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Captain America Comics #10: Review

Jan 1942
Joe Simon, Jack Kirby

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Story Name:

Spy Ambush

Review & Comments

3 stars

Captain America Comics #10 Review by (February 15, 2010)
Last issue done by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. a) Cap faces a female villain for the first time. b) The story is set in “Gotham City” (no, not that one). It isn’t explained why Bucky is put in jail. c) The story is clearly based on THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES. There seems to be an English moor within walking distance of Camp Lehigh. Sergeant Duffy’s first name is revealed to be Thaddeus.

New and Improved Comments: Final issue done by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. 1) Cap faces a female villain for the first time. 2) The story is set in “Gotham City” (no, not that one). It isn’t explained why Bucky is put in jail. 3) Text story. 5) The story is clearly based on THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES. There seems to be an English moor within walking distance of Camp Lehigh. Sergeant Duffy’s first name is revealed to be Thaddeus. 7) This may be the stupidest story Stan Lee ever wrote. Why does the Yogi assume the intended victims will be in the same room as the clock at the fatal hour? Why did Father Time just happen to be passing the General’s house at the right time—in costume? Why does the villain have a henchman hanging around the murder scene—and is also there himself? Why don’t the police catch on that each of the victims received a clock in the mail the day of their deaths? Why don’t the police guard the later intended victims? Or investigate Yogi Zamor at all? Why does the montage of victims show one dying by hanging rather than “natural causes,” and another perishing on the deck of a ship, unlikely to be near the clock? Why did Larry bother to visit Yogi Zamor and wasn’t his maid in danger from the poisoned clock? Did Father Time ever look at himself in a mirror and why wasn’t he ashamed to leave the house dressed like that?


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America Comics #10 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro
Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes are assigned to drive a truck with a top secret cargo through the mountains. A woman faints on the road in front of them and they stop. Sending Bucky for help, Steve looks closer and a trap is sprung: the woman is Nazi agent Countess Mara assigned to hijack the secret weapon. A thrown grenade knocks out Steve and Mara and her henchmen make off with the truck. A thug on a motorcycle tries to run down Bucky but Captain America knocks him out and the heroes use the cycle to pursue the fleeing truck. Following the Nazis into their stronghold, Cap and Bucky are gassed, waking up in a chamber full of shooting flames. The heroes escape through a ceiling panel and take on the enemy. Mara uses the secret weapon—a grenade-gun—to fire a bomb at Cap but it bounces off his shield and lands in the villain’s arsenal. The explosion kills all the Nazis except for Countess Mara; Cap sends her back to Germany with a message for Hitler that America will not be defeated.

Story #2

Hotel of Horror

Writer: Jack Kirby. Writer: Joe Simon. Penciler: Jack Kirby. Inker: Joe Simon.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America is invited to be guest of honor at Gotham City’s defense drive celebration. He is met at the train by an enormous crowd of adoring fans. A man introducing himself as Boswell, the Mayor’s secretary, sneaks Cap and Bucky out the back and to a hotel. After registering, Bucky goes to the desk to check on messages and is thrown out of the building. Summoning a police officer he returns to the hotel only to be see a completely different staff who deny that Captain America was ever there and their room number does not even exist. Going to the Mayor, Bucky finds that they have never heard of Boswell, the supposed secretary. Back at the hotel Captain America is a prisoner of foreign spies led by Netman (Boswell) sent to eliminate the hero after luring him into a trap with two teams of hotel staff. Bucky escapes from his jail cell and returns to the hotel in the guise of a bellhop to investigate. When his cover is blown, he is dropped into the basement where he sees Cap, wrapped in a net and killed by thrown knives. It turns out to be a guard: Cap had escaped and is disguised as a henchman. Netman sets the room on fire to escape but Cap nabs him while the fire department puts out the fire. At the celebration, Cap makes a speech advising all Americans to be prepared for the coming battle.

