This page lists the lesser-known super-powered and costumed adventurers from DC's Golden Age. For an indices of characters from key early comics, see :
The Black Pirate (and Son)
Created by Sheldon Moldoff
Name: Jon Valor
Known relatives: Donna Bonita (wife), Justin Valor (son, Black Pirate II)
First appearance: Action Comics #23 (Apr. 1940)
Black Pirate King Philip II of Spain Reign 1556 1598
Black Pirate bears a sun christened Justin Valor. A monarch once kind has taken to paths of greed and Valor, the fearless fighter rose to champion the people's rights as the Black Pirate. He is Englishman Jon Valor, member of court of King Phillip of Spain. 12 years pass and the boy grows strong and fearless, and earns his first sword training with his father. Donna Bonita is concerned, wishes he not know his father's secret identity. Justin takes to fighting in the street, the Black Pirate steps in and retreats quickly. A guardsman comes for Justin because he messed with the king's messenger. Before the king, Jon comes to dispute with him, rejecting his kingship, and fleeing the castle and the city. They collect his wife, pursued by Don Muerte and his men. The family board a ship at Barcelona but are pursued into the sea as well. His mask comes off and his son learns the truth. They win the fight and sail for America.
Near starvation, Jon's crew soon docks on the African mainland, governed by Jaime Lopez of Spain, abuses slaves. Justin doesn't like it and lays into a slave master, Jon buys the slave while Lopez gets word of the king's anger. The slave fights with them and Justin dons the Black Pirate's uniform. A jester joins them on the ship as they leave. They head for England, on which King Philip has declared war.
Philip hears of the Pirate's sabotage, then learns British fleet captained by Sir Francis Drake is setting sail. Jon and Justin on the boat in their costumes, has to fight off a mutiny who want to run from the armada. They jump over and climb onto Spanish ship, take it over, then to the British Flagship to inform Drake, send another Spanish ship into the drink. 8
Pirate goes to port of Calais, France, The French king plots England's downfall via the Scots, uses a young boy. Jon's jester finds his counterpart and gets intel French Blackguards have kidnapped the son of the Scottish king. Valor follows the French ship set for Scotland, frees the young boy, returns him home, gains promise of peace from king with England. 9
King Philip gets invite to coronation to Henry IV of France, masked ball at Marseilles, who is friend of England. Pirate saves his life. 10
Valor in Paris is the target of the Duc de Grande, cousin of Louis the Just, but finds the people hate him for being a tyrant.
The Black Pirate lands in the New World, the area named Virginia where colonists disappeared. They find a note warning of treacherous Indians. They engage and retreat to the ship to plan further. The Indians board in the night, killing one and kidnapping Justin. A captive white girl pities him as he's bound to a pyre. Jon and his men arrive and drive them off, taking the girl with them, her parents were killed. Justin is courtly to her but Jon tells him he's years away from official courtship age.
In America, Jon deals with fur traders who are evil and attempt to steal them back. Ends up fighting Indians, surviving their tests and they admire his courage, work with him for revenge on the other men. The chief even calls Jon like a son to him.
Valor returns to England. Versus Despard, criminal mastermind who uses an island as his base. They put him down, meet courageous Virginia, then take the island for their own.
"The Return of the Black Pirate" sets a new stage, in modern day, a new Captain Valor of a British warship approaches an island never before seen. His son is with him to explore, finding heavy, concealing mists, the war's guns have dispelled the mists to reveal it. They are spitting image of Jon and Justin, now an R.A.F. pilot 300 years later! It's been overun by Nazis. Inside they find portraits that look like them and a book telling of when winged flying men beset the island, masked, with bow and arrows, sent by Don Muertes. Today they uncover an old cannon and use it against Nazi planes.
Black Pirate answers call of King James to stop plundering knaves in London, led by masked Lord Tolliver.
Donna frets over Justin's contstant fighting, sends him to a gentleman's school where he becomes an instructor of fencing.
