East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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Curse of the Golden Bat III – the First Superhero

After meeting a horrid human being like General Doihara, we need something to lift our spirits, and so this third instalment of the post series based on my research for Guillotine Wind and the strange case of the Golden Bat cigarettes.
And we go in a whole new direction as we go back to 1931, and meet a character created as a tie-in with the cigarette brand.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Ogon Bat

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The Curse of Fantomah

This is a strange story.
It connects a pulp bad guy from 1929, a Japanese superhero from 1931, an American superhero from 1940, and an Italian master criminal from 1964.
The lot, because of my idea of doing something new with Fantomah.

Fantomah (1)

Fantomah, as you’ll remember, was the jungle queen/daughter of the pharaohs created in 1940 by Fletcher Hanks,later variously re-imagined, and currently on the public domain. In her original incarnation she was a statuesque blonde that turned into a gray-blue skinned, skull-faced super-witch.
Now here’s my idea: in AMARNA1, one of the characters is a pulp magazine reader. He always carries a folded pulp mag in his back pocket. So, I thought I’ll make him read my stories about Fantomah, as published by Spicy Oriental Adventures (a title that, as far as I know, never existed). The idea, in other words, is to write and publish a serial-within-the serial. Short 3000-words episodes presenting my own take on Fantomah, as explained in a previous post.
It sounded easy, it sounded fun.
I would call this serial-within-a-serial The Curse of Fantomah.
Then, I started thinking about Fantaman, and my project started spiraling out of control. Continue reading