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Daring Mystery Comics #2 (1940 Series)

Data courtesy of the Grand Comics Database
"Enter the Laughing Mask"

Written by: Will Harr (signed)
Pencils: Maurice Gutwirth [as M. Gutwirth] (signed)
Inks: Maurice Gutwirth [as M. Gutwirth] (signed)
Cover Pencils: Alex Schomburg ?
Cover Inks: Alex Schomburg ?
Dennis Burton becomes the next member of his family to beconme involved in law enforcement as District Attorney, bent on uncovering the plot behind the recent destruction of passenger trains.
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Cover Details - none
CharactersThe Phantom Bullet [Allen Lewis]
PencilsAlex Schomburg ?
InksAlex Schomburg ?
14 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "Voyage to Sunev"
CharactersZephyr Jones (introduction); Corky Grogan (introduction); King Bolo; Princess Tonka; Birdmen of Sunev; Gen. Roudo (villain); The Parrot-Men (villain)
SynopsisScientist and inventor, Dr. Morrison Jones, died before his rocketship that would realize his dream of making the first trip to the planet Mars could be completed. His son Zephyr, however, vows to live out his father's dream.
Genrescience fiction
PencilsFred Schwartz (signed)
InksFred Schwartz (signed)
NotesNext appears in Mystic Comics (Marvel, 1940 series) #1. Jerry Bails's Who's Who and the Lambiek Comiclopedia both list Fred Schwab as the artist although "Fred Schwartz" is not listed among his pen names, nor as a separate person. This seems likely to be a confusion of similar names. The Masterworks credits Schwartz as a person and not a pen name. Cal Cagno was eventually on staff at Timely, and may have already been on staff at this point, making this possibly an in-house / freelance job. Not enough is known about Schwartz to help place the source.
10 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "Origin of the Phantom Bullet"
CharactersThe Phantom Bullet [Allen Lewis]; Benny the Beggar; Alvarez Monez (villain); Bird-Men (villains)
SynopsisReporter Allen Lewis is baffled by the death of a wealthy man who clutches a feather in his hand, but soon learns of a mysterious race of "bird-men" that seemed to be involved. Given the secret for a gun that shoots ice pellets by a soon-to-be murdered scientist, Lewis adopts a costumed identity to track down the bird-men at any cost.
PencilsJoe Simon (signed)
InksJoe Simon (signed)
NotesFunnies, Inc. material. Next appearance in The Marvels Project (Marvel, 2009 series) #2
10 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "King of the Jungle"
CharactersTrojak (origin); Trojak's father; Edith Alton; Balu (the tiger)
SynopsisTrojak, raised in the jungle by a native tribe after his father was killed by hostiles, is encouraged to find his own people and leave the jungle. However, he discovers that the ways of his people are not to his liking, and returns to the jungle to fight off hostile savages attempting to kill a girl who has be-friended him.
PencilsJoe Simon [as Gregory Sykes] (signed)
InksJoe Simon [as Gregory Sykes] (signed)
NotesDr. Michael Vassallo disputes the Larry Antonette art credits and suggests that Joe Simon may be the penciller and inker (, 24 November 2007 --- CONFIRMED in Alter Ego #76, page 9. Harry Mendryk confirms Simon as writer on based on conversations with Simon. Funnies, Inc. material.
Six-Gun Dynamite
CharactersOzias Wilkins; Mattie Wilkins
SynopsisMattie insists that the silver mine Ozias is working is worthless, and insists she will leave him if he continues to work it.
Pencils? (spot illustration)
Inks? (spot illustration)
NotesStudio or freelance source unknown.
10 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "Introducing K-4"
CharactersCapt. K-4 and his Sky Devils [Lt. Rene D'Auvergne, Lt. Ronald Wolverstone-Clodd] (introduction); Major Von Lutz (villain); the Nazis (villains)
SynopsisCaptain K-4 is assigned to infiltrate and help to destroy the ammunition depot located at the Nazi seaport of Kurtzberg, while disguised as a Gestapo agent.
NotesThe Masterworks tentatively credits Jack Alderman with the artwork, but Jim Vadeboncoeur, Jr. via the Timely-Altas list in January 2012 states that he sees no Alderman here. The heads and airplanes are likely drawn by a different artist than the rest of the strip. Jim believes that the same artist likely drew the majority of this strip and the strip in issue #4, or possibly a different artist drew #4 using this story as a close guide. Henry Andrews notes that the airplanes in this issue's story are much more detailed than in #4, indicating that the touch-up artist here did not work on the story in #4. The story in #4 is from the Chesler shop, so this may be as well, but the unusual panel arrangement here (with wide spaces between the panels) which may or may not be a clue to the strip's origins, has not been spotted elsewhere.
10 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "Who in Reality Is Mr. "E"?"
CharactersMr. E [Victor Jay]; Betty; The Vampire (villain)
SynopsisMr. "E", enemy of the underworld, sees connections in the recent deaths of several "captains of industry," knowing all four were silent partners in the Snead Oil Company but unaware at the same time that his old enemy, the Vampire, is behind it all.
PencilsAl Carreno
InksAl Carreno
NotesOnly golden age appearance. Next appearance in The Twelve (Marvel, 2008 series) #1 Al Carreno was associated with Chesler at this time according to Who's Who, but also with Funnies, Inc. at an unspecified date. Cal Cagno may have been a Goodman/Timely writer. The studio source, if any, for this story is unclear.
8 pages Daring Mystery Comics story "Enter the Laughing Mask"
CharactersThe Laughing Mask [Dennis Burton]; Lester Deeks (villain); Lester's gang (villains)
SynopsisDennis Burton becomes the next member of his family to beconme involved in law enforcement as District Attorney, bent on uncovering the plot behind the recent destruction of passenger trains.
PencilsMaurice Gutwirth [as M. Gutwirth] (signed)
InksMaurice Gutwirth [as M. Gutwirth] (signed)
NotesBecomes the Purple Mask in the next two issues. Likely Chesler shop material.
Daring Comics' Free $25 Prize Contest!
SynopsisThe editor of Daring Comics announces a contest offering $25 in cash prizes, asking readers to select their favorite feature in Daring and tell why. 1st place wins $5, 2nd place $2 and 3rd to 20th prize winners get $1 each. Deadline for entries is January 30, 1940.
NotesFound on the inside front cover. Sequence added by Craig Delich 2008-8-17.
Money and Big Prizes
NotesFound on the back cover.
Rush Coupon for Mammoth Catalog
NotesFound on the inside back cover.
More Information
Product Name Daring Mystery Comics #2 (1940 Series)
Characters The Phantom Bullet [Allen Lewis]
Series Daring Mystery Comics
Publication Date Jan 31, 1940
Synopsis Dennis Burton becomes the next member of his family to beconme involved in law enforcement as District Attorney, bent on uncovering the plot behind the recent destruction of passenger trains.