Tuesday, November 11, 2014


An atomic superhero that doesn't don his costume until the fifth issue!

Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom was published by Gold Key Comics. Doctor Solar was created by prolific writer Paul S. Newman and editor/artist Matt Murphy. Gold Key came out with issues #1-#27; issues #28-#31 were published by Whitman around 12 years after Gold Key cancelled Doctor Solar.
First written by Paul S. Newman (#1-#6), novelist Otto Binder took over later (#7.)
Fine artwork was provided by Bob (Turok, Hangman) Fujitani (#1-#5) & Frank (Phantom, Flash Gordon) Bolle (#6 & #7.) Both provided a realistic feel to the comic book.

Painted covers by Hugo award winning artist Richard Powers (#1 & #2) & extraordinary George Wilson (#3-#7)
The complete series, included a crossover I'll cover in Part IV, was collected in four gorgeous hardback editions, by Dark Horse Archives.  

Doctor Solar was a physicist named Dr. Raymond Solar, assisting fellow worker Dr. Bently to avert an imminent meltdown of the nuclear power plant where they worked, sabotaged by Dr. Rasp, agent of an evil mastermind named Nuro. 

Bently lost his life trying to prevent the meltdown while Solar absorbed a massive amount of radiation in the process. He survived, discovering he gained the ability to convert his body into any kind of nuclear energy. Using his new powers, Solar began searching for Nuro, who would become Solar's nemesis. Nuro used a robot double of himself called Orun and later transferred his mind into it, calling himself King Cybernoid.
Doctor Solar did not gain a superhero costume until the fifth issue of his comic, becoming "The Man of the Atom". Doctor Solar manipulates matter at the atomic level, flies and blasts bolts of energy. In addition, his skin turns green whenever he uses his powers. 

Doctor Solar #1  An Atomic Accident Turns a Young Scientist Into a Fantastic Being!
"Solar's Secret"
"An Atomic Inferno"

Professor Harbinger was different back then.
Doctor Solar #2  A Traitor in Atom Valley Threatens to Expose Solar's Incredible Secret!
"The Remote Controlled Traitor"
"The Melting Point" 
Professor Harbinger 4 page feature begins with art by Mel Crawford. 

"The Night of the Volcano"
 Doctor Solar #3  Solar Fights with Fire and Ice to Uncover the Secret of the Hidden Hands!
"The Hidden Hands"
"Seeds of Trouble"  
Prof. Harbinger feature.
"Solar's Deadly Double" 
 Doctor Solar #4  A Life-Giving Room Becomes a Death Trap for Solar!
"The Deadly Sea"
"The New Atlantis" 
Prof. Harbinger feature.
"Treacherous Trap"
Doctor Solar #5  For the First Time -- Solar Shows Himself as the Invincible Man of the Atom!

"The Crystallized Killer"
Prof. Harbinger feature.
"The New Man of the Atom"

First dons costume as the Man of the Atom. His hair turns gray, which adds a distinctive visual look. 
I've always liked this dynamic cover, to Doctor Solar #6!
Doctor Solar #6  The Fiendish Nuro Creates a Humanlike Robot to Destroy Solar!  
"The Imposter"
A full length Solar story! 
Art by Frank Bolle begins.
"The Power of Light"
Prof. Harbinger feature.  
Doctor Solar #7  Solar Discovers an Undersea City Which Holds the Secret of the Vanishing Oceans"
"Vanishing Oceans"
Written by Otto Binder begins.
"Satellite Sweeper"
Prof. Harbinger feature. 
"The Guilded Comet" 
Always look forward to Paul Smith art!
Valiant Comics' Original Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom #1 reprints Gold Key's Doctor Solar stories from issues # 1, #2, #5 & #6. The stunning cover is done my Paul Smith.  

Highly Recommended Doctor Solar Archives Vol. 1!
These issues are included in the hardcover Dark Horse Archives Vol. 1, sporting the cover to Doctor Solar #6. These are the editions you cannot miss, they are fantastic. In addition, I have seen the first three volumes on Kindle as well. 

Tomorrow will present my second of four installments of Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom. It's great to relive the excitement of the original Gold Key comic. 

Live Large My Friends!

Thank You!

Solar even made the Halloween mask circuit!


1 comment:

  1. Among the first comics I remember owning was. Whitman issue of Doctor Solar featuring a backup Magnus story. Always loved this character. Nobody else seemed to have heard of him back then. So happy they put out those hardcover reprints of this, Magnus, Dr. Spektor, and some others. I wish they'd collect Owlman and some others that didn't last so long.