Mild Mannered Reviews - Classic Pre-Crisis Superman Comics
Jimmy Olsen #52Cover date: April 1961
"Jimmy Olsen, Wolf-Man"
Writer: Jerry Siegel
Penciller: Curt Swan
Inker: Stan Kaye
Editor: Mort Weisinger
Reviewed by: Osgood Peabody
As we begin this story, Mr. Mxyzptlk, the imp from the 5th Dimension, drops in to visit Metropolis and to seek refuge from his girl-friend Miss Gzptlsnz. Spotting Jimmy & Lucy on a date, he immediately falls in love with Lucy, and (perhaps with some justification) thinks to himself "what a crime to waste such beauty on a young idiot like Olsen"! Afterward, Mxy attempts to romance Miss Lane himself by offering her a gigantic emerald, but Lucy gives him the brush-off, recognizing him as "that awful 5th Dimensional pest Lois told me about".
The jilted Mxyzptlk goes to Jimmy's apartment, and in a pique of jealousy, compels him to take another swig of the Wolf-man potion left over from his previous adventure. But as Olsen is about to drink it, Mxy secretly changes the potion to ordinary water, thinking, "it will be my magic, not the potion, which will change Jimmy into a wolf-man!" Jimmy immediately signals his pal Superman, and after hearing what happened, the Man of Steel reassures him that he'll arrange for Miss X to kiss him again in a darkened room, just like before. As evening falls, Jimmy is transformed once again into the Wolf-Man, but his pal soon returns with Supergirl, and Superman thinks how good it was of Linda to take time out for this "errand of mercy"(!). Just as in the previous story, Superman arranges to have Jimmy keep the lights out to preserve Supergirl's identity, although Jimmy thinks it's to keep his appearance from scaring her away.
That brings us to this interesting panel - the caption: "a kiss in the dark!" The silhouettes of Wolf-Man Jimmy and Supergirl in mid-smooch. Jimmy thinking "Hmm, whoever Miss X is, I like her kisses! I've always hoped we'd meet again some day". Supergirl, on the other hand, is chaste in her thoughts: "Jimmy's nice! I'm glad I can help him!"
Unfortunately for Jimmy, this time her kiss fails to break the spell (as it's Mxy's magic, not the potion that's ailing him), and after "Miss X" departs, Superman returns to reassure his buddy that he'll try to help him, but he has a few emergencies to handle first (funny how these unidentified crises were not urgent until now!). The following day, Jimmy tries to take his mind off his troubles by accompanying Lois on an assignment to interrogate a proprietor of a wax museum on the whereabouts of a criminal known to associate with him. This criminal is none too swift, as he gets the brilliant notion of hiding out by imitating one of the wax images, and even Olsen is able to see through his "disguise" immediately as everyone knows "wax figures don't sweat!" Lois is grateful for the assist, and that night, as Jimmy accompanies her back to the Daily Planet office, when Lois sees him undergo the wolfman transformation, she pities him and offers up a kiss to break the spell. But even Superman's gal can't smooch it away, and Jimmy is left more desperate than ever.
The next evening, Jimmy takes Lucy Lane to the park, and once again, the transformation takes place. Lucy now steps up to the plate, "Lois told me everything! I know I refused to kiss your wolf-face last time this happened to you but please let me kiss you now!" Lucy then puckers up, thinking, "I've closed my eyes! I'll think of somebody real handsome!" [I guess it should come as no great surprise, that, alas, Olsen does not appear to be the subject of her fantasy!] But, Lucy also strikes out, as she blurts, "Gasp You're as repulsive as ever!" [Probably the last words you want to hear from your girlfriend during an intimate moment!]
Wretched as ever, Jimmy walks along a lonely trail by the ocean, and as he slips on a rock, thinks, "Maybe I'll be lucky and crack my skull on some rocks!" But as he falls into the water, Lori Lemaris immediately approaches, and without any explanation (having sized up the situation telepathically, no doubt) kisses the distraught reporter. However, Lori's kiss fares no better than the other ladies, and Jimmy thinks, "Golly I'm running out of girls to kiss! Who's left? Lana Lang... perhaps!" [It doesn't say much for poor Lana that Olsen thinks of her as a last resort, does it?] But, naturally, Lana's kiss also fails to cure Jimmy, as Mxyzptlk looks on, thinking, "I'll say this much for Jimmy-boy! He's persistent!"
However, after leaving Lana's apartment, a veiled, miniature woman approaches Wolfman-Jimmy, and assures him that her kiss will break the spell. Sure enough, Jimmy is stunned as he changes back to normal. Curious to see who his benefactor, is, he pulls back the veil, but to his horror, "Yipes! She's a homely hag!" Mxy himself then pops in to reveal that this woman is in fact Miss Gzptlsnz, the girl he came to Earth to hide from! She secretly followed Mxy from the 5th Dimension and, observing his plot to impress Lucy, worked her own magic to cure Olsen. She then tricks Mxyzptlk himself into saying his name backwards by having him read the "magic brand" of lipstick which saved Jimmy (conveniently labeled "Kltpzyxm"). After filling in Olsen that it was, in fact, her own 5th-Dimensional magic that cured him, not the lipstick, she happily follows the imp back home by saying her own name backwards. Our story ends with Jimmy trying to steal another kiss from Lucy, but she fends him off, saying, "You got enough kisses in the last few days to last you months, you wolf!"
Story - 4: It's somehow fitting that this tale, where Jimmy follows a more logical path to a cure, is just not as satisfying as the first Wolf-Man tale's labyrinthine plot-twists.
Art - 4: Swan & Kaye do another comical rendition of Jimmy as wolf-man, although, once again, it seemed funnier when everyone was afraid of his appearance.
Cover Art - 4: On the cover, Jimmy the Wolf-man appeals to Lois, Lana and Lucy to kiss him again to break the spell. But as Superman, looking on, notes, "Poor Jimmy! This time, Nothing can help him! Not even a kiss from Supergirl! He's doomed to stay that way for keeps!" [Interesting that Supergirl's kiss here is deemed the ultimate cure, - - I guess her smooch was indeed something special!]
So like most sequels, this Wolf-man tale doesn't measure up to the original, but buried in this story is another tantalizing interlude in a darkened room, and by now the readers must have been clamoring for more of Jimmy & Kara. Editor Mort Weisinger would respond with one of the most fondly remembered tales of the Silver Age, not to mention Jimmy Olsen's finest hour but that'll have to wait for another review!
Pre-Crisis Superman Comic Book Reviews
- Action Comics #1 (June 1938)
- Action Comics #2 (July 1938)
- Action Comics #3 (August 1938)
- Action Comics #4 (September 1938)
- Action Comics #5 (October 1938)
- Action Comics #6 (November 1938)
- Action Comics #7 (December 1938)
- Superman Archives: Volume 1 (1939)
- Superman #1 (Summer 1939)
- Action Comics #8 (January 1939)
- Action Comics #9 (February 1939)
- Action Comics #10 (March 1939)
- Superman #13 (November/December 1941) - The Archer
- Superman #19 (November/December 1942) - Case of the Funny Paper Crimes
- Action Comics #60 (May 1943) - Lois Lane - Superwoman
- Superman #30 (September/October 1944) - The Mysterious Mr. Mxyztplk
- Action Comics #80 (January 1945) - Mr. Mxyztplk Returns
- Superman #38 (January/February 1946) - The Battle of the Atoms
- Superman #42 (September/October 1946) - The Death of Clark Kent
- Superman #45 (March/April 1947) - Lois Lane, Superwoman
- Superman #53 (July 1948) - The Origin of Superman
- Action Comics #124 (September 1948) - A Superman of Doom
- Superman #60 (December 1949/January 1950) - The Two Identities of Superman & Superman Fights the Super-Brain
- Superman #76 (May/June 1952) - The Mightiest Team in the World
- Superman #80 (January/February 1953) - Superman's Lost Brother
- Superman 3D (1953) - The Man Who Stole the Sun, Origin of Superman and The Man Who Bossed Superman
- Superman #87 (February 1954) - The Prankster's Greatest Role
- Superman #88 (March 1954) - The Terrible Trio
- Superman #89 (May 1954) - Captain Kent the Terrible, Superman of Skid Row, and One Hour to Doom!
- Superman #91 (August 1954) - The Superman Stamp and Great Caesar's Ghost
- World's Finest #88 (May/June 1957) - Superman and Batman's Greatest Foes
- Superman #115 (August 1957) - The Midget Superman!
- Superboy #65 (May/June 1958) - The Amazing Adventures of Krypto Mouse
- Action Comics #242 (July 1958) - The Super-Duel in Space
- Superman #123 (August 1958) - The Girl of Steel
- Superman #127 (February 1959) - Titano the Super Ape
- Action Comics #252 (May 1959) - The Menace of Metallo and The Supergirl From Krypton
- Superman #129 (May 1959) - The Girl in Superman's Past
- Superman #130 (July 1959) - The Curse of Kryptonite!, The Super-Servant of Crime!, and The Town that Hated Superman!
- Jimmy Olsen #40 (October 1959) - Jimmy Olsen, Supergirl's Pal
- Superman #134 (January 1960) - The Super-Menace of Metropolis
- Jimmy Olsen #42 (January 1960) - The Big Superman Movie!, Perry White, Cub Reporter!, and Jimmy the Genie!
- Jimmy Olsen #44 (April 1960) - The Wolf-Man of Metropolis
- Adventure Comics #271 (April 1960) - How Luthor Met Superboy
- Jimmy Olsen #46 (July 1960) - Jimmy Olsen, Orphan
- Superman #141 (November 1960) - Superman's Return To Krypton
- Superboy #85 (December 1960) - The Impossible Mission
- Jimmy Olsen #51 (March 1961) - The Girl with Green Hair
- Jimmy Olsen #52 (April 1961) - Jimmy Olsen, Wolf-Man
- Superboy #89 (June 1961) - Superboy's Big Brother!
- Action Comics #279 (August 1961) - The Super-Rivals
- Superman #147 (August 1961) - The Legion of Super Villains
- Superman #149 (November 1961) - The Death of Superman!
- Jimmy Olsen #57 (December 1961) - Jimmy Olsen Marries Supergirl
- Superman #155 (August 1962) - Superman Under the Green Sun and The Downfall of Superman
- Justice League of America #13 (August 1962) - Riddle of the Robot Justice League
- World's Finest #129 (November 1962) - Joker-Luthor, Incorporated
- Superman #158 (January 1963) - Superman in Kandor
- Superman #160 (April 1963) - The Mortal Superman
- Superman #161 (May 1963) - The Last Days of Ma and Pa Kent
- Superman #162 (July 1963) - The Amazing Story of Superman-Red and Superman-Blue
- Superman #163 (August 1963) - Wonder-Man, the New Hero of Metropolis and The Goofy Superman
- Justice League of America #21 & #22 (August/September 1963) - Crisis on Earth-One! and Crisis on Earth-Two!
- Superman #164 (October 1963) - The Showdown Between Luthor and Superman
- Superman #165 (November 1963) - The Sweetheart Superman Forgot
- Superman #166 (January 1964) - The Fantastic Story of Superman's Sons
- Superman #167 (February 1964) - The Team of Luthor and Brainiac
- Superman #168 (April 1964) - Luthor - Super Hero and Lex Luthor, Daily Planet Editor
- Superman #169 (May 1964) - The Man Who Stole Superman's Secret Life
- Action Comics #314 (July 1964) - The Day Superman Became The Flash
- Justice League of America #29 & #30 (August/September 1964) - Crisis on Earth-Three! and The Most Dangerous Earth of All!
- Superman #173 (November 1964) - The Triumph of Luthor and Brainiac
- Action Comics #318 (November 1964) - The Death of Luthor
- Action Comics #319 (December 1964) - The Condemned Superman
- Superman #175 (February 1965) - Clark Kent's Brother
- Superman #181 (November 1965) - The Superman of 2965
- The Legion of Super-Heroes - Archives Volume 4 (1965)
- Superman #184 (February 1966) - The Demon Under the Red Sun
- Action Comics #338 (June 1966) - Muto - Monarch of Menace
- Action Comics #339 (July 1966) - Muto versus The Man of Tomorrow
- Superman #189 (August 1966) - Krypton Lives Again
- Action Comics #346 (February 1967) - The Man Who Sold Insurance to Superman and The Case of the Superman Imposter
- Superman #194 (February 1967) - The Death of Lois Lane
- Superman #196 (May 1967) - The Star of Steel
- Superman #199 (January 1967) - Superman's Race With The Flash
- Superman #200 (October 1967) - Super-Brother Against Super-Brother
- The Flash #175 (December 1967) - Race to the End of the Universe
- Justice League of America #63 (June 1968) - Time Signs a Death Warrant for the Justice League
- Superman #211 (November 1968) - The Name of the Game is Superman!
- Superman #215 (April 1969) - Lois LaneŠ DeadŠ Yet Alive
- Superman #224 (February 1970) - Beware the Super-Genius Baby
- Action Comics #393 (October 1970) - Superman Meets Super-Houdini! and The Day Superboy Became Superman!
- Jimmy Olsen #133 (October 1970) - The Newsboy Legion
- Action Comics #394 (November 1970) - Midas of Metropolis and Requiem for a Hot Rod!
- World's Finest #198 (November 1970) - Race to Save the Universe!
- Action Comics #395 (December 1970) - The Secrets of Superman's Fortress and The Credit Card of Catastrophe
- Jimmy Olsen #134 (December 1970) - The Mountain of Judgement!
- World's Finest #199 (December 1970) - A Race to Save Time!
- Superman #233 (January 1971) - Superman Breaks Loose!
- Jimmy Olsen #135 (January 1971) - The Evil Factory!
- Superman #234 (February 1971) - How to Tame a Wild Volcano
- Jimmy Olsen #136 (February 1971) - The Saga of the D.N.Aliens
- Superman #235 (March 1971) - The Sinister Scream of the Devil's Harp
- Superman #236 (April 1971) - Planet of the Angels and The Doomsayer
- Jimmy Olsen #137 (April 1971) - The Four-Armed Terror!
- Superman #237 (May 1971) - The Enemy of Earth
- Superman #238 (June 1971) - Menace at 1000 Degrees
- Jimmy Olsen #138 (June 1971) - The Big Boom!!
- Superman #240 (July 1971) - To Save a Superman
- Jimmy Olsen #139 (July 1971) - The Guardian Fights Again!!!
- Superman #241 (August 1971) - The Shape of Fear
- Superman #242 (September 1971) - The Ultimate Battle
- Jimmy Olsen #141 (September 1971) - Will the Real Don Rickles Panic?!?
- Jimmy Olsen #142 (October 1971) - The Man from Transilvane!
- Jimmy Olsen #143 (November 1971) - Genocide Spray
- Jimmy Olsen #144 (December 1971) - A Big Thing in a Deep Scottish Lake!
- Superman #247 (January 1972) - Must There Be A Superman
- Jimmy Olsen #145 (January 1972) - Brigadoom!
- Jimmy Olsen #146 (February 1972) - Homo-Disastrous!
- Jimmy Olsen #147 (March 1972) - A Superman in Super-Town!
- Jimmy Olsen #148 (April 1972) - Monarch of All He Subdues!
- Superman #292 (October 1975) - The Luthor Nobody Knows!
- Action Comics #458 (April 1976) - Make Me a Super-Hero! and Masquerade of the Nutty Kid!
- Action Comics #484 (June 1978) - Superman Takes a Wife!
- Superman #328 (October 1978) - Attack of the Kryptonoid
- Action Comics #489 (November 1978) - Krypton Dies Again and Where There's a Will... There's a Fray
- Superman #329 (November 1978) - I Have Met The Enemy... And He Is Me! and The Secret of the Talking Car
- Superman #330 (December 1978) - The Master Mesmerizer of Metropolis!
- Action Comics #490 (December 1978) - No Tomorrow For Superman
- Action Comics #491 (January 1979) - A Matter of Light and Death
- Superman #331 (January 1979) - Lockup at 20,000 Feet
- Action Comics #492 (February 1979) - Superman's Secret Afterlife
- Superman #332 (February 1979) - The Eternity Cage
- Action Comics #493 (March 1979) - The Metropolis UFO Connection
- Action Comics #494 (April 1979) - The Secret of the Super S
- Action Comics #495 (May 1979) - Attack of the Ultimate Warrior
- DC Comics Presents #14 (October 1979) - Judge, Jury... and No Justice!
- The Superman Story (1979) - The Life Story of Superman
- DC Comics Presents #57 (May 1983) - Days of Future Past
- DC Comics Presents #67 (March 1984) - 'Twas the Fright Before Christmas
- DC Comics Presents Annual #3 (1984) - With One Magic Word
- Superman: The Secret Years #1 (February 1985) - Dreams and Schemes and Feeling Proud!
- Superman: The Secret Years #2 (March 1985) - Reach Out and Touch
- Superman: The Secret Years #3 (April 1985) - Terminus
- DC Comics Presents #80 (April 1985) - A World Full of Supermen!
- Superman: The Secret Years #4 (May 1985) - Beyond Terminus
- DC Comics Presents #85 (September 1985) - The Jungle Line
- Superman Annual #11 (1985) - For The Man Who Has Everything
- World's Finest #323 (January 1986) - Afraid of the Dark
- DC Comics Presents #97 (September 1986) - Phantom Zone: The Final Chapter
- Superman #423 & Action Comics #583 (September 1986) - Whatever Happened To The Man of Tomorrow?
- Showcase Presents: Superman Family - Volume 1 (October 2005)
- Superman/Batman: Saga of the Super Sons (December 2007)
- Not Brand ECHH #7 (April 1967) - The Origin of Stuporman
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