Robot Town USA and Robotman In The Moon

Following are two stories from the series' last run in Detective: "Robotman In The Moon" (issue #141) and "Robot Town USA" (issue #147).

"Robotman In The Moon" (Detective #141) boasts Thompson's most spectacular visual fireworks. This scan comes from a Canadian edition, which has crappier printing than the US version. Thompson's highly atmospheric and dramatic approach shows his ability to play it straight with great style and distinction.

Robotman in The Moon Detective141a
Robotman in The Moon Detective141b Robotman in The Moon Detective141c
Robotman in The Moon Detective141d
Robotman in The Moon Detective141eRobotman in The Moon Detective141f

"Robot Town USA" (Detective #147) is earnest post-war liberal allegory. It eerily anticipates the classic EC SF story, "Judgment Day," in its basic theme. As a departure from the usual crooks-and-heroes format, this story also inspired Thompson's pen and brush. Again, I wish the printing quality was better...

Robotman comic book scans Detective147a
Robotman comic book scans Detective147b Robotman comic book scans Detective147c
Robotman comic book scans Detective147d
Robotman comic book scans Detective147e Robotman comic book scans Detective147f
Thompson's departure from "Robotman," as with most 1940s comics, was completely unheralded. Artists such as Ruben Moreira and John Certa inherited the series, which became filler-product, and somehow lasted 'til <i>Detective</i> #202.

I doubt the powers-that-be at DC knew what to do with Jimmy Thompson. A journeyman illustrator, he could fulfill any comics genre. His unwillingness to conform to the DC house style is notable and laudable. I regret that so many restraints were put on him, as an artist, in this last run of "Robotman."

In our next and final chapter, we'll examine some of Jimmy Thompson's other work for DC--and his teen comics of the late 1940s!

--Frank Young
Text ©2009 by Frank M. Young

Thanks to my dear friend Paul Tumey for bringing Jimmy Thompson's work to my consciousness. Paul runs an outstanding blog on the works of Jack Cole ( Go there immediately!

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