Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Harrys Heroes

Harry’s Heroes: The Hangman

In an earlier post I expressed my profound admiration for the artistry of cartoonist Harry Lucey. I’d like to start a series of postings that feature his work on “straight” heroic adventure heroes. Today I’m featuring the MLJ character the Hangman.

Harry drew more pages featuring the Hangman, than on any other of the costumed heroes that he worked on. Granted other artists did significant turns on the strip, notably Paul Reinman and Bob Fujitani, but Lucey produced well over a hundred pages for the feature.

Here is his striking cover for SPECIAL COMICS #1 (Winter 1942). For the following issue the book was renamed HANGMAN COMICS. It went on for a run of 8 issues, before it changed into BLACK HOOD COMICS

That issue also found Harry delineating a 1-page recap of the character’s origin. Long before Marvel or DC, MLJ killed off a major player in their stable of heroes when the Comet met his demise in PEP COMICS #17. That crusader’s brother took on the struggle to continue the fight against crime under the guise of the Hangman.

Hangman’s original home was PEP COMICS where he shared page space with the company’s star hero the Shield as well as with a new humor strip about a high school boy and his friends… a kid by the name of Archie. The following tale was told in PEP COMICS 26. In the same issue that funny strip introduced readers to Veronica Lodge.


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