Friday, July 2, 2010

Golden Age Villains - Black Death

The Black Death was a villain in a Woman in Red story from Thrilling Comics #10, published in November 1940 by the Better/Standard/Nedor house. It's difficult to find really interesting costumed villains in Golden Age comics some times so I really liked this one. In the story he was actually a character in a stage play which was in rehearsal. After a certain line is delivered the disguised actor is suppose to fire a gun loaded with blanks at another actor but, and you probably already guessed it, the gun was actually loaded with real bullets. When they find the actor who was playing Black Death backstage he claims not to remember anything. Turns out the theater owner was the real killer wearing the Black Death disguise and had drugged the actor playing the part. His motive seemed a bit obscure to me but had something to do with the female star of the show, who he had also kidnapped - what some guys won't do to get a date. Anyway, the Woman in Red solves the case and brings to justice a really interesting villain. The suit looks like it was made from Black patent leather and is highlighted by the skull on the chest and the facial features which resemble a skull. To my knowledge this was Black Death's only appearance. The figure was a Toy Biz Marvel Silver Surfer painted to match the character.
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