Dial H for High School Field Trips (of Evil)

Still some spillover from the Jinx story we talked about last week (2 more dialed heroes), and then it's right into the issue's back-up about a field trip to a chemical lab gone awry. In comic book universes, you sure get a lot of dangerous field trips, don't you? I think I'd have had my mom write me a note so that I wouldn't have to go. Though of course, it's a great place to get super-powers.

Case 35: Adventure Comics #488
Dial Holders: Chris and Vicki
Dial Type: Watch and Pendant Dials
Dialing: Though in Robby's days conditions placed on a dialed hero left the Dial holder along with the heroic identity, here the effects of Belladonna's poisons are transmitted to Chris when he changes back.Name: Captain Saturn (spokesman for an automobile company, or ginchy retro space opera name?)
Created by: Terry H. Pavlet, Age 24, of Muskego, WI
Costume: An orange unitard with yellow accessories, it has flared gloves, massive goggles, a belt of circular segments, and most notably, free-floating pairs of rings criss-crossing the ankles and torso. He's like a big human atom.
Powers: Captain Saturn can mentally throw metal rings from somewhere in his back (a pocket dimension?). These can presumably be used to entrap a foe, but in this story, are only used as projectiles to knock them out.
Sighted: Near Fairfax, helping the police capture the Jinx.
Possibilities: Potentially the member of some terrible high-concept team we'd call the Planeteers (to renew a copyright), Captain Saturn could also be a superhero from a future when we've colonized the solar system, filling in some DCU history between now and the Legion.
Integration Quotient: 12% (his potential is squashed by his rather underwhelming power)
Name: Snowfall (at the risk of being called Snowball, this is a perfectly good elemental hero name)
Created by: Christopher Benjamin, Age 13, of Winslow, AR
Costume: A pleasant number on two shades of blue that brings out her wind-swept blond hair, Snowfall's gloves, shoulders, mask and boots are all trimmed with icicle shapes. Her belt buckle is a fierce blue sun (hm, not a snowflake?).
Powers: Snowfall can create ice and snow. No surprises there.
Sighted: Near Fairfax, helping the police capture the Jinx.
Possibilities: Her niche is taken by the JLI's Ice, but Snowfall might serve as a junior version of the same archetype on a team like the Teen Titans. Maybe she's from the same icy fairyland (as per Ice's origin once upon a time).
Integration Quotient: 60% (we don't need her, but we can take her)
Name: Moonlight (more of a girl's name, but I'm not judging)
Created by: Vincent Broese, Age 14, of Whittier, CA
Costume: Polarized in the middle, Moonlight's costume alternates between black and pale yellow right up to his full-faced mask. he has a white belt with a moon crescent, a yellow starburst intruding on his black chest pieces, and a cool white cape that wraps over his left front and a high collar. This is one of the better designs of the entire Adventure Comics Dial H strips.
Powers: Moonlight can blind you with the light of the moon, or cover you in a smoky darkness (though your eyes can get used to it quickly enough). Neither power is very powerful.
Sighted: At Fairfax Laboratories, getting trounced by Belladonna.
Possibilities: Moonlight's a bit effete, but there's no reason all superheroes should be macho. I'd see him as a lone vigilante in the style of Dr. Mid-Nite, working only a night, or else creating a night during the day to scare criminals.
Integration Quotient: 80% (he's Cloak & Dagger all in one... not really, but the look goes a long way)
Name: Glass Lass (the 30th century is the only place for Lasses)
Created by: Jimmy Owens, Age 13, of Wister, OK
Costume: Vaguely(?) reminiscent of Wonder Woman's, Glass Lass' costume is a red one-piece bathing suit with a high neck, accessorized by a stylized yellow belt and starburst chest emblem and tiara. Her gold bracelets have a red starburst on them. Of course, what you mostly notice is her shimmering crystal skin.
Powers: Glass Lass' crystalline skin is diamond-hard and can also be used as a prism to intensify light into a heat beam.
Sighted: At Fairfax Laboratories, helping defeat Belladonna.
Possibilities: The names sends us to the Legion, but the costume puts me in mind of a connection to the Amazons. Whatever became of them a thousand years hence? Wonder Woman was made of clay, and this Amazon was made of crystal. I'm sure we can work something out.
Integration Quotient: 85% (what looks derivative might actually be her way in)
Name: Mental Man (I'll want to say Metal Man each time, so a little awkward)
Created by: John Iverson, Age 13, of Sardia, TX
Costume: In red and yellow with white trim, this pretty typical caped superhero costume has an open-haired mask and special blue triangular goggles. It's the goggles that are important.
Powers: Mental Man's goggles allow him to mentally project any life-like image he can imagine, such as a terrifying monster or a secret identity-keeping Chris King. These do not have any solid substance.
Sighted: At Fairfax Laboratories, helping defeat Belladonna.
Possibilities: Illusion-casting isn't the best of powers for a solo hero, and there's something about Mental Man that screams solo hero. I'd send him to Los Angeles and peg him as a special effects artist (shades of Mysterio) turned hero. Maybe an occasional ally to Blue Devil.
Integration Quotient: 20% (a bit too vanilla)

Bonus Supervillain
Name: Belladonna (it's a poison that literally means "pretty lady")
Created by: Susan Kijamichez, Age 23, of Boston, MA
Costume: A purple and almost burgundy outfit with fur-trimmed boots and cape, and a white skull as a belt buckle. Her fingers have rings shaped like pills, the same shape as the pellets on her belt.
Powers: Belladonna is the "Princess of Potions", and holds in her rings and utility belt a variety of sleep or paralysis-inducing toxins delivered either as smoke, or intravenously thanks to a small blowpipe tied around her neck.
Sighted: Belladonna is really Angela Wainright, one of Fairfax Laboratories' most brilliant chemists until she resigned in protest. She now seeks revenge against the people who are abusing her formulas and poisoning the atmosphere. She was stopped by Glass Lass and Mental Man.
Possibilities: An eco-terrorist with a good name and fair modus operandi, kind of like a low-powered Poison Ivy. If she goes global (instead of concentrating only on Fairfax), she could make a pretty good villain for industrialist heroes like Green Arrow and Steel.
Integration Quotient: 85% (villains are easier to fit in, especially when they enjoy a certain sexiness)

Next time, Adventure #589. Wow, we're two issues away from the end of this title (but not of Chris & Vicki's adventures).


Michel Fiffe said...

I remember these. Trevor Von Eeden had to cut his teeth on this title a few times. Lemonade was made!

Siskoid said...

I completely agree. I enjoy practically everyone more than Infantino on this book.

Jeremy Patrick said...

Isn't Captain Saturn pretty much a rip-off of Marvel's The Ringer?

Siskoid said...

Pretty much. Though I had wiped that character from my mind.


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