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Captain Future #3 Captain Future's Challenge
Edmond Hamilton, RadioArchives.com
Spieldauer: 5 Std. und 33 Min.
4.5 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Striking terror on four worlds, a mysterious raider throttles interplanetary commerce - and earth summons Curtis Newton, the wizard of science, and his trio of Futuremen to combat this sinister menace.
Captain Zero premiered in November 1949, and had the dubious distinction of being the last of the single-character hero pulps. Captain Zero was a fabulous character whose strange and deadly career began each midnight at the stroke of twelve - and ended each gray dawn with the first rays of the sun. During those few hours, he became completely invisible! But even that wonderous feat wasn't enough to save the pulp magazine. It ended after only three issues.
The Captain Future stories were not only populated with magnificent characters, but they were also set in a wild, imaginative, almost psychedelic universe. Edmond Hamilton built worlds and star systems that in many ways completely disregarded what the public knew to be true about outer space, but they did not care. Nearly every planet in our solar system could support life, and danger lurked there, too. Although the original stories took place amongst familiar planets, Hamilton would take fans far beyond anything familiar in later tales.
Deep-hidden in evil, Satan's Suicide Club sat in council - and men died. What dreadful force drove these men, leaders of society with everything to live for, to end their lives at the behest of that sinister being who sardonically called himself Professor Mephisto? And why did men and women suffer the tortures of the damned, rather than defy this mysterious being? Richard Wentworth once more assumes the cloak of the Spider to free these lost ones from a living hell and a disgraceful death - and steps into the jaws of a devil's trap that casts his life among the lives in pawn!
War gongs clanged in Chinatown - but it was no tong war that tore the great Societies with fear, and suspicion, and deadly hate. For deeper in evil mystery than their own dark secrets, lay the hidden temple of crime, that loosed the Scourge of the Yellow Fangs - the menace that erupted in the yellow men's haunts, and overflowed into white men's lives, and threatened white men's rule. Victims lived long enough to curse the unknown Man from Singapore - who knew the Spider and planned his quick removal from the finish fight.
Without any forewarning, the madness struck. One moment the busy steel-mill town of Keystone was a peaceful industrial community. The next, it had become a shambles of murder, madness, and ruthless midnight slaughter. Horror walked its streets, and terror lurked in every close-locked home. Could the Spider, hastening to answer the distressed call of the dismayed inhabitants, prevail against the death which struck from darkness? A stranger in a place of madness, unsupported by friends or allies, Richard Wentworth faces his greatest test - alone!
With appalling suddenness, a new hooded monster of crime unleashed swift murder and soul-chilling madness upon Manhattan. His army of assassins struck with wanton savagery to lash terrified millions into a paralysis of fear. The Dictator held sway! And Richard Wentworth, the avenging Spider, driven to the ambuscades of the underworld, faced the vortex of sudden peril alone.
It is Wentworth himself - the Spider - who is first to feel the dread hand of that Master of Darkness - The Blind Man - and his satanic weapon. His best friend, Kirkpatrick, Commissioner of Police, is strangely attacked by the forces of evil; his beloved Nita van Sloan is spirited away into a fearsome fate...and the Spider himself is destined to a horrible life of pain and misery. Caught between the forces of evil, the Spider at last seems doomed to die in ignominy!
Richard Wentworth - whose grim, anti-crime crusades as the Spider have made him world-famous - was the first objective in the Poison Master's murder campaign. His best friend, Kirkpatrick, lay in a death-like stupor. His beloved, Nita van Sloan, was stricken with the horrible living death! And at the same time, countless thousands were felled by the same fatal venom.
Never had Richard Wentworth - he who is the scourge of the Underworld in his guise of the Spider - faced such tremendous odds or been so alone in the strife! Nita, his beloved, had tried to kill him, as she was hopelessly insane. His faithful servant had been tortured beyond human endurance. And the Master of Madness, chief of a powerful, fiendish syndicate, was spreading his germs of mania unchecked.
Although an orphan, Curtis Newton's parents left him with gifts that would most definitely lead to him becoming Captain Future, the superman of the space ways. His mother, Elaine, provided him with his mission, to become the protector of the solar system, to fight for justice wherever it may take him. Roger, his father, not only passed on incredible genius and scientific skills, but he provided him with three caregivers that would grow to be the greatest team a space faring hero could have-The Futuremen!
White slavery, the loathsome traffic in women's bodies - and souls - was stripping America of wives, sisters and sweethearts. Richard Wentworth, valiant champion of human rights, knew that an Oriental master criminal was captaining the slavery syndicate, guessed the unspeakable purpose behind those wholesale abductions. But with Nita hopelessly lost, with G-men harrying him relentlessly, can the Spider outwit his most formidable foeman and save America's doomed womanhood?
Death in its ugliest form ravaged America. An ambitious, clever madman, master of a far-flung criminal empire, spread cholera germs through every rank and class of a large and totally unsuspecting populace. Numbed by terror, the citizens fled from certain death, while the police, baffled and powerless, campaigned relentlessly against the Spider, the only man able to save the stricken and bring the Plague Master to justice!
Richard Wentworth - who, as the swift-killing Spider, is the scourge of the Underworld - thought the Fly was dead. But once more that most formidable enemy had arisen, pillaging, slaying wantonly, armed with a ghastly new weapon, the Green Globes of Death! Ruthless and astute, heading a gigantic criminal syndicate, the Fly was butchering innocent persons only, it seemed, to see their red blood flow. It was with flagging hope and heavy heart that the Spider took up his newest battle with the preying jackals of crime!
Never before had a shrewd criminal leader so successfully defied the Law - and the Spider's sure vengeance! A powerful Eastern murder syndicate, employing two deadly weapons, held America for ransom, spreading pain and terror and red destruction. Never had the Spider's struggle against the underworld seemed so futile, for the name of Richard Wentworth was disgraced, his fortune was forfeit, and his beloved had betrayed him into the hands of the police - and certain death!
In that single, unguarded moment while he played his precious Stradivarius, the combined forces of the Mayor of Hell - the crooked Law and the vengeful Underworld - besieged Richard Wentworth, otherwise known as the Spider, nemesis of criminals! Mourned as dead, the Spider must start life anew, without friends or funds or hidden refuge, so that the Mayor of Hell's bloody-handed henchmen - who judge no deed too base, who respect neither man nor God - may find their just reward - in death!
Never before had a greedy, criminal genius loosed so loathsome and deadly a weapon! The Bat Man - leading a band of savages, releasing clouds of bloodthirsty vampire bats - planned to make himself a greater conqueror than Napoleon or Genghis Khan! One man stood in his way - Richard Wentworth, who when the law fails, sallies forth as the dread Spider to spread red death in the Underworld.
The first reports were incredible. Montezuma the Third, Emperor of the new born Aztec Empire, was slaughtering American troops with a deadly, new weapon...sacrificing captives to his ancient gods.... America seemed condemned to degrading slavery. Operator #5, Ace of the Secret Service, fought against overwhelming odds. And while the gods of a long-dead civilization revel in carnage, the very existence of the white race in America is apparently doomed...!
As suddenly as Death, the bitter cold came, and with it, the armored tanks, sleek submarines, and mailed warriors of the invading legions! An international syndicate, fearing America's greatness and strength in war, had unleashed savage war-dogs to win the conflict before it fairly began. The greatest military genius of modern times commanded the enemy, and Operator #5 of the United States Secret Service - known to his dearest friends as Jimmy Christopher - was America's choice to oppose him.