Strange Tales #112 (Human Torch)
Issue(s): Strange Tales #112 (Human Torch story only)
Review/plot: A television commentator is bad mouthing the Torch, turning the town of Glenville against him. The Eel robs a famous inventor's lab.
Worst expository dialogue ever: "Can't... hold you! A greasy mixture on your outfit renders you as slippery as the creature you're named after!"
The Eel has stolen a mystery object that turns out to contain "miniature radio-active atomic pile". The Torch goes looking for the Eel, but his "tracer fire ball" (given to him by the inventor) accidentally leads him to the Thing instead, because the Thing was carrying a note written by the Eel. The Thing makes his own attempt at winning the "worst exposition ever" prize, and, if you're judging entirely on volume, he wins hands down. Thank god he's made of rock or he'd be crushed by all those words.
The Eel accidentally activates the device, but the Human Torch fights him...
...and finds the ticking bomb, absorbing all the radioactive heat so that it doesn't blow up a nearby veteran's hospital. The television commentator's son lived at the hospital, so now the commentator likes the Torch. Torch almost dies from the radiation (and all of the underground crime scene, including the Wizard in his jail cell, rejoice) but Reed is able to save him.
The Thing, who earlier was torn up by Johnny's impending death, reneges on his pledge to be nice to him if he got better.
Also in this issue, a gem collector steals a gem from a religious statue which then wakes up and kills him, and a space traveler lands on a planet where whatever you want to happen becomes true but then finds out that he was just a figment of someone else's fantasy.
This issue and Strange Tales #113 are scripted by Jerry Siegel, the co-creator of Superman, under the pseudonym of Joe Carter. Siegel's story is tragic but also unfortunately typical of comic book creators of the time; one of the creators of the character that essentially launched the entire super-hero genre had been working for little pay under the abusive Mort Weisinger at DC. He didn't last long at Marvel due to his old fashioned scripts and the fact that Stan Lee wasn't yet comfortable at delegating writing work to other writers at this time.
Quality Rating: D
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A, unless you want to go by the weird thing on Sue's head, which places this around FF #16.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
If you look at the cover, you'd think the Eel was the "Living Bomb"...only he's referred to as the Eel in a thought bubble by Johnny. I wonder what makes eels explode anyway?
And if all "bubbles" was like that super-long Thing one, maybe modern comics would be way more interesting...or just "text books with funny pictures".
Posted by: Ataru320 | January 21, 2015 8:43 AM
I've been reading these Strange Tales Torch stories the past week and, for the most part, they're pretty unimpressive. I actually enjoyed this one, although the word balloons definitely are crowded at times as in the Thing scan you show above. The worst part is that most of it is completely unnecessary "explain what the art is already showing" stuff that makes a lot of Silver Age comics unreadable for many today.
Posted by: Robert | January 30, 2016 6:51 PM
Comments are now closed.
|SuperMegaMonkey home | Comics Chronology home|