Shield. Joe Higgins suffers tragedy as a child when his father Tom, an agent for the FBI, is killed in an explosion set up by one of his enemies. The dying Tom tells his son about a formula he'd been working on but had not completed: the name of the formula is SHIELD, for Sacrum, Heart, Innervation, Eyes, Lungs, and Derma. Joe goes to school and becomes a chemist. He completes the SHIELD formula but before making use of it finds out who his father's killer was and goes after him. Joe is badly beaten and then left at the site of an explosion. Joe slinks back to his lab, badly wounded, and rubs the formula into his body. He seals himself into a special suit and then lies under "flouroscopic rays" for 12 hours. This alters his body enough that he gains  superpowers, and he uses them to fight the bad guys as the Shield. He joins the FBI, with only J. Edgar Hoover and Higgins’ immediate boss Col. Henry Boyle knowing his secret identity. The Shield is sidekicked by Dusty. The Shield has super-strength, invulnerability, can perform Hulk leaps, and wears an indestructible costume. He fights everything from ghosts to zombies to Mad Scientists to Yellow Perils, saboteurs to pirates, the Flying Dutchman to name criminals like the Vulture and the Strangler. The Shield appears in stories with titles like “The Mosconian Menace,” “The Vampire Murders,” and “The Monocled Monster.”

First Appearance: Pep Comics #1 (Archie), Jan 1940. 100+ appearances, 1940-1948. Created by Harry Shorten and Irv Novick.

 


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