The Hood, non-invisible at the time, in action. Artist: Art Pinajian.


Medium: Comic books
Published by: Quality Comics
First Appeared: 1939
Creator: Art Pinajian
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Hooded Justice is a vanishingly minor character in modern comic books — a bit player in the back-story of Watchmen — and he …

continued below

… had the same name as a vanishingly minor character from the 1940s — one single appearance under that name. In fact, even under his most familiar name (of three that he used), Invisible Justice, he was pretty small potatoes.

Hooded Justice debuted in the first issue of Smash Comics,which was put out by Quality Comics (Plastic Man, Midnight) with a cover date of August, 1939. Also making their initial appearances there were such luminaries as Archie O'Toole, Bozo the Robot and Abdul the Arab. Hooded Justice was created by cartoonist Art Pinajian, also the creator of Madam Fatal and The Wasp. Such was the publisher's confidence in this one, they didn't put him on the cover — not even in one of its four small insets.

Kent Thurston was apparently, tho it wasn't stated as part of his character, something of a faddist. Or at least, he indulged in one contemporary fad, that of putting on a mask and fighting crime and/or evil on a freelance basis. In particular, he dressed up in an identity-concealing outfit and went into evil-bashing under the Hooded Justice monicker. Also introduced in his first adventure was his police contact, Inspector Bill Blake.

The second issue was where he got his super power and his second superhero name. He rescued a scientist from a criminal gang — unsuccessfully, apparently, as the scientist was dead before the story was over. But before biting the dust, he gave his would-be rescuer his latest discovery, a way to make a man invisible. From that point on, the hero added the word "invisible" to his name, usually calling himself "The Invisible Hood" tho the series name appeared as "Invisible Justice".

That lasted less than three years. In Smash #33 (May, 1942), Invisible Whoever was replaced by The Marksman, an archer superhero much like The Spider or The Arrow, except his major schtick was having infiltrated the German military as an officer. Invisible Hooded Justice, or whatever, disappeared for good.

Years later, Quality's properties were acquired by DC Comics. But the only use DC ever made of this one was a brief appearance in All-Star Squadron #32, and his role as cannon fodder was less than most characters got there.

Except, of course, to use his original name in Watchmen.


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