Monday, 12 December 2011

Action Comics, No. 434

Written by - Cary Bates
Pencils by - Curt Swan
Inks by - Vince Colletta
Cover by - Nick Cardy

Well, it's been a while (almost 4 months) since my last blog entry, and what a busy 4 months it's been! It's nearly Christmas now and the bad weather is finally here to stay, so what better way to spend these dark cold nights than wrapped up in some classic comics! I absolutely love the image on the front cover of this issue which depicts Superman (not Clark) squirming in a dentists chair as the dentist tugs away at one of Superman's back teeth; my favourite part is the female nurse in the background close to feinting. Some of my all-time favourite covers are from DC's Action Comics. There seemed to be periods where there would be a good run of covers for a few issues and then some not so good; I guess it was all down to the particular team that was involved in the book at the time as the turn-over of talent was fairly quick it seems. 

This is issue 434 of Action Comics from 1974 and the title of the story is 'The Krypton Connection'. The premise of the story is Clark is tricked into eating chocolate that gives him super-toothache. Lois takes him to a new dentist that is handily working out of the building next-door to the office. Once in the chair he is sedated with gas to which he expects no effect but somehow he is knocked out. Lois then notices that the woman working in reception is the same woman who delivered the chocolates to Clark. When confronted, the woman blasts Lois with a 'Memory Extinguisher' and sends her on her way. Whilst sedated Clark hallucinates visions that explain who the dentist and his assistant are; they are Dr. Xadu and his wife, Emdine Ze-Da. They then proceed to brainwash Clark into wanting to destroy the world.

One of the quirkier moments of the comic that I enjoyed was just before Clark ate the chocolate, he finds on his desk a machine gun. He picks up the gun and immediately it starts to glow, then a burst of different colours fill the panel to which Clark exclaims "Great scott!". Just then a guy called Steve Lombard (sports presenter) pops his head around the door and explains that it's a novelty item called a 'Razzle Dazzle Gun' that "shoots out psychedelic streams of light! All it takes to set it off is the body-heat of your hand!". Bizarre!

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