Introduction On Racism Epigraphs A History of the Pulps A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Glossary and Character Taxonomy Breakdown by Country of Origin Bibliography Table of Contents The Best of the Encyclopedia
Park Avenue Hunt Club. The Park Avenue Hunt Club was created by Judson Philips (Luke Bradley, Mark Chandler, Danny Coyle, John Smith (III), Ivy Trask, Carole Trevor) and appeared in thirty-seven stories and serials in Detective Fiction Weekly, Flynn’s Detective Fiction, and New Detective Magazine from 1934 to 1944, beginning with “The Hawk” (Detective Fiction Weekly, Jan. 27, 1934).
The Park Avenue Hunt Club are Costumed Avenger Killer Vigilantes. The Club is a group of black mask-clad dilettantes, gentlemen of leisure, who independently distribute their own variety of "justice," which is inevitably lethal. The leader of the Club is Geoffrey Saville, a former intelligence officer for the U.S. government during World War One. After the War Saville became a sportsman and world traveler, eventually returning to the United States in order to begin dealing out bloody justice. Saville is tall and thin and resembles Ronald Colman. Under fire Saville is cold and fearless, and has a “strange sixth sense” when a story’s plot calls for it.
The second member of the Club is John Jericho, a former big game hunter who craves action. A mammoth man, 6’5” and muscular, Jericho has curly red hair and is a lethal shot with his right hand. (Jericho starred in a series of novels appearing after World War Two). The third member of the Club is Arthur Hallam, the brains of the group. Hallam is a former medical student and psychiatrist. He is intelligent and planned the group’s strategies. The fourth and final member of the group is Wu, a Chinese man who works as chauffeur, valet, cook, and general batman to the Club. He is small and expressionless, but is very loyal to the other members of the Club. He is only an average shot but is deadly with the knife, which he keeps in a neck sheath.
The Club works out of New York City, where they operate from a number of offices. They use a powerful “low black Phaeton” and an armored limousine.
* I'm including the Park Avenue Hunt Club stories in the Best of the Encyclopedia list because they are archetypal in the sense of being iconic. The Club are some of the iconic Killer Vigilantes of the pulps, arriving too late to really influence most of the other notable pulp Killer Vigilantes but being superior examples of the character type. The stories are entertaining enough--Judson Philips was competent and professional, if rarely inspired as a writer--the Club appropriately brave, ruthless, and deadly, and the villains the Club eliminates in the name of "justice" suitably despicable. Wu's appearances are attempts at racial inclusivity, although they still have a few anti-Chinese stereotypes in them. So: good as far as pulp stories went, with the heroes standing out in their merciless quest for "justice."
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