Retro Review: Atom and Hawkman #29

Cover dated November 1968, and featuring a nice Joe Kubert cover, cameThe Atom and Hawkman # 39, sub-titled; The Titan and the Fury!  Previously there had been an Atom comic book and also a Hawkman comic book, but suddenly they were merged into one book, continuing the numbering of the Atom series.  Obviously these two heroes had reached a sales crisis and DC attempted to save the two heroes by combining them into one comic.

It actually wasn’t a complete shock, as each had teamed up with the other previously in each others books, and knew each other’s secret identities, similiar to the Flash and Green Lantern relationship.  In fact, once the original silver ageGreen Lantern comic ended, Hal appeared in back-up stories in The Flash!

The first combined story was entitled; “Vengeance of the Silver Vulture” and it was written by Bob Kanigher, nicely drawn by Murphy Anderson and ablely inked by Joe Giella.  The story opens with The Atom and Hawkman travelly on foot through the Mayan jungles, where they are set upon by clay attackers!  Yes, you read that right, clay!  A two-page flashback tells how our heroes got here, in Mexico, and why.  They then stumble upon a young native boy being attacked by a puma (the animal, not the shoe!) and Atom saves the day.

Then it’s Hakman’s turn, as he battles the hordes of Tekla, a mad Mexican/Mayen out to rule all.  While this is happening, the Atom rescues a Silver Vulture statue from a mine shaft.  He is overcome by ancient fumes and turns against Hawkman!  Hawkman sends a bird messenger to summon the aid of Hawkgirl, who makes an appearance only to be captured by Tekla and his men.  Hawkman and Hawkgirl are to be sacrificed, when the Atom is suddenly struck by lightning and regains his senses!

He frees the Hawks and the Silver Vulture statue is given to the local boy, who the Atom had previously saved.  THe boy chooses to destroy the cursed statue, rather than risk it poisoning others!  All in all a pretty dull comic.  I give it only two (2) out of five (5) Legion Flight Rings.  The cover by Kubert is the nicest thing about this book actually!

About Greg Turner

Greg Turner (@gregturner16) is Back to the Past’s archivist and an auctioneer. He writes the columns “Fabulous Finds” and “Retro Reviews” on alternating weeks for the website and spins classic 45′s each week for Vinyl Tuesdays.

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