Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Mystery Men Comics #2 - pt. 1

We finally reached September 1939! And Mystery Men Comics #2!

We meet up with The Green Mask again, this time involved in a tong war. Tong wars apparently were real things, plaguing New York and Chicago into the 1930s, so they seem to be much on the mind of comic book writers even years later.

The Fu Manchu-like villain this time is called San Sin and, luckily, Green Mask seems to know exactly where San Sin is headquartered as if there was a sign out front. And, amazingly, the very first Chinaman Green Mask points a gun at just happens to know exactly where San Sin is and leads him there.

After that, things get a little more interesting. Sure, pit traps are old hat already, but San Sin doesn't try to flood it, or let in a crocodile, or have the walls close in -- he plans to just hold Green Mask there until he starves or gives up.

Green Mask playing along seems, at first, to be a cheap trick to stretch out the story, but the Green Mask has information we were lacking, that San Sin is a smuggler. Green Mask is playing along in order to be led to the people San Sin is getting his contraband from.

How long was Green Mask staking out this hideout before the adventure started? Somehow he knows even the hidden entrances to this place, even though no one ever showed him.

Hostage-taking can lead to some tough problem-solving situations for players to role-play through.

It's the futuristic year 2000!  Rex Dexter wants to go to the planet Capris -- Capris? Okay, I can buy that maybe people in the "future" would know of planets the rest of us didn't know about, but how does Rex from 1939 know about this radium-rich planet? Reading travel brochures?

The planet Capris looks an awful lot like Saturn there. Is it just the future name for Saturn? Then again, they're clearly walking on a planet with ground, so they're not visiting a gas giant like Saturn. Maybe Capris is one of Saturn's moons renamed then? Most likely I'm over-thinking this.

A planet so radioactive that it isn't safe to come within 1,000 miles of it -- that seems at least possible.

The Capris-Men (Caprisians?) are some freaky-looking aliens; I'm thinking I would give them 5 Hit Dice. Wilder yet is putting your Heroes in a scenario where they lose if they're stripped naked.

I like how, in the year 2000, we have magnetic ships that can make it from Earth to Saturn (maybe Saturn?) in four days, but men still wear top hats. It's true what they say, men's clothes never go out of fashion!

"I have a vision...of using interstellar tugboats to haul a planet-sized mass within the length of four of the Moon's orbits from Earth, and watch the gravitational pull tear Earth apart." What a Charisma score he must have to make the nations of the world go along with this!

This is from Billy Bounce, and it demonstrates what creative uses pepper and a fountain pen can be put to, so long as your Editor allows it. In some ways, this is no more ridiculous than pulling planets into Earth's orbit...

Chen Chang has thugs working for him. Given they have 2 Hit Dice, that might explain how they are able to pitch men over the railing so easily.

If I haven't said so before, I really like the artwork on Chen Chang...

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus)

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