Showcase 1 (March-April 1956)

The first issue of Showcase might feature “real life” heroes like firefighters, but there’s still limited danger. In the three stories, no one gets seriously injured and the protagonist–fireman Fred Farrell–successfully saves not just a frightened child but also a baby elephant.

While the first story (Farrell passing his final firefighting test) does have some character drama, the rest of the stories are just Farrell against the elements. The third story doesn’t even showcase Farrell’s heroics, it’s more about informing voters to give more money to firefighter’s salaries. Amusingly, the bad guys in that story are the small businessmen out to make a buck and young mothers wanting better education for their children.

Arnold Drake’s scripts aren’t bad–the comic is probably edifying as a look at fifties firefighting tools and techniques. Ditto for John Prentice’s artwork. It’s never exciting (and his faces are boring), but it’s competent.

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