Friday, September 23, 2011

Fish Story

If I ever became the owner of a dockside tavern that catered to sailors I would name it either "The Pickled Herring" or the "Recurring Case of Scurvy." I assume I'd be really good at it and would eventually own a chain of successful "fisheterias" that would rival fast food restaurant chain "Captain D's."

And much like Captain D's, I would give out educational, nautical themed comic books. Not sure what the hell I'm talking about? Well then check out the "Captain D's Exciting Adventures" freebie comic from 1980:

The comic makes an effort to both maintain the restaurant's nautical (yet anti-pirate) theme and be educational. It tells the story of Captain Samuel Reid, the "Hidden Hero of New Orleans" and goes great with a side of hush puppies and coleslaw.


As Captain D says above, Captain Reid became a national hero by a losing a battle with several British ships and then went on to play a part in designing the America flag. Like many fish eating Americans I've been completely oblivious to the details of this guy's career (and his existence). This was something that Captain D just couldn't abide so Reid's life story has been immortalized in comic book form starting with his birth...


...and leading up to the day he took command of his ship, the General Armstrong:


This thirty year process takes up one page of the comic. That's probably for the best.

The story kicks into high gear though when the good Captain runs afoul of several British warships (which, at the time, was not a good thing).


You're probably assuming that after a lengthy and bloody skirmish Captain Reid figured out some Captain Kirk-esque maneuver to beat the odds and win the battle. Nope. You've seen too many movies. He lost his ship and hid in a monastery:

"Goodbye ship!" Don't feel too bad though. Apparently his pummeling delayed the British long enough for the U.S. to win the Battle of New Orleans thus ending the War of 1812. Look at that! You just learned something from a comic book!

And as Captain D promised, Reid went on to design the American flag...


...which would almost immediately be forgotten due to the cunning machinations of that glory hound Betsy Ross.

Now no promotional,freebie comic from the 70's/80's would be complete without a section of insanely easy puzzles and games. This one is no exception and provides some brain teasers that I can only assume were meant for children with vision impairments:


And with that we say, "Bon Voyage!"

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