Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Saber-tooth Tiger, a T-Rex, an Abominable Snowman and a Tribe of Angry Neanderthals.

Gee whiz, how many different deadly threats can you fit into a 14-page story? Well, according to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the answer is "a lot."

"We were Trapped in the Twilight World," was published in Amazing Adventures #3 (August 1961). A science major named Paul Harper postulates that the past, present and future all exist simultaneously in different dimensions. His professor pish-poshes this idea. But Paul lives in a Comic Book Universe, so its not surprising that he and his girlfriend Cathy soon stumble through a portal into a past dimension.

They are quickly menaced by a saber-toothed tiger. This is killed by an Abominable Snowman, but the Snowman then threatens them in turn.

Escaping from this threat, they then have to save a Neanderthal baby from a dimetrodon, but the ungrateful parents and their tribe are soon chasing them. They dodge a T-Rex, but get captured by the Neanderthals--who tangle them over a cliff to be eaten by a pterodactyl. Luckily, a nearby Cro-Magnon man with a bow and arrow chooses to help them out.

This is a fun story, setting up its premise quickly and then tossing the protagonists into a breathless non-stop adventure. The tale is basically an extended chase scene, with Jack Kirby's art work making it all look fantastic. And it might just hold the record for highest number of different threats per page (1 danger/2.8 pages) in comic book history.

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