Dial H for Hamilton Junior High

In Adventure 481, Chris gets benched for one mission because he needs to study and get his grades up, and interesting wrinkle that allows Vicki to fail (but not really), and brings the two of them closer together (they almost kiss, but then Chris' kid brother barges in). This issue also reminds us the Kings lost all their furniture recently and need us to design some, and features a number of heroic designs from female readers. Yes, girls read comics too! I think the costume design element probably made Dial H more girl-friendly than most comics of the day.

Case 24: Adventure Comics #481
Dial Holders: Chris and Vicki
Dial Type: Watch and Pendant Dials
Dialing: Though some hero pairings have seemed complementary in the past, for the first time the Dials turn Vicki and Chris into true matching heroes, indicating they do work in tandem.
Name: Goldman and Goldgirl (the male version sounds like a surname, and the female uses the more sexist "girl" which creates a difficult to pronounce alliteration)
Created by: Michael Olonovich, age 11, of Philadelphia, PA
Costume: Both heroes wear the same white one-piece bathing suit, and have gold skin and bald heads. Their ears are encapsulated, which makes me think they may be artficial beings.
Powers: Both heroes can fly at incredible speeds, and fire a psychokinetic beam that seems to create a silvery overpass so a truck can drive over a kid in the street. It's possible this construct was miscolored and meant to be gold.
Sighted: In Fairfax, saving a kid from being run over by a truck.
Possibilities: They appearance is so brief, it's not even clear what their powers are. However, the fact that they are a duo could be built upon. Maybe they're a matching Adam and Eve from an alien culture, or built as a new human race by some mad scientist.
Integration Quotient: 5% (nothing about them really inspires)
Name: Alchemiss (clever, if a bit silly)
Created by: Robert Buethe, age 21, of Elmont, NY
Costume: Essentially a leotard with black and purple elements. Infantino also gives her one of his trademark whip-like hairdos. Functional, but rather ordinary.
Powers: Alchemiss can control the four alchemical elements, although pushing her limits can be painful. She is seen raising parts of the ocean floor (earth), flying and creating tornadoes (air), making a blazing inferno fly into space (fire), and split the churning sea (water).
Sighted: In and around Fairfax. She saves a ship from the storm, a police car from a falling tree, and a hospital from a fire. However, she fails to find a distraught Martha Winters (see our bonus supervillain) after she fell into the ocean.
Possibilities: A competent if unremarkable design, Alchemiss could fit in with the Legion or even the Teen Titans.
Integration Quotient: 40% (her powers are certainly versatile enough that she could be a continuing character somewhere)
Name: The Sixth Sensor (a mouthful, far less clever than it means to be)
Created by: Lynn Thilcult, age 14, of Goosebay, Labrador
Costume: Quite the piecemeal uniform. It has a head like the Red Tornado's, only green, striped sleeves, and huge star pasties. Maybe he's got a 6th sense, but it's not FASHION sense.
Powers: The Sensor is a telepath who can peer into a person's thoughts, even the most remote of memories. From the acrobatics on show, he may also be able to intuit where an opponent will strike. He can also fly.
Sighted: In Fairfax, fighting the Destructress.
Possibilities: One time, the JLA looks into a dimensional mirror and sees heroes from a lame Earth (possibly Archie's). The Sixth Sensor would be in that group shot.
Integration Quotient: 1% (bad name, bad clothes, who would want to use him?)
Name: Dimension Girl (Legion-ny, but classic sounding too)
Created by: Steven St.Thomas, age 13, of Manchester, CT
Costume: A pink cat suit with a plunging neckline, with banded gloves and boots, a big belt, and some crazy 3D glasses. Not the most fetching of accessories.
Powers: It's hard to gauge the extent of Dimension Girl's powers. In this story, she creates a "time dimension" in which Destructress is astrally projected so she can see how her parents didn't die in a fire after all. She can fly too.
Sighted: In Fairfax, fighting the Destructress.
Possibilities: Once again, Vicki becomes a heroine that sounds like she came from the 30th century. Dimension Girl could also be a fun addition to the Teen Titans or Young Heroes in Love, perhaps someone FROM another dimension who has a crush on a hero in our own, or who wants to prevent something from happening in OUR timeline.
Integration Quotient: 30% (bad look, but not insurmountable given her powers' potential)

Bonus Supervillain
Name: The Destructress (difficult to say and awkward)
Created by: June Roe, age 18, of Dayton, OH
Costume: The Aquarians who "built" her were apparently copying off of Alchemiss, the only superhero they'd as yet encountered, but they've given her an orange color scheme, shiny gold boots and some neat, gnarled, destructive bracelets.
Powers: The Destructress has alien bracelets that fire destructive energy.
Sighted: In Fairfax, trying to destroy the city. She is Martha Winters, a girl who went mad when she mistakenly believed her parents had died in a fire by her fault. Aquarians from beneath the sea kidnapped her during a storm of their own making, brainwashed her, and set her loose on an unsuspecting city. Superheroes made her see the truth - that her parents were still alive - freeing her from Aquarian influence.
Possibilities: Martha's story is pretty much done, and she was only a pawn. What's to stop someone else from donning the bracelets and becoming a new Destructress though?
Integration Quotient: 60% (provide her with an interesting motivation, and you might have a potable Supergirl villain or something)

But who ARE these Aquarians I speak of? That'll have to wait for the next dial-up. Stay tuned!


Bob Buethe said...

I don't remember how I got the idea for Alchemiss. But I do remember that I submitted her as a graphite pencil drawing, with notes that her costume is divided into four colors: brown (earth), white (air), red (fire), and blue (water), for a Metamorpho-style look. My drawing was copied, but my color notes were ignored. Personally, I think the published version looks better than what I had in mind.

I've never gotten into video games, but in 2002 I heard about a Windows-based game called Freedom Force, inspired by the Marvel comics of the early 1960s, that included a character named Alchemiss. She was nothing like mine, but she did motivate me to try the game, and I was hooked on it for quite a while.


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