Friday, June 10, 2016

1970's Flashback: The Butterfly

Hell-Rider #2 (1971)
Skywald was a short-lived company best known for horror comic magazines like Nightmare, Psycho, and Scream (with a similar adult format as those released by Warren Publications), not submitted for Comics Code Authority scrutiny.  In 1971 two 64 page issues of Hell-Rider were published starring a vigilante-motorcyclist named Brick Reese. Backup features included another biker gang The Wild Bunch and the subject of this flashback. The Butterfly was the first Black super-heroine in comics history. She only had the two adventures in each of these issues, but her stories had top talent attached to them such as Gary Friedrich, John Celardo, and Rich Buckler.

Marian Michaels, alias The Butterfly, was a nightclub singer who also faced off against a white supremacist secret society with a leader who had penetrated the halls of power in Washington. The organization called the Brothers of the Crimson Cross mission was nothing less than the total eradication of non-white races in America. The Butterfly wore a really skimpy costume but never degenerated into typical blaxploitation themes common at the time and managed to present a well-rounded depiction of the lead African-American female hero.
Unused splash page by R. Buckler

1 comment:

Gene Phillips said...

Definitely a favorite of mine!