I'm reading every Aquaman solo adventure in publication order, one per day. After I read each story I'm going to post the cover/splash page and a few thoughts on the story.
Adventure #126 (March 1948) - The Man In The Iron Shoe!
When wanted criminals start committing suicide by drowning themselves, Aquaman is called in find out why.
We get lots of named criminals in this story, but the main character of focus is never named! We learn of Trigger Malone, a murderer, Mark Smith, a thief, Snatch Uzell, a kidnapper, and Tipper Dale, a jewel thief. All of them apparently commit suicide, always with a police officer as a witness. Well, except for Tipper Dale. His "officer" turns out to be Aquaman in disguise, who follows him into the water.
Once in the water, Aquaman learns that the criminals use iron shoes to drag them into a waiting sub, which then takes them to an underwater resort where they get plastic surgery from a gang doctor who runs the whole operation. Aquaman fights the doctor and his rescued criminals, and uses his knowledge to outwit them.
One big problem... Aquaman lets a lot of oxygen into a room. The doctor then fires a bullet into that room, which bounces off a metal wall. Aquaman (and the doctor) must be really really lucky that the bullet didn't cause a spark, leading to a deadly conflagration.
Finny Friends Report: No fishy help in this story.
Captured/Knocked Out report: Aquaman allows himself to be captured when he follows the sub, but escapes as soon as he's sized up the situation.
Quotefile: Narrator, "What's this? Aquaman using a gun, after having sworn never to kill or maim a prisoner? Then why should he reach for a gun now? Will he spurn his sworn code?"
Have you read this story? What do you think?