Monday, May 14, 2007

Ripples Through Time - 124

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.

This review is dedicated to Polite Scott, who is a medical blogger as well as a comic book blogger. I kept thinking of him while reading this story with all its ridiculous medicine. Get well soon, Scott!

Adventure #200 Aquaman Splash Page
Adventure #200 (May 1954) - Aquaman, Microbe Hunter!

Aquaman is called on a mysterious mission inland: to rid a famous scientist of a dangerous virus by being shrunk and injected into the victim's blood.

Finny Friends Report: Aquaman rides his sea cow in this one, but otherwise his finny friends don't help him. He does manage to communicate with Welky's white blood cells, though, and gets their help.

Quotefile: Aquaman, as he's shrinking, "T-this reminds me of Alice in Wonderland! I--I hope my story ends happily, too!"

Man, how many problems are there with this story? Aquaman is summoned because he can breathe liquid, but he's being shrunk to the size of cells. Um. When he gets into the body, he see (and describes for the curious young readers) "red corpuscles" and "white-celled phagocytes", but there's only one virus cell. A single virus cell caused sleeping sickness? To trap the virus cell, he closes a valve in the heart then sneaks up from behind by going through the entire circulatory system. Wouldn't that kill Welky? I mean, closing the heart valve can't be good for his health. How exactly does Aquaman communicate with the white blood cells? And seriously, what happened to the poor rabbit?!?

There's a strange sequence at the beginning in which Aquaman is setting up a "shell-speaker" that will allow him to listen for danger signals on the surface. No sooner does he have it set up than he hears cannon fire and learns that he's being summoned by the Navy for a secret mission.

I thought the plotline might be based on Fantastic Voyage, but this story came out over a decade earlier than the film.

Aqua-Exclamations: "Holy Herring", "Holy Catfish"

Have you read this story? What do you think?