Wednesday, March 12, 2008

World's Finest Comics #175

World's Finest Comics #175 (On Sale: March 12, 1968) has a beautiful Neal Adams cover.

"The Superman-Batman Revenge Squads" is a classic story for mainly the artwork. It is written by Leo Dorfman and drawn by Neal Adams and Dick Giordano. This is only Giordano's third piece for DC, the last being two years prior. This is the beginning however of one of the greatest artistic teams in comic history, even if it is a rocky start.

In Dick Giordano: Changing Comics, One Day At A Time by Michael Eury, Giordano relates, "I remember getting the pencils. They were the best pages I'd ever gotten to handle. And it was the weakest job I ever did with Neal."

Personally, I don't thank the pages are that bad, but maybe that's just me.

Batman and Superman hold an annual contest where they challenge one another in tests of skill. The newly formed Batman Revenge Squad teams up with the Superman Revenge Squad to sabotage the contests. They all plant bombs in the trophies that the two heroes collect. When the trophies are brought back to the Bat-Cave and the Fortress of Solitude, they explode. Reprinted in Super-Team Family #1, Superman in the Sixties TPB, and Batman Illustrated by Neal Adams Vol. 1 HC.

The back-up story features the Martian Manhunter in "The Strange Experiment of Dr. Erdel," a reprint from Detective Comics #225 by Joe Smachson and Joe Certa and is the first Martian Manhunter story. Professor Mark Erdel has designs a robot brain that can probe other dimensions. The first time he uses the machine to probe space and time, the machine teleports a green-skinned alien to Earth.

Using telepathy the alien communicates to Dr. Erdel. He is J’onn J’onzz, a martian scientist. J’onzz requests to be sent home. The professor explains that in order to send the martian home he must redesign the robot brain which could take years. In order to blend in with the population, J’onzz changes his appearance to that of an ordinary Earthman. Abruptly, the professor collapses, suffering from a heart attack. The shock of the experience has killed him. J’onzz is now trapped on Earth.

J’onzz takes the Earth name John Jones and explores the world. He is able to extract gold from sea water to get some money. After traveling the world, J’onzz decides to fight crime as a police detective. He qualifies and quickly becomes a rookie detective.

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

1 comment:

B Allen Krauz said...

This Issue & the one with the "Composite Superman", was always special to me as a kid.
The NEAL ADAMS-designed costume of the Batman Revenge Squad "chest emblem", had always stayed with me over the years, eventually swiping it for a character I created called, "DEATHMASK"...