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What is the name of the villain who had a hidden bankroll located somewhere in Central City before he dies which The Octopus and The Spirit were trying to locate in the story "Showdown with The Octopus"? (Answer at bottom of the page)
This September 11 1949 published story is one of the most reprinted Spirit sections, even though The Spirit only appears in the last two pages of the tale.

The last panel of the first page

Freddy is what some people would call 'an angry young man' - he feels hard done by and longs for an easy way to get money.

Whilst in his local 'mom and pop' store (these stores usually sold candy, magazines, soda and had a public telephone booth) he spots a chance when only him and the owner, Max, are in the place.

Freddy holds an incredulous Max at gunpoint whilst taking money from the till, Max thinking that Freddy is playing some sort of prank, walks towards him, but is shot and killed by Freddy.

Preparing to leave, some customers arrive and Freddy props Max's body under the counter and serves them, stating that Max has popped out for a few minutes and that he is helping out. A young lady and her boyfriend get some chocolate malts and whilst Freddy is serving their drinks Max's lifeless body is spotted by the lady.

Freddy flees from the store

Fleeing from the shop, Freddy first hides in a bar before trying to board a subway train to get out of the area. The Spirit stops Freddy just before as he is about to board the train, but Freddy knocks The Spirit out as he desperately grabs hold of the closed door. Holding onto the subway door, Freddy's luck runs out as the train approaches the tunnel...

In this tale Eisner makes it aware to the reader of the passage of time in the story by putting a clock on the top of each page and counts down the last ten minutes of Freddy's life.

"In movies, the director controls the timing and the pacing of the story - the viewer has no options. The director can change the pace of the story by cross-cutting or other techniques" Eisner told Tom Heintjes in 1988. "But in comics, the reader can read as fast or as slow as he likes, and most of the time when the comics reader turns the page, the first thing he looks at is the last panel of the page."

Eisner ends each of the pages with a panel either showing surprise or tension so that the reader has to go onto the following page...

In 1989 a short film of the story was made by Edgewood Motion Picture and VideoProduction. Below are a few stills from the film which appeared in advertisements which appeared in the KSP Spirit reprint series at the time.

Some stills from the short film

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Quick Link

A page giving a concise history of The Shadow character is at Who Knows What Evil Lurks In The Hearts of Men?


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Click here for to view a calendar of forthcoming classic reprints from DC & Marvel




Trivia Answer: Spider Webb.(For more information, click here)