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Mighty Crusaders (vol 1) #6

Reviews for the various Mighty Crusaders Comics.

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Post Fri Dec 30, 2005 4:36 pm
Calum User avatar
Gem Mint
Gem Mint

Posts: 258
Location: Edinburgh

*** clicking the link below ***
*** carries a spoiler warning ***

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I just stumbled upon this incredibly detailed review of Mighty Crusaders volume 1 issue 6. Basically if you read the review, you don't need to read the issue!

I promise to post my own review of this issue soon.

Post Tue Sep 04, 2007 4:35 am
leonmallett User avatar

Posts: 523
Location: West Midlands, UK
Well, in lieu of Calum's review (which hopefully we will see!), and offering as few spoilers as possible, here are my thoughts.


What they could get away with in the 60's in story/plot terms, compared to the 80's or even what a modern audience would accept. Having read a few of that 60's run there were a few tropes that repeated themselves - conflict amongst the Mighty Crusaders (sometimes as a cover for hatching a plan against the master villain); main criminal masterminds with little or no explanation for their desire or motivation to defeat the premier team of ultraheroes; crazy action where each hero is taken down in turn whilst the others look on; the magnificent if inexplicable Starolator; equipment or objects utilised when apparently not there previously; crazy-sounding made up elements and chemical compounds which are basically as kryptonite of various hues, but affecting all ultraheroes and so on. And guess what? It is all in here, and more. The only modern writer who could get away with this kind of stuff and make it engaging and semi-plausible is Alan Moore (read Supreme to see what I mean). Imagine if...

Anyway, don't take my comments as harsh criticism. If you have only read Red Circle Mighty Crusaders then don't expect more of the same. But if you are nostalgic and prepared for a silly but fun ride through 60's super-hero comicana, then you could do worse than pick up a copy. The book is very much of it's time. The plot leans heavily on coincidence and there is no character development really, more just the approach of the time to repeat the situations that would outline each individual hero in their usual mold, but despite that I recommend this book and would love to see a collected edition.

Post Tue Jan 29, 2008 7:03 pm
Calum User avatar
Gem Mint
Gem Mint

Posts: 258
Location: Edinburgh

Image Image

Okay here's my review of Mighty Crusaders 6, August 1966:

First of all there are two things i want to say at the top of this review. firstly it's written by Jerry Seigel!!! Yes! Jerry Seigel, co-creator of superman!

Secondly, this story is silly. It's implausible and unbelievable. If you think this is inherently a bad thing, stay away from this issue. On with the review:

I loved this issue! it's camp, implausible and ridiculous! Those aren't necessarily the things i look for in a comic, but when done well, like anything, they are enjoyable.

The "2 big features" that the cover promises turns out to be a full length crusaders story split into several shorter chapters, much like a justice league story of this era, since the first four sections (or the first two parts!) feature three or four solo pages, featuring fly-man and flygirl, the shield, the black hood and the comet. These characters are not developed at all. The Shield is written as woodenly as Superman of this period. Luckily it's a team book, so it doesn't get boring. Every page is different. One thing i like about this story is the use of large panels. Several pages have four big panels rather than the more familiar nine panel grid scenario. the four parts mean there are a good few splash pages too.

In terms of story, this is highly tenuous. The basic plot is that each of the crusaders upsets a law enforcement agency. These agencies, as named in the story are the CIA, the FBI, the "secret service" and a chief of police. After this, they are hi-jacked while using their "starolator" to find out about any weird crimes. The perpetrator puts them in various perilous situations which they escape all of by using teamwork, then heir antagonist reveals that he represents yet another elite law enforcement agency, T.R.I.U.M.P.H., with no mention of what this actually stands for. The Crusaders are told they have qualified for employment in this agency and of course they accept. There's no real ending other than that. I thought the story deserved another page of wrap-up to be honest, though you don't feel cheated, there's enough story in there for one comic.

Some things in this story are ludicrous. Bill Higgins loses his job in the most unlikely way, just because that's his only character trait. Fly-man exhibits his ability to grow to an enormous size, which i think has only been seen once elsewhere. This was in the days when he would occasionally reveal a new superpower without any warning or explanation at all. The bad guy, Maestro, uses all manner of technical gadgets against the crusaders which are totally unfeasible and would have been prohibitively expensive even if they weren't.

The other ludicrous thing (apart from the Starolator) is the way the Crusaders don't appear to have any doubts or reservations (or even questions) upon finding out that an unknown man, who has kidnapped them and proved he is a match for them in combat, is apparently ivolved with an agency they also knew nothing about, and whose name isn't even explained to them. The Shield even allows them to replace his costume with one of their own design and calls the erstwhile bad guy "leader"! Surely in modern america, or any sane country, this would be high cause for alarm. I'd want to see some ID at least.

Now this comic really is a nod to the marvel line. The art, characterisation and plot format all owe much to books such as fantastic four and x-men from that time. It's not a clone though. This really is a comic from 1966, but it is definitely not (quite) a marvel comic. If you like marvel comics from that period though, you'll like this too for sure. It's superior to a lot of DC comics from that period in my opinion, though arguably not as good as justice league of america.

Also, you get two pages of mail (something i miss in modern comics) and an excellent full page house ad featuring the Web (now starring in a movie with Katy Keene i believe!)

If you are a fan, you'll want this, and if you're not, you're probably not reading this anyway!

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