Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Whiz Comics #2 - pt. 4

This is still Lance O'Casey's strip, though there's no sign of him on this page. I share it here, not because being dangled over a tiger cage is so original a trap, but for the unusual addition of having the prisoners placed on swings over the cage. There would be a chance, then, that they could swing themselves out far enough that they could drop outside the cage, though there would be a danger of falling wrong (with a failed save vs. science) and still landing inside the cage, plus there's still falling damage and the chance of being shot even if they do land right.
Somehow the tigers managed to break out of their cage, which you'd think has always held them successfully before. It is worth noting that an unintelligent animal, entering a melee, will not automatically attack the Hero, but would pick a random target.

That is one fantastically capable monkey. I have an entry for monkeys in the Mobster Manual already; I should add that supporting cast monkeys can do anything a person can do.
The last feature to debut here is Dan Dare, of the detective genre. It's hard to take "Seals of Doom" seriously as a story title when you find out, a page later, that it refers to the animal seals.

That said, it's interesting to see a story set in Florida, indeed the first I can recall. Sea Castle is not a real town, that I can tell, though it seems to be a common name for businesses in Florida.
$5,000 seems to be a very generous sum for detective work in 1940. That Dan so cavalierly promises to return it if he fails suggests that he's pretty well set for money already (or just highly confident!).
Note how easy this investigation is for Dan. The chief of police not only coaches this man, a complete stranger, on every detail of the case, but then simply hands him the murder weapon to examine. When actual (ahem) legwork is required, he simply calls up his friend Carol and asks her to do it all, not even bothering to find out where Pete is for her first. The first case could be explained by a great encounter reaction roll, while the second case might warrant a loyalty check from Carol in the near future.

Speaking of legs...that panel 6 had to have been pretty scandalous for a kid's book in 1940.
Player tip: when someone suspicious tells you not to go swimming somewhere, you should bring nothing but a little red bathing suit and go swimming there.

This is not the first time we've seen an underwater entrance to a hideout.
Whoa, what's going on here? Bending bars, swimming three miles, and then climbing a sheer wall while soaking wet is starting to make Dan look like he's a superhero instead of a fighter. One or even two instances could be explained away by really good rolls, but all three of these on the same page really make it looks like he's activating powers.

Superhero or not, Carol has got to be questioning her loyalty to Dan right about now.
This is the first time I've ever seen the term "community chest" used outside of the board game Monopoly.

It's also worth considering, for home campaigns, if you want to send them instructions to pursue scenarios via telegram, rather than wait for them to pick up on plot threads on their own.

(Scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus.)

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