Sunday, February 27, 2011

From the Pulps - Doc Savage

Some of the comic book heroes back in the 1940s originally appeared in the pulps during the 1930s, including the Shadow and my featured character today, Doc Savage, the Man of Bronze. With bronze skin and golden eyes he has trained his mind and body to the peak of perfection. Olympic athletes would fall easily to his blinding speed and massive strength. His mastery of a multitude of scientific disciplines is unparalleled. He is man, raised quite literally to the very peak of his abilities. Plus he happens to have a fortune in gold that he can draw upon for anything he requires. He also has a vast spirit of adventure, which he shares with his constant companions. Andrew Blodgett (known as Monk) Mayfair (to the left of Doc in the picture) is short and sturdy, a practical joker and a whiz in chemistry. Theodore Marley (known as Ham) Brooks (to the right of Doc) is a Harvard lawyer and the natty dresser of the group, with a sword cane thrown in for good measure. Monk and Ham are always going at one another and even have pets aimed at provoking one other. Monk's pig is called Habeas Corpus to poke fun at Ham and Ham's strange ape is called Chemistry to give Monk a ribbing. Appearing now and then is Patricia or Pat Savage, Doc's cousin and the only female semi-member of the bunch (on far left). Doc considers her pesky but she's just as competitive as any of the men, and nearly as skilled. John Renwick (or Renny), a civil engineer, is a very large and scrappy fellow with large fists and the will to use them. William Harper Littlejohn or Johnny (back center) is an archaeologist, geologist and paleontologist, who is strong if skinny and as comfortable in a lecture hall as battling bad guys alongside Doc. And finally there's Long Tom (Thomas J. Roberts on the back left), looking pale and emasculated but just as scrappy as the rest, he's a brilliant electrical engineer when he's not out adventuring with Doc. Doc and his family and friends started out in the pulps with scientific gadgets and lots of action and were later converted to the comic medium by DC and Marvel comics. There was even a movie featuring their adventures with Ron Ely. The action figures were done from the Marvel comics version, which I thought kept to the spirit of the stories. Doc was made from from a Street Fighter M. Bison with a head from another series I don't remember. Pat has a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle April head on a Marvel Dagger figure. Monk has the body from Jurassic Park Nedry and the head from an Alien human figure. Ham has a 2-Face body with the head of a 1940s Star Trek Data. Renny had a Peter Parker body with the head from Mr. Fantastic. Johnny has a Clark Kent body and the head from a Star Trek Barkley. Long Tom is a Seaquest O'Niel figure throughout.

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