Friday, March 24, 2017

The Losers - The Major's Dream!

Our Fighting Forces one hundred and sixty-one sports another Joe Kubert cover but again Jack Kirby is the man responsible for the story and art inside. D. Bruce Berry is back as inker.

"The Major's Dream" tells the story of Major Geoffrey Soames, a British officer who has seen some potent action in the Asian theater. He is assigned to help The Losers with some mapping of possible targets. Along with is loyal aid Sim he shows The Losers how to reach a particular temple where Soames had lost comrades before, and they are required to take shelter there when Japanese forces get too close. But this temple holds a deadly secret and that secret provides nightmares for Soames who dreams he is under attack by the deadly goddess Kali. As the enemy forces are eliminated by Allied bombing the Losers survive in the shelter of the temple,  but Soames loses control and weirdly makes his dream come true as the statue of Kali falls on him and kills him weirdly allowing him peace as he joins his men.

This story seems to be Kirby's response to the classic story of the noble Gunga Din as first imagined in poetry by Rudyard Kipling in late nineteenth century and later adapted to film by Hollywood in 1939. That yarn which tells the rousing story of three friends who fight with gusto and bravery seems almost to have been the story of Major Soames (who looks a bit like Douglas Fairbanks Jr.) and what we see in this Losers story is a more realistic portrayal of what the rigors of war might inflict.

More to come as Kirby's tenure on the title comes to a close.

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  1. One would think that at some point Captain Storm would get hip to old Nazi’s-hiding-in-the-shadows trick…

    1. This is a blind spot shared all DC war characters apparently. Kubert constructed scores of covers with this basic gimmick of course. It's a clever bit of immediate irony for the reader but alas often has little to do with the story inside.

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