Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Mighty Crusaders-Rick, Jerry, Paul and Vic-1966

From the "So bad it's GREAT" department, here's one of the worst but most enjoyable comic book stories of the request yet! When Simon and Kirby crated the Fly in 1959 for Archie, the Black Hood hadn't really been gone all that long but the other MLJ heroes were all in the distant past.  The Black Hood soon joined the Fly and Fly-Girl for a few adventures, though, as did a very modernized version of the Comet, the first super hero ever to die in comics. Supposedly. Within a few years they had formed a super hero team alongside the son of the original Shield--The Mighty Crusaders! With DC having such success with their Golden Age revivals, writer Jerry Siegel (along with Rich Goldwater, Vic Gorelick and artist Paul Reinman) decided to go all out and revive 90% of the MLJ one tightly squeezed story! Now the Hangman and the Wizard had already been revived...but as villains! So they were the villains here in TOO MANY SUPER HEROES! An accurate title if ever there was one! Still, much fun if you know the characters, many of whose Golden Age adventures we've already presented here at 4CS.


Smurfswacker said...

I have never got past the "so bad..." to the "good" part on the Mighty heroes. I hated them when they came out and while I am more tolerant of them (realizing this was a bunch of old guys without a clue trying to be hip), I just can't embrace them. Even though Siegel gave us the all-time oddest super (villain) power: "Thunderbolts crashing from my nostrils!"

GamerGuy said...

I am so very very sorry for asking to be inflicted with that :)

Joseph Hinman (Metacrock) said...

It is a train wreck. I love the Mighty Crusaders, but I think what I love about them more than the way they were is the way they could have been. It was the unknown aspect I found alluring.

I had very little exposure to them in the day. I owned the only copy of the only Archie hero comic that I ever saw. That was the first issue of the MC. My mother bought it for me on the spur of the moment becuase the train stopped someplace like Alabama as we journeyed from Dallas to Atlanta. I never saw them in Dallas, no idea who they were. I was drawn to the idea of a new group and company that was neither Marvel nor DC. I was totally oblivious to the fact that the writers could not understand the distinction between petty bickering and characterization.

I still love the Crusaders I wish I could see them as I imagine they might be. Yet all comics are like this in a sense. I love the JSA, there were a lot more examples of much greater quality of JSA than there were examples of Mighty Crusader quality, yet I still feel DC never used the JSA properly. I never got enough of what I loved about them, the team ups, the old guys coming back, the allure of the unknown, the idea of a past I've never heard of. The way the were in the silver age, Black Canary's stockings. You know.

I love all the comics, and most especially JSA, JLA, and LSH yet what I love the most about them is what they could be not what they are (certainly not) or even totally what they were. It's what they suggest that I like the most. More true of the Mighty Crusaders.

It's so rare to see any team story on the Net I'm glad you put this up. thanks, Book Steve.

rnigma said...

These comics creators who had grown up in the Depression and WW2, trying to be "hip" to trends of the mid-late '60s, were rather like the old guy who puts on a leisure suit and a bad rug and tries to pick up young women.
DC and Marvel were just as guilty (viz: Snapper Carr, Rick Jones), but what makes the "Mighty Comics" egregiously bad was their attempt to emulate Stan Lee's carny-barker hyperbole, and failing even at that.