The cover of Crack Comics #9, January 1941, is attributed to Gill Fox. It includes both of my favorite subjects – bikes and babes. Even better, babe on bike. The book is packed with long forgotten superheroes: The Clock; Alias the Spider; The Black Condor, The Red Torpedo and Madam Fatal.
As if that wasn’t enough, the book includes one page “Screwball rules of behavior” by the iconic Rube Goldberg.
- The Clock’s crime fighting costume was a straightforward business suit and face mask. He got his name by using a calling card that stated “The Clock Has Struck”. The college football and polo exploits of Brian O’Brien prepared him to execute The Clock’s superhero maneuvers much like the Wharton School of Business prepares future Wall-Street business leaders.
- “Alias The Spider” was yet another well-to-do individual who had the free time to spend seeking to rid the world of crime. His sidekick was Chuck the Valet. The superhero and his “real life” persona Tom Hallaway were created by writer-artist Paul Gustavson of Slave Girl fame.
- The Black Condor (created by the Eisner/Iger studio), in Tarzan-like fashion, was rescued and raised by a condor as one of its own chicks. Eventually the child outgrew the nest, even learning how to fly. He soon applied his condor-like developed skills to joining the ranks of the champions of justice.
- The Red Torpedo first appeared in Crack Comics #1 (1940). Written and drawn by Henry Carl Kiefer, Red Torpedo aka Jim Lockhart was a Navy Officer that built and ran an advanced “torpedo-like” submarine. As the Red Torpedo he defended the oceans against multiple World War II dangers, which eventually evolved into single arch-enemy, Black Shark.
- Madame Fatal was remarkable for being a male, Richard Stanton, who dressed up as a superhero in the guise of an elderly woman. Enough said.