It's been a Phantom-Philled week indeed. The final installment of the long-awaited original story from Hermes by Peter David and Sal Velluto finally landed (more tomorrow) as well as yet another stab at the character from the bowels of Dynamite. But Free Comic Book Day also gave us some choice Jim Aparo illustrated yarns from the vintage Charlton run. These 1970 classics are lushly drawn by Aparo who was still in throes of delivering fantastic textures and detail. The scripts though are mystery as they are from a writer known only as "Norm DiPluhm". It has long been assumed that the mysterious "DiPluhm" was in fact Steve Skeates, but Skeates has denied this claim repeatedly. Others suggest the writer in question is the ubiquitous Joe Gill. (Gill wrote so many stories for so many different comics, I grew up thinking "Joe Gill" must be a house name.) (Late Additional Note: Here is a good argument that "DiPluhm" is D.J. Arneson.)
We get two stories from issue thirty-seven of the run, the exotic cover story "Bandar Betrayers" and a tight little action yarn titled "Skyjack".
The very next issue, thirty-eight, supplies two more stories - "The Trap" and "The Phantom's New Faith".
All in all a great overview of Aparo's final days on the series as with the very next issue Pat Boyette would step in to take over "The Ghost Who Walks" with the aforementioned Joe Gill.