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Comic Book Legends Revealed #248

Welcome to the two-hundred and forty-eighth in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the previous two hundred and forty-seven.

Comic Book Legends Revealed is part of the larger Legends Revealed series, where I look into legends about the worlds of entertainment and sports, which you can check out here, at legendsrevealed.com. I'd especially recommend you check out this installment of TV Legends Revealed to find out which odd TV series coined the phrase "Does Not Compute"!

This week's a special theme week - each legend involves re-using unpublished works!

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Let's begin!

COMIC LEGEND: An unpublished script starring the Seven Soldiers of Victory was published within five issues of Adventure Comics...THIRTY YEARS after the Seven Soldiers of Victory feature was canceled!

STATUS: True

Leading Comics was a quarterly title by DC Comics that debuted in 1941.

Inspired by the format of All-Star Comics, Leading Comics featured a number of solo heroes all on a newly formed group called the Seven Soldiers of Victory (the heroes were the Star-Spangled Kid and Stripesy, The Crimson Avenger, Green Arrow and Speedy, The Vigilante and the Shining Knight - Crimson Avenger's sidekick didn't count for some reason)

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Here they are in #1 forming their new team...

A typical issue of Leading Comics had the Seven Soldiers of Victory get together in Chapter 1 in a framing device, then each individual hero (or heroes, as there were a few duos in the group) would get their own adventure, with each chapter usually drawn by a different artist. For instance, in Leading Comics #1, Mort Meskin drew the framing story and George Papp and Creig Flessel were among the artists who worked on each individual chapter (I bet you can guess which character Flessel drew)

Here's an example from Leading Comics #13 (in this issue, though, Arthur Cazeneuve drew each chapter)...

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Each issue was written by Joe Samachson.

Well, Leading Comics was not the most popular book (after all, it was never a monthly book), and in 1945, DC Comics dropped the superheroes from the book with issue #14...

The book then became a funny animal title...

until it was canceled with issue #41...

At the time, though, Samachson already had a script written for #15 that ended up being unused.

Well, it was unused for AWHILE, at least!

THIRTY YEARS later, the great Joe Orlando broke the unused script by Samachson out and the last issue of Leading Comics was finally published over five issues of Adventure Comics, #438-443.

Like the original stories, each chapter was handled by a different artist. This time around, Orlando got some of the best and brightest of DC's 1975 stable of artists.

Dick Dillin did the framing story...

Then Howard Chaykin...

Then Lee Elias...

Then Mike Grell...

Then Ernie Chan...

Then Jose-Luis Garcia-Lopez...

Then back to Dillin to wrap things up...

I don't know if Orlando came up with the idea, but boy what a cool idea it was!

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