I'm reading every Aquaman solo adventure in publication order. After I read each story I will post the cover/splash page and a few thoughts on the story.
Adventure #154 (July 1950) - Aquaman's Sea-Circus
Ichthyologist Enoch Druten summons Aquaman to Zero Island, then threatens rare species of fish with poison unless Aquaman performs in a sea circus.
Druten's motive is a bit weak. He just wants to be recognized as a genius fish expert, and decides the way to do so is to get Aquaman to perform in his sea circus with one of virtually every type of fish in the sea. This harkens back a little to Adventure #109, in which a man had spent his life gathering specimens of every type of fish, but Druten is a wee bit more insane and considerably less honest.
As usual, Aquaman outwits the bad guy with the help of some finny friends. In general, heroes of the Golden Age were simply smarter than their opponents. Despite being a self-declared genius, Druten was no match for Aquaman. Always be suspicious of people who call themselves smart.
Finny Friends Report: In the sea circus, Aquaman has four fish "sing" a quartet, two swordfish duel, flying fish perform on a trapeze, and an archer-fish spits at targets. As a finale, Aquaman enters a cage of "man-eating tiger sharks" to the awe of the crowd. To thwart Professor Druten, Aquaman sends pilot fish on a special mission. They summon sawfish, electric eels, and sharks who bypass Druten's poison system and free the threatened fish. Then Aquaman has dolphins haul Druten to the nearest Coast Guard patrol.
Captured/Knocked Out report: Aquaman is "trapped" by Druten's threats to the fish in the electric cage.
Quotefile: Megomaniac talking, "I've sent over 2,000 message afloat. Aquaman is sure to find one! Wait until he learns that professor Enoch Druten, the world's greatest ichthyologist, has summoned him!"
Have you read this story? What do you think?