Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Saturday, March 9, 2019


Hoo doggies!  This is "The Official Publications of The Straight Shooters of America" (brought to you by Ralston-Purina).  Luckily, you don't need to be a member to view the scan of this issue.  And your parents can be assured that "NO blood-curdling horror, NO gangster heros, mar these comics.  NO glorification of war, crime or slaughter -- nor are its pages crammed with cheap, badly drawn illustrations, to debase young reader's conceptions of form and proportion."

'There were only twelve (maybe thirteen, who knows?) issues of this comic (1940-1943), and the final three were renamed Tom Mix Commandos Comics.  In addition to this title pushing Ralston-Purina products, the one-time "King of the Cowboys" was featured in 61 issues of Tom Mix Western (1948-1943); he also was a regular feature in eleven issues of The Comics from Dell (1937-8).  I doubt Mix ever saw any of the comics titles with his name; he died, age 60, on October 12, 1940 after the car he was driving was caught in a flash flood and plummeted into a gully.  A suitcase placed behind him and containing cash, traveler's checks, and jewels rocketed toward him  and broke his neck.

Up front in this issue is "Tom Mix...and the Train That Vanished from the Face of the Earth."  Tom is summoned to the War Department and tasked to guard the new Army mystery plane XP-80.  to foil a ruthless saboteur named Dr. Goliath by smuggling the plane in an ordinary baggage car, under the watchful eyes of Tom Mix.  tom and young Jane board the train, only to meet a disguised Dr. Goliath who manages to throw Tom off the train.  The train (and Jane) then vanished!  With the help of Pecos Williams and Washington Jefferson Lincoln Lee, Tom managed to track down the baddies and when Dr. Goliath escapes in the XP-80, Tom manages to lasso the plane in mid-flight and -- SPOILER ALERT! -- climbs up to save the day.

In "Tom Mix and the Cry for Help!" young Jane visits her friend Pops Johnson, an old prospector, only to have the two waylaid by a couple of gunmen seeking the gold that Pops was rumored to have hidden in his cabin.  The bad guys steal the gold, bind Jane and Pops to cabin timbers, and set the cabin on fire so there will be no witnesses.  Bwahahahaha!  But the neer-do-wells did not count on Jane being  member of the Straight Shooters Club.  Using her toes, Jane manages to type out a morse code message to Tom on her Straight Shooter Telegraph Set.  Tom (with his horse Tony), Pecos, and the Old Wrangler ride to the rescue.  Coincidentally, immediately after this story there is an ad for Straight Shooter's Electric Telegraph Set (just 10 cents in coin and one blue seal from a Ralston hot cereal box -- what a bargain!).

To help bulk out the 34 pages of this issue, there are a whole lot of fillers, many of which plug Ralston, clean living, and/or the Straight Shooters Club.


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