Death hurled a ghastly challenge at Secret Agent “X.” A torch of terror burned above Doom’s table where they played. And charred, unsightly corpses were the jackstraws dealt him by the grim gamester’s boney hand.
A nameless mystery man with a wartime past, backed by a shadowy group of powerful philanthropists, Secret Agent “X” took on the toughest assignments of the dirty thirties. Operating out of the half-haunted Montgomery Mansion, “X” was also known as the Man of a Thousand Faces. A past master of disguise, he infiltrated the Underworld to crush crime in all of its hideous manifestations.
No one knew who Secret Agent “X “really was. Not his readers. Not his editors. Not even his writer, conceivably. To this day, eighty years later, his true identity is still a deep mystery. That’s keeping a secret!
For Secret Agent “X”, it was decreed that he would pit himself against villains who were maestros of unbridled horror. Melodrama was the rule of the day. But the unknown “X” plunged into maelstroms of raw bloodlust undreamed of by The Shadow and Doc Savage. His foes were truly depraved. Terrorists. Torturers. Kidnappers. Stranglers. Arsonists. These were the types of tabloid master criminals our nameless hero hunted.
Writer Paul Chadwick communicated the essence of the new series with the horrific titles of his novels. The Death-Torch Terror stands out as an early example of the fearful proceedings.
In this thrilling tale, a series of bank robberies are marked by a trail of incinerated corpses. What sinister weapon has been fielded that reduces living flesh and bone to charred husks? When New York’s police commissioner is abducted by the murderous gang, the Man of Mystery and Destiny dons his warpaint and takes up the trail. But will the fires of doom engulf “X”, too?
The Death-Torch Terror first appeared in Secret Agent “X” magazine, April, 1934 and is read in fearful intonations by Milton Bagby.