Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Our Army at War #215

Our Army at War #215 (On Sale: December 2, 1969) has a Sgt. Rock cover by Joe Kubert.

We begin with Sgt. Rock in "The Pied Piper of Peril" by Robert Kanigher and Russ Heath. In a small French town Rock and Easy Co. are ambushed by a squad of SS Troopers. Through the use of slang terms Rock is able to communicate to his men without the Nazis understanding and is able to kill the entire squad, save their commander. The fighting over the women, children and old people of the town come out of hiding and thank Rock and his men for saving them.

Almost immediately the prisoner seems to have some strange power over the youngsters of the town. They sit and watch him while he whittles a flute and seem to spend all of there time around him. Bulldozer remarks how it reminds him of the Pied Piper story. The kids will have nothing to do with Rock or his men and actually seem to protect the Nazi from his captors.

Then next night the kids steal Easy's guns while they sleep and Rock and the SS Officer square off, where Rock finally takes him out. The kids then confess that the Nazi had told them they would never see their fathers alive and that their mothers would also be killed if they did not cooperate with him. A pretty silly story of not much consequence if you ask me.

Next is "The Face of Death" drawn by Fred Ray regarding Joel Kurt, an artist sent by newspapers to try and capture the feel of battle during the Civil War. Kurt keep getting closer and closer to the action, saying he wants to capture the "face of death" for his readers, but he always feels he is failing. Finally he disobeys orders and follows the men during a charge against the Confederates, where he is shot. After the battle they find him leaning up against a tree, where he asks for his paper and pencils. He says, "I've got it... got it at last! Now..eveyonel...will see...the real face of death!" He then dies and when they look at the paper there is nothing but a scribble on it. The only way to see the real face of death, is to die. This story I liked.

We end with a Great Battles of History story, "Liegnitz and the Mongol Tide" written and drawn by Ric Estrada. It is more of a history lesson than a story of the battle where Duke Henry of Sliesia was defeated by the Mongol hoard.

Edited by Joe Kubert.

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