At sea, Black Pirate nearly capsizes. They set down in a strange place inhabited by mermen who call him "Earthman." Enidnu of Atlantis tells him to go back or face wrath of Seagrim. There are factions, green who are loyal to Princess Undine and red led by Seagrim whose son Malo wants to wed Undine. Valors captured, thrown into the Maw where great tentacled beast grabs them. With help from Enidnu they escape. They gather below water but in air, have giant idol of Poseidon. As thanks princess tells Jon if he ever needs help, dip Poseidon's ring into the sea and Atlantis will answer.
King James again sends for Jon when his son, Henry is ill, to find a cure, go to Africa for a draught to restore him. Off Ivory Coast they're overrun, sent into the drink, his Atlantean ring summons help, bring them to shore. They help African natives fight off invaders, then get the medicine.
From London stage, a crook actor's daughter takes revenge on Black Pirate. 22
A strange man tells tale of the Pirate's encounter with the Flying Dutchman. 24
Pirate is a fast-moving serial. Now in Cornwall Justin saves his father from hanging throwing a dagger to cut the rope. Never taking a pistol, defeats his nemesis with grti and sword. They save the king's son. 25
Pirate in Siberia, port of Tana on the Black Sea, Cossacks fight for their lives.
Black Pirate and Peril of Lin Yu, another Japanese invader, Togawa. The Governor's daughter dreams of the Valors' arrival. Caught in a typhoon, the Pirate's craft is tossed and they swim to shore on Lin Yu island, meet Mei-Ko. They're beset by invaders after jade.
Pirate generally did not continue its story from one issue to the next. Justin did age over time
Pirate: his Jester appears. Donna kidnapped but Jon is set on rescuing slaves, women and children, in a ship set for American Colonies. 29
Justin conveys a Moorish lamp from the Spanish King to England's king. It's said to give warning of danger.
Black Pirate meets Captain Thunder in town menacing people. Finds a map to the Land of the Little People, which they find. First spotting a tiny ship and meeting its tiny crewman, Prince Haroum who welcomes them. They are friendly to them. Thunder finds them, captures Valor and son. They destroy the map after leaving.
- Action Comics #23–36, 38–42 (Apr. 1940–Nov. 1941)
- Sensation Comics #1–31, 41, 42, 49–51 (Jan. 1942–July 1944)
- All-American Comics #72, 73, 83–102 (Apr. 1946–Oct. 1948)
- All-Star Squadron #54, 55 (1986)
- Comic Cavalcade #1, 2, 7 (1942–43)
- DC Comics Presents #48 (1982)
- Justice League of America #159–160 (1978)
A popular and exciting comic adventure, "The Black Pirate" endured for over eight years through three Godlen Age titles. The series was set in . While it was not set in the current day, its protagonists wore costumes and masks.
An Englishman in sixteenth century Spain.
Captain X of the R.A.F.
Name: Richard "Buck" Dare, aka The Aviator
First appearance: Star-Spangled Comics #1 (Oct. 1941)
Featured appearances: Star-Spangled Comics #1–7 (Oct. 1941–Apr. 1942)
This pilot served in the British Royal Air Force and was the grandfather of Ronald Raymond (Firestorm I). His son, Edward Raymond never knew Richard. Dare only introduced himself on the day of his son's wedding. (Firestorm #??) When next he returned to visit his son and grandson, it was to warn them of an old nemesis—the Russian called Stalnoivolk. Dare was unable to stop Stalnoivolk's attack and he was himself killed by the Russian superman. (Firestorm #71)
Cosmo, Phantom of Disguise
First appearance: Detective Comics #1 (Mar. 1937)
Featured appearances: Detective Comics #1–20, 22–37 (Mar. 1937–Mar. 1940)
Cosmo was a gentleman adventurer, crime-fighter, and a master of disguise. His strip was printed in two-color.
