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The Origin of Owl Girl in Crackajack Funnies #32

Crackajack Funnies #32 from 1941 features the discovery that Owl Man's partner is Owl-Girl, and it seems to stick.

Crackajack Funnies was a comic book anthology published by Dell in the thirties and forties and which is probably best known for introducing superheroic comic book character, The Owl by Frank Thomas, running from Crackajack Funnies #25. A rare example of the superhero form from Dell, who mostly specialised in licensed properties, The Owl's invention came on the back of Batman, and also stars a private detective and millionaire playboy Nick Terry, with a butler, who used his wealth to fund his crime-fighting activities as the Owl, which mostly involved him flying his Owl Plane. Terry's fiance, newspaper reporter Belle Wayne quickly discovers his secret identity (it took Lois Lane decades) and becomes his costumed sidekick Owl Girl. And it's Crackajack Funnies #32 from 1941, being auctioned today by Heritage Auctions, that features her discovery and that origin. For its time, Owl Man was slightly more sophisticated than its brethren, with multiple part-stories, and consequences of actions such as killing, affecting the characters beyond the issue they appeared in.

Crackajack Funnies #32
The Origin of Owl Girl in Crackajack Funnies #32

Crackajack Funnies #32 (Dell, 1941) Condition: VG+. The Owl appears on the cover and the origin of Owl Girl is told inside the issue. Ellery Queen and Wash Tubbs backup stories. Frank Thomas cover and art. Al McWilliams art. Moisture damage. Creasing, foxing, and rusted staples. Overstreet 2022 VG 4.0 value = $148.

The Origin of Owl Girl in Crackajack Funnies #32
The Origin of Owl Girl in Crackajack Funnies #32


Gold Key would later revive The Owl after Dell folded, and the Batman TV series was a hit, with a sillier, less pulpy, campy version of the character, which didn't last long. He was also revived a few times more recently as a public domain character, including a Project Superpowers series for Owlman from Dynamite in 2008. He is also a clear influence, as well as the more obvious Blue Beetle, on Nite-Owl in Watchmen.

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Rich JohnstonAbout Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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