Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Radio Avenger

One thing I love about comic books is how they ride fads and the next new thing. A listing, for example, of heroes and villains based on the disco age would be mortifying in a funny way. The amazing thing isn't that there were one hundred dancing fools in tights, but rather that one actually had the legs to survive her own creation. The Dazzler is still shining a disco inspired light in the marvel universe.

During the golden age the same thing happened. For example, there were several heroes and villains that made use of radio as either a theme or weapon. In that light I give you the Radio Avenger.

The Radio Avenger was once just Johnny Block, a young man at the wrong place at the wrong time. He witnesses a crime committed by organized crime. To silence him they grab him and pour acid down his throat and drop him off in the woods. Luckily it was near enough to the house of a kindly if mad scientist. One thing any mad scientist loves is an unexpected test subject, um patient.

Our hero wakes up with a KNOB in the side of his neck. At first he can't talk till the scientist turns on a machine the size of a fridge. The scientist tells him he installed a special radio in his throat. The machine transmit sounds to the radio and using the radio he can then speak using that sound. He can, in effect, sound like any sound or voice the machine has recorded. He just needs to twist the knob. The scientist also gives him special gloves with microphones in them. Just point and it will capture the sound for the machine. Our hero decides to use his power to, of course, FIGHT CRIME.

Wearing a suit and a domino mask he fights crime by a combination of indirection of using different voices and deafening sounds. With a turn of knob he can "shout" out a full scale train running right at you. One problem is he has to stay within his city or he falls out of radio range and loses his voices.

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