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Sunday, February 02, 2014

Adventure Comics #271 - April 1960

Comics Weekend "The Second Deluge!" by Robert Bernstein and Ramona Fradon.

It's Adventure Sunday!

"The Lord said to Aquaman: 'Go into your own title, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.'"
It's a very busy night for our heroes, after one ship after another finds itself in trouble and needs help. The next morning, Captain Noah and his ark drift by Aquaman and Aqualad. The Sea King comes aboard, wanting to see how all the animals and fish are doing.

Aquaman, impressed with how much Noah knows, promises to go fetch two octopi for the ark. But what he doesn't know is, Noah created each storm himself!
...and so ends another adventure for Aquaman and Aqualad!

As fun as this story is--and it's a lot of fun--this particular adventure really belongs to Ramona Fradon. From the killer splash to the final page, Fradon gives every panel her all. The action is well staged and exciting, and yet Aquaman, Aqualad, and "Noah" all remain distinct people, helping tell the story with their facial expressions and body language.

I found it interesting how this story does its best to dodge any religious implications--Aqualad seems to buy into it, a little, but Aquaman thinks the guy is a kook, and he never changes his opinion. And, of course, he's right--because he's Aquaman!


Richard said...

In 1960 a loon who claimed that the Lord was going to send powerful storms to punish the wicked and destroy the world would be laughed at. In 2014 people who say the same are elected to high office and have their own tv shows. I tend to be harsh about the early Sixties because of the pervasive sexism and racism of that era, but in this respect they seem like an age of enlightenment.

Unknown said...

Viva Adventure Sunday!

That splash is killer indeed. I love page 7-panel 2, where Aquaman oh so casually rides out of the whale spout. Wonder how much practice that one took?

Spoiler alert: Don't read this story until AFTER you've seen the upcoming Aronofsky Noah film. You never know.

James Chatterton

Anthony said...

Imagine the Comics Code would've prevented anything that came off as critical of religion (or implication of such). No atheists (and little acknowledgment of non-Christians as it is) in 60s comics...

@James Chatterton: Wouldn't a lot of people have already "read the book"? :-p

Anthony said...

Hit "post" before finishing...

Re: Superboy: this issue's a landmark issue for the Boy of Steel. The plot: Superboy befriends a young man named Lex Luthor, whose family recently had moved to Smallville. After building him a lab, an accident (a fire, made worse by Superboy improperly putting it out) causes the destruction of a protoplasmic lifeform Lex was working on plus causing all his hair to fall out. Enraged, Lex sets about to try to one-up Superboy by improving life in Smallville with various inventions. However, they all backfire, forcing Superboy to intervene and save the day. Finally completely fed up, Lex vows to prove to the world his intellectual superiority over the Boy of Steel---and later Man of Steel---by destroying him. (Yes, he had more of a motivation than "my hair fell out," as many seem to erroneously think is his Silver Age motive...)

Not only does it give an origin for the Earth-1 Lex, but also is the first published story to give him a first name at all (he was just "Luthor" before this story).

Unknown said...

Is this when Aquaman started wearing green gloves?