Friday, October 18, 2013
YEAR 1943: MISS AMERICA (II)
Since Quality Comics' "Miss America" character died on the vine, their competitor Timely felt comfortable utilizing the name for a new character, who would enjoy a more noteworthy career. Starting in MARVEL MYSTERY #49, Madeline Joyce received super-powers as the result of a lightning strike, and immediately took up crimefighting as "Miss America." Aside from the one constant ability of flight, Miss America's powers varied wildly, ranging from super-strength to X-ray vision. Some versions had her running around wearing glasses in her superhero identity, a clear reverse-riff on Clark Kent's schtick of doffing glasses to become Superman.
This online reprint of a "Miss America" story suggests that in her 1940s incarnation she was just a middling-to-fair superheroine. Without getting into her later incarnations at Marvel, the original character's greatest distinction may have been her charter membership in Timely's short-lived superhero team, the "All-Winners Squad."