Story #3

A Sinister Scoop

Writer: Stan Lee. Penciler: ?. Inker: ?.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

In London, Headline Hunter is granted an exclusive interview with diplomat Reginald Whitney. A rival reporter, Jenks, overpowers Headline and steals his pass, using it to gain access to Whitney’s hotel room. The resourceful Headline, though, disguises himself as a bellboy and listens in on the interview from the next room. At the conclusion, Jenks reveals himself as a Nazi spy sent to kill Whitney. Headline bursts into the room and beats up the bad guy, saving the diplomat and his important message.

Story #4

All in a Day’s Work

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Perry Ashford of British Military Intelligence is tasked with sneaking through the German lines to swim across the Kriper River in order to deliver secret plans to the Russian High Command. He crawls stealthily through the mud and foliage but just as he nears the river, he is caught by a Nazi detachment. The officer in charge questions him but before they can find the plans, Ashford seizes the officer’s gun and uses him as a hostage to make it to the river and swim to the other side, dodging rifle fire. The Russian generals are grateful for his success but Ashford merely replies, "It’s all in a day’s work."

Story #5

The Phantom Hound of Cardiff Moor

Writer: Jack Kirby. Writer: Joe Simon. Penciler: Jack Kirby. Inker: Joe Simon.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Steve Rogers is in the guardhouse for another foul-up when a gravely injured man staggers into camp announcing the latest victim of the Hound of Cardiff Moor. That night, Steve escapes from jail and as Captain America, he and Bucky investigate. They meet elderly Mr. Murdock who relates the story of the deadly hound: it was the pet of a wealthy family; when driven from their home, the master placed a curse on anyone who tries to live on the moor—death at the jaws of the ghostly hound. Several people trapped on the moor by the hound seek refuge in Murdock’s home. Cap and Bucky head out and are attacked by a glowing hound. Cap breaks its neck with his shield and discovers it is an ordinary dog covered in luminous paint. A man in a dog suit gets the drop on them with a gun; he is the real killer using the costume’s claws to tear apart his enemies. Cap punches his lights out and unmasks him as Murdock who turns out to be the now-grown son of the original owners of the Moor.

Story #6

The Skyscraper Plot

Writer: Stan Lee. Penciler: Charles Nicholas. Inker: Charles Nicholas.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Millionaire Lionel Van Devanter awards the contract to build his new skyscraper to the Slade Company. Disappointed rival contractor Grant schemes to sabotage the project so that Slade will forfeit the contract and go out of business. A Grant thug assaults a worker and pushes him off his high perch. A passing Hurricane zips into a position where he can catch the doomed man and deposit him safely on the ground. The next day, Hurricane and Speedy Scriggles hire on as construction workers to prevent further mishaps. The heroes (one with speed and the other with clumsiness) defeat several schemes to destroy the building and the mysterious leader behind Grant is unmasked as Lionel Van Devanter who secretly owns Grant’s firm and awarded to contract to Slade solely to put him out of business.

Story #7

Beware the Man Who Could Forecast Doom!

Writer: Stan Lee. Penciler: Al Avison. Inker: Al Avison.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

General Peters is persuaded by his wife to visit the famed psychic Yogi Zamor; the Yogi foresees the General’s death the following evening at 8 PM. The next morning, General Peters receives a clock in the mail and when that clock strikes 8 the General dies suddenly. Father Time, who was passing by, hears Mrs. Peters’ cry for help but is attacked by a thug. The thug is silenced by an unseen gunman, who escapes the hero. Over the days which follow several prominent men die similarly, with the stopped clock to indicate fulfillment of Yogi Zamor’s prophecies. After consulting the psychic as Larry Scott and having his own death foretold, Father Time pays a call on the Yogi and unmasks him as a Nazi agent who rigged the clocks to emit poison gas at the "predicted" time. Cornered, the villain releases the poison and dies but the hero is protected by covering his face with his cloak.

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Jack Kirby
Joe Simon
Jack Kirby (Cover Penciler)
Joe Simon (Cover Inker)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Bucky Barnes
Bucky Barnes

(James Barnes)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

Plus: Father Time, Headline Hunter, Hurricane, Nazis, Speedy Scriggles.

> Captain America Comics: Book info and issue index

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