More Fun Comics 76
|More Fun Comics 75 | More Fun Comics | Series | Stories | More Fun Comics 77|
|More Fun Comics #76|
Aquaman Splash Page from More Fun #76 by Paul Norris
|GCD Title:||Mystery of the Sinking Ship|
|Cover Date:||Feb 1942|
|Anthology:||Seven Stories (Doctor Fate Cover), fourth story|
|Other Stories:||"Green Arrow: The Secret of the Centuries"; "Doctor Fate: The King of Crime"; "Radio Squad"; "Johnny Quick: Adventure of the Human Streak"; "Clip Carson"; "Spectre"|
|Editor:||Whitney Ellsworth (credited); Mort Weisinger, (actual)|
|Ship Date:||25 Dec 1941|
Aquaman spots a sinking ship and suspects foul play, his hunch is confirmed by the captain of the salvage ship.
Aquaman sees a ship sinking, and investigates. It's a freighter, and Aquaman suspects foul play. He goes to the surface where rescue ships are gathering, and finds out that the ship, The Petrel, was carrying the crown jewels of three countries, which were being sent to America for safe-keeping. He tries to learn more from Skover, the captain of a deep sea trawler, but Skover is suspicious and tries to hold him. Aquaman leaps overboard, deciding to do his investigations on his own.
Sixty fathom down, a diver from another rescue ship has reached the wreck. He is attacked by a metal man who attempts to cut his air hose. Aquaman hits the metal man so hard he dents the helmet, and the man flees. Aquaman doesn't chase, instead he tends to the injured diver then searches the ship himself. He is surprised to find an airtight cabin with a survivor inside, guarding the jewels. As he tries to plan a rescue for the trapped boy, Skover's ship clamps on him and pulls him up.
Once on the surface, Aquaman notices that Skover has an injury on his chin... right where Aquaman dented the metal man's helmet. Skover's men toss Aquaman into a decompression chamber, but Aquaman breaks loose and dives into the sea.
The injured diver finally wakes up, but is stabbed before he can tell anyone what happened. Skover blames it on Aquaman. But Aquaman is busy freeing the ship. On the surface, Skover asks the Navy to bomb the ship, and the Navy agrees. Everyone pulls up their anchors to move away... and to their surprise, the Petrel rises up, pulled by the anchors and helped by Aquaman and his friends. Aquaman produces the survivor from the Petrel, who points out Skover as the culprit.
Skover is a good villain. At the beginning of the story you aren't sure whether he's just cranky or up to something. The proof that Aquaman needs, the injury on Skover's chin, isn't pointed out to the reading audience until the end of the story.
The survivor is a cabin boy, and he is sitting calmly in the ship, looking at the jewels he was told to guard.
The Navy captain who arrests Skover tells Aquaman that there will be a reward, but Aquaman tells him to divide it among the honest men who worked to raise the wreckage. The last words of the story belong to the Navy captain as he wonders "What kind of a person is Aquaman? Does he stay under the ocean?"
This story has no title. The title used by the Grand Comics Database Project is The Mystery of the Sinking Ship. This title was applied to this story by the indexer, and is in no way official.
Other notables about this issue: Superman's Secret Message (Code Venus No 2) CVCPAGQC UGJJ KYIC WMS NFWQGAYJJW QRPMLE, a really neat ad for Canada Dry Ginger Ale that has a recipe for a "Canada Dry Ice Cream Hi-Ball!" (put a mouth-watering mountain of vanilla ice cream into a glass and fill with tangy, gingery Canada Dry Ginger Ale. Good? It's super-good! Come on... try it!), an ad for Sensation Comics #2 (endorsed by Jack Dempsey), an ad for Leading Comics #1 (featuring Green Arrow, who really took off in the Golden Age, The Vigilante, The Crimson Avenger, The Star Spangled Kid and Stripesy, and The Shining Knight), and a text short story called "Street Incident".