Posts tagged ‘Bronco Bill Starr’

Action 311 – Superman – King of the World, and Supergirl and Super-Horse start dating

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From the cover of Action 311 (Action 1964), I was fully expecting the Swan/Klein story to be an “Imaginary Story,” but it isn’t.  Superman really does take over the world.

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Red kryptonite splits Superman and Clark Kent into different people.  This had happened before, though creating an evil Clark and Good Superman.  Red kryptonite can never have the same effect twice, so in this variation, Clark is good, and Superman is evil.

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Superman heads to the United Nations, and demands that all the countries on Earth turn themselves over to his rule.  There is some debate among nations, but Superman shows what he will do to anyone who defies him,and everyone gives in.

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Superman builds himself a big castle.

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Dismayed at his behaviour, Clark forms an underground movement to overthrow him, consisting of Perry White, Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen.

The story concludes in the next issue.

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Supergirl has a busy Valentine’s Day, thanks to Dorfman and Mooney.

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Dick Malverne gives her candy.  Boooring.  Jerro tops that with a display of glowing fish. Comet watches, getting all jealous.

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Comet travels back in time and begs Circe to make him human.  She warns him that she sees him regretting this choice, but begins a spell which will do just that.  It’s time-delayed, allowing him to make it back to his time period, before he changes and his powers fade.  But before he tranforms, Comet is found by a masked thief, and used in his robberies.

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The thief changes clothes and takes off with his loot, just as Comet takes on human form again. He puts on the thief’s clothes – so you can see exactly where this is going to go.

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For a few pages, Linda is re-united with Bronco Bill Starr, and they spend some loving, quality time together.  Just a girl and her horse, making out in front of a waterfall.

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But then Bill gets accused of being the masked thief.  Supergirl is devastated, but chases him, convinced that he has also kidnapped Super-Horse.  Circe takes pity on him, and changes him back into his Super-Horse form.  The actual masked thief is caught, clearing Bill’s name, but too late.  He’s a horse again.

Action 301 – Superman murders Clark Kent, and Comet’s story gets even more complicated

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Edmond Hamilton and Al Plastino craft a really interesting Superman tale in Action 301 (June 1963).

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Clark Kent and Lois Lane are on the track of a gang of thieves.  The bad guys find the reporters,and are out to kill them, but Clark changes to Superman, and throws Clark Kent to his death.  What?  The body is not found, but Superman is arrested anyway, though the police, and Lois Lane, and even the reader, is mystified at this turn of events.

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Though no one wants to betray Superman, and many people testify to his long record of selfless service, Lois Lane is forced by the prosecution to admit that Clark kissed her just before Superman “killed” him, and lay the groundwork for a motive of jealousy.

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Things clear up as the story reaches its conclusion.  Superman wanted to be in the prison, so he would be in the right place to stop the gang of thieves master plan.  The murder trial is called off when people discover Clark Kent in the cell.  He claims to have been there all along, just disguised as Superman.  A pretty clever way out.

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Dorfman and Mooney add another level of complexity to the Super-Horse saga in this issue.

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Comet accompanies Supergirl to Zerox, the Sorceror’s World, a location that returns many times throughout the years in the Legion of Super-Heroes series.  On Zerox, Comet finds a wizard, Endor, who gives Comet the power to transform into a human, when in the view of an actual comet.  Comet, in human guise, gets to rescue Supergirl, though he does not reveal his identity, and their meeting on Zerox is brief.

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Returning to Earth, Comet winds up turning human again, and takes on the identity of Bronco Bill Starr, a rodeo rider, with a strong bond with horses.  Oh, I should have mentioned that in human form, he loses all his powers.  Supergirl cannot contact him telepathically, and goes to see Lena Thorul for help.  She can only get an image of Bronco Bill, with no explanation.

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Supergirl heads to the rodeo, and hit it off with Bronco Bill Starr right away.  She sees that he has the same comet shaped mark that her horse has, but does not suspect any connection between them.  She does notice the similarity between the rodeo rider and her rescuer on Zerox, but writes that off to coincidence.

You can’t really blame Supergirl.  With all the twists and turns in Comet’s origin, who could ever guess at it?

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