her arms, while across the street the likely owner, in a stupor of his own, calls out for his pet. Pen catches the fellow, who can barely stand on his own. Bunny recognizes him, though. His face was in the papers, it's Algy Barker, who inherited four million dollars from his Aunt, as long as he didn't get drunk before his twenty-first birthday. So much for that money. Just then, two goonish gentlemen rudely push past the trio and take Algy. Pen doesn't like any of it, least of all being shoved by a bully. He confronts the brutes, and when they attack him, he knocks them down. Before leaving, they pour a bottle of alcohol over Algy's head. Strange. Now Pen suspects someone is trying to cheat Algy out of his inheritance.
Oxie helps carry Algy, while Pen and Bunny head to his home. His cousin Jason waits for them there. After seeing Algy's condition, Jason calls his lawyer to have him barred from receiving any money. Algy starts to come around, his head no longer swimming. He swears to Pen that he never touched a single drop of liquor. He was in his room, dressing up to go to the theater. He then recalls his parrot started singing, then he felt lightheaded. That was all he remembers. The lawyer doesn't believe him, but Pen gets a thought! The penniless detective grabs Algy's cousin and leads the group upstairs to the bedroom. Inside the air conditioning vent was an oxygen tank. As everyone knows, pure oxygen can make a person act drunk, even a parrot! It was a gag, set up by Jason, to cut Algy out of his inheritance.
Penniless shows his friends the check for solving the case: money he promises to spend wisely, like paying the landlord what they owe in rent.
Appearing in Penniless Palmer: "Mystery of the Hiccupping Parrot"
- Jason (Algy's cousin) (Single appearance)
- Mr. Noop (Jason's lawyer) (Single appearance)
- Chub (Single appearance)
- Binks (Single appearance)
- Algy Barker (Single appearance)
- Hector (parrot) (Single appearance)
- Aunt Cynthia (Mentioned only) (Deceased)
Synopsis for TNT & Dan: "Remember Yesterday"
At Southfield High School, Tex Thomas's colleague "Old Park" Parkinson is reluctantly being squeezed into retirement. Thomas and his star pupil Danny Dunbar, in and out of their costumed identities, travel from city to city in order to recruit some of Old Park's most successful former students, including some top-level politicians and scientists and industrialists, to throw a big tribute banquet for their beloved mentor, and dissuade the school board from retiring him. This works out, and Old Park stays on at the school.
Appearing in TNT & Dan: "Remember Yesterday"
- "Old Park" Parkinson (Single appearance)
- his former students:
- Skinny Simms, senator (Single appearance)
- Dr. Danvers, scientist (Single appearance)
- Calvin Cole, manufacturer (Single appearance)
- his former students:
- Wilbur (Single appearance)
- Teddy (Single appearance)
Synopsis for Robotman: "Satan's Machine Shop"
At a court hearing, the criminal lawyer "Slick" Sharp gets his client off with a "Not Guilty" verdict. The prosecution balks as Slugger walks away a free man.
Sharp returns to his headquarters, where his gang is waiting. Sharp is truly a criminal lawyer, in the literal sense. He even has a member of his gang working the local newspaper. The only one he fears is the metal hero Robotman, and Slick had a plan on how to get rid of him. He tells his news contact to print a story, telling how he was a crooked lawyer who gets fellow criminal free of charges. It sounds self-incriminating, but it also would certainly draw Robotman's attention.
In the laboratory, Chuck brings the newspaper headlines to his friend and lab partner Robotman's attention. It might be worth checking out this "slick" lawyer. The man of metal puts on his Paul Dennis disguise before leaving, then in a blunt move, walks directly up to Sharp's home and confronts the boys guarding the place. They are no match for his cyborg strength, Paul simply crashes the door down to the surprise of every gangster in the room. The guards fire a bullet at him, only for it to bounce off his back. No use hiding it anymore, they all realize he is Robotman! Sharp and his men toss a wall of furniture up and dowse the lights in the room. This is no obstacle at all for the robot crimefighter, though when he flips the lights back on, the room is empty. Where did they go? His eye lenses can pick up even the most microscopic detail, like a secret panel in the wall that would lead to a hidden tunnel. Robotman heads down the passage to be met with a white powdery substance sprayed on him. But he doesn't need to breathe, so it shouldn't be a concern. Except Robotman finds it getting harder and harder to move around, almost like his mechanisms are jammed up. Slick laughs at the confused hero, and explains that it was diamond dust they hit him with, a substance that can jam up his joints when it gets lodged inside them. The gang set the hero up on a pedestal in their chop shop, planning to take him apart piece by piece later, after they come back from pulling a bank heist.
So here he is, left alone and stuck in a barely moving body. With a single, rigid movement of the arm, Robotman pulls a screwdriver out of his chest compartment and begins unfastening the bolts holding his torso together, then his legs, and his arm. With that done, he starts putting himself back together, the idea being that this should loosen his joints enough to get him back in fighting shape. But there is just one more thing he would need, and he sees it in one of the barrels in the corner: a nice oil bath, to wash away the remaining dust and lubricate his joints. Now he was ready to rejoin the fight!
The Ambers National Bank is in the middle of being robbed. Slick Sharp and his gang are about to get away with the money in the vault, when Robotman enters the scene! Sharp calls on one of his boys to attack the meddling robot with a blowtorch. The crook manages to torch one of Robotman's hands off, unfortunately his metal arm is now burning hot, and each swipe he takes at the gang lets them literally feel the heat. He forces them back into the vault, closing the protective barred gate behind them. Using his melted hand as a makeshift lock to keep the gate closed, Robotman puts an end to the criminal lawyer's career.
Back home, while Chuck designs a new hand for him, Robotman tells his friend he has a few new ideas for upgrades to his body.
Appearing in Robotman: "Satan's Machine Shop"
- "Slick" Sharp (Single appearance)
- "Scribbler" Mace (Single appearance)
- "Hot-Shot" (Single appearance)
- Slugger (Single appearance)
- New York City
- Ambers National Bank
- Published by Detective Comics, Inc.
- The Newsboy Legion's Guardian's chronologically prior appearance was in All-Star Squadron #43, and his chronologically next appearance is in All-Star Squadron #50.
- The Star-Spangled Kid's chronologically prior appearance was in All-Star Squadron #32, and his chronologically next appearance is in Star-Spangled Comics #13.
- TNT and Dan's chronologically prior appearance was in All-Star Squadron #32, and their chronologically next appearance is in Star-Spangled Comics #13.
- The Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy created special "maneuvers". These moves are mostly illegal for anyone who isn't a costumed crimefighter to use.
- "Maneuver XY-27": Activate a switch on the Star-Rocket Racer to make it illuminate in bright light, blinding onlookers.
- "Maneuver M-33": The Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy let themselves get beaten up.
- "Maneuver L-23": Charging as a team to knock down an obstacle. (i.e. A door, a gate, a hoodlum, etc.)