Snapshots of Jimmy Olsen #14: The Red-Headed Beatle of 1,000 B.C.

Source: Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #79 (1964)
Type: Time travel
Time for an Easter classic! That time Jimmy Olsen went back to Biblical times and hung out with the shepherds, yo! Definitely a case of "what was I onnnnnnnnn?!!!", our tale begins in good old 1964 where Jimmy, while too square to ever change his 1940s haircut, might indulge in a little wiggery from time to time.
It was 1964, who DIDN'T have their own personal Beatle wig, am I right? But square is as square does, Jimmy quickly slips it into his pocket when the door bell rings, so very ashamed of his brush with pop culture. Who's there? Why it's Kasmir, a "time policeman from the future" who claims the Legion of Super-Heroes have detailed Jimmy, as an Honorary member, to assist him in a mission to the past. Kasmir even lets Jimmy pilot the time bubble to a time 3,000 years back. But when they get there, Kasmir shows his hand. He's really a CRIMINAL - who would have thought it, he had such a soft shirt - who stole a time bubble but couldn't pilot it beyond pressing auto-send (to 1964). Now that he's seen how it works, he doesn't need Jimmy anymore and tries to kill him. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a youth with a turban springs into action!
This is the "Mighty Youth" who won't reveal his real name and hides his hair style to keep his identity secret (and you thought glasses were a stretch). Happily, Jimmy has already been to this time and knows the language(!). Leaving Kasmir unconscious, Jimmy and the Youth, the damaged time bubble in tow, walk to a nearby city where Jimmy gets a job working for Ben-Robba, a shepherding tycoon of the era.
But Ben-Robba is really very stingy with his employees and Jimmy feels the need to make extra cash on the side. His plan:
Start a "beetle" craze in the middle of Judges 16 (some verses may have been expunged by one Synod or other). But Kasmir is lurking behind the scenes and he hates the kids' new-fangled music. He blows the whistle on Jimmy, telling Ben-Robba Olsen is making money off of HIS wool trimmings. The shepherd is really quite avaricious (I smell an Old Testament plague on his house some day), so not only does he take Jimmy's winnings and send him to jail, he also screws Kasmir out of his reward money.
Five pieces of silver, eh? Adjust for inflation, it gets to about 30 by Jesus' time... JUDAS! And now our story kicks into high (Biblical) gear. To get out of jail, Jimmy blows his shepherd's horn, which brings the Mighty Youth running. Because remember: The Mighty Youth IS EXACTLY LIKE SUPERMAN. That's an important rule in Superman Family time travel adventures. The past is just like the present. And who's ACTUALLY the super-strong hero of the Old Testament? Its "Superman"?
Correct. Samson. And because Samson is Superman and Superman is Samson...
Jimmy MUST (by Hebraic law) call attention to the fact her name has double L's in it. In French, we have an expression: "Tiré par les cheveux", which means "far-fetched", but can be literally translated as "pulled by the hair". I think that applies particularly well here. Kasmir escapes from jail too and discovers Samson's secret identity. To prevent him from interfering with his plans, he skulks into the Mighty Youth's hideout in the night to cut his hair.
But wait! If Samson's been depowered, who comes as Kasmir with a mighty fist? Haven't you been paying attention? Jimmy noticed Kasmir coming and put his Beatle wig on Samson and THAT was the head of hair that got a trim! Just then Superman shows up, tracking the time bubble, and Kasmir throws a vibro-grenade at the trio. Superman springs into action (finally).
And now you know where Samson would later get the idea to bring that Pagan temple down. It's an Easter miracle! But Saint Jimmy has another one up his sleeve: One last "beetle" show for the Old Testament girls who love his horn-blowing. The miracle? His wig apparently regrows hair. And that's canon.

Have a good Easter weekend, everyone!


d said...

I think it was Fred Hembeck's strip about this issue that got me to buy it back in the 80's. Which then started my life-long love of all things Olsen..Thanks Fred!


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