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17.10.07

The Phantom Detective















The Phantom (in the stories, no one ever called him the Phantom Detective) was wealthy playboy Richard Curtis Van Loan. Having experienced action and adventure in the big war (WW I) he became bored. Frank Havens, the publisher of the New York Clarion challenged his young friend to solve a case the police couldn't.
He did, of course. Having gotten the bug, Richard learned everything he could about crime detection, makeup and disguise, and the psychology of criminals. Eventually he started solving crimes the police couldn't and was eventually called upon by the police to help them. Often, the police would approach Havens about contacting The Phantom. Eventually Havens put a crimson colored beacon on the roof of the paper and turned it on whenever The Phantom was needed (holy Bat Signal!!).
The Phantom Detective was Standard Magazine's response to the launch of The Shadow Magazine by Street & Smith. Although it ran for far fewer issues (170 instead of 325) its less frequent schedule meant it held the record for the longest-running single-character pulp, lasting for over 20 years (starting in February 1933 and ending in the Fall 1953 issue).

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great covers!
But would really love to see full issue scans of those issues.

Tim said...

More that covers :)