Dial H for Hamerica

House of Mystery #166 brings you a little dose of Americana in the form of two heroes (and a horse). There's something rural about both, which makes sense since Robby Reed works out of small town America. Funny how most superheroes are urbanites. Well, I guess that's where there's the most crime.

Case 11: House of Mystery #166
Dial Holder: Robby Reed
Dial Type: The Big Dial
Dialing: In Chief Mighty Arrow, the Dial gives Robby a living mount. Since it has created a twin for him in the past, this isn't so surprising. For the first time, we get an indication that the Dial dictates more than appearance and powers, as the Chief uses the word "heap" a lot. It's also possible that Robby's a product of his era and thinks it's fine coloring his hero's vocabulary this way.
Name: Yankee Doodle Kid (could fit the American Revolution era or the Golden Age)
Costume: There are a LOT of red-white-and-blue, star-spangled costumes in comics. This variation has three things going against it. 1) The yellow cape. 2) The pilgrim clogs. 3) That fool eagle on his head. Hey, if Captain America can wear the wings, then a whole bird should be even better, right? Wrong.
Powers: The Yankee Doodle Kid has Jubilee's powers, basically. He throws fireworks around, either from his hands or his eyes. Unlike Jubilee, they can actually cause damage. There's an impressive array of tricks that are almost all the same, but have different names. Super-Skyrocket Blasts shoot sparkling pellets from his eyes, though they can fire as pellet-less heat vision. Cherry Bombs and Super Cherry Bombs are grenades that come out of nowhere. Skyrocket Missiles shoot out of his fingers, and blinding Sparkler Missiles. Flying Pinwheels are like Skyrockets that can saw through tree trunks. A Fireworks Picture Display creates huge illusions, and a Firecracker Fence helps corral the threat. And he can fly.
Sighted: In Cougar County. When the Cougar Man of legend sprang out of a time warp, the Kid saved a busload of kids from it, and then forced it back into the warp before it got to Township Bridge.
Possibilities: The Kid had some obvious potential as a Golden Age hero, but is somehow too celebratory for the war. I see him as defending rural areas in the fireworks-happy Deep South during the 1950s.
Integration Quotient: 40% (he gets in, but in a Global Guardians kind of way - i.e. tucked away in a less-traveled corner of the DCU)
Name: Chief Mighty Arrow (it's all about racial stereotypes)
Costume: Though complemented by sensible hush puppies, the Chief's costume is what you'd expect from any western)
Powers: Chief Mighty Arrow appears to be a tough fighter, but his powers really derive from his equipment. His bow fires explosive arrows (and possibly, other trick arrows). His tomahawk can grow to giant size when thrown. And strangest of all, the feathers on his headdress can be rocket-fired to tickle a foe. The Chief has a winged horse called "Wingy".
Sighted: In Southport. The Chief stopped a legendary giant black albatross from attacking an orphanage, then arrested a group of criminals who took advantage of the monster to rob the town blind. The scientist unwittingly responsible for the monsters' appearances destroyed his "legend computer" under the Chief's watchful eye.
Possibilities: Fits that corner of weird western comics inhabited by Super-Chief. While he could be an ethnic hero in the modern world, racial sensitivity would preclude his inclusion in most stories. He's just silly.
Integration Quotient: 25% (Weird Western Tales all the way, but there's every chance he wouldn't make it to a repeat appearance)

Next time: A Dial H hero returns. I won't tell you which, but I'd rated his reuse at 5%! I guess the odds came up in his favor!

9 comments:

De said...

I'd buy a book featuring Scalphunter beating the living snot out of Chief Mighty Arrow.

Siskoid said...

I'm seconding the motion.

Henry H said...

So I found this looking for images of Chief Mighty Arrow after reading the brand new Dial H, and I can't stop laughing at your comments. Almost two years to the day since this blog was published Mighty Arrow returns. Crazy!

Siskoid said...

I know, right!

Makes it Chief Mighty Arrow's 3rd appearance, since Robby turned into him TWICE.

Henry H said...

Out of curiosity, how do you feel about the new 'Dial H' series? I picked it up because I've been a fan of the author for years, but know almost nothing about the original and how it compares.
It seems like a fringe title that nobody I know ever read and I've never managed to have a chat with anyone about old vs new.

Siskoid said...

I love it! Click the Dial H tag and somewhere in there is a post like this for the first issue.

Anonymous said...

Reading through your Dial H tags now actually, this is a wealth of information, thanks!

Henry H said...

Didn't mean to post anonymously, oh well.

Siskoid said...

Happens, don't worry about it. I sort of guessed it was you ;-).

Alas if I could pay the rent with that kind of "wealth"...*



*;-) Joke should not be taken to mean I am struggling financially, but thanks for caring.

 

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