The Scarab
Publication information
PublisherNedor Comics
America's Best Comics (DC)
First appearanceStartling Comics #34 (July 1945)
In-story information
Alter egoPeter Ward
Team affiliationsSMASH
Notable aliasesThoth
AbilitiesSuper-human strength, flight, invulnerability

The Scarab is a fictional superhero from the Golden Age of Comics. He first appeared in Startling Comics #34 (July 1945), published by Nedor Comics.[1] The character was later revived by writer Alan Moore for America's Best Comics.

Nedor Comics

The Scarab was the secret identity of Egyptologist Peter Ward, who decoded a secret message in an ancient papyrus scroll.[2] Ward was actually the reincarnation of an ancient Egyptian high priest; by rubbing his magic scarab ring Ward would instantly transform into the super-powerful Scarab.[3] He was accompanied by Akh-Tu-Men, an intelligent black cat.[4]

The Scarab debuted in Startling Comics #34, and became a regular backup feature in Exciting Comics from issue #42-48.[5] His last Golden Age appearance was in The Black Terror #20 (October 1947).[6]

America's Best Comics

Alan Moore revived the Scarab, along with many other Nedor Comics characters, for his Tom Strong series. In Tom Strong #12 (June 2001), the Scarab was revealed to have been one of the members of SMASH that had been placed in suspended animation after an alien invasion from the moon in 1969. Awakened 30 years later, the Scarab joined his former comrades in the fight against the alien. SMASH disbanded shortly thereafter, but reformed three years later. The Scarab is a member of the reformed group.

In the Terra Obscura spin-off series, the Scarab allows himself to be bonded with the ancient Egyptian god Thoth in order to control one-time superhero Mystico (who is himself bonded with the god Seth).

Dynamite Entertainment

The Scarab
Publication information
PublisherDynamite Entertainment
First appearanceProject Superpowers #0 (cameo; January 2008)
In-story information
Alter egoAmon Khadul
Team affiliationsThe Superpowers
AbilitiesNone; wears exoskeletal armor that lets him fly and gives him superhuman strength and speed, and is equipped with electronic jamming technology.

The 2008 miniseries Project Superpowers from Dynamite Entertainment introduced a new version of the Scarab.[7] He is a loose interpretation of the Golden Age Scarab, with more differences from the source than other characters in the series, who are all characters who have fallen into the public domain.[8]

Fictional biography

Ten years ago, Amon Khadul found a priceless stone shaped like a scarab, and he sold it for a fortune upon which he built a financial empire. Wanting to make a difference in the world, he built the Scarab armor to fight against the F-Troops who were invading the Middle East; electronic jammers in his armor prevented people from recording his existence. It was there that he met Samson, who convinced him to fight the enemy openly, and this encounter led to Scarab becoming an ally of The Superpowers.[8] However, Amon Khadul is also a member of The Supremacy, a secret council that rules the world and considers the returned heroes a threat to their system; because he is opposed to The Supremacy's practices and lust for power, Khadul acts as a "double agent", keeping the Superpowers informed of The Supremacy's plans.

Unbeknownst to Khadul, the scarab-shaped stone he had found and sold was formerly part of a magic ring that once belonged to another hero known as the Scarab; the fact that Khadul has taken the same name and symbol is a coincidence... or perhaps fate.

Armor

The Scarab wears a suit of exoskeletal armor, which resembles a silver-colored humanoid scarab. The armor gives Scarab superhuman strength and speed, and its wings enable him to fly with great speed and maneuverability. The armor is also equipped with electronic jamming technology, which prevents people from electronically recording him.

Film

A modernized version of the Scarab appears alongside other Golden Age superheroes in the independent film Avenging Force: The Scarab, a low-budget production likely attempting to capitalize on the success of the film Marvel's The Avengers.

References

  1. ^ Yoe, Craig (2018). Super Weird Heroes Vol. 2: Preposterous But True. Yoe Books. p. 255. ISBN 978-1631408588.
  2. ^ Mougin, Lou (2020). Secondary Superheroes of Golden Age Comics. McFarland & Co. p. 176. ISBN 9781476638607.
  3. ^ Markstein, Don. "The Scarab". Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  4. ^ Nevins, Jess (2013). Encyclopedia of Golden Age Superheroes. High Rock Press. pp. 233–234. ISBN 978-1-61318-023-5.
  5. ^ Benton, Mike (1992). Superhero Comics of the Golden Age: The Illustrated History. Dallas: Taylor Publishing Company. pp. 161–162. ISBN 0-87833-808-X. Retrieved 1 April 2020.
  6. ^ [1] Grand Comics Database. Last accessed 2/14/2007
  7. ^ The Scarab at the Comic Book DB (archived from the original)
  8. ^ a b Superpowers at the Comic Book DB (archived from the original)