Sunday, January 08, 2012
Forbidden Worlds #108
When the rocket finally lands on another planet, Caton discovers that the humans there have patterned their civilization after Earth's medieval period, with knights in armor. He also learns that he's tremendously strong and has other powers:
He wins the heart of the princess, but one thing makes him miserable. When he returns to Earth, he'll go back to being a weakling. Fortunately she has a wizard who can take care of that:
Comments: Cute story. Writer Richard Hughes did a lot of these types of tales, where the hero takes a trip (often to another planet) and comes back with new confidence and drive. It's not hard to see the appeal to adolescent boys, who were often subjected to bullying and the scorn of the girls they adored.
The next tale concerns a chemist who works for a tobacco company, trying to come up with a filter that doesn't change the taste of the cigarette. His latest effort seems to work at first, but soon leaves him feeling dizzy. He reads the news on the bus home and learns that Ambassador Alvarez was killed and that Pan-Oceanic Oil's stock had soared. When he gets home, he still feels odd and his wife suggests that he go to bed right after supper:
The third story is a very shot tale of a sailor who receives a visit from his wife in a dream. She's concerned about reports of severe weather on the seas. The next morning, his bunkmate reports that he also saw the woman. And when he returns home, his wife had had the same dream of visiting him. What happened?
Comments: These stories are not Hughes' forte, because there isn't room for any real characterization.
The finale is the cover story. Twin boys were separated at birth due to the divorce of their parents. One of the twins, Leonard, grows up in America and becomes an unsuccessful painter. He's told his paintings don't have any effect, and so:
falls into an old well the next morning and drowns, much to the delight of Mephisto, who comes to collect his soul.
Comments: Somewhat predictable, but still very entertaining. It's the flip side of the Arthur tale. Overall, as usual with ACG comics, I loved this issue.