Tag Archives: Baron Strucker

Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #28, Mar. 1966

sgt028Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #28, Mar. 1966

Story by: Stan Lee
Art by: Dick Ayers
Inking by: John Tartaglione
Lettering by: Sam Rosen

two-stars

I think I’m going to stop caring so much about how much I write about each issue, or at the very least these stupid WWII comics. They really aren’t superhero comics, they just happen to have Nick Fury in them. There is some crossover between these characters and the rest of the superhero stuff, and that’s the only reason I’m doing it in the first place.

The Howling Commandos are off to a city in France recently occupied by the Nazis to help the local resistance make trouble for ze Germans. Their old nemesis, Baron Strucker, is running the city now, and he’s just as useless as he is every time they go up against him. The Howlers blow up a million trains and four million bridges, which ticks Hitler off to no end. He orders Strucker to blow up the entire town instead of just shipping off the citizens to concentration camps as he had been doing. In retaliation, Fury sets Strucker’s base to explode, and the issue ends with a stalemate: who will blow up whom?!

Hitler gets a lot of facetime in this issue, which is funny because he’s shown as a raving psychopath, constantly yelling insanity at everyone. The weird thing about this is not that Adolph Hitler is shown in a negative light in a WWII comic written by a former army propaganda man, but that Baron Strucker is constantly disagreeing with Hitler’s orders, thinking of him as a madman. So wait, are we supposed to sympathize with the monocle-wearing Nazi officer now? What’s that all about?

sgt028p

 


Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #22, Sept. 1965

Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #22, Sept. 1965

Story: The greatest, by Stan Lee
Art: The first-ratest, by Dick Ayers
Inking: The ornatest, by Carl Hubbell
Lettering: The straightest, by Art Simek

We deal a lot with Bull McGiveney’s “Maulers”, another commando squad stationed at the same base as the Howling Commandos, in this issue. We’ve pretty much only seen Bull himself being angry that the Howlers get all the good assignments, or sometimes they get into bar fights together. I actually really like the antagonistic camaraderie that comes through between the two sergeants in this one.

Time for another craaaazy mission for the Howling Commandos to do succeed at beyond all odds! This time they have to take out a train full of anti-aircraft guns so the allied bombers can bomb some place or other, I dunno. They team up with Bull McGiveney’s Maulers and manage to succeed (of course), even when Baron Strucker’s Blitzkrieg Squad shows up out of nowhere to join in the fray.

I think this mission the Howlers go on was something that either Stan Lee or Dick Ayers was actually there for, in some capacity. There are just so many more little details in this than normal, and at the end they actually mention a realistic amount of allied losses. Also, Stan Lee and Dick Ayers actually make appearances in the issue talking about how they’re eventually going to make this comic. I can buy this a little more than I can Lee and Jack Kirby trying to crash Mr. Fantastic’s wedding.


Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #20, July 1965

Sgt. Fury and Howling Commandos #20, July 1965

Smashing script: Stan Lee
Awesome art: Dick Ayers
Inspired inking: Frank Ray
Luscious lettering: Artie Simek

I consistently give Sgt. Fury bad ratings (not that the ratings really matter for anything), but I don’t really hate the series or anything, not like I did with ANT MAN. It’s just… bland. The same exact thing happens every month, just a bunch of super-awesome guys blowing up tanks and punching Nazis. I don’t know what horrible things I’ve done wrong in my life, but that just isn’t exciting to me.

Remember Baron Strucker and his Blitzkrieg Squad, the Nazi version of the Howling Commandos? Well, they’re back, and they’ve taken over a castle in Scotland! Fury and the Howlers go after him because they’ve got a personal score to settle (I don’t know why constantly beating someone means you have a score to settle, but whatever), and they… beat the shit out of the Nazis. Yawn.

Fury even makes a patriotic speech at the end of the issue while punching a Nazi with a monocle, which is awesome when Captain America does it. I’m not really sure why it doesn’t have the same impact (I tried using a word other than “punch” and it still ended up being a stupid pun) when Fury does it, but it just seems forced. Maybe because he’s constantly yelling at everybody for no reason anyway, so it’s not really all that special. Who knows/cares.


Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #14, Jan. 1965

Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #14, Jan. 1965

Written with the explosive power of a live grenade by: Ex-Sgt. Stan Lee
Drawn with the savage impact of a block-buster by: Ex-Corp. Dick Ayers
Inked with the smashing force of a tank by: Geo. Bell
Lettered with a brand new bottle of India ink by: Artie Simek

Ah, the classic bad guy routine: Create a team exactly matched with the good guy team to fight them one-on-one. There’s one minor flaw in Baron Strucker’s plan here, though… THEY NEVER ACTUALLY FOUGHT EACH OTHER. How can you fucking forget about that part, you Nazi asshole? Still, the Blitzkrieg Squad is neat enough, and I assume they’ll show up again later. Maybe next time they’ll give the members of the squad names or something to do or something.

Hitler tells Baron Strucker that he’s tired of these verdammt commandos running around making a mockery of the Nazi war effort, and tasks him with their destruction. Over a fine glass of brandy, Strucker decides to make his own anti-commandos, the Blitzkrieg Squad (so named because “blitzkrieg” is the coolest word in the German language), who are basically the exact same characters as the Howlers, except they don’t talk and their shirts have a skull and crossbones on them. METAL.

The Blitzkrieg Squad sets up a trap for the commandos, where they’ve constructed plywood recreations of a missile base in hopes of luring them in to blow them up. It works extremely well, and the commandos fall into the trap. Unfortunately, the execution of capturing or killing the Howlers is horribly underplanned, and they just throw nets and boxes over the commandos, which they easily get out of because they aren’t infants. The commandos tie up the Blitzkrieg Squad and stuffs them in a fake missile, then leave. Obviously, Hitler isn’t very happy about this outcome.

Really, this is a good plan and a well thought-out trap… they just forgot to plan out the actual EXECUTION of the damn thing. A net? Really. These Nazis threw a net over some guys. In 1942 or whatever. A NET. Everybody knows that a fucking net is the worst weapon ever, unless you’re fighting a bunch of fish. It’s only acceptable as a weapon in gladiator times because it was obviously given to those guys because the Romans were dicks and they thought it was funny to watch dudes try to fight each other with nets. Don’t Nazis have guns? I’m just sayin’.


Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #9, Aug. 1964

Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos #9, Aug. 1964

Sensational story by: Ex-Sgt. Stan Lee!
Awe-inspiring art by: Ex-Corp. Dick Ayers!
Inked by: Geo. Bell
Lettered by: S. Rosen

In this issue, Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos have a simple mission: KIDNAP HITLER. There’s no way that could possibly backfire, right?

That’s… pretty much all there is to this issue. The Commandos are tasked to capture Hitler, and that’s all there is to it. After they parachute down inside German lines, they dress in normal German civilian clothes and seek out the nearest rally, where they can find their target. Unfortunately, all the Commandos besides Fury and Izzy get captured, and the two remaining American forces need to force their old enemy Baron Strucker to help them both get Hitler and find the rest of their squad. They easily free their friends (Nazis are so stupid!) and get Hitler back home… but it turns out it’s just one of Hitler’s many, many doubles. Darn. I thought for sure they were going to capture Hitler. And all without blowing up even a single tank!

It must’ve been pretty tough for the Commandos to not even throw any hand grenades or dynamite at any Nazi tanks, since that’s basically all they do. I mean, yeah, kidnapping Hitler, that’s no big deal for these guys, but not blowing up anything? Now that’s just ridiculous.