Betty Bates, Lady at Law debuted in 1940’s Hit Comics #4 and would have a ten year run.  I tend to highlight the cultural malfeasance of the Golden Age books but Betty is a good example of forward thinking, jiu-jitsu brawling career woman.  There were, in fact, dozens of female heroines in the first wave of comics.

Black Owl also first appeared in 1940 in Prize Comics #1…well, actually sort of #2.  Doug Danville didn’t take the Black Owl moniker until that second issue, having determined that it was snappier name than his original alter ego “K the Unknown”, go figure.  It seems to me that Alan Moore’s NiteOwl character from The Watchman, Dan Dreiburg, owed a big nod to Black Owl.  Which is appropriate since Black Owl also featured some of the early work of another comic book great, Jack Kirby.  He came up with Black Owl’s blue and red costume, which I’ve gone changed all up…oh well!

Speaking of Alan Moore, I was reminded the other day of Moore’s work on Miracle Man in the 1980’s.  Originally published in 1950’s UK as an alternative to the legally disembodied Captain Marvel, I had read a couple of the reprints of the Moore work they published a few years back, just before I dove into The Enchanted Dagger.  I had already been working on TOTI, and I knew that The Watchman had a Golden Age angle, of course, but I found a lot of affirmation in Moore’s appropriation of an obscure character like Miracle Man and making something new with it.  Yup.