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El Espectro. El Espectro was created by the Spanish author A. Olle Bertran and appeared in El Espectro #1-4 (1944-1945).

El Espectro is a Costumed Avenger. In the far-distant year of 1985 all of the countries of Central Europe have banded together into the Confederation of the States of the Danube, led by the dictator Samuel Risko. Hungary remains the lone holdout. The leader of the Hungarian nationalist resistance is Professor Justus Zacary, a brilliant scientist and inventor. Zacary is a master of SCIENCE! who puts his refuge, the Grey House, and his creations, including a crystal radio-controlled torpedo, a silenced machine gun, and disintegration gas, in the service of the resistance. Unfortunately, Zacary is caught by the Confederation forces and put to death.

However, when American journalist Nestor Taylor is dropped into Hungary he is swayed to the cause of the Hungarians by the lovely Amanda, Prof. Zacary’s daughter. Taylor takes the Professor’s inventions, including a bulletproof cape, a mask that projects a Blue Ray that causes those affected by it to go to sleep, radio-controlled crystal torpedo/missiles, and a high-tech car. He carries out solitary operations against the Confederation–sabotage, guerilla attacks, robberies of the Vienna Opera, and so on.

* I've included El Espectro in the Best of the Encyclopedia category because of the ideasplosions within El EspectroEl Espectro didn't have heftroman-type ideasplosions, but rather a series of high concept sf ideas brought together in a very enjoyable way by author A. Olle Bertran. Near-future multi-national Central European dictatorship with Hungary as the lone holdout with a good guy mad scientist with SCIENCE! devices with V For Vendetta-like Costumed Avenger hero with James Bondian devices...that's a winning combination in most writers' hands, and Bertran didn't let anything go to waste. Good clean fun for the whole family!

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