The Federal Men featuring Steve Carson
Created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster
Featured appearances: New Comics #2–11 (Jan. 1936–() • New Adventure Comics #12–31 () • Adventure Comics #32– 70 (–Jan. 1942)
The Flying Fox (Rex Darrel)
First appearance: More Fun Comics #37 (Nov. 1938)
Featured appearances: More Fun Comics #37–38, 40–51 (Nov 1938–Jan. 1940)
This hero was an aviator who wasn't a super-hero, per se, but who wore a pilot's cap with foxlike ears. When his goggles were on, it resembled the Batman's cowl.
Gary Concord, Ultra Man
Featured appearances: All American Comics #8-19 (Nov. 1939–Oct. 1940)
Sci-fi, future alternate earth
Name: Johnny "Genius" Jones
First appearance: Adventure Comics #77 (Aug. 1942)
Featured appearances: Adventure Comics #77–102 (Aug. 1942–Feb./Mar. 1946) • All Funny Comics #1–16 (Winter 1943–Mar./Apr. 1947) • More Fun Comics #108–125 (Mar. 1946–Aug. 1947)
Genius Jones has been revived in the backup feature of the 2007 Tales of the Unexpected. In this series, Dr. Thirteen leads a ragtag band of forgotten heroes who fight to stay relevant in a universe whose "architects" seek to sideline them.
Name: ?? "Hop" Harrigan, aka the Black Lamp, aka Guardian Angel
First appearance: All-American Comics #1 (Apr. 1939)
Series: All-American Comics #1-99 (Apr. 1939–July 1948) • Comic Cavalcade #3-30 (Summer 1943–Dec. 1948/Jan. 1949)
Featured appearances: Flash Comics #66-68 • Sensation Comics v.2 #1 (1999) • Young All-Stars #8
Assisted the All-Star Squadron once by flying them to Alaska. (Young All-Stars #8)
Little Boy Blue
+ The Blue Boys + Little Miss Redhead
Created by Bill Finger and Jon L. Blummer
Little Boy Blue: Thomas "Tommy" Rogers
Toughy: Herb Simms
First appearance: Sensation Comics #1 (Jan. 1942)
Little Miss Redhead:
Name: Janie (last name unrevealed)
First appearance: Sensation Comics #?? (??)
Little Boy Blue and the Blue Boys , typical American boyswith a sense of fair play and justice. In the big city with crime rampant, hoods under Wolf Lupo shake down merchants, they trust in new District Attorney Dan Rogers. His son Tommy doesn't like his father feeling helpless. Mother's name Martha. His friend Tubby is reading the new comic, Sensation Comics with "Wildcat." It inspires them to don costumes and become mystery men. When they go to their clubhouse, they find a kidnapped witness and are spurred to fight Lupo's men. They're helped by Toughy who becomes the third member of the Blue Boys. Tommy's costume is multicolored, with a red hood and boots, yellow sleeves, while the others are all in blue. 1
Dan Rogers reads about the Blue Boys. Tommy adopts an old horn like those used by Minute Men to call the group together. Used it to investigate a case of wrongfully accused man.
Blue Boys versus Croaker Shayne. Toughy a scrapper with a thick accent. Tubby always concerned about what his mother is thinking.
Boy Blue meets Officer Clancy, takes down Fancy Dan the racketeer.Toughy spins so fast in a circle that crooks go flying.
Boy Blue Tommy learns about mobsters upsetting the milk market racket. Great acrobatic prowess
When new fancy kid with blond long curly hair and britches comes to Tommy's school, Tommy steps in to defend him against bullies, but the boy is strong enough to defend himself, wants to be left alone. They go to his home find he's actually Midget Mike on the lam. 8
Tubby and Toughy also had a signal to call Tommy, a special whistle
Tommy calls Tubby "Joe." 16
Blue Boys meet a foster kid delinquent.
Blue Boys answer fire alarm, dash into burning building
Boy Blue art starting to be more expressionistic a la Kirby?
Tommy's dad buys him a pony that needs some new shoes. The old man who helps him is beset by robbers and Blue Boys (Toughy mentions he was reading a "Green Lantrin" story) mop them up.
Pages drop to 32 and Black Pirate appears again #41, moves into
Tommy overhears some tidbit about crime and the boys rush to investigate. Toughy's uncle Horace has come to live with him.
Little Boy Blue and the Blue Boys II
First appearance: The Flash v.2 #12 (1988)
Names: Shawn Rogers, "Static," and
- Sensation Comics #1–82 (Jan. 1942–Oct. 1948)
- The Big All-American Comic Book (1944)
- Who's Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #13 (1986)
- Who's Who Update '88 #2 (1988)
- The Flash v.2 #12 (1988)
- Seven Soldiers #0
Briefly succeeded by their offspring. (Flash v.2 #12, Invasion! #2)
A new hero called Boy Blue appeared as a member of the Vigilante's new Seven Soldiers of Victory. He was unnamed, but apparently a Hispanic teenager who wore a ghost suit that made him lighter than air or harder than diamond. He also carrired a horn with concussive properties. He appeared only once and perished along with all the Soldiers after defeating the Miracle Mesa Monster; they were slaughtered by the Gods of the Miracle Mesa. (Seven Soldiers Special #0)
The Masked Ranger
Created by Jim Chambers
First appearance: More Fun Comics #36 (Oct. 1938)
Featured appearances: More Fun Comics #36–41 (Oct. 1938–Mar. 1939)
Red, White & Blue
First appearance: All-American Comics #1 (April 1939)
Featured appearances: All-American Comics #1–69, 71 (Apr. 1939–Mar. 1946) • Comic Cavalcade #1, 2, 5-7 (Dec. 1942–Sept. 1945) • World's Finest Comics #1-7
Red, White, and Blue were fighters who had no super-powers but were strong and clever. Sergeant Red Dugan of Army G2, Whitey Smith of the Army, and Blooey Blue of the Navy three allies who team with FBI agent Doris West. A version of this trio appeared in Kingdom Come.
First appearance: Detective Comics #1 (Mar.
Featured appearances: Detective Comics #1-152 (Mar. 1937–Oct. 1949) • Adventures of Superman #467 • Action Comics #743 • Superman v.2 #44
Bradly was a non-costumed detective Golden Age, and the creation of Jerry Seigel and Joe Shuster. He debuted before Superman as a regular in Detective Comics. Bradley's face resembled that of Superman (as did their Doctor Occult). He wore the same suits that every early comics plainclothes hero wore. His partner was Shorty Smith, a very short, blond-haired man who idolized him. Appeared in Detective #500, partnered with Batman, Sherlock Holmes and Elongated Man.
In post-Crisis continuity, there appears to be three Bradleys. Slam Bradley Jr. (the original's son) debuted in post-Crisis Superman #44 (06.90). The young Bradley inherited his father's resemblence to Superman, and was once mistaken for Clark Kent. He showed up again alongside Superman "Blue" (Action #743, 1998), on the trail of a character named the Inkling. However, in the midst of the creative team upheavals in the Superman titles, Slam (among many other Metropolitans) was lost and forgotten. Slam Jr. recently became an ally of Catwoman, (Detective #762) Slam Jr. also has a son, Sam who was a police officer that went undercover as Smart Bomb to infiltrate the Society in Gotham City. He met Catwoman as well when Slam was kidnapped and tortured by the Black Mask. (Catwoman #50-52)
In Catwoman #54, Slam meets Ted Grant outside a bar; he says they must be the same age. If Slam meant that he was around during Wildcat’s early adventures, then Slam's Golden Age adventures likely stand in continuity. However, Wildcat has extended longevity and Slam may think that Wildcat is younger than he is.
Name: Cyril "Speed" Saunders
First appearance: Detective Comics #1 (March 1937)
Featured appearances: Detective Comics #1, 3–58 (Mar. 1937–Dec. 1941)
A non-costumed hero who became part of the Justice Society legacy in 1999. Speed was active in modern-day adventuring and was the grandfather of Kendra Saunders, Hawkgirl II. In a retroactive change to continuity, he was also made to be the cousin of Shiera Sanders, the original Hawkgirl. (Note: In later retrconned tales, Shiera's last name was spelled "Saunders.")