#13 (Dan Brown Sucks)

Issue 13
“Sightless, In A Savage Land” (February, 1966)
Released: December 2, 1965
Written by Stan Lee
Drawn and inked by John Romita
Layouts by Jack Kirby
Lettered by Sam Rosen
Cover drawn by Jack Kirby

Full disclosure before you even start listening to this episode: we spend a good amount of time talking this week about things that have nothing to do with #13. It’s not that this issue is utter garbage. It’s, at the very least, better than #12, but those of you who listened to last week’s episode know that the bar was very low.

In addition to giving an honest review of John Romita’s second attempt at bat, we discuss internet conspiracy theories that revolve around animated Disney films, whether Captain America could whip Wolverine’s ass in a fight, and why a twelve-year-old would start talking like an infant just because he’s left to fend for himself in the jungle. Rodney also insults best-selling novelist Dan Brown.

Episode 12 is available on Buzzsprout here: https://feeds.buzzsprout.com/2021691.rss

You can find us on Spotify as well! https://open.spotify.com/show/42GINDXqBqGKIT49FZCyz9?si=EdeD4WaIQZ6RoK0RNzPWcA&utm_source=copy-link

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Finally, check behind the cut for our individual grades for this issue and take some time to view the artwork and images that we discuss in the episode!

Our individual grades improve this time around, but not by much. Kyle gives it a D. Rodney is only slightly more generous than Kyle, allowing John Romita’s artwork to give his grade a slight bump to a D+. Aaron gives it a C -. Overall average: D+.

This issue actually gets off to a rip-roarin’ good start with a sequence depicting Daredevil fighting Maa-Gor without the aid of his radar senses. He is literally fighting blind. There’s some needless explanations as to what Daredevil is doing (and why he’s doing it) in the dialogue, but the sequence itself is pretty clever and a very creative idea.
The sequence where Daredevil fights Maa-Gor is intermittently intercut with a sequence that shows Ka-Zar and Zabu battling the gigantic killer plant that protects the medicinal ju-ju berries that Ka-Zar hopes will nurse a wounded Daredevil back to health. Like we said, it’s a good start to this issue.
Ka-Zar fares better in his battle than our hero does. He’s able to thwart the botanical adversary with a fire. The captions say that he creates the fire by rubbing two pieces of flint together. How much do we wanna bet that he carries the flint in the pockets he sewed into his loincloth?
Daredevil’s battle with Maa-Gor ends less impressively. Parnival Plunder saves the day by firing a rifle into the cave, which frightens Maa-Gor and causes him to run away.
It turns out that Parnival Plunder has a good reason for coming to The Savage Land. He’s there to reunite with his brother, Kevin. Kevin turns out to be Ka-Zar. Both men hold one half of a medallion. Hold onto your loincloths! It’s flashback time!
Parnival Plunder is the son of famous explorer, Lord Plunder. Lord Plunder discovered a mysterious ore that emitted vibrations when struck. The vibrations are strong enough to dissolve metal! To hide his discovery, he stores the mysterious ore in a secret tomb, a tomb that he locks with a medallion made from the mysterious ore.
Lord Plunder splits the medallion in half and gives one piece to each of his two sons. Don’t even get us started on the logistics of this mysterious ore and how Lord Plunder can do all the things with it that the comic wants us to believe he can. It’s pretty brain-breaking to sort out. And while we’re avoiding the discussion of things that don’t make any sense . . . Kyle isn’t wrong. In this drawing, Kevin appears to be old enough to be able to talk properly before he’s whisked away to the Savage Land to become a Tarzan rip-off.
This issue includes the first time in the comic’s history that a reader gets a drawing from Daredevil’s point of view. This is, apparently, how the world looks through Daredevil’s radar sense. This image doesn’t save the issue, but it’s a nice touch.
You know what isn’t so nice? Foggy Nelson. In fact, he’s a fucking creep. Here we see him admitting to Karen that he had hoped that harm had come to Matt Murdock. Only through the absence of his life-long friend would he be able to fill in that dot dot dot in his unfinished sentence . . .
Eventually, Ka-Zar and a newly-recovered Daredevil team up to take down Parnival Plunder. This is Aaron’s single favorite panel in the entire issue. Granted, the physics of how Daredevil moves depicted here are wholly implausible, but Parnival Plunder taking a good kick to the face is absolutely chuckle-worthy.
From there, things get uber-complicated and hard to keep track of. Turns out that one of Parnival’s men has turned against Parnival and wants the medallion for himself. It also turns out that Parnival Plunder’s butler, Feepers, is an enemy agent that has been hiding covertly amongst Plunder’s crew to track the whereabouts of the mysterious ore. Feepers kills Parnival’s crewman and then goes after Daredevil and Ka-Zar.
Tricky tricky, Mr. Feepers! He puts out on APB on Ka-Zar and Daredevil, claiming that they are responsible for the murder of the crewman.
The issue ends with “a heavily-armed espionage agent” finding Ka-Zar and Daredevil as they seek shelter in the moors of England. Thinking that he can turn on Feepers and recover the mysterious ore for themselves, he fires a high-velocity explosive at our heroes and renders them disabled. The final panel promises that “the best is yet to be” in the next issue, but the three of us are skeptical.

Be sure to check in next week for images and commentary for issue #14, the final issue of this three-part story arc!

If you have comments or something to add to our discussion, you can email the crew at devilsarchivepod@gmail.com or leave a comment on our Facebook page. We’d love to hear from you!

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