The Mighty Atom terrifies an opponent.


Medium: Comic books
Published by: Magazine Enterprises
First Appeared: 1946
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Over the years, Magazine Enterprises published westerns (such as The Presto Kid), parody (Funnyman), newspaper reprints (Texas Slim). spies (Undercover Girl) and other …

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… genres of fiction in comic book form. In 1946, they got into stories for young children, with the near-simultaneous debut of Tick Tock Tales (first issue cover-dated January, 1946) and The Pixies (which started with a date of Winter, 1946).

The Pixies used the time-honored device of a community of very small people interacting with normal-sized objects. This provided visual appeal in cartoon form as far back as Palmer Cox's Brownies and Bill Donahey's The Teenie Weenies and was still in use, for example in Disney's Bucky Bug. But The Pixies had an added another appealing device, used almost exclusively in comic books. The community sported a superhero of its very own.

Pete Pixie was an ordinary citizen of Pixerary (the town's name). He had nephews named Tom, Dick and Harry, and a girlfriend named Polly Pixie. He was perhaps a little punier than most, but otherwise a perfectly normal guy — on the srface, at least. His neighbors never suspected that when trouble was afoot, he'd sneak away and cry out "Pick a peck o' pixies!", which transformed him into The Mighty Atom, who was capable of dealing with any menace.

Atomic power was prominent in the news during the 1940s and '50s, and atoms were widely known to be small but powerful. That explains not only that name, but why the same one was given to Astro Boy a few years later in his native Japan. It's also why All American Publications used the name The Atom for an earlier little guy who packed a big punch.

Aside from having their own title, The Pixies also had a regular feature in Tick Tock Tales, starting in an early issue (but not the first). Most issues featured Koko & Kola on the cover, tho once (#22, October 1947), Mighty Atom appeared on it to defend them from a pirate.

In the back pages of Tick Tock,The Pixies lasted all the way through 1951, more than 30 issues. But in their own title, they had only six issues (the last one titled Mighty Atom & the Pixies), ending in 1949. Through most of the '50s, they were dormant.

Then comics entrepreneur Israel Waldman, who printed uauthorized editions of characters as prominent as Kaanga and as obscure as Lt. Hercules, got hold of them. Between 1958 and 1963, three issues came out from his IW Enterprises, which also reprinted ME comics such as The Avenger and Jet Powers.

But no publisher since Waldman has shown even that much interest in The Pixies and their resident superhero.


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