Sunday, November 19, 2006

Ripples Through Time - 019

I'm reading every Aquaman solo adventure in publication order, one per day. After I read each story I'm going to post the cover/splash page and a few thoughts on the story.

More Fun #90 Aquaman Splash Page
More Fun #90 (April 1943) - Somewhere in the Pacific!

Aquaman helps a US Marine scout patrol battling the Japanese on a small Pacific Island.

This is the first story in which Aquaman is explicitly referred to as American, although it has been inferred before. At the end of the story, as he's being awarded the Navy Cross, the officer tells Aquaman that he's getting the award "for valor and distinguished service in the cause of your country." Also, at the end of this story, Aquaman addresses his readers and asks them to buy war bonds and stamps.

Aquaman doesn't get involved in the war effort much in these first stories. This was only the third time he gets involved directly. The War is a big part of the background of his stories, but direct involvement has been fairly rare so far.

Besides commander Bob Crane, the only named characters in this story are "Tex" and "Yank". I don't think the writer was trying very hard... The porpoises are poorly drawn, I don't think the artist had any reference for them... When they spot Aquaman, one of the Marines says, "Another legendary tale come true!" I wonder what other tales have come true for these guys... Aquaman dresses up as a sea monster to scare away the Japanese, and it works... Aquaman apparently abandons the Marines as the fight starts, but he's gone to deal with the mini subs.

Captured/Knocked Out report: Aquaman is never captured or knocked out in this story, but he's nearly accidentally shot by the US Marines.

Finny Friends Report: A porpoise leads Aquaman to a safe cave on the island. Another porpoise helps him out of the water to where the scout patrol is holed up. A group of electric eels powers the patrol's radio for Aquaman. Aquaman leads "an armada of giant squid" against the Japanese baby subs.

Quotefile: Aquaman, after nearly being shot by the Marines: "That was a mighty warm reception, boys!"... The Japanese threaten torture: "must we use unpleasant inducements?"

Have you read this story? What do you think?

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