Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Keen Detective Funnies v. 2 #11

Back at Centaur, we rejoin the Masked Marvel as he climbs the side of a building and leaps from one building to another. They're pretty mild as superpowers go, not all that different from what a mysteryman could do with stunts.

Despite looking like an ordinary plane, the Masked Marvel's plane has VTOL capabilities.

Again, the Masked Marvel seems de-powered here, as he finishes a fantastic leap with a swing on a rope, as if he needed that to land safely (though maybe he just does it for a flourish to look cool).

His invention is an everlasting fire extinguisher (a handy trophy item, if not a tad bulky).

This is Dan Dennis, FBI.  Dan's plan is to shut off all power in the city -- including to hospitals -- on the off chance that his hunch is right and the mad scientist is using his own power source. Asking the power company to do something like that for you is one of those things that should require a very high encounter reaction roll -- maybe an 11 or 12 on 2 dice.

This is from Dean Masters, D.A. -- though he's not actually here right now, as this is a long flashback scene involving the bad guy, here called a mad man. I've wrestled with how to stat madmen in Hideouts & Hoodlums, giving them multiple attacks in Supplement V.  Here, madmen appear to just have better carrying capacity.

This is A Russell Granville Adventure, though it's not the adventure I'm interested in here, but that last panel and the discussion of air control in mines. Finally, I have an explanation for why multi-level hideouts will need pit traps, and furnaces and electric fans as well. These will need to be part of the dressing of large underground hideouts.

There's a surprising amount of interesting features on this page. There's the shaft to the surface with baskets of burning coal in them. There's the mystery of the odd crank piece and how it fits to a crane disguised in a chimney. There's the idle speculation about murderers using asbestos suits and gas masks -- well-equipped mobsters, as both have been trophy items on the lists since Book II.

There's a good amount of detection work in this story, and I'm not going to show you all of it, but I'm particularly impressed with Russell Granville here when the questions whether the reporters are real. Because, as a player, I might have suspected as well that this was a perfect opportunity for the Editor to introduce a twist in the story. Also, it's just a good idea for Heroes to fact check things they learn in-game -- not every character they meet is going to tell them honest information.

Pirates steal $15 million in gold from this ship -- pirates seem to be the most successful criminals in early comics.

The naval destroyer has a "sonic detector" on board -- another term that would have predated Radar.

This is Dean Denton, by the way.

Language, Dean!  But, really, did you fail to search your arch-nemesis upon capturing him? Did you let your Editor have his own characters do it, knowing that he could have fudged search dice rolls, or hand-waved rolling altogether?

And just how did the Conqueror have paralyzing gas concealed on his person? Concealed capsules? There's a paralyzing raygun in the trophy section, and sleeping gas capsules, but nothing yet that combines the two...

(Scans courtesy of Digital Comic Museum)

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