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Blackhawk Vol 1 112

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"The Doomed Dogfight": The story opens with film of a 1944 dogfight between a lone American fighter and seven German Messerschmitts. The American shoots down all but the leader, Colonel Eric von Cramm, who flees to fight another day. We are returned to 1957 where we learn we are supposedly watch



Appearing in "The Doomed Dogfight"

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  • Colonel Eric von Cramm

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Synopsis for "The Doomed Dogfight"

The story opens with film of a 1944 dogfight between a lone American fighter and seven German Messerschmitts. The American shoots down all but the leader, Colonel Eric von Cramm, who flees to fight another day. We are returned to 1957 where we learn we are supposedly watching gun camera footage shot from Blackhawk's plane, the lone American in the dogfight, gun camera footage that somehow captured close-ups of Von Cramm and his dialogue as he curses Blackhawk and swears revenge (no sillier a mistake than similar ones seen too often in Hollywood war movies). A friend of the Blackhawks wants to recreate the battle using live ammo and robot piloted Messerschmitts, all for charity, of course. At the circus, the team is captured by a series of traps that use several of their specialties, i.e. Stanislau's acrobatic skill on a mechanical trapeze, Hendrickson's marksmanship at a shooting gallery, and Olaf wrestling a robot. Naturally, they are prisoners of Von Cramm, who is using the staged dogfight to wreak his revenge. Blackhawk wakes to find the team missing. Once in the air, his detective skills tell him that his team mates have been strapped into the six Bf-109s that he is supposed to shoot down. And Von Cramm is in the seventh plane. Blackhawk jumps from his aircraft to Von Cramm's, seizes the remote controls for the other planes and saves his men, while Von Cramm falls to his death.

Appearing in "The Crimson Vultures"

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  • The Crimson Vultures

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Synopsis for "The Crimson Vultures"

A criminal team wears crimson vulture costumes and there is a counterpart in the team for each of the Blackhawks. They are highly skilled and practiced to counter every move the Blackhawks make. They also have a "flying bridge" that they use to steal heavy items like armored cars. They even have a pet vulture to fight Blackie. But in the final show down, when the Vultures electrify their bridge to "freeze" the Blackhawks in place (another misunderstanding of how electricity works), the Black Knights are wearing insulate boots and have no trouble taking out the bad guys. The Vulture's leader, in a mad rage, dives the flying bridge in order to kill everyone but the Blackhawks jump free and float to safety on their secret jacket-parachutes, a secret the Vultures did not know. In the last panel, we are told that the reason the Blackhawks knew about the electrified bridge trap was because Blackie's radio had caught on the pet vulture when they were fighting and it had transmitted the bad guys' plan.

Appearing in "The Eighth Blackhawk"

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Supporting Characters:

  • Jim Turner

Villains:

  • Zorac

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Synopsis for "The Eighth Blackhawk"

While doing rescue work in a flood, Blackhawk is knocked unconscious and swept toward a waterfall and apparent certain doom. He is saved by a youth named Jim Turner. Jim tells them he is a life-long fan of the Blackhawks and desires nothing more than to be a member. Blackhawk tells him their charter limits the team to seven (an odd provision) tells Jim to go home and pack. They will fly him to Blackhawk Island for a special lifesaving award ceremony. We then see Jim in a secret meeting with Zorac, a crime boss who gives Jim an inertial navigation device that will calculate the location of Blackhawk Island when Jim is flown there. Jim is given orders to sabotage and disarm the island's defenses. At the island, Jim is given royal treatment and begins to have doubts about his mission, but he goes ahead with sabotaging the defenses. In the morning, he finds a Blackhawk uniform for him and a sign designating him as a reserve member. Now Jim really feels bad. When he is taken on a mission with them and treated like a full equal, he decides he can't go through with it. He leaves a note telling about his betrayal of them and when he returns to the mainland he is about to smash Zorac's device when Zorac stops him. Zorac has Jim tied up in his mountain hideout when the Blackhawks, having found Jim's note, parachute in. Unfortunately, they land in a mine field and Zorac is about to hit the detonator when Jim lifts a hand grenade from one of the hoods and blows up the cabin. Zorac and his men are finished but Jim is saved by a tactic he read in the Blackhawk handbook (throwing himself on the floor to avoid the shrapnel). The Blackhawks then tell him they picked up the device on their detectors before he even got to the island so they kept an eye on him and undid his sabotage but didn't say anything to give him a chance to make things right.

Notes

  • ”The Doomed Dogfight” has some serious continuity problems, mainly that the Blackhawk team apparently has not been formed as late as 1944. That is consistent with the origin tale told later in Issue 198[1], which has the team first coming together for the D-Day invasion, but it is not consistent with the actual origin in Military #1[2].
  • Includes a two-page story titled "Codes of the Jungle" about how indigenous peoples used drums, horns and smoke to communicate over distances.
  • Includes a list of the winners of the “DC Slogan Contest.”

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