Thursday, March 08, 2007

Ripples Through Time - 096

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 #172 Aquaman Splash Page
Adventure #172 (January 1952) - Aquaman Leaves The Sea!

After a gang of crooks robs Captain Banks, Aquaman goes inland to capture them.

Now, you all know I've been looking for some time for the origin of the "one hour limit" in Aquaman's stories. So far I haven't found it. But this tale makes a LOT of the implication that Aquaman is weaker out of water, and the splash page actually has Aquaman getting groggy from being on land! The opening text box asks, "Does his strength ebb like the tide when he leaves his natural domain?" While the clear answer from the story is no, it's hard to not see this as the possible first cut into Aquaman's abilities.

Aquaman goes after the crooks on land because he made a promise to protect Captain Banks in some unrevealed story. Even after he's been shot, Aquaman continues to pursue the bad guys, and states that he owes Captain Banks a debt of honor. Like Captain Banks, the bad guys assume Aquaman is helpless on land, and are very disturbed when he shows up and easily takes them down. As in a previous tale, Aquaman rides in a train in a milk car.

Finny Friends Report: Aquaman has a sea gull track the bad guys to their lair after he's been shot. He has a goldfish turn off the light in their hiding place to rattle them, then a sea eagle captures one of the thugs. At the end of the story, Aquaman rides off on his sea turtle.

Captured/Knocked Out report: Aquaman is shot by the crooks as he follows them to shore, and his arm is injured for the remainder of the story.

Quotefile: Captain Banks, after Aquaman says he's going after the crooks on land, "But what good will that do? Your strength is in your sea power, where all your friends are! On land, you'll be all alone... and helpless!"

Have you read this story? What do you think?