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Wama. Wama was created by the Mexican creator Joaquin Bassoco and appeared in a number of comic strips from 1944 to 1958, beginning with “Wama, El Hijo de la Luna” (Chamaco, 1944-1953).

Wama is a Jungle Hero modeled on Tarzan (I). In the jungles of Mexico, which contain a wide range of bizarre and dangerous creatures, the heroic Wama, who was raised by talking apes, fights evil, including a vicious tribe of gorilla-men led by the wicked Tae-bong. In the jungles of Mexico Wama must also deal with snake-men, dragonfly-women, alligator-men, and toad-men, as well as winged monkeys, pygmies with mouths on their foreheads, winged horses, the kingdom of the dwarves and the empire of the lion-men. Wama is married to Katie, an American woman, and has several children by her, but he is a compulsive philanderer and has a number of children by other women. All of them grow up to be like him, and one appeared in his own strip in Chamaco in the 1950s.

* I'm including “Wama, El Hijo de la Luna” in the Best of the Encyclopedia list because of its imaginative content. Imitations of Tarzan (I) are played out, and were so by the mid-1940s, which forced authors of Edgar Rice Burroughs-like stories with Tarzan (I) imitations to get creative in their heroes, settings, and opponents. Joaquin Bassoco did a very good job, in "Wama," of creating enemies that weren't present in any Tarzan (I) story and still held a creative charge in them--pygmies with mouths on their heads, toad-men, dragonfly-women, etc. The end result was a comic strip that was just different enough from the Burroughsian original to be thought of as its own thing rather than Burroughs Lite. The strip is well-illustrated and comparatively well-written, and if Wama is two-dimensional at least his adventures are fairly original. 

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