Sunday, July 6, 2014

Crossover of the Week

August 2-10, 1974
            In 1991, the vigilante known as the Voice, convalescing at a clinic, tells his nurse the story of how he became a crimefighter. Returning home from Vietnam, his plane made a stopover in Hawaii, where he visited Chang Apana, a former member of the Honolulu Police Department and the alleged model for the character of Charlie Chan. He mentions the first master, who had a maxim about eliminating the impossible. Some say that the first master is still alive and living in Tibet, or else he acts as the oldest beekeeper in the United Kingdom; he also wrote monographs. Investigating a cabal he heard rumors of in Saigon, the future Voice is confronted by his own father. One of the men injured by the soon-to-be hero, Mr. Jones, is treated by his honorary uncle, Dr. Fairchild. The cabal was actually a gathering of Independent Operators, part of a network set up by the Voice’s uncles Dan and Richard, both former civilian federal agents. After a falling-out with J. Edgar Hoover and the McCarthyites, the two joined an all-branches military group called JANIG in the mid 1950s. The sting operation was designed to capture people wishing to destroy the network; however, many of those people turned out to be individuals on the side of justice investigating rumors of the network’s existence. These included Steve McGarrett, a naval officer named Magnum, members of Robert Ironside’s team, Dan Briggs, Jim Phelps, King Farriday, Napoleon Solo, John Keith, Amos Burke, Alexander Scott and Kelly Robinson, and JANIG’s own Steve Ames.
            Short story by Erwin K. Roberts in the magazine Double Danger Tales, Fading Shadows Press; reprinted and revised on the Planetary Stories website. This crossover brings Roberts’ pulp-style hero the Voice into the CU. Supposedly, Chang Apana was indeed the real-life basis for Charlie Chan; however, Chan was a very real individual in the CU. Nevertheless, Max Allan Collins’ Nate Heller novel Damned in Paradise establishes that Apana had a CU counterpart. The first master is Sherlock Holmes. The Voice’s father is Secret Agent X, a pulp hero created by “Brant House” (Paul Chadwick.) Mr. Jones was a plastic surgeon turned disguise artist who appeared in Dennis Lynds’ story (written under the house name Robert Hart Davis) “The Man of a Million Faces,” Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine, June 1968. Dr. Jeffrey Fairchild, alias Dr. Skull and the Skull Killer, battled the villain known variously as the Octopus and the Scorpion in two one-shot pulp magazines. Dan is Dan Fowler, G-Man, who was created by Major George Fielding-Eliot and appeared in the pulp G-Men Detective. Richard is Chinese-American Secret Service agent Richard Wong, created by Lee Fredericks, who appeared in G-Men and G-Men Detective. JANIG (Joint Army Navy Intelligence Group) and Steve Ames are from the Rick Brant juvenile adventure novels by “John Blaine” (Harold L. Goodwin and Peter J. Harkins.) Steve McGarrett is from the television series Hawaii Five-O. Magnum is Thomas Magnum from the TV series Magnum P.I. Robert Ironside is from the television series Ironside. Dan Briggs and Jim Phelps are from the classic television series Mission: Impossible. King Farriday (or rather Faraday) is a spy character appearing in the short-lived comic book series Danger Trail, published by DC Comics in the early ’50s. Napoleon Solo is, of course, from The Man from U.N.C.L.E. John Keith is from Norman Daniels’ The Man from A.P.E. espionage novels. Amos Burke is from the television series Burke’s Law and Amos Burke, Secret Agent, as well as the 1990s revival of Burke’s Law. Alexander Scott and Kelly Robinson are from the TV series I Spy. The Independent Operators appear in several stories by Roberts.


  1. Ironside crossed over with a series The Bold Ones: The New Doctors

    Was Ironside in the CU before this?

    The Independent Operators seems to be another fictional secret organization that include CURE, Stony Man, Matt Helm's organization, Stephen King's the Shop that are in the CU. A.P.E would be another new one.

  2. I did know about that one, and it's listed in the TV crossovers appendix I'm including, along with these two:

    As far as I know, there was no link bringing in Ironside prior to this story.