The Phantom Detective pits his strength and ingenuity against the fiendish perpetrators of sinister criminal machinations originating in India and involving American gangdom — bringing death and disaster in their wake. Wherever the grim game of life and death is played — wherever criminals are tightening their fiendish grip on society — the Phantom Detective takes a hand! The world’s greatest sleuth — master of disguise, deduction, psychology — holds the ace in the dramatic game played by the underworld against the forces of law and order. Thrill to his exciting adventures, breath-taking perils and astonishing cleverness in a smashing, action-packed narrative of death and disaster in the wake of a gigantic, sinister plot only The Phantom Detective can uncover!
Somewhat aimless upon his return from the war, Richard Curtis Van Loan confided often in a friend of his father’s, the rather influential Frank Havens, the publisher of the Clarion newspaper. A father figure to Van Loan in many ways since he had been orphaned as a child, Havens provided the advice to the young man that would change his life and the course of pulp history forever. Noting a particular crime that the city’s police were having trouble solving, Havens challenged Van Loan to try his hand at solving it. Van Loan does just that and in the process discovers his purpose. Not only that, but Van Loan learns of the true level of corruption and crime riddling his city and the world at large. Determined to strike back for justice and ordinary citizens, Van Loan decides to create another identify for himself and take his fight literally to the streets.