"A Small Boldness": The Spectre is drawn to a cemetery, where he prevents two teenagers from committing suicide. The Spectre shows them their hero, rock star Karl Colter of the band Oblivion, who is burning in hell after his suicide.
- Aw, c'mon, Spec! Don't say you don't remember yer ol' partner, huh? Don't tell me you forgot ol' Percival Popp, Super-Cop.
Appearing in "A Small Boldness"
- Percival Popp, the Super Cop (Ghost) & (Flashback and main story)
- Clarice Winston (Flashback only)
- Waylon Grant (Flashback only)
- Michael the Archangel
- Karl Colter (Deceased)
Synopsis for "A Small Boldness"
The Spectre is drawn to a cemetery, where he prevents two teenagers from committing suicide. The Spectre shows them their hero, rock star Karl Colter of the band Oblivion, who is burning in hell after his suicide.
Elsewhere in the cemetery, the Spectre meets the ghost of his old partner, Percival Popp, the Super-Cop. The Spectre recalls that Popp was a beat cop working out of the same precinct that Jim Corrigan did. When Corrigan led a sting on a gang of arms smugglers, Popp tagged along. In the ensuing firefight, Popp got knocked unconscious when he hit his head on a side of beef. Most of the officers on the force had a low opinion of Popp, but Corrigan always defended him.
One evening, Louis Snipe told Popp that he wanted to speak to Corrigan. In the alley behind the precinct house, Snipe informed Corrigan that Gat Benson would be present at a warehouse robbery later that night. Unknown to Corrigan, Popp was hiding behind a trash can and listening to their conversation. Popp suspected that it might be a trap, so he snuck down to the warehouse in case Corrigan needed backup. Popp could only look on in horror as Corrigan was put into a barrel filled with cement and thrown into the river. Popp fainted. When he regained consciousness, he heard a woman scream inside the warehouse. Clarice Winston (Corrigan's fiancée) and Waylon Grant (Corrigan's partner) had been captured by Gat Benson. Popp was about to attempt a rescue, but then Jim Corrigan entered the warehouse and killed all of Benson's men. Popp knew something was strange when he saw Corrigan's supernatural powers.
Later, Corrigan instructed Popp not to tell anyone that he was a ghost. Popp suggested that Corrigan needed a secret identity, like the "mystery men" who had recently begun to appear. If Corrigan wore a costume, everyone would suspect that he was just another mystery man, not a ghost. Popp had even designed a costume for him.
Popp and the Spectre were partners for a while, and then the Spectre joined the Justice Society of America. After the war, the police department let Popp go. He then worked as a security guard in an office building, living a fairly solitary life. He died thirty years ago and has been coming to the cemetery every year hoping that the Spectre would show up. Popp confesses that he was hoping they could be partners again, now that they're both ghosts. Corrigan tells Popp he deserves better and brings him to the gates of Heaven. The archangel Michael tells the Spectre that Popp has not earned his place in Heaven. However, the gates open slightly, and Popp is allowed to enter. Michael tells the Spectre that he must have a friend in Heaven, and the Spectre knows it was Amy Beitermann.
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- Karl Colter is an analogue of Kurt Cobain (leader of the rock band Nirvana), who committed suicide in April 1994.
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