Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Too Much Information About Jimmy Olsen's Helmet!

With friends like Jimmy Olsen, who needs enemies? Jimmy was constantly turning on Superman, or at least appearing to betray his longtime pal. Like that time when he donned the Helmet of Hate, and used Red Kryptonite to turn the man of steel into a wicked, red-skinned devil! It all began one afternoon in the Fortress of Solitude, when Superman was alerted by his allies in the bottle City of Kandor to the approach of a flying saucer manned by members of Braniac's gang. I'm not sure why it couldn't have been Brainiac himself, but maybe he had a clause in his contract excluding him from having to appear in stupid-ass Jimmy Olsen stories. Anyway, Superman goes to investigate, but is repelled by an impenetrable force field:

Stymied, Superman returns to earth, where he finds Jimmy Olsen and the only people more tragic than Jimmy Olsen, Jimmy Olsen fans, waiting for him. Superman performs a “feat of strength” for the assembled idiots, then flies off, having apparently forgotten about the Brainiac twins.

Jimmy has a job, but you’d never know it from the way he spends his day sightseeing with his band of slack jawed followers, playing in museums and having his picture taken. The fan club's next stop is the Superman Museum, where Jimmy borrows some trophies, ostensibly to write an article about them, but more likely in fact to fumble around with and break them. At the Daily Planet, he badgers Perry White into taking his picture with some of the "imitation" trophies, when he starts showing off, fiddling with a complicated alien hate-helmet which, of course, immediately takes control of his feeble brain. Grabbing a Red Kryptonite ray projector, Jimmy starts waving it around, declaring his hatred for Superman:

Superman shows up to see what all the commotion is, and Jimmy trains the red-K ray upon him. The unpredictable energies work their effect upon him, changing him from heroic and strong to an evil, weak, red-skinned devil! As all of this is happening, Boz and Grumm are observing from space, delighted at the situation. Now that Superman is a “devilish chap”, he strikes an unholy bargain with an easily tempted Perry White:

(Choke) Suddenly everyone is turning evil. Superman begins to feel his strength come back, and is regaining the power of flight, when he remembers Boz and Grumm. Soon, the Satan of Steel flies his ginger-tressed tormentor up to the alien saucer, with the wickedest proposition of all!

Boz lets lets the force field down, because, apparently, even an evil Superman’s word is his bond (?!?) and Superman and Jimmy come aboard. Although frankly, the logic is extremely murky here, since if Superman has indeed been turned evil, I would assume that would extend to any oaths he might extend to invading aliens. BUT. For the sake of this story, all appears lost, with Superman HONOR BOUND not to attack, but not so honorable that he isn't ready to press the button that will shrink Metropolis forever!

Surely Superman won't press the shiny red button?

The jolly, candy colored button...?!?

So has Superman really turned evil forever?!? Of course not, stupid. In this case, I really think the caption says it best. "UNEXPECTEDLY..."

Awp indeed, my friend. Boz and Grumm are stunned as a dozen tiny Supermen burst forth from Superman's exploding devil horns! Yes, the whole thing was just an insanely elaborate , prearranged hoax, starting with the anchor that Superman snapped to look like a “J”, initiating "Plan J", a Byzantine scheme involving prop trophies, fake racketeers, disguises, and bogus Mayoral endorsements to gain access to the alien saucer without breaking Superman's precious "word of honor"! But don't worry about Perry White getting that racketeer elected mayor; it turns out that was all part of the plan too:

So the Daily Planet only rushed out a special edition to endorse an undercover agent posing as a racketeer for Mayor of Metropolis. But Superman didn't have to lie to a couple of Braniac's flunkies, so it's all good.


prof. grewbeard said...

Superman- what a cut-up!

ZADL said...


That may be one of the best Jimmy Olsens they ever did. Truly classic! Thanks!

Manks said...

Aww.. The Silver Age... when it was all good :).. No identity crisis there :P

Anonymous said...

Is that J. Jonah Jameson reading checking out the competition? The very first inter-company crossover, perhaps?

Anonymous said...

I guess I should have read the previous post first. Curse you, Blackberry and your limited screen.

googum said...

Admittedly, those Kandorians hate shrink rays, so I could see them wanting in on this action.

Brian Hughes said...

Yeah, there is an exchange at the beginning of the story where the Kandies request a crack at the Brainies, But Supes says "NO! I'LL HANDLE THIS ALONE!"
Then he runs afoul of the force field.

Pat said...

I had forgotten, but there was a Plan L for Lois (Lois Lane #29) and a Plan P for Perry (Action #295), both also insanely complicated.

Pat from Silver Age Comics

Angelo said...

hi - would it be okay to email you some info on a webcomic called Falling Skies?

Brian Hughes said...

Sure- my e-mail address is at the top of the page.