Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Reading Room: DAN HASTINGS "Radium Raiders from Earth's Core"

Originally a Flash Gordon clone, even using Alex Raymond art swipes....
...by the time the wandering strip took up residence in Scoop Comics, it had gotten away from interplanetary adventures to intraplanetary tales!
I suspect this tale from Dynamic's Scoop Comics #1 (1941) was meant to be an interplanetary adventure with several panels redrawn/relettered to make it a "civilization at the earth's center" story.
Both writer and artist(s) are unknown.
Originally proposed as a newspaper strip packaged by the Harry A Chesler Studio in 1937, Dan Hastings was reworked into comic book format when comics using new material instread of strip reprints took off in 1939!
The series went thru several different publishers, starting at Chesler/Dynamic, moving to Centaur, then MLJ (later Archie), finally back to Chesler/Dynamic, with minor modifications to cast and premise at each company.
This tale was the first of his final run at Chesler/Dynamic, where he faced more Earth-bound foes, including thinly-disguised Axis surrogates (with more advanced tech than the real-life Germany and Japan).

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