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Sunday, January 03, 2010

More Fun Comics #90 - April 1943

Comics Weekend "Somewhere In The Pacific!" by Ruth Lyon Kaufman and Louis Cazeneuve.

More fun with More Fun!

For the first time, Aquaman gets directly involved with the war effort--very involved, as we'll soon see.
Thius story opens, not with Aquaman, but with a small patrol of Marines, trying to defend themselves from the Japanese army on a small island.

After tossing some grenades, they find that their radio is dead. Separated from their commanders, they are now without a ship, orders, or even a way to communicate!

More than worrying about themselves, the Marines are more concerned with telling the fleet that this small island is not uninhabited, as was believed.

But what the marines don't know is that one of their patrol, a man named Crane, was not killed in an artillery explosion--he was on board their boat when it was hit, but he was thrown into the water, where he was rescued by...Aquaman!
Aquaman leaves Crane to go offer help to the others. But since he doesn't want to get shot, he tries to sneak up on them--which is not a good plan:
Aquaman uses some electric eel pals as connecting wires for the Marine's radio, enabling them to get a message out. He then goes back to the cavern where he left Crane, only to find him gone.

Crane left Aquaman a message scrawled in sand, telling him that he's off to rejoin his men, via a small passage.

Aquaman gets concerned Crane might end up falling into enemy hands, so he follows:
Great Neptune, do I love that middle panel, with Aquaman dressing up as some sort of sea serpent. That is dispensed with way too quickly for my tastes.

Anyway, Aquam and Crane rejoin the Marines, to warn them of the enemy trap they are about to fall into. Once they have, they want to get another message out to the fleet, but Aquaman's eel pals "ain't giving any more juice."

They wonder if Aquaman can deliver the message personally, but he seems to have disappeared! They think he's abandoned them, but they don't have time to worry about that, since the enemy is now here!

The Marines engage in gruesome, hand-to-hand combat, while Aquaman is trying to help in his own way:
Of course, Aquaman didn't desert the Marines, as is soon revealed. In fact, he helped fight off an entire armada by himself (plus some of his finny friends). He even ends up getting the Navy Cross!

This original Aquaman is a champion in the cause of democracy. Of course the later Aquaman, being a King, isn't quite so enamored of the concept. Yet another difference between our two heroes (that, and the Golden Age Aquaman's latent racism).

Credits on these More Funs are scarce, and when no information on the writer was available (either via the GCD or Mike's Amazing World of DC Comics), I credited Mort Weisinger.

But this issue's story is definitely credited to a different writer Ruth Lyon Kaufman (aka "Bunny" Kaufman, which sounds like a pseudonym you'd use when you're working with Irving Klaw or somebody like that), making Ms. Kaufman the second Aquaman writer, ever.

Oddly, Ms. Kaufman only has two writing credits to her name--this story and an issue of Batman. Very unusual.

Like I mentioned above, this moment goes by way too quick:
Man, do I love Aquaman's "sea serpent" costume. I wish we could've seen more of it!

1 comment:

Josh Hill said...

I love this era of comics. And these Aquaman tales are perfect examples of how much fun it was back then. Hence the name "More Fun" :)