Thursday, March 03, 2016
I usually think of Vandal Savage as just a very long-lived caveman, so it's easy to forget he's had other skills over the years. Like super-science, super-will, and super-BS. From 1975, the Flash #235, "Vandal Savage--Wanted Dead and Alive!" Written by Cary Bates, art by Irv Novick and Tex Blaisdell.
Barry Allen, the Flash, races home for a special candlelit dinner with his wife Iris, but finds Vandal Savage there instead! Savage knows Barry's secret identity, and tells him he'll never see Iris again. Flash tries to stop Savage with a super-speed vacuum, but is himself stopped cold when Savage grabs him! His speed rebounded back at him, the Flash ends up ricocheting around his home, destroying the entire building!
But while that was merely a trick, Savage's mental projection, Iris is still missing. As is Carol Ferris in Central City, kidnapped by Savage moments after a date with Hal Jordan! Savage is able to tear through Green Lantern's constructs, even causing GL to get hit by his own power-ring hammer!
At this point in continuity, Vandal Savage was from Earth-2, so GL and Barry go visit Jay Garrick, the Flash of that world, for info. Jay gives a little exposition on how Savage might have survived going up in a fireball in his last appearance, but then uncharacteristically bags out of helping his friends. They wonder why, but figure Jay would have to have a good reason; although Jay thinks Barry would not understand his problem...
Savage then projects images of Iris and Carol, to lure Flash and GL to his trap. The girls are trapped in a fireball like the one that supposedly killed Savage, with their oxygen running out; and Savage laughs at their attempts to extinguish the fireball. GL is knocked out, and Flash is unable to put it out with carbon-dioxide; but Flash's try was just a distraction: without Savage focusing on him, Green Lantern was able to scan through Savage's "super-evolved mental defenses" and find him. Defenseless now against the power ring, GL compels Savage to confess: he planned on using the fireball, Green Lantern's power, and Flash's super-speed aura to make himself immortal. (Immortal again, maybe? Maybe more immortal?) But Savage had also been bluffing before: while he had intended to kidnap Iris, she was already gone when he got there!
Meanwhile, on Earth-2, Jay feels bad for Barry, since he took Iris--and Barry "must never be allowed to see Iris again!" What was that about? Well, I'll have to keep an eye out for the next issue!