Old Time RadioAudiobookseBooksPulp Fiction Books
Newsletter
eMail
Call
(Your shopping cart is empty)

 

  Shadow Volume 10 [Pulp Reprint] #5025



 
Alternative Views:


Our Price: $12.95
Sale Price: $3.24
You save $9.71!

Availability: Usually Ships in 24 Hours
Product Code: 5025
Qty:

Description
 
The Shadow
Volume 10

Pulp fiction's legendary Knight of Darkness returns in two of his most engrossing adventures. First, the Voodoo Master returns from the grave and launches a series of terrorist attacks to enslave "The City of Doom". Then, the Dark Avenger battles the master of disguise known only as Five Face. Will "The Fifth Face" be the face of death? In a special bonus feature, The Shadow battles a million-year-old Neanderthal in a "lost" radio script by Hugo Award-winning science fiction author Alfred Bester. This series entry features a classic cover by George Rozen, a foreword by Harlan Ellison, all the original interior art by acclaimed illustrators Tom Lovell and Earl Mayan, and historical commentary on the origins of super-villains and DC Comics' Vandal Savage by popular culture historians Will Murray and Anthony Tollin.
Special Feature:
John Olsen Reviews the Stories in The Shadow #10
Review written and copyrighted by John Olsen; used with permission

"The City of Doom" was published in the May 15, 1936 issue of The Shadow Magazine. This is the second of the three novels in the Voodoo Master series, as the evil Dr. Mocquino returns to battle The Shadow. In fact, that was Walter Gibson's original title for this story: "Dr. Mocquino's Return." Once again The Shadow must face the sinister Dr. Rodil Mocquino. And it will take all his courage, all his skill, all his amazing abilities to avert the slaughter that threatens the city of doom and defeat the Voodoo Master.

Hampstead is the city of doom. It's a small city, heavy on industry. But the various industries are meeting with accidents. Disastrous accidents in which lives are lost. Like the railroad yards. Two wrecks in the railroad yards within a matter of days, both unexplainable. Eight men killed. Another accident at the dye plant; a boiler explosion that took three more lives.

The town is jinxed. Harry Vincent, secret agent for The Shadow, had been sent to Hampstead to investigate, but he's now missing. So The Shadow makes a personal visit himself. And he's just in time to witness another horrible accident. At the steel mill, a cauldron of molten steel is accidentally poured too early. Instead of reaching the molds, it is splashed upon the workers. Another nine men perish in horrible deaths.

The Shadow confirms that this is sabotage. Trusted workers are performing sabotage against their wills, under the hypnotic influence of The Voodoo Master. Dr. Rodil Mocquino, known as The Voodoo Master, was last seen sinking beneath the waves in the Hudson River, riddled with bullets. But now he's back, and he's trying to destroy the will of the inhabitants of Hampstead. If he can destroy the influence of the machine age, he can implant the principles of the voodoo belief upon the community. Only then will they be susceptible to join his cult. Thus, his war on industry.

Dr. Mocquino wields a strange hypnotic power over men. He has the ability to make them do his bidding, without realizing what they are doing. The Shadow must break the power of the Voodoo Master before the superstitious townsfolk fall prey to his evil. He must find and rescue his trusted agent Harry Vincent. And he must destroy the Voodoo Master once and for all. (Well, at least until the next sequel.)

To do all this, he must fight the hypnotic power of Dr. Mocquino's strange lamp that glows, sparkles, and glistens. The lamp that strangely draws the mind's focus and makes any human susceptible to Dr. Mocquino's commands. He must fight Dr. Mocquino's zombies, not truly the walking dead, but close enough. Their minds have been taken by Dr. Mocquino and they are automatons under his complete control.

Who's helping him in this fight? No one. He's on his own, in this story. No agents are here to help him out. No forces of the law are present to give aid. It's just The Shadow. The Shadow against Dr. Mocquino.

The Shadow appears in disguise as businessman Henry Arnaud of Chicago. It was an often-used disguise, first appearing in the 1932 story "The Black Master." The Lamont Cranston disguise became more popular in later years, but Henry Arnaud was used throughout the 1930's and into the 1940's. The Shadow chooses the Arnaud disguise in this story because his features are full and bear little of the hawkishness his enemies associate with The Shadow's countenance. Also, Henry Arnaud is not a real person, unlike Lamont Cranston, so he is disposable if necessary. In fact, in this story, he lets Arnaud take the rap for a murder, something he wouldn't do with the Cranston disguise.

This story is more gruesome than usual. Men flee from the molten steel that's running loose, it pours onto their feet, melting their ankles and they fall into the molten horror. It's described in more graphic terms than Gibson was usually wont to do. And when The Shadow battles the zombies, it takes a bullet to the brain to stop them. Or he has to hack them up with a sharp saber. Yes, this is more the type of gore that Theodore Tinsley was known for. But when Walter Gibson worked on this story, Theodore Tinsley hadn't even started on his first Shadow novel, yet. So it's pure Gibson, gore and all.

There are some classic scenes in this story. One takes place in the Hampstead power house, when The Shadow battles Dr. Mocquino's minions. He stands between two massive generators, shooting between the spinning blades of the dynamo. Then there's the scene where it faces the dazzling hypnotic light of the Voodoo Master. "You are helpless!" jeers the Voodoo Master. "You are in my power!"

My favorite scene is where The Shadow battles against half a dozen zombies in his attempt to rescue Harry Vincent. In the castle dungeon he holds off the unearthly creatures with a saber in one hand and an automatic in the other. His bullets have no effect because they are garbed in old Roman helmet and armor. They never tire. They just keep coming. And The Shadow battles on. Yes, this is a true classic pulp moment!

No rubber suction cups are present in this story. Instead, The Shadow climbs the outside walls of the castle like a human beetle, all the way up a four-story tower.

It has been often mentioned that The Shadow is a master linguist. It seems there is never a language he hasn't mastered. He speaks dozens of languages throughout his many adventures. But in this one, he encounters one that he doesn't recognize. We are told that he hears Dr. Mocquino give a hard order in some unknown tongue. I think it's the only time he's been stumped.

For those of you who want to read the other two stories in this series, the first novel was "The Voodoo Master" from March 1, 1936 and the third one was "Voodoo Trail" from the June 1, 1938 issue. Together, these three stories make up some of the very best of The Shadow's pulp adventures.

I did find one possible discrepancy, however. - Spoiler coming up. - After you've read the story, ask yourself if blowing up Dr. Mocquino's castle wouldn't also disconnect the transformer that was keeping the machinery at the Hampstead Knitting Mills under control? Uncontrolled, wouldn't they begin to run wild and cause the very disaster that The Shadow has worked so hard to prevent? Or did I miss something?
 


"The Fifth Face" was originally published in the August 15, 1940 issue of The Shadow Magazine. Who is this new criminal mastermind? He can change his looks to become five different people. But one by one, The Shadow will eliminate those faces, until he reveals the final, fifth face!

Our story opens as three down-on-their-luck gangsters sit in their hideout playing cards. In walks Jake Smarley, their bookie. But it turns out that Smarley has much higher aspirations that being a bookie. He wants to enlist these three men as his lieutenants. Under his command, they will instigate a crime wave unlike any remembered in New York history. The secret of their success lies in Smarley's uncanny ability to change his appearance. He calls himself Five-face, as described in this excerpt from the pulp novel:

"Five-face will wipe off his map, like this" - Smarley started to spread his hands across his face - "and be another guy!"

An instant later, the lieutenants were gawking in amazement. They weren't looking at Jake Smarley any longer. His face had changed; it was shrewd, rather than drab. As the three men squinted, Smarley's hands made another sweep.

His face seemed to enlarge, to become fuller and more genial. Then, as his hands performed another swing, he turned his head and gave them a brief view of a set profile that wore an expression of disdain.

One more quick change came, as the face turned toward them, but before the three lieutenants could gain more than a vague impression, a sweep of the swift-moving hands restored the drab features of Jake Smarley.

How does he do it? Well, apparently he has a natural ability. And he uses makeup to add to that natural ability. He uses materials from a make-up box: a fake chin and a molding substance that looks like putty. And exactly how will he use his chameleon-like ability?

The plan is simple. The master criminal walks boldly into a bank and gets a hundred grand. The three lieutenants have their gangs outside, to cover his getaway. Naturally the crook will get spotted when he grabs the mazuma, but that's not a problem. Even The Shadow can't find him, because Five-face will change his appearance and never be that man again. Sounds like a perfect plan.

There will be four crimes, each bigger than the last. And each will be blamed on a character who will disappear after the crime, never to reappear. That will use up four of the faces mastered by the crook who calls himself Five-face. The fifth face is his real one. It's the face he will keep permanently after the crime wave is finished. It's the fifth face that will retire in wealth at the end of the spree of violence and death.

Luckily, The Shadow is on the job. The Shadow is keeping an eye on certain events that involve great wealth and might be tempting to denizens of the underworld. And when Five-face strikes, The Shadow is nearby to enter into battle. And luckily, he's not alone. He's going to need all the help he can get.

Assisting The Shadow is his team of agents including Moe Shrevnitz, his very capable hackie, Cliff Marsland, who has quite a reputation in the underworld, Hawkeye, a clever spotter who could follow a snake's trail through the grass, Harry Vincent, long in The Shadow's service, Clyde Burke, reporter on the New York Classic, Jericho Druke, the big African, and Burbank, his sequestered contact man. Also present is chauffeur Stanley, who aides The Shadow unknowingly. Officers of the New York Police Department are, as usual, present in the person of Inspector Joe Cardona and Commissioner Ralph Weston.

In all the early adventures of The Shadow, his agents never knew his identity or his disguises. But as the years passed, that changed. In this story, they now recognize that Lamont Cranston is one of The Shadow's disguises: "The Shadow's agents stared in utter amazement at two men who came from the main door and entered a waiting limousine. One was Lamont Cranston, otherwise The Shadow."

The usual trapping are all here. On the third finger of the left hand, The Shadow wears his one-of-a-kind girasol ring. The Shadow appears in his favorite guise, that of millionaire and world-traveler Lamont Cranston. In the back of Cranston's limousine, is the hidden drawer containing the slouch hat, cloak of black, gloves and two .45 automatics. And also in the back of the limo, is hidden the special short-wave radio by which means The Shadow can contact Burbank.

We are treated to a visit to the black-walled room lit with a single blue bulb, The Shadow's sanctum. And we even get a very quick visit to Chinatown, which Shadow fans always cherish. The Shadow uses his special fountain pen containing the special vivid blue ink that disappears shortly after exposure to air. And he uses that special three-colored flashlight to signal his agents.

As this story was written, Europe was at war. American had yet to enter into what would be known as World War II, but it was clearly just a matter of time. Author Walter Gibson gives nod to the current events by indicating that Lamont Cranston now makes excursions to South America, "since European voyages were no longer popular."

It's a fun story to read, but certainly not one of the best that The Shadow had to offer. By 1940, things had started to become a little routine. But still, even at that, the ending had me fooled. I was sure I had figured it out early on. After reading all of these stories, and I should be able to see through Walter Gibson's tricks by now. Right? Nope, he got me again! A cool ending that caught me by surprise.

I guess that's why I never seem to get tired of these stories. They are always fresh. Never formula; never predictable. Always worth the few hours it takes to read them.
 


John Olsen was first introduced to The Shadow in the early 1960's, tuning in to rebroadcasts of his adventures on KEX radio in Portland, Oregon. Several years later, John was drawn to a hardback book entitled "The Weird Adventures of The Shadow," containing three Shadow novels reprinted from the old pulp magazines. The pulp Shadow was a far different character from the beloved radio version, but the stories drew him in and opened his eyes to a richer version of the hero. Today, John is retired in Sherwood, Oregon. He has read all 325 of the old Shadow pulp mysteries and enjoys them so much that, as of this writing, he is well over half way through reading them all again for a second time.


Share your knowledge of this product with other customers... Be the first to write a review
RadioArchives.com

 About Us
 Privacy Policy
 Send Us Feedback