The Phantom classic featured in this edition—A Man Called Nobody— comes from the Frew archives of 1992.
Which is hardly a remarkable fact! What is so interesting about this story is that it is one of the most requested Phantom adventures—ever!
We can now reveal that of the top 54 most requested stories on Frew’s files, this one has been No 7 for well over a decade!
We’ll let you decide the reasons. Could it be the villain’s name? (‘Nobody’, after all is quite unique!). Perhaps it is the fact we never see Mr Nobody’s face, or perhaps that Scott Goodall’s script is close to being a horror story and horror stories are—surprisingly perhaps—very rare items in the long comics history of The Ghost Who Walks.
Lee Falk, in fact, rarely disposed of anybody (The 1942-43 classic The Phantom Goes to War being easily the best known exception to the rule!).
If they died, Lee’s heroes passed away in heroic fashion and villains were invariably captured and at worst, tried and sentenced in court to nothing more than jail terms.
(Yes, we know a few actually did die at or near story’s end, but mostly from simple falls, or injuries sustained earlier or from suicide (very rare!)
Creators for the Scandinavian publishers of The Phantom comic book have over the years, depicted their villains dying—and often in nasty circumstances, but such cases are still reasonably few.
All of which stresses that The Phantom is in a special league of his own and is never to be compared to the vast majority of ‘super heroes’ whose enemies die or are killed in droves and all too often in horrific circumstances.
That has never been the way of The Phantom and never will be!
Certainly artist Carlos Cruz enjoyed his time on the adventure. His enthusiasm for the strange plot is evident on every page!
The selection of the sewerage and storm water drainage tunnel systems under Morristown for much of the story plot is interesting.
Perhaps author Scott Goodall was influenced by a movie or two written and directed by Orson Welles who loved such settings.
Or even by the cult American movie ‘Them’ which the producer and director wanted you to believe was set in similar drainage systems under Los Angeles. There are overtones of such movies throughout A Man Called Nobody!
Nothing wrong with that!