Flash 93 – the Fiddler returns, and the Black Canary and the crimson crystal

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The Fiddler, recently introduced in the pages of All-Flash, gets a big cover appearance on Flash Comics 93 (March 1948).

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The Fiddler’s hair has changed from brown to white now, so perhaps he found losing the the Flash really traumatic.  Kanigher and Elias being back his ability to control people through music, as well as his violin-car, but otherwise this story pales next to his original one.

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That’s largely because the Fiddler is off to the side for most of it.  The Flash winds up being upstaged by a number of citizens, who prove as effective at stopping crime as he is.  At Joan’s suggestion, Jay winds up giving up his Flash identity, as he feels he is no longer needed.

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But in fact all the people he saw “fighting crime” were really working for the Fiddler.  He simply wanted to get the Flash out of the way before his next crime spree.  And once the Flash hears that the Fiddler is back, he dons the costume again and takes him down.  It’s not a bad story,just not much for the Fiddler to do.

The Fiddler next appears in All-Star Comics as a member of the Injustice Society.

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The Black Canary story in this issue, by Kanigher, Infantino and Giacoia, was reprinted in a 100 page World’s Finest in the 70s, and was the very first Black Canary story I ever read.  It begins as a cloaked woman comes into Dinah Drake’s flower shop, and dies.

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She was carrying a glowing orb, called the crimson crystal (despite not being crimson, or a crystal).  Other members of the sect followed her, and kidnap Larry Lance while Dinah is changing costume.  The police are clearly not yet convinced that Black Canary is on their side, as they accuse her of murder.

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Canary seeks out the lair of the crimson crystal people, all women who have been deceived into thinking that they will gain eternal life from the crystal.  She reveals that it is a simple ornament with a lightbulb inside, and exposes the fraud leading the group.

A fairly simple story, but I just loved it.

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