Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Saturday, November 23, 2013


Captain Steve Savage #2, December 1951

Avon Comics first ran their Captain Steve Savage comic book in January 1950.  Savage was a U.S. Air Force Captain running dangerous missions over Korea; the comic book was likely meant to be a one-shot since there was a near two-year time lag before the second issue.

Issue #2 was titled Captain Steve Savage and His Jet Fighters and featured a three-part story with episodes "Perilous Mission Over Korea," "The Choquin Massacre," and "The Death Gamble," with pencils by Louis Raveilli.  Also in the issue was a story featuring private eye Mike Strong, "The Mystery of the Empty Graves!"

Issue #2 also had a two-page text story, "Danger No. 5!," featuring Leslie Charteris' modern-day Robin Hood Simon Templar, the Saint.  Comic books often used text stories as fillers, but this one seems unusual.  Other issues of Captain Steve Savage used war and adventure tales as such filler, but nothing using a well-known fictional character such as the Saint.

Avon Comics also published The Saint comic book, beginning in 1947.  The comic stories were authorized but not written by Charteris.  (Charteris did write The Saint comic strip from 1948 to 1961; many of those continuities were published in comic book form, but none in the Avon Comics series.)  On at least one occasion The Saint comic book printed a two-page text story about the Saint that tied into that particular issue.  But a Saint story in another comic book?  It may have been a filler intended for The Saint comic book that did not fit in that book.  (The comic book ended in March of 1952, just a few months later.  Avon may have had enough material to fill the last issues and this story was an orphan.)  Or the story may not have been authorized by Charteris and the publisher snuck it into another book.  Your guess is as good as mine.

No writing credit is given for the story and the author is certainly not Charteris.  But it is a small and curious piece of Saint history.

Anyway, here is Captain Steve Savage, private eye Mike Strong, and Simon Templar -- 1951 vintage.

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