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Gleed, Ben. Ben Gleed was created by Don Wilcox (Lester Allison, “Ebbtide” Jones, Whispering Gorilla) and appeared in “Ben Gleed, King of Speed” (Amazing Stories, Dec. 1939), “The Iron Men of Super City” (Amazing Stories, May, 1941), and “The Fiend of New London” (Amazing Stories, Feb. 1942).
Ben Gleed is the City Manager of Super City, which was founded as a “gigantic advertising project for Efficio, Incorporated…the last word in scientific efficiency.” Most workers can’t stand the “inhuman” pace of work in the city. Gleed is an exception—he is “all speed and no mercy,” a super-efficient worker who has “trained myself in the science of speed.” But this has come at the cost of making him cold and hard, especially to the pretty stenographer Lucille, who loves him and tries to help him when the City’s Board of Directors schemes to fire Gleed.
Gleed proves himself to the Board by doing ordinary jobs with better speed and efficiency than ordinary workers, but then he loses a publicity job for being too fast and not concentrating on quality. Without Gleed chaos and the dreaded inefficiency come to the city. Gleed is given back command and restores order, and Lucille falls for his unyielding, steely, impassive allure. In later stories Gleed deals with a robot revolt of the Iron Men and leads the rebuilding of London into a Super City Of SCIENCE!.
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