In the past few days of the Captain Action Advent Calendar, we’ve seen some pretty strange things as it relates to the Captain Action comics. However, this promo comic from 1967 is both the most insane thing I’ve ever read and also a brilliant piece of marketing. Mini-comics are nothing new to toy fans, as they were popular concepts up until the 1980’s. Even the new Captain Action figures come packed with a comic. It’s a great way to introduce kids to the characters.
But this mini-comic is designed to sell other toys and makes no effort to hide it’s blatant shilling. The plot is downright insane. It’s 30+ pages of wall-to-wall costume changes. Captain Action manages to don every one of his costumes and also uses all of his gear. It starts out at Jimmy’s birthday party. Jimmy is just like you and I, an excitable boy.
Jimmy soon falls asleep, dreaming of how awesome his Captain Action is. We’re then taken into Jimmy’s dream. There, Captain Action notices a large mist. He takes his rocket pack into the air to check it out and finds missiles being shot at him. Naturally he assumes it’s aliens.
So Cap decides to get on the horn… But instead of using the telephone, he opts for this thing… (Available at your local retailer!)
GET SET FOR INVASION FROM SPACE!
Since the Earth is under attack from freaky looking aliens, it makes sense to make those aliens think that they’ve got plenty of heroes to face up against. That’s kind of smart. Not as smart as say, using your wacky helmet phone to call the real Batman, but okay, you dress up as Batman.
Then it’s time for Buck Rogers to get in on the action! Take that you no-goods!
This continues for a bit with Captain Action becoming Aquaman and others, until he’s whisked into the air by a magnetic ray. OH NO! He’s about to be killed, but thankfully he has his trusty parachute. He’d have been dead for sure…
OR HE COULD JUST TURN INTO SUPERMAN AND FLY OFF! That’s right, one panel ago he nearly died from a fall and needed a parachute, but put on the Superman costume and now he can fly. What… the… hell?!
Captain Action then starts handing out knives and guns to citizens. Why bother? Why not just dress up as citizens and then hand the knives and guns to yourself? I should also add that it’s pretty obvious that he’s handing these guns to criminals. Just look at those guys! They’re bound to be no-goods!
Now Captain Action is Green Hornet. Wait, the Green Hornet is calling the US Army for backup? Doesn’t Captain Action know that Green Hornet operates outside the realm of the law and is actually a wanted fugitive? I guess I shouldn’t expect a comic that has such lack of logic to bother with any continuity.
Okay, so Captain Action has had to turn into Earth’s mightiest heroes, but at least he’s not turning into second rate sidekicks. OH CRAP! He just turned into TONTO! Because if you want to beat back an alien invasion, it’s best to do it as Tonto. This comic couldn’t get anymore absurd. I mean, he’s turned into a dozen or so characters, running around the globe to pretend to be so many guys to stop this invasion.
And then Action Boy joins the battle… As Superboy.
And he throws a lion. HE THROWS A LION! No, I mean, seriously, he fights an alien invasion by THROWING A LION!
This is the most amazing piece of literature in human history. Shakespeare was good, Jack Kirby did some great stories, Stephen King has wrote some terrific suspense… But this is clearly the greatest story ever told. Any time you have a story where you throw a lion to defeat aliens, you’ve reached another level. Ernest Hemingway who?
And with that, so ends the greatest comic ever written. The last couple of pages include more shilling, as Captain Action tells you to buy some of Ideal’s games and race track cars. I’m surprised they didn’t work those in as a way to stop the alien attack. Jimmy awakens to the realization that he can “make it all come true”, which combined with the look on Jimmy’s face, will no doubt haunt my nightmares for years